Stainless steel cookware is a popular choice among both professional chefs and home cooks. The material offers excellent heat conductivity and does not react with acidic foods, making it ideal for cooking a variety of dishes. Plus, it's durable, dishwasher-safe, and resistant to stains and scratches from metal utensils.
Below, we've rounded up seven of the best stainless steel cookware sets on the market. With options for every budget, your new favorite pan is only a few clicks away.
The 8 Best Stainless Steel Cookware Sets
Made In Cookware - 10 Piece Stainless Steel Pot and Pan Set
Made In Cookware offers professional quality cookware, and it's used in restaurants across the world. Chefs like Mashama Bailey, Tom Colicchio, Nancy Silverton have chosen to use Made In. If you are serious about your cooking or upgrading your essential cookware then it's time for you to check out Made In's stainless steel set. These stainless steel pots and pans are dishwasher (except nonstick)- and oven-safe up to 800°F. Your cooking options are endless, and your nightly clean-up is as easy as ever.
Each piece is crafted in Italy from 5 layers of four different types of metals to construct stainless clad, meaning each piece is nearly indestructible. The stainless steel handles are designed to stay cool with stainless steel rivets that help guarantee it for life.
This stainless steel cookware set contains everything you need to master in the kitchen. However, this set's only downside is that it contains one nonstick frying pan and it contains two layers of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) coating.
Set includes: 10-inch nonstick fry pan, 10-inch stainless clad frying pan, 2-qt saucepan, 4-qt saucepan, 3.5-qt saute pan, and 8-qt stock pot. All with a lid except frying pans.
Cuisinart ® Chef's Classic™ 11-Piece Stainless Steel Cookware Set
Best on a Budget
Sauté, simmer, steam, fry, boil, broil, bake, and brown. You name it, this affordable Cuisinart ® Chef's Classic™ 11-Piece Stainless Steel Cookware Set can do it. With a range of sizes and shapes, they can tackle just about any recipe. Use the saucepans for boiling eggs or making small batches of sauces and the sauté pan for frying or searing. The stockpot is perfect for making large batches of soup or stew, and the skillet is for frying eggs or cooking up a batch of bacon. Utilize the handy steamer insert for vegetables and delicate seafood cuts.
Cuisinart's reliable stainless steel construction ensures that these stainless steel pans and pots will last for years, and the polished finish adds an extra layer of protection against scratches and dents. All components are dishwasher-safe for easy clean-up minus the elbow grease. With its versatility, durability, and easy maintenance, it's a set that will become a staple in your kitchen for countless meals to come.
Set includes: 1.5 Quart saucepan with glass cover, 2.5 Quart saucepan with glass cover, 3 Quart saucepan with helper handle and glass cover, 8 Quart stockpot with glass cover, 8" Skillet, 10" Skillet, and 18cm Steamer insert
BergHOFF Ouro Gold 11-Piece Cookware Set
In addition to being practical and functional, the BergHOFF Ouro Gold 11-Piece Cookware Set is also incredibly stylish, with a sleek gold finish that adds a touch of elegance to your kitchen. Energy-efficient and induction-ready, these durable stainless steel pans and pots marry form with function. They're the perfect choice for home chefs who love taking photos of their food.
Each piece is crafted from 18/10 stainless steel, with lids and handles included. A triple-layer base ensures even heat distribution, making them suitable for use on all cooking surfaces. Tight-fitting lids and a handy stainless steel steamer insert further increase your cooking options. Whether it's seared scallops, pasta sauce, or steamed broccoli, this versatile 11-piece set ensures it's cooked to perfection.
Set includes: 6.25-inch covered saucepan, 8-inch covered casserole pan, 10-inch covered stock pot, 10-inch covered deep skillet, 8-inch fry pan, 10-inch fry pan, and a 10-inch steamer insert
Greenpan® Venice Nonstick 10-Piece Stainless Steel Cookware Set
Best nonstick stainless steel cookware
The Greenpan® Venice Nonstick 10-Piece Stainless Steel Cookware Set is a top-of-the-line collection of pots and pans made using eco-friendly, non-toxic materials. It includes a variety of sizes and shapes, including a saucepan, stockpot, sautés pan, and more, giving you the versatility to tackle any recipe. Each piece is made from durable, multi-layered stainless steel that can be used on all stovetop surfaces.
The standout feature of Greenpan® cookware is its ceramic nonstick coating, which allows for effortless food release and easy cleaning. The finish is made without PFOA, PFAS, and other harmful chemicals, making it a safe and healthy choice for your family. Handles made from a comfortable, heat-resistant material allow for easy transport from the stovetop to the oven.
Set includes: 1.5-qt covered saucepan, 3-qt covered saucepan, 5-qt casserole dish, 8-inch frying pan, 10-inch frying pan, 3-qt skillet, and 2 matching glass lids
Demeyere Atlantis Proline 9-Piece Stainless Steel Cookware Set
Worth the splurge
Artisanally crafted in Belgium, Demeyere cookware is unlike anything else on the market. This 9-Piece Atlantis Proline Stainless Steel Cookware Set is crafted with a 'TriplInduc' triple-layer base, which consists of a layer of aluminum sandwiched between two layers of stainless steel. This unique design provides for fast and even heating, ensuring that your food is cooked to perfection on any type of stovetop.
The luxe Silvinox finish helps resist fingerprints and stains to keep the silver-white exterior looking its best for longer. Stay-cool handles make it easy to transport a hot pan from the stovetop to the broiler, then straight to the tabletop for an impressive dinner party display. Think of them as a long-term investment for your kitchen.
