Not Martha


I’ve been waiting very patiently and last week it finally happened — we ruined a pan so badly it’ll have to be replaced. I’m ready to start buying grown up cookware but the stuff I bought in a set at Target 10 years ago just wouldn’t kick it. But now, gloriously, I am in need of a small saucepan. I’ve been keeping an eye on items like this on at The Kitchen: investing in new cookware, where All-Clad is recommended. I got a catalog the other day that compares the various All-Clad lines and think I want to start flirting with the Stainless line. Look at those straight sides and, swoon, they can go in the dishwasher! The catalog in question, Chefs, is even offering the 1.5 quart saucepan for $75 (it is also at Amazon for the same price). I kept the catalog next to my bed last night, opened to the All-Clad page. That price is just about right for a first date of dinner and the movies. Since I’m not breaking up with Scott anytime soon I might as well spend the money I’m saving on first dates with cookware, right?

Should I do it? Do you have cookware you love and recommend? Any advice for a cookware noob?

· comments [82] · 06-14-2007 · categories:food · the home ·

82 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Kat // Jun 14, 2007 at 7:43 am

    I absolutely love my Calphalon. I’ve been collecting pieces for years & know I will have it forever. It cooks beautifully & cleans like a dream!

  • 2 Fahm // Jun 14, 2007 at 7:53 am

    My boyfriend is a great cook, and we recently invested in some Calphalon pieces. He LOVES the anodized (?) line – the surface is non-stick enough, yet chars food just right. I’m by no means a good cook, but I love using the Calphalon. It just makes the cooking experience more fun. So yes, buy it, you won’t regret it!

  • 3 Gwen // Jun 14, 2007 at 7:57 am

    Hi Megan, Great site. I used to work at cooking store and just so you know. The stainless All-Clad line is a less efficient in heat transfer than the MC2 or the LTD. I have a couple of pieces of LTD, my all time favorite is the roasting pan. You might check the NY Times for article by Mark Bittman about furnishing a kitchen for less than $300. He talks about getting some pieces from a restaurant supply stores. Also if you just love any of the “designer” high end pots you might check to see if they have an outlet. A lot of times they carry the same or a somewhat limited version of the warranty which is really what you’re paying for. I really like my Le Creusets but they are really heavy. Good luck.

  • 4 Meredith // Jun 14, 2007 at 8:01 am

    Go for it! Good kitchenware-be it knives, cookware, dishes or gadgets-is always a sound investment if you like to cook. I don’t own All-Clad myself but my parents do and they absolutely love theirs. Once my Farberware stuff goes, I’ll probably buy All-Clad too.

  • 5 Erica // Jun 14, 2007 at 8:05 am

    I several of the All-Clad stainless pieces and I am pretty sure they will out-live me. They are pricey, but I personally believe they are worth every penny and I would buy the whole line if I won the lotto. If you do decided to go with the the stainless, buy some Bar Keeper’s Helper. It’s a cleaner for stainless and it’s magic.

  • 6 Shelley // Jun 14, 2007 at 8:06 am

    I love your first date logic – I should use that one myself! I have the All Clad saucepan, and I LOVE it. I don’t put mine in the dishwasher, though – I’m paranoid about it losing its pretty shine.

  • 7 megan // Jun 14, 2007 at 8:18 am

    Gwen – Let’s see, heat transfer… dishwasher… I’m going to have to think about that one. I saw the Bittman article but I think it’s behind the paywall now.

    Erica – thanks for the tip!

    Thanks for the recommendations everybody, I’ll take a good look at Calphalon before I purchase anything.

  • 8 karin // Jun 14, 2007 at 8:24 am

    do it!!! I have the all-clad stainless and I love it. The 3 quart sauce pan is the most used pot in our house.

  • 9 AthenaMaria // Jun 14, 2007 at 8:34 am

    I had Calphalon but replaced it a half a year ago with the AllClad that you’re looking at. I prefer the All Clad, although it does seem slower to heat (ie boil water for pasta). It’s easier to clean I think, I soak with warm water and a bit of Dawn while we eat and it generally wipes clean. We tried one piece and liked it, so bought the rest in a set because it’s cheaper that way.

