Stainless steel utensils are excellent and long-lasting for cooking, but combining them with nonstick cookware surfaces is always problematic. Nonstick cookware is also available in a variety of materials and types. Some of them can withstand cooking with stainless steel utensils while some won’t. To maintain your nonstick cookware in perfect condition, always follow the handling directions, use appropriate and compatible utensils, and clean it properly. The result will not disappoint you.
Cookware continues to evolve and integrate new technology, as well as various types of nonstick coatings. There are several types of nonstick cookware available on the market to select from. Understanding the sort of nonstick coating used in cookware sets before making a buying selection is a wise approach. Different kinds of nonstick cookware come with various kinds of requirements; which is buying the appropriate utensil to cook with. Stainless steel utensils cannot be used with nonstick cookware because they have sharp edges which can damage the surface by scratching the nonstick coating and causing it to mix with your food. This certainly will reduce the life of your nonstick cookware. The nonstick cookware surfaces need utensils that should have soft edges and be composed of durable, soft, and easy-to-handle material. This type of material includes wooden, nylon, silicone, and bamboo. So, here in this article, we are going to discuss the best cooking utensils for nonstick cookware.
Types Of Nonstick Cookware Coating Materials
You need to understand that there are different types of nonstick surfaces which have different maintenance requirements. So, you have to know which nonstick cookware surface you are using and what kind of utensils you can use with it; for example, you can easily use stainless steel utensils with copper, cast iron, or anodized nonstick cookware but even then, caution is usually advised by the manufacturers. Plastic-coated and anodized nonstick cookware is not known to withstand cooking with stainless steel utensils. So here are some types of nonstick coatings;
This coating is made from clay and silicone mixture which is hardened by the use of oxygen, chemicals, and binders. Ceramic nonstick cookware works greatly among all the nonstick cookware as it doesn’t leach chemicals when heated. Its only downside is that it fades off easily when scrubbed while being washed. Its benefits are that it is non-toxic and eco-friendly.
Enameled Cast Iron coatings:
This coating is made by applying powdered glass on cast iron cookware and then heated at 700-850 temperatures which melt the glass and this led to the making of a clean smooth nonstick coating. This nonstick cookware is expensive but eco-friendly (doesn’t leach), easy to use, and pretty durable.
The oldest coating is known to be PTFE. Perfluorooctanoic acid and Polytetrafluoroethylene are used to make this nonstick coating. Due to the release of possibly hazardous gases and chemicals, while cooking, PTFE nonstick cookware might not be the safest cookware to use because the coating is known to cause cancer, kidney disease and affect the male reproductive system.
Silicone nonstick coating:
In this coating, polydimethylsiloxane is produced by mixing silicon with methyl chloride and water. Then it is heated and mixed with water again to make silicone rubber which is used in making baking cookware. If this nonstick is made from high-quality silicone without any use of plastic fillers then it will be the safest of all the nonstick cookware.
Anodized aluminum coatings:
In this coating, aluminum is mixed with acid to make a smooth aluminum oxide coating. This nonstick cookware is one of the most economical cookware. They are heat-resistant, non-toxic, and won’t leach chemicals.
This coating is recently used by many manufacturers. This is the most advanced as it uses a nanoscopic layer that resists water. Various materials are used in this nonstick cookware coating like carbon nanotube substances, zinc oxide polystyrene, precipitated calcium carbonate, and manganese oxide polystyrene. This is known to be the future of nonstick cookware.
What nonstick cookware is metal utensils safe?
Nonstick cookware is safe if the materials used are safe. They are even safer when combined with safe cooking equipment. Metal or stainless steel utensils, such as whisks, spoons, and spatulas, are sometimes regarded as “unsafe” utensils. After all, such utensils have a tendency to clash with or harm the surface of the nonstick cookware. You shouldn’t be concerned about how metal or stainless steel utensils will impact your nonstick cookware as long as you use metal utensil-safe nonstick cookware. Here is some nonstick cookware that is considered metal utensils safe.
Copper nonstick cookware:
Copper Cookware from the Gotham Steel brand is considered metal utensil safe which means you can use stainless steel or metal utensils with them. The reason is that these contain the finest nonstick coating which does not get scratched easily when you are using metal utensils with them. But you should always be careful in handling copper nonstick cookware.
Cast iron cookware:
These are constructed entirely of cast iron so, there is no danger in using metal utensils with this nonstick cookware. However, you should use caution otherwise nonstick surface can deteriorate with constant scrapping. Nevertheless, if the nonstick surface of a cast-iron skillet is destroyed due to the use of metal or stainless steel utensils, you can restore it by seasoning the cookware.
