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The purpose of this buying guide is to help you find the best cookware set for your kitchen.

Here are links to the complete guide:

In part 1 we went over the different pieces of cookware. In part 2 we discussed the most popular types of cookware sets including stainless steel cookware sets, aluminum cookware sets, and Multi-Clad Cookware Sets.

Here, we will briefly discuss the less common choices for cookware construction. While not as popular, each does have its own character and purpose.

Let’s go!

How To Buy A Cookware Set

Here Are More Types Of Cookware Sets

1. Cast-iron Cookware

This is not actually a “less common” cookware type, we just weren’t sure where to put it and topping the list of part 3 seemed ideal. Cast-iron cookware is ideal in cooking food which requires low and steady temperature. Despite the temperature around it fluctuating, its built and construction enables it to effectively maintain its metal temperature for a long time.

While large amounts of iron can be poisonous, iron cookware only provides a small amount of the total RDA of iron intake. Iron is essential to producing red blood cells so cast iron cookware may be an advantage or a disadvantage depending on your situation.

One of the most fun things to do when owning Cast-Iron Cookware is seasoning the cast iron cookware (to ensure it keeps its non-stick quality). (More on seasoning cast iron cookware here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seasoning_%28cookware%29).

Seasoning Cast Iron Cookware

Advantages:

  • Since it heats and cools down easily, it retains and maintains heat better than the other materials.
  • Again, one fun interesting quirk about cast-iron cookware is seasoning it to keep its non-stick quality

Challenges:

  • It is prone to rust development. Therefore, cleaning is advised to be done just by damping it with cloth.
  • It has the tendency to react with food if not seasoned. Thus, it may require high maintenance since it needs to be regularly seasoned.
  • Also a soft reactive metal that can “leak” into food

2. Carbon Steel Cookware

Carbon steel cookware, such as Woks, is also effective in cooking dishes which require even temperature. Just like cast-iron cookware, it also needs to be seasoned before the first use which is part of its charm.

Advantages:

  • It heats and cools temperature quickly and evenly.
  • Needs to be seasoned before use (just like cast-iron cookware)

Challenges:

  • Just like cast-iron, it may have the tendency to react with food.

3. Porcelain

Porcelain cookware is another alternative to metal cookware and has many of the same advantages of Ceramic cookware. No metals to interfere with your food is the most popular advantage. However, there are other harmful chemicals in pottery and Porcelain such as lead.

One of the most fun characteristics about Porcelain and pottery cookware is the ability to paint it bright colors and give it its own character. Two very popular porcelain cookware sets are pictured below, the Rachael Ray Porcelain 10-piece Cookware Set (left, red) and the Paula Deen 15-Piece Porcelain Cookware Set (right, green)

Rachael Ray Red Porcelain Enamel Nonstick 10-Piece Cookware Set    Paula Deen 12512 15-Piece Porcelain Cookware Set

Advantages:

  • Eco-friendly, no metals
  • Easy to clean
  • Usually the most colorful of cookware. The main reason people choose Porcelain cookware is that it can be very stylish
  • Resists chips/scratches/stains (unless dropped)

Challenges:

  • Cannot endure direct contact with heat for long periods of time. Better with low heat
  • Pricey. There are cheap sets of porcelain cookware, but you will want the more expensive brands which will have a higher quality of enamel.

4. Glass/Ceramic Cookware

Glass cookware is made from hard and smooth glass ceramic which renders it nonreactive to several cooking materials such as heat, water and chemicals. It works great with all heat sources, except induction.

Advantages:

  • It is resistant to extreme temperature.
  • Eco-friendly, no metals.
  • Since it can withstand freezer temperature, one can enjoy the convenience of moving it directly from the fridge to the microwave, hob or oven.
  • Easy to clean

Challenges

  • Since it is not too sensitive with temperature, it has the tendency to heat slowly. But once it has reached the targeted temperature, it can retain it well.
  • There is some health concern of the glaze used on ceramic cookware (some mix of lead and cadmium). Make sure the coating is within safe levels of lead and cadmium.

THAT CONCLUDES THIS PORTION OF OUR BUYING GUIDE

Be on the lookout for:

Part 4: Other Considerations

Where we discuss other factors for you to think about when buying the best cookware set for your lifestyle!

Here are links to the complete guide:

See you next time!

Check out all our best cookware set reviews

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