    I do have problems with eggs and browning meats (like chicken or chops). So I use Lodge preseasoned cast iron for that, and I happen to really, really love the Lodge round griddle.

  • 10 Kelly // Jun 14, 2007 at 8:35 am

    Hi there,
    We are slowly doing the same thing with our cookware (well we didnt move any of our junky cheap stuff with us and are slowly accumulating new, quality pieces.)

    We bought an All-Clad LTD saucepan like this one at Marshalls a few months ago at half the price and I couldn’t be happier with it.

  • 11 Lenore // Jun 14, 2007 at 8:45 am

    Bed Bath and Beyond sometimes has specials on pieces like the small sauce pan, so check there before paying full price. Also check (if you can bear shopping there) Tuesday Morning as they often have high end cookware at not quite high end prices.

  • 12 megan // Jun 14, 2007 at 8:58 am

    Lenore – Thanks, we don’t have Tuesday Morning shops here. But you reminded me I wanted to link to Cookware & More which is mentioned in that article at The Kitchen. Cookware & More sells All-Clad seconds that work fine but have minor flaws in them.

  • 13 julie. // Jun 14, 2007 at 9:01 am

    This place sells all-clad irregulars at 33% off retail.

    I’ve ordered all-clad from them twice and the pieces were perfect to my eye. My husband finally found a tiny scuff (not even a scratch) on the bottom of one of them.
    I’m slowly replacing my old set of pans with all-clad. I’m buying one or two new ones a year so it’s less of a shock to the wallet -

  • 14 WendyP // Jun 14, 2007 at 9:06 am

    We sprung for the All-Clad set in December and I love it. I get a perverse pleasure in seeing “my” pots and pans in most of the kitchens on FoodTV shows. If the dishwasher doesn’t shine them up well I use a sprinkle of Barkeeper’s Friend or Bon-Ami and they look as good as new in 30 seconds. We also bought a couple of inexpensive non-stick skillets for things like eggs – the right tools for the job are always preferrable.

  • 15 Lisa Wakely // Jun 14, 2007 at 9:19 am

    I own the All-Clad stainless, and love it. They are
    worth the money. We lucked out on a complete set at Costco, but have never seen them there again. Williams-Sonoma sometimes has the little pans on special for $20.00.

  • 16 melissa // Jun 14, 2007 at 9:21 am

    Hi, Megan. I have told my husband more than once that if we ever split, I will fight him for the Calphalon. :) I really love it. Nothing sticks and it cooks everything just right. Good luck, Dear.

  • 17 Stowmarkate // Jun 14, 2007 at 9:26 am

    We have a bunch of All-Clads and we LOVE them…my mom has a full set as well. Go for it!

  • 18 Celeste // Jun 14, 2007 at 9:36 am

    My DH was a sous chef at a four star restaurant. They used the All Clad brushed aluminum pots and didn’t have to replace ANY of them in the 8 years he worked there. That is abuse.

    Needless to say ten years ago we bought all stainless all clad pots for our kitchen. We have had no issues with them and I’ve burned many a meal! You can not go wrong with these pots. I’ve had absolutely no issues with heat transfer.

    They go right in the dishwasher and although they aren’t the shiniest all the time – i can get them shiny with a little polish.

    Calphalon and anything with a non-stick surfaces requires special care – especially having to use plastic utensils and eventually the surface will beging to chip.

  • 19 Angela // Jun 14, 2007 at 9:54 am

    Delurking to say that we do indeed have Tuesday Morning stores here in Seattle; there is one by the Northgate Mall and I think one also by Alderwood. Behold:

    I am mostly a cast-iron girl myself, but I do covet the All-Clad saucepans.

  • 20 leandra // Jun 14, 2007 at 9:59 am

    When we got married (almost 6 years ago), we bought a set of the Calphalon II non-stick cookware and we love it. Not dishwasher-safe (alas), but super easy to clean. Our sauce pans are in excellent shape, but the larger frying pan is starting to lose it’s non-stick surface, probably because we use it nearly everyday.

    I’ve been wanting to get a stainless All-Clad pan for a while though, so I may try your first-date logic with the hubby!

