There are many advantages of using stainless steel frying pans in your kitchen: They distribute heat quickly and evenly and have a nonreactive surface (meaning its surface does not affect the flavor of food you’re cooking). These durable pans are constructed of food-grade stainless steel with an aluminum core.
Since stainless steel frying pans do not have a nonstick coating, it’s important to use them properly and maintain them carefully to prevent food from sticking. Most of these frying pans feature riveted handles, and some even come with lids. Here are some of the best stainless steel frying pans to add to your cookware collection.
- BEST OVERALL: Cuisinart MultiClad Pro Stainless 10” Open Skillet
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Tramontina 80101/019DS Gourmet Prima Stainless Steel
- BEST UPGRADE: All-Clad 4114 Stainless Steel Tri-Ply Bonded Fry Pan
- BEST 10-INCH: Ozeri 10” Steel Earth Pan, Restaurant Edition
- BEST WITH LID: Frigidaire 11FFSPAN13 Ready Cook Cookware
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Stainless Steel Frying Pan
When shopping for a stainless steel frying pan, it’s important to consider things such as size, capacity, grade, and the weight of the pan. Learn more about these features and benefits below.
Size and Capacity
Stainless steel frying pans are available in multiple sizes: 8-, 10-, and 12-inch are the most common sizes, but they are available in larger sizes as well. As you consider which stainless steel frying pan is right for you, consider how many people you usually cook for and what kind of food you typically make. Don’t get just one frying pan, though—it’s helpful to have pans of a few different sizes in your kitchen.
Stainless steel is a material that’s used in many objects, but not all stainless steel is created equal. The difference is the grade of the stainless steel. Stainless steel frying pans are made out of food-grade stainless steel, which means they contain at least 16 percent chromium by weight. Nickel is also added to some stainless steel frying pans to enhance their corrosion resistance.
Food-grade stainless steel must be part of the American Iron and Steel Institute’s (AISI) 200, 300, or 400 series, according to the NSF International standard, which certifies that products meet health and safety standards. The 300 series is the most popular for frying pans because it is long-lasting and corrosion-resistant. The 200 series is a lower-quality, budget-friendly alternative, and the 400 series is typically used for flatware as opposed to frying pans.
Stainless steel frying pans are heavier than other types of frying pans such as those made out of aluminum. Although it’s important to ensure your pan is not too heavy to lift, there are benefits to using a heavier stainless steel frying pan. Heavier pans can withstand heat better, which prevents them from warping. They are also less susceptible to hot spots since they contain multiple layers.
Our Top Picks
This list includes the top picks for the best stainless steel frying pans for the kitchen. With useful features like tri-ply construction and riveted handles, these stainless steel frying pans would be terrific additions to your cookware collection.
This 10-inch frying pan features triple-ply stainless construction with a brushed stainless steel exterior, stainless steel interior, and aluminum core. The premium construction of this MultiClad Pro stainless steel frying pan offers even heat distribution and quality cooking performance.
Its other terrific features include a riveted handle that stays cool to the touch and tapered rims for drip-free pouring. It can be used in the oven and broiler and is safe to heat up to 550 degrees Fahrenheit.
Constructed in three sturdy layers, this frying pan from Tramontina is made of durable 18/10 stainless steel, an aluminum core, and a magnetic stainless steel exterior with a mirror-polished finish. Its impact-bonded base generates even heat distribution. Other benefits are this frying pan’s riveted handles for comfortable use and its flared edge for easy, no-spill pouring.
This frying pan can be used on all types of cooktops, including induction cooktops. It’s also safe to use under the broiler or in the oven up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.
All-Clad’s 14-inch stainless steel frying pan has tri-ply bonded construction featuring durable stainless steel surrounding an aluminum core for even heat distribution. This pan has a wide, flat cooking surface and low-profile design, and its polished exterior is stick resistant and simple to maintain.
This frying pan also has riveted handles that are easy to grip. All-Clad products are made in the USA and dishwasher safe. This pan is compatible with induction cooktops and broiler and oven safe to 600 degrees Fahrenheit.
This 10-inch frying pan is made with uncoated 18/8 tri-ply stainless steel and has a stainless steel handle that stays cool to the touch. Oven and broiler safe, this pan allows even cooking without hot spots. Its magnetized base is compatible for use on induction stoves for rapid heat transfer.
This pan resists discoloration and is scratch resistant and dishwasher safe. Easily seasoned with all types of cooking oil, this pan is oven safe to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.
This 12-inch stainless steel frying pan from Frigidaire is made out of brushed stainless steel, with an aluminum core that provides quick and even heating. What sets it apart from some of its competitors is that it comes with a see-through lid and has two easy-grip, riveted handles for added convenience in the kitchen.
This durable frying pan is dishwasher safe; it’s oven safe up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit with the lid on or 450 degrees Fahrenheit without the lid. It is suitable for use on all types of cooktops, including induction.
FAQs About Stainless Steel Frying Pans
If you still have some questions about purchasing and using stainless steel frying pans, read on for frequently asked questions and answers about these kitchen essentials.
Q. What is stainless steel?
Stainless steel is a type of steel alloy that is combined with chromium to form a strong, corrosion-resistant outer layer.
Q. Are stainless steel frying pans safe?
Yes, most stainless steel frying pans are safe to use, but it’s important to purchase a high-quality model made of food-grade stainless steel so it will not leach any chemicals into food. Routine maintenance and cleaning is recommended to maintain the quality of your stainless steel frying pan.
Q. Can metal utensils be used with a stainless steel frying pan?
Metal utensils shouldn’t be used with a stainless steel frying pan because they can scratch the pan. It’s better to use wooden, plastic, or silicone utensils.
Q. How do you clean a stainless steel frying pan?
Stainless steel frying pans can be safely washed in the dishwasher, but hand-washing with warm water and soap is recommended for best results.