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Best Cookware?

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  • Best Cookware?

    I'm kind of on the fence for either cast iron or ceramic. What do y'all recommend? A few questions:

    1) I hear that cast iron can actually be good for you, because of the iron that leeches into your food. Is this form of iron "natural"? Does our body recognize it as the same iron that it gets from, oh say, a nice juicy steak?

    2) How big of a hassle is it to season it all the time?

    3) Is ceramic cookware REALLY safe? I feel as though it would depend on the brand. Is there a standard brand that is known to be the best?

  • #2
    Either one is great. I mostly use cast iron when I cook, but that's because I've found it easier to find, more affordable, and easier to know exactly what it is I'm getting. In other words, it's easier to tell when something's pure cast iron than if it's pure ceramic. I've seen ceramic stuff that is painted, and ceramic stuff that has an aluminum coating, etc.

    Cast iron is not a big pain to clean and season if you do it right from the start. Don't ever use soap, simply use a brush after cooking to get whatever might have stuck on and then apply a fat. My choice is coconut oil. Works extremely well, keeps everything clean and shiny. Nothing sticks to my cast iron pans; it's like magic.

    As far as the iron leaching, I have heard that it is beneficial as well, but I have my doubts whether it is truly usable by our bodies. If so though, hell, that's awesome. That being said, the way I eat, iron is definitely one mineral I'll never have to worry about!
    I never know what to put in these things. I write songs!


    • #3
      I enjoy Cast Iron that is coated (Le Creuset): This cookware is coated and provides the best of both worlds --- cooking on the stove top, transferring to oven, and serving on the table. Cleanup is a breeze. (Do I sound like an infomercial?). Any type of cast iron is great for these reasons and needs to be seasoned from time to time, which is quite easy to do.
      F, 48, 5'10"
      Start Date: 25-06-12 @ 161lbs
      Goal Reached: 30-09-12 @ 143lb. Now bouncing between 145lb - 149lb. I'd like less bounce and more consistency :-)

      Started Cross Fit 20.12.12 ---- Can't wait to submit my success story on the 1st anniversary of starting primal.


      • #4
        all le creuset in my kitchen


        • #5
          i love cast iron. and, i have never cleaned my stuff...i get out as much of the food as i can, and whatever doesn't make just adds to the flavor of my next meal.


          • #6
            le creuset is the best! It's very pricey but it will last forever. Sometimes you can find odd pieces at places like TJ Maxx or Marshalls. I bought mine online (ebay), but every once in awhile i look and i haven't really seen any good deals lately on ebay for that stuff.

            plain ole cast iron would be my 2nd choice and it's a lot cheaper.


            • #7
              I prefer cast to ceramic. I have both coated (a Le Crueset french oven) and uncoated (various makes but all with smooth cooking surfaces). Cast isn't hard to take care of, despite CW. I love the weight of cast, as it makes pan stay stationary while you stir.

              I have an uncoated steel wok that came with directions that sounded exactly like the seasoning instructions that my grandmother gave me for cast. It works great as well.
              Male, 32y, 6'0" tall
              SW 306lbs (6/1/12)
              CW 244lbs (1/17/13)

              BP down from 120/80 to 110/74


              • #8
                Alton Brown had a bit of cast iron "hardware" care on the pilot steak episode in season one, I believe it was. (The series was called "Good Eats", if you're unfamiliar with the guy.)

                However, I'm always interested in how people maintain their cast iron.


                • #9
                  I have plain cast iron in multiple sizes that I have collected from second hand store for next to nothing. I also have a stainless pan with 4 inch straight sides and a lid that I love. Also one enamel coated Dutch oven by Lodge that I got on mega sale. I find the stainless is the easiest to care for followed by the cast iron. Cast iron is a no brainer to care for after the initial seasoning.


                  • #10
                    I use stainless steel quite a bit. Seems to be safe from what I have researched.


                    • #11
                      Le creuset and All Clad stainless & copper core - makes cooking so easy


                      • #12
                        Latest T-FAL skillets good too


                        • #13
                          Cuisanart stainless, love it.


                          • #14
                            we use lodge cast iron -- we have two skillets and two dutch ovens (one larger than the other). We usually use one skillet and the two dutch ovens.

                            it's great.


                            • #15
                              Another fan of cast iron and stainless steel here. When we got married, we received a set of stainless steel pots with a copper bottom and they're still going strong (13 years later).

                              A few years ago we bought a cast iron skillet that we use a lot for steaks & burgers, or anything we want to sear. Super easy to clean. You can find detailed, but simple, instructions online for seasoning cast iron.

                              We also have a 5 qt. Martha Stewart enamel-coated cast iron covered pot that we got on Amazon for $40 several years ago. Works especially great for pot roasts. If we win the lottery, we'll buy some Le Cruset pieces. Until then, what we have now works just fine.