  • 21 Ana // Jun 14, 2007 at 9:59 am

    I have been a proud owner of an AllClad set for 5 years now and we love it. The stainless steel line is the best one. We have used it so much and still love it. Gwen is right above about the LtD line, but I believe the LtD line is good in the oven, so if you buy a turkey pan in the future go LtD. Although I have also resolved to buying two LeCreuset one medium round one, and a very large deep oval one, that can be used for stews and casseroles or a chicken or small turkey… Go for AllClad, and I found the BEST deal at Macy’s on sale for the whole set (but this was a few years back) If you want to buy some good dark roasting pans, there are two very good restaurant supply stores in Astoria, on the 31st street near 36th avenue N, W train stop.

  • 22 megan // Jun 14, 2007 at 9:59 am

    Angela – Huh, I’ve never seen it! Thanks.

    Thanks to everybody for the information, I feel like I have a team of experts to consult! I have to say the dishwasher-ability is a major plus for me, but I’ll research all other lines before I buy (I was raised in the Midwest, we don’t part with money easily).

  • 23 megan // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:02 am

    Ana – What city are you referring to? New York? I am, sadly, in Seattle.

  • 24 Amy // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:02 am

    I have many pieces of the All Clad stainless and love it. My stepfather is a chef and swears by Calphalon.Sounds like you can’t lose.

    Chef’s is great. And a little tip, once you order from them, you will get a motherload of email 10% and 15% discount coupons.

  • 25 whitney // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:10 am

    My mom gifted me with a small All-Clad saucepan one year for Christmas and I love it. I have a fair amount of Calphalon pans which are also great, but I think the All-Clad is easier to clean (especially since it’s lighter in color than the Calphalon). If/When I need to buy another piece of cook-ware, I’ll definitely be looking at All-Clad first.

  • 26 angorian // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:11 am

    Go to a restaurant supply store. You’ll get better quality for less money.

  • 27 kathleen // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:23 am

    I considered the All-Clad and Calphalon when we got married three years ago. After mu-uch research and shopping, we bought Scanpans. They have a lifetime warranty, are all non stick but it’s baked in so it doesn’t flake off like teflon, and to clean them, you take them from the stove and stick them under running water. The dirt steams off and your pan is clean in ten seconds! No need for the dishwasher! And I have no trouble searing meat or browning things, etc. We love love love them. And they’re much less expensive than the All-clad or Calphalon. We got ours at Chef’s Catalog which had a store in Chicago. But their catalog is equally awesome.
    They’re not as beautiful as the others, but we love them for their functionality and ease of cleaning. Consider them!

  • 28 nazilam // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:23 am

    We have many different kinds of cookware for different reasons.

    I love stainless lined copper (check out met market), le crueset and good old fashioned revereware for simple things like heating soups, making pasta and artichoke steaming.

    I have a friend who swears by the demeyere cookware they have at city kitchens.

    Too bad you can’t rent a pot or pan for a week to test it out before buying it.


  • 29 rubycakes // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:29 am

    Dishwasher-ability was a big deal for us as well. My hubbie ruined several of our Calphalon pots in the dishwasher (they get pitted). So, we moved to Le Creuset. I *LOVE* these pans. They are very happy in the dishwasher. Heat beautifully and evenly. Burned a batch of carmel in a small sauce pan, so the interior is a little darker, but cleaned up beautifully. City Kitchens on 5th and both frequently have killer deals on the line – which is how I add to my stash.

  • 30 Jess // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:31 am

    The All Clad Copper Core pots/pans are a delight to use. I have a a couple of pans that clean up like expensive nonstick, even if I burn nasty sticky sauces inside. Seriously, it’s like they’re made of some weird reverse-magnet food repeller. I haven’t been able to get anything to stick in there.

    The only drawback is that if you have hard water like me the copper band around the bottom gets a little dingy.

  • 31 Carrie // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:44 am

    I had originally registered for a modest Calphalon set when I got engaged. My sisters ended up getting me an Anolon professional cookware set as a surprise for my wedding shower that they found for super cheap on Amazon (like this).