Set includes: 2-qt saucepan with lid, 3.5-qt saucier with lid, 5-qt sauté pan with lid, 11-inch fry pan, and a 9-qt Dutch oven with lid
HOMI CHEF 10-Piece Nickel Free Stainless Steel Cookware Set
Best Nickel Free Cookware Set
The standout feature of this HOMICHEF 14-Piece Nickel Free Stainless Steel Cookware Set is its nickel free. If you are sensitive or allergic to nickel, then this is the set for you. Not to mention, these nickel-free cookware sets are 12-15% energy-saving.
Each pot and pan is constructed from sturdy nickel-free stainless steel and cast iron with a 5mm thick 3 ply construction and aluminum core, ensuring they're oven-safe, dishwasher-friendly, and compatible with all cooktop types. Naturally, stick resistance without toxic PFOA and PTFE. Provides even and consistent heat distribution and eliminates hotspots effectively.
Set includes: 1 QT Sauce Pan with Lid, 2.5QT Sauce Pan with Lid, 7 QT Stock Pot with Lid, 9.5"/ 2.5QT Saute Pan with Lid, 8" Frying Pan, 9.5" Frying Pan
Viking Professional 5-Ply Stainless Steel Cookware Set
Best Heat Distribution
The Viking Professional 5-Ply Stainless Steel Cookware Set combines the best qualities of stainless steel and aluminum with its sturdy five-ply construction. The pots and pans heat up quickly and evenly, and the well-designed handles provide a comfortable, secure grip.
Its three layers of an aluminum core and 18/10 stainless steel provide superior durability and performance. Not only do the stainless steel interiors look sleek, but they also heat evenly and quickly through the pan. The stainless exteriors feature an elegant satin finish and are magnetic to ensure compatibility with all co0k tops, including induction. Whether you're a seasoned pro or just starting out in the kitchen, they're sure to be your new go-to's.
Set includes: 8-inch and 10-inch fry pans, 2-quart and 3 quart saucepans with lids, an 8-quart stockpot with lid, and a 3.4 quart sauté pan with lid
Misen Stainless Steel Pots and Pans Set
Best Starter Set
Whether you are looking for a housewarming gift or gifting yourself a serious cookware set, this Misen Stainless Steel Pots and Pans Set has everything you need for serious cooking. Whether it's searing meats, simmering sauces, or boiling pasta, this set has got you.
Crafted from 18/10 stainless steel with three layers of aluminum and alloy core, these five-layer pots and pans will heat fast and even without hot spots. The slightly steeper sloped walls create more cooking space for more food. Designed with a rounded, closed edge to ensure a perfect, drip-free pour using an ergonomically designed stay-cool handle. The set is oven safe for up to 500F and safe for all utensils, and when you are done cooking, stick it to the dishwasher and simply scrub any stains with a stainless steel cleaner.
What to Look for in Stainless Steel Cookware
When shopping for stainless steel cookware, there are a few key things to consider to ensure that you get a high-quality product that will last for years and perform well in the kitchen:
High-grade stainless steel, 300 series and above, is more durable and corrosion-resistant than lower grades, meaning it will hold up better over time. It will retain its shine and polish without rusting.
Most stainless steel cookware uses 18/10, and it contains 18 percent of chromium and 10 percent nickel. This type of cookware will resist rust and will retain its shine and polish. If you are sensitive to nickel, look for 18/0 or "430 stainless steel" as it does not contain any nickel.
For quality purchases, it's best to avoid the 200 series of stainless steel as they are not as durable and corrodes easily, so it's more likely to leach the cookware core into your food over time and under high heat.
The more layers of stainless steel, the stronger and more durable the cookware is going to be. Look for cookware that is made with a tri-ply, five-ply construction, or even seven-ply construction, which means that the base of the pan has a layer of aluminum or copper core sandwiched between layers of stainless steel. This can help to improve the cookware's heat conductivity and prevent hot spots. With high durability, it also helps protect the core from leaching into your food.
The thickness of the stainless steel material, known as the gauge, can affect the overall durability and performance of the cookware. Thicker gauges (lower numbers) tend to be more durable and heat evenly but can also be heavy and more expensive. Thinner gauges are lighter and less expensive but may not heat as evenly and may be more prone to warping.
Look for handles that are securely attached to the cookware and comfortable to hold. While some handles are made of stainless steel, others may be coated with a heat-resistant material such as silicone.
Your pans' lids should be made with high-quality materials with sturdy, heat-resistant handles and a secure fit.
Some stainless steel cookware may not be suitable for use on certain cooktops, so be sure to check the manufacturer's recommendations to ensure that the set you choose is compatible with your stove.
Stainless steel pots and pans are harder to clean compared to non-stick ones, and many brands have added PTFE or ceramic nonstick to make cleaning a breeze. The problem with these coatings is they may contain forever chemicals, nano titanium or silica.
Is stainless steel cookware nonstick?
No, unless it has a nonstick coating on top of the stainless steel constructions. Otherwise, they will stick. You can "reduce" sticks by using butter and oil, but they do not release as easily as nonstick cookware.
To reduce sticking, you have to make sure you are using the right technique and applying the correct heat level to your stainless steel pan. If you apply too much or too little heat, food is more likely to stick.
Stainless steel cookware versus cast iron
Typical stainless steel cookware is relatively low maintenance than cast iron, which requires seasoning and special upkeep.
Is it better to have nickel in stainless steel cookware?
The advantage of having some nickel in stainless steel cookware is it makes it more corrosion-resistant. However, this also makes the cookware more expensive because of the cost of nickel. Nickel can also be an issue for people with sensitivity or allergies.