Hard anodized Aluminum nonstick:
You should keep in mind regarding this cookware that not every anodized nonstick cookware is metal utensil safe. But there are some cookware sets available in the market that are considered safe so you have to search for that cookware. T-fall brand is known to create the best scratch and erosion-resistant anodized nonstick cookware. These contain specialized toxin-free coatings which make them long-lasting and metal utensil safe. Always ensure before buying if the said nonstick cookware can be used with metal or stainless steel utensils or not.
Carbon Steel Cookware:
Carbon steel nonstick cookware can get scratched by the use of stainless steel or metal utensils but you will observe with time the scratches get to blend in with the cookware surface, so such utensils can be used with them. Carbon steel is a wonderful option if you want something that will last a long time.
Stoneware cookware is very old. People have been using them for centuries. Stoneware nonstick cookware cannot be scraped or scratched easily. So, you can use metal or stainless steel utensils with this nonstick cookware but always practice caution.
What utensils do you use with nonstick cookware?
Nonstick cookware makes life effortless in terms of cooking and cleaning. However, the downside to this cookware is that the coating that keeps the food from sticking during cooking can be scratched if you use an improper tool like sharp-edged metal or stainless steel spatula. There are a variety of materials available in the market from which you can select. Although the best cooking utensils for nonstick cookware should be made from bamboo, nylon, wood, or silicone.
Wooden Utensils, will not scrape your nonstick cookware, but they are not ideal for tossing burgers, patties, or omelets due to their lack of flexibility. They also won’t crack or melt if left near a hot pan – although wooden utensils can catch fire if you lay one on the burner unattended, so be cautious. This wooden set from AIUHI Store is made from timber wood of the highest quality. It is durable, naturally insulating, and doesn’t harm any kind of nonstick cookware surface.
Bamboo Utensils, Just like wood, bamboo utensils are also durable, heat resistant, lightweight, and easy to use with all types of nonstick cookware without damaging their nonstick coating. Wooden Bamboo set from the NEET store on Amazon is great to have for your nonstick cookware.
Silicon tools are the most heat-resistant utensils unless subjected to exceptionally high temperatures, they won’t melt when put against a hot pan on the cooktop. The only disadvantage is that they are not always as durable to be used to flip eggs, hefty burgers, or steaks. But for any other light cooking, they are great. Silicone utensils from Home Hero and Lively Home Goods are great to use with your nonstick cookware collection.
Nylon utensils can also be used with nonstick cookware. These are durable, washable, and great for flipping grilled meats and patties. Always choose high-quality nylon utensils because the cheap ones are not resistant to heat and can get melted if left unattended. A nylon kitchen set from NEXGADGET is best to have for all kinds of nonstick cookware.
What utensils should never be used when cooking in a nonstick skillet or pan?
You must be aware of the nonstick no-nos to maintain the lifespan of your nonstick cookware. When it comes to caring for your beloved nonstick skillet or pan, there might be a few things you’re doing incorrectly which include the use of inappropriate cooking utensils. Here we are trying to tell you to stop using the following cooking utensils with your nonstick cookware to increase their lifespan and pristine condition.
- Metal utensils
- Stainless steel utensils
- Plastic, wooden, nylon utensils having very sharp edges
- Plastic, wooden, nylon utensils that are extra rigid.
All these utensils should not contact your nonstick cookware surface because these cooking utensils may easily scratch and destroy the nonstick coating, affecting the cookware’s capacity to remain, well, nonstick. It is preferable to use wooden, bamboo, or plastic utensils since they are less likely to damage the coating.
Tips for Buying Metal Utensils Safe Cookware
There are so many different varieties of nonstick cookware that it might feel like a never-ending black hole of knowledge while researching for cookware that is metal utensil safe. So, here we are mentioning some important things to consider that will help you while buying such nonstick cookware;
How can I maintain my non-stick pans?
If you take care of your nonstick cookware while cooking you can benefit from them for a long time. So, here are some tips and tricks from some chefs to keep your nonstick cookware in a shiny condition.
- Do not use oils with a low smoke point because such oils burn effortlessly and can affect the nonstick surface negatively.
- Thoroughly heat up your pan before adding oil.
- Remove the chill from cold meals. Set them aside for 10 to 15 minutes to get to room temperature.
- Do not excessively heat the cookware to hasten the preheating process.
To conclude I will say that always find out from the manufacturers what exactly the nonstick cookware you are buying is made up of and choose appropriate cooking utensils accordingly to pair the nonstick cookware with. Do not use metal or stainless steel tongs, spatulas, or spoons in your nonstick cookware without knowing the material it is made from. Stick to those soft-edged, plastic, wooden, or silicon utensils if that is the case. Take care of your cookware as per the instructions and your pots and pans will stay new and last a lifetime.