    I cannot say enough good things about these pans. I’ve had them for 4 years now- they just require a little extra care. Personally, I couldn’t live without my large covered saute pan.

    I have a few stainless steel pans and I never use them. Probably just a personal issue- I guess I’m lazy!

  • 32 Ana // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:53 am

    yes, Megan, I am sorry – I realised later that you are in Seattle. I am in NYC… and was referring to Astoria as a neighbourhood in Queens, not as a city near Seattle… :-)

  • 33 Barrie // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:57 am

    for as much as you seem to cook, it’s a great investment. i don’t have any grown up pots and pans yet. although, i did inherit my grandmother’s cast-iron pan that’s probably been in the family for oh, about 70 years. things that are good like that will last a lifetime. if not more. do it!

  • 34 SusieJ // Jun 14, 2007 at 11:00 am

    The best cook I know (and a professional food writer) is my husband’s aunt. She uses FARBERWARE. Yep, middle of the road Farberware. And some cast iron pans. I don’t think she owns anything non-stick.

    My own feeling is that unless the equipment is bad (dull knives, paper-thin pots, glass loaf pans), a competent cook can cook well with anything; and super-duper equipment won’t make a bad cook any better. That said, you also have to be happy with it. If every time you look at your saucepan you wish you’d bought something else, you might as well buy what you want.

  • 35 Marsha // Jun 14, 2007 at 11:40 am

    My husband and I received a full set of All-Clad LTD when we got married six years ago, and we love it. I can’t say enough good things about it–there’s a reason why it consistently ranks at the top of lists from chefs, professional foodies, and home cooks alike. It’s not cheap (which is why we were so grateful for this very generous wedding gift), but you’ll probably never have to buy another set of cookware again. Seriously. Great performance, easy care, and functionally stylish–what more could you want?

  • 36 Jennifer // Jun 14, 2007 at 11:45 am

    I have several All Clad pans. I love them all. I’ve had good luck with getting them on e-bay for a fraction of the retail cost. I’m also fond of City Kitchens on 4th Ave in downtown Seattle. They have great prices, as you probably know already.
    Good luck!

  • 37 Molly // Jun 14, 2007 at 12:04 pm

    We have copper on our registry, but I’m not sure I’ll stick with them after reading this and all your messages! :)

  • 38 Ana // Jun 14, 2007 at 12:13 pm

    SusieJ is right. The pan does not make the cook. But also what a lot of people have agreed here is that, if you can afford to buy something, buy a pan that will last 70 years, which is the case of All-Clad. Instead of buying farberware and then having to replace in 70 years. There is an old adage that goes: I am not so wealthy to buy cheap things. When I bought the All-Clad set I couln’t really afford it, I was single, entertaining a lot, going out a lot, and spending money. But I saw it as an investment and did not go out to fancy dinners for 3 months… in order to buy the All-Clad set. And it keeps performing and it will 30 years from now.

  • 39 Ana // Jun 14, 2007 at 12:14 pm

    I meant: Instead of buying farberware and then having to replace it in 7 years…

  • 40 mary // Jun 14, 2007 at 12:16 pm

    I bought myself a 3.5 quart All-Clad Stainless saucepan about a year ago to give the revered brand a try. I’ve been very happy with it and will probably buy myself a smaller one as soon as I can justify it. I would definitely recommend All-Clad for saucepans, but there are other brands out there that work well too. A heavy saucepan with a light-colored interior is worth investing in. (The heavy bottom prevents things from getting scorched quickly, and the light color makes it easy to see if a sauce dependent on color, like caramel or brown butter, is ready.)

    I’d recommend going into a store that carries a few different brands of high end cookware and looking at them, lifting them–see how you like the handles and the heft and the shape (for example, All-Clad’s saucepans are a little higher and narrower than some other brands, and their handles attach at more of angle). The 1.5 quart saucepan seems like a good way to test it for yourself. There’s also an All-Clad Stainless 1 quart saucier that’s widely available for $50, if you want a lower, wider option.

