A Quick Guide to Ceramic Cookware Sets
If you’re searching for an eco-friendly alternative to your nonstick cookware set, you can’t avoid ceramic pots and pans. This material is toxic free and very easy to use. Still, it can be hard to find the right set because there are so many brands on the market. I hope that this little article will help you compare features of some cookware sets and find features you really need in your new ceramic cookware set.
In the past, ceramic was the most popular cookware material. Over time, other materials came into fashion: bronze, copper and cast iron became more popular for their durability and performance. Ceramic cookware required a lot of time to heat but could hold heat for many hours. Modern ceramic doesn’t have this problem because it heats up very quickly and preserves the heat longer.
More recently, innovation and technology have allowed for an application of a thin ceramic coating to more durable materials. Nowadays you can find enamel cookware that features a glassy coating that hides several metal layers underneath. Ceramic is more popular than glass when it comes to nonstick surfaces. The main point is to create a surface that will let the food slide off easily and make cleaning fast and hassle-free. Many manufacturers offer quality, high-end ceramic cookware that can be passed from a parent to a child and perform just as well as the time it was bought.
What makes ceramic so special?
When you chose ceramic cookware over other materials, there are two things you should know about: how it performs and how you should clean it. Ceramic cookware is much better than stainless steel, aluminum or cast iron on both fronts.
Ceramic is a hybrid material and manufacturers make sure it takes the best of other materials: ceramic preserves the metal layer underneath, so it combines an amazing heat retention properties of cast iron, an outstanding temperature control of stainless steel and nonstick functions of ceramic. Moreover, ceramic doesn’t react with acidic foods and doesn’t degrade. It comes as no surprise that some of the best remains of past generations are ceramic pots and pans.
The nonstick lowdown
Unlike Teflon coating that has been proved to release toxic fumes under high heat, ceramic cookware doesn’t have any of the health concerns and is completely eco-friendly. Teflon is a lightweight, efficient surface that can be sold for a low price, making it a popular choice for many cooks. However, ceramic coatings are thicker and more durable. These properties make ceramic much more expensive to manufacture.
However, Teflon isn’t durable at all and it can break at high heat, temperatures that your oven can achieve during cooking. When it happens, it flakes and it gets to your food, and it has been proved to have negative effects on your lungs and brain. If you use Teflon cookware, make sure to read manufacturer instructions carefully.
Ceramic coating never breaks at very high temperatures as it’s totally inert. This material doesn’t break off or chip during regular cooking, and the surface doesn’t deteriorate over years. These properties justify a higher price: you will get a durable and toxic-free cookware that you can easily use and clean. It’s not uncommon for ceramic pieces to be passed down through generations.
Ceramic and heat conductivity
Ceramic surface is more than just a convenience of a nonstick coating. This material is one of the best heat conductors used in cookware. When manufacturers add cast iron or stainless steel layers underneath, you get a piece that heats up evenly and quickly, and then holds the temperature for many hours. Ceramic keeps the heat and releases it evenly and slowly. It’s a great choice for everyone who has an oven with weaker heating elements. It also compensates for a higher price.
Finally, ceramic cookware just looks good. This coating can come in a wide variety of colors, from dusty to light and bright, and many options mean that you can find a ceramic set that matches the design of your kitchen. Ceramic keeps its beautiful appearance for many years, even longer than stainless steel, and it doesn’t gather scratches. If you give good care to your ceramic cookware, it can be very pretty many years after you bought it.