  • 41 Kelsey // Jun 14, 2007 at 12:24 pm

    I have no idea whether this matters to you or not, but my fiance & I were researching cookware to register for & decided against the Calphalon (we’re going All Clad) because part of the manufacturing process involves known carcinogens. Granted, these toxins aren’t present once the cookware is fired & ready for sale (nor will it present itself a la the Teflon scare), but I personally felt better not buying it altogether because someone was exposed it at some point.

  • 42 Jenn(nnn) // Jun 14, 2007 at 12:39 pm

    I love my All-Clad. I own the stainless (as shown in your photo) and it’s truly dishwasher-safe. I have had it for five or so years now and haven’t had any problems.

    I did have an All-Clad grill pan which, after one too many trips from stovetop to oven, began to warp. The lovely thing about Williams-Sonoma is that you can exchange it for a replacement free-of-charge (extra bonus even if you buy your cookware through or another store). W-S will deal with the lifetime guarantee replacement for you!

  • 43 Maria // Jun 14, 2007 at 12:46 pm

    Do it! Buy that All-Clad! It’s the best. I have a 14″ fry pan and I use it ALL THE TIME. This is the best stuff made. A great website is This site has all sorts. Good luck.

  • 44 Austin // Jun 14, 2007 at 12:49 pm

    I’m just stepping in to add another Tuesday Morning to the group in the Seattle area (which is actually right across from where I work)
    There is one near the Southcenter Target, on Andover Park West.

  • 45 Karin // Jun 14, 2007 at 12:58 pm

    Don’t buy great cookware unless you have a level stove. If the stove isn’t level it all get ruined.

  • 46 lynne // Jun 14, 2007 at 1:06 pm

    i love love my all-clad. for about the last five years i have bought one pan each year. now i have a collection of pans i use nearly every day.

    it’s v. expensive sure, but you will not regret buying them.

  • 47 Lisa // Jun 14, 2007 at 1:15 pm

    I went through the same thought process when I first contemplated grown-up cookware. I lived with a copy of the Chef’s catalog in my hand at all times and went back and forth between All-Clad and Cuisinart. I ended up with the Cuisinart because Chef’s was offering a better package deal on a set (and I knew my mother LOVED their food processor). I love my pots. I have had them for 10 years, and everyone who uses them remarks how wonderful they are. When they get burned on the bottom, a little kosher salt and vinegar takes care of that in a second.

  • 48 carissa // Jun 14, 2007 at 1:17 pm

    i went the LTD route for my pots and pans when i got married a few months ago. i LOVE LOVE LOVE them. i chose the LTD because a sales associate at williams sonoma said that there is a possibility of the stainless blueing over very high heat.

    don’t know if this is true, but i didn’t want to risk it.

  • 49 Cinnamon // Jun 14, 2007 at 1:34 pm

    Get it! The All-Clad is amazning. There was a short lived Special at William-Sonoma a while back and I got that very pan. It’s fantastic and wonderful and I don’t regret my $60 purchase. And I’m notoriously cheap, too.

    All my skillets, however, are Lodge cast iron, which are super-cheap and available at hardware stores. I adore cast iron, but for pans, All-Clad Stainless is the way to go.

  • 50 Lucia // Jun 14, 2007 at 1:40 pm

    CUISINART. I love my Cuisinart Chef’s Classic Stainless 10-Piece Set. Don’t let the affordablity of this set (currently $134 at Amazon)deter you. I’ve been using them for only a year and a half, but I seriously enjoy cooking with these pans each time. The cooking surface heats evenly and predictably, and they clean up nice and shiny. I’m sure All-Clad would be wonderful to use, but I don’t think I’m missing out on much. Blissful ignorance.

    I’ve also really liked my Calphalon Commercial Hard-Anodized Sauté Pan, but I managed to warp it on a gas range. It is now pretty much unusable on my current ceramic-top range because it doesn’t make enough contact to heat properly. Maybe I’ll be able to use it on a gas range someday?

    Good luck!

  • 51 britt // Jun 14, 2007 at 1:49 pm

    cookware opinion yes calphalon is amazing, but I have noticed that if you are looking for “random” (as in not a whole set) pieces my local TJ Max has some amazing cookware for way cheaper than i can find in catalogs, just suggestion

  • 52 martha in mobile // Jun 14, 2007 at 2:23 pm

    I have the all-clad 1, 2 and 3 quart (with steamer) stainless saucepans and the domed chef’s pan. My saucepans are about 15 years old and they look and cook like new. I loves them, I does. And barkeeper’s friend should be your friend, too.

  • 53 Liane // Jun 14, 2007 at 2:23 pm

    I have Emerilware, it is a branch of All-Clad–not as fancy as the real stuff but i like it because I can bash it around (put it in the dishwasher) and not worry about dropping it. I save my $ for my Le Creuset pots. There is a Tuesday Morning near the Goodwill by Alderwood Park and Ride. There is another next to Trader Joe’s on Everett Mall Way in Everett. Have fun shopping for a new pot, it’s so much fun, isn’t it? I think the looking around and deciding is the best part.

  • 54 MamaLana // Jun 14, 2007 at 2:37 pm

    I’ve always adored Le Crueset, but when I hit a certain age :::cough:::cough::: it got too heavy for me!! Darn!! I can still lift the Calphalon. LOL

  • 55 Bean // Jun 14, 2007 at 2:39 pm

    I absolutely love my Calphalon, too. You might check out Marshall’s or Ross if you have them in your area, they have GREAT deals on fabulous cookware. My last Calphalon saucepan only cost me $20 :)

  • 56 Gwen // Jun 14, 2007 at 3:45 pm

    I only have two All-Clad pans & I adore them!!! We are going to buy a couple more pieces at a time so we have a set. They are easy to clean & I’ve done some of the best cooking in my life with them. Yeah for All-Clad!

  • 57 Carla // Jun 14, 2007 at 4:24 pm

    I love my All Clad pans, but I find that Calphalon is just as good, and you can get two for the price of one All Clad :) I have a mix of both All Clad and Calphalon, just buying whichever is on sale (usually at Bed Bath and Beyond, though used to have a yearly All Clad sale!)

  • 58 kim // Jun 14, 2007 at 5:00 pm

    You totally want the All-Clad stainless. You wanted to be in Pittsburgh last weekend though, buying it at their factory sale, held twice a year (june and december). I have picked up my pieces, a little at a time, all at the sale. You’ll stand in line but the prices are worth it.

    I also second the Lodge cast iron recommendation.

  • 59 bfmomma // Jun 14, 2007 at 5:21 pm

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE my all-clad. But I’d recommend going with a set bought at BB&B or Boston Store, or online–they’re a GREAT deal and then you can fill in with individual pots. My mom started with a single pot and got hooked, but then the sets (better deals) had pots similar to what she already had.

    Also, Williams Sonoma always has a piece or two at close to 50% off–it rotates what’s the special priced item.


  • 60 Miss Sassy // Jun 14, 2007 at 6:26 pm

    Hi Megan, I have hard-anodized Calphalon and love it. However, It is very heavy. A small saucepan is fine but bigger ones are pretty tough (such as ones to boil noodles or make sauces). Good luck!

  • 61 Pru // Jun 14, 2007 at 6:40 pm

    My favorite small (1 qt) saucepan is an inexpensive “anodized” non-stick one (about $20 I think it was) made by “Analon”. It seems to be indestructible. My 2 and 3 qt pans (also in constant use) are Chantal enamel on steel pans bought at a discount at Marshalls. I’m very fond of them. I also still have the 2 and 3 qt pans Revereware pans I got as a bride in 1963. They seem to last forever.

  • 62 bene // Jun 14, 2007 at 6:47 pm

    I’m probably going to get called a heretic, but ah well. When i started out on my own, I went with calphalon and All Clad. And while the few I still have are very nice. I was much happier with the IKEA 365 stainless for everyday use — I don’t have stress about keeping them perfect, I can use steel wool when our hard to tame gas stove helps me burn something into em. The heat transfer is good for 95% of what I do (the heavy anodized Calphalon sauce pan and stock pot come out for candy making and stock making).

    Also, careful on the dishwasher safe some of them are only dishwasher safe with special detergents and silly things like that.

  • 63 megan // Jun 14, 2007 at 6:50 pm

    Wow, thanks for all the feedback.

    I think that the current post in the line they (meaning various catalogs and stores) is the same sized pot I need right now so I might go ahead and get it to see how I like it. I realize that sets will be a good deal but I just don’t think I’d use some of the pots in the set enough to justify the storage space, so I’m going to go with the strategy of buying cookware as I need it, and trying to find it on sale when I do.

  • 64 Serena // Jun 14, 2007 at 7:02 pm

    I have the Emeril All-Clad series too. It’s a little embarassing because his signature is all over the handles, but otherwise I LOVE them. They were an amazing deal and the quality is excellent. Mine still look like new after 3 years – they are easy to clean. I would encourage you to consider glass lids if you are undecided. It’s nice to just be able to glance quickly to see how things are simmering without losing any heat. I replaced my hand-me-down enameled Le Creuset with these and my wrists thank me every day. Lordy those things were heavy!

  • 65 Nia // Jun 14, 2007 at 8:03 pm

    We have a mix of pans and really you can’t go wrong with All Clad and Le Creuset. The All Clad Sautee with lid is one of the most useful pans ever made. (A close 2nd the the LeC French Oven) I use Cameo to clean both the All Clad and the Le Creuset. I also put them in the dishwasher when I’m feeling lazy.

  • 66 Rachael // Jun 14, 2007 at 10:47 pm

    Completely different to everyone else. I have Paderno. My mother in law also has it. It’s awesome, and we have slowly replaced everything. Now all our saucepans, frypans, dutch oven, casseroles, stockpots, saute pans and roasters and even our wok are stainless steel Paderno.

  • 67 Michele // Jun 15, 2007 at 1:05 am

    Ugh! I just did the exact same thing (ruined a pot) a couple days ago! I loved that pot! It was a revere ware saucepan that had pouring spouts and strainer holes in the cover (one side with small, the other with large). Anyway, I have no specific recommendations, but if you might use the pot for boiling stuff (eg. a small batch of pasta) the strainer in the cover feature is awesome.

  • 68 Chichmama // Jun 15, 2007 at 4:56 am

    I have the Emeril All-Clad as well and have been very pleased. It got top marks from Consumer Reports, I wanted the All Clad and hubby came home with that instead because of the consumer reports thing and I was annoyed at first, but it works just as well as my sister’s “real” stuff.

    I also love my Creuset pieces, I use those for stews and chili and such.

  • 69 melanie watts // Jun 15, 2007 at 7:09 am

    nothng like a little porn to look at before going to sleep:) My stainless steel pots are so old I can’t remember what they are called . However, they are fantastic and if you like to cook …..

  • 70 Michelle // Jun 15, 2007 at 8:08 am

    Everyone keeps referring to Calphalon as though it is one line of pans. There are so many different varieties of Calphalon (and All-clad and most other brands). We have one 12″ everyday skillet in the hard-anodized commercial line. And two non-stick/hard anodized omelet pans from the Simply Calphalon line. Other than a brief cleaning issue with the anodized we’ve been very happy with these pans for 2 years now. I haven’t bought any of the tri-ply for myself yet, but it has the all the qualities I’ve read to look for (stainless exterior, aluminum core, thick sides as well as bottom…).

    Recently we put together a “set” of pots and pans for my MIL from individual pieces on sale at Amazon. 6 qt stock pan, 3 qt saucier, 2.5 qt low & wide and 2 qt sauce pan, plus a 10″ non-stick everyday skillet from various calphalon lines (mostly the tri-ply) for just under $200. All the sets we saw were at least $300 on sale and had always had multiple pieces that would duplicate things she already owned and would not use.

    My favorite pan though is a 5-ply stainless/aluminum core 4 qt saucepan that Faberware made briefly around 1999/2000 found for $40 at an outlet store. I wish Faberware still made it, but now the line is thinner and all coated with non-stick :(

    Enjoy your pretty pretty all-clad.

  • 71 emily // Jun 15, 2007 at 9:17 am

    all-clad – all the way.

    save you money on cleaning supplies. don’t bother with the bar cleaner stuff. Use a little baking soda (the box is less than $.75), sponge, and water. I guarantee that your all clad will some out sparkling.

  • 72 Jennifer // Jun 15, 2007 at 9:47 am

    I found a great All-Clad stainless 12-inch saute pan at TJ Maxx. It was $99 and retails for something like $199. Under the end of the handle was marked an “S” for “second,” but I haven’t been able to find a single flaw in it. Works beautifully on my new induction cooktop.

  • 73 Cynthia // Jun 15, 2007 at 10:01 am

    Megan – look at all the excitement you generated amongst people talking about saucepans!! I love it.

    And, I love love love my All Clad Stainless saucepans, skillets and saute pan. Word to the wise…sets look like a great deal but you usually end up missing out on the one pan you need most and storing pans you seldom use. What I have done is slowly build my personal set by buying one piece at a time (or receiving them as gifts). I received that advice from a seasoned cook and I think I have saved money because of it. Also, check out Cooks Illustrated for advice on buying pans. I am sure they have given high marks to some of the less expensive lines (like Farberware). Oh – and you can’t beat a nice old cast iron frying pan. You just can’t. :-)

  • 74 m // Jun 15, 2007 at 11:37 am

    I second Paderno, I’m a pastry chef and all of my home pots are from them. I have everything from one tiny one for caramel to one big enough to make stew for 60! I love them. Plus the lids are interchangeable, so despite having about 20 pots I only have about 6 lids, no annoying panicked search for the precise lid, it’s either small, med or large!

  • 75 Delica // Jun 15, 2007 at 3:10 pm

    I’ve had my All-Clad stainless steel for over 10 years and they are still in incredible condition. I consider myself an excellent cook, so if you are really into cooking, they are worth the investment. The one thing I would have done differently was to buy one non-stick frying pan instead of both in stainless steel – we love omelets over here and the clean up would be so much easier. I also have the dutch oven, the small and large sauce pans, and the butter melter. I’ve never felt without with this set. If I were to splurge on anything extra at this point, it would be for the brassiere (sp?) and the roaster. Have fun shopping!

  • 76 Pieces // Jun 15, 2007 at 3:16 pm

    I did a lot of research before buying my latest pots and I went with the Emeril All-Clad. Very affordable and great quality. I have had them for a couple of years and have had no problems. I especially like the lids and the way they fit. Good luck!

  • 77 Erin // Jun 15, 2007 at 5:58 pm

    All I have in my kitchen is All-Clad. My boyfriend and I bought a large set when we moved in together. They’re amazing. We put them in the dishwasher all the time and it doesn’t effect them at all — which makes clean-up so amazingly easy. I’m absolutely dying to have the roasting pan. Maybe for Christmas. Definitely purchase at least one non-stick pan though. PS: We bought that stupid bar cleaner and I’ve never had to use it so don’t get sucked in.

  • 78 Virtual Frolic // Jun 15, 2007 at 8:13 pm

    Hi there! Been reading your blog for a long time!

    I had the same problem awhile back – yes All Clad is hands-down the best, but I didn’t have too much money. In reading alot of reviews, I ended up getting the Sur La Table stainless steel 8 piece set or something like that – and I love it. It’s a great deal, only 200 bucks for 8 some pieces. Some of the pieces are a bit unbalanced, but once you have food in the pot, it’s not a problem. I’d highly recommend it. For a non-stick skillet, I love the cheap Caphalon essentials series from Target.

  • 79 lagusta // Jun 16, 2007 at 8:34 am

    I’m a professional chef and I’ve been using the same All-Clad pans for 6 years – they are super tough, unbreakable, and the best pans you’ll ever buy. I can’t love them enough!

  • 80 heidi // Jun 16, 2007 at 5:13 pm

    I love my All Clad copper core and I took to Australia with me as well! You can buy seconds (only minor scratches or discoloration) from That is how I acquired a lot of my pans and pots, etc. I also really love le Creuset, which is great for roasting!

  • 81 Mel // Jun 17, 2007 at 2:55 pm

    Paderno! The exclamation point says it all. My family and I have used them for 25+ years with no complaints.

  • 82 Sarah // Jun 20, 2007 at 8:27 am

    I love logic like this!

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