Enameled Cast Iron vs. Non Stick: What Are the Differences?

For everything from scrambling eggs to sautéing vegetables, and everything in between, a good skillet is an essential tool for every kitchen, regardless of experience level. Renowned for their flexibility and simplicity of use, enameled cast iron skillets and nonstick frying pans are two of the most popular options among home chefs.

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What makes them different, and which one should you pick? Or do you need to use both skillets? Everything relies on what and how frequently you plan to prepare. To further the confusion, both can be great options if crafted from premium materials. Here’s how to make a choice.

What Does Cast Iron Mean?

Cast iron skillets are very durable, generation-spanning cookware that is created by pouring molten metal into molds. There are two types of cast iron cookware: unpainted cast iron and enameled cast iron.

A thin layer of enamel is applied to cast iron to produce a cooking surface that is smooth, non-porous, and non-reactive. Because unfinished cast iron lacks that protective layer, it must be regularly seasoned in order to keep its nonstick qualities. Both offer the versatility that cast iron has come to be associated with, but enameled cast iron is usually simpler to clean and cook with.

The Benefits of Cast Iron Pans

Because they combine the heating properties of cast iron with a smooth, enameled cooking surface, enameled cast iron skillets are a joy to use in the kitchen. These pans are ideal for sautéing everything under the sun, baking bread, and scorching meats. A lot of people value the skillet’s ability to function as both an oven and a cooktop, making it ideal for oven-finished Dutch babies and reverse-seared steaks.

Durability: Cookware made of cast iron is incredibly resilient and may be passed down through the generations since it is built of an iron and steel alloy.

High heat resistance: The remarkable toughness of cast iron is also reflected in its capacity to tolerate high temperatures. Our skillet may be used for both baking and broiling because it is safe up to 580F.

spontaneously nonstick: Proper seasoning causes unfinished cast iron to spontaneously become nonstick by creating a frictionless surface composed of polymerized oil. But if you don’t, the seasoning will wear off and reveal the rough metal underneath, which will stick. Our enameled cast iron is hand-enameled in France to guarantee a smooth surface that is non-stick right out of the box and doesn’t require frequent seasoning.

Attention for Cast Iron Skillets

Like any cookware, cast iron skillets have certain components that should be taken into account before buying.

Hot handles: The capacity of cast iron to conduct and retain heat is highly praised. We advise handling the skillet carefully and using an oven mitt or thick dish towel because the handle retains heat just as effectively as the rest of it.

Weight: Although cast iron’s longevity makes it a timeless material, it weighs a lot more than other pans you might be accustomed to using, such as carbon steel, stainless steel, and nonstick. The weight of cast iron could be something to consider, particularly if you plan to cook foods that need to be quickly removed from the pan.

What Is Cookware That Isn’t Stick?

Convenient and simple to clean nonstick coating is the hallmark of nonstick cookware. This creates a cooking surface that is free of friction, making it impossible for nearly any food to stick, even fluffy eggs and flaky fish.

Perks of Nonstick Cookware

Because their bases are usually made of aluminum or stainless steel, nonstick cookware is portable and easy to use in the kitchen.

Usefulness: Nonstick skillets are renowned for their extreme ease of handling. Naturally, they simplify the process of preparing stick-prone items, such as frittatas or pancakes, and require less work to clean up.

Easy upkeep: For those who detest cleaning up after cooking, nonstick pans require almost no maintenance. To remove extra food or oil before it dries, just give the pan a quick wash down and give it a little scrape with a dish sponge.

Many applications: Nonstick cookware, which is made of lightweight materials that transfer heat rapidly and uniformly, is well-known to be a very useful tool for both novice and experienced cooks. It can be used to cook a wide variety of foods, from seared steaks to Dutch babies.

Avoid Stick Skillet Issues

Like any product, nonstick cookware undoubtedly offers advantages, but there are things to consider before making a purchase.

Heat considerations: Many nonstick pans aren’t oven safe, depending on the base or handle material utilized during production. You might want to think about getting a pan made of a different material if you plan to bake with it or move a dish from the cooktop to the oven. If not, be sure the nonstick pan you’re thinking about can withstand high temperatures. Our nonstick cookware, for example, is oven-safe up to 500F.

Lack of durability: Compared to other cookware kinds, nonstick coating is far more sensitive, therefore you must be careful about the tools you use to maintain the surface. Using a more robust utensil material (such as a stainless steel spatula) increases the possibility of chipping or damaging the coating, which might cause the nonstick qualities to disappear.

Replacements required: The coating on even the best nonstick cookware will eventually wear off and require replacement. Although our Non Stick is made to endure longer than less expensive alternatives, you might want to think about using a different material (such cast iron) if you’re looking for a skillet that you’ll never need to replace.

What’s Better, Non-Stick or Cast Iron?

When it comes right down to it, our enameled cast iron skillets and nonstick frying pans are actually not comparable, despite the fact that each material has advantages and disadvantages. The two components compliment one another in terms of their strengths and capacities and work well together as building blocks for a fully stocked kitchen.

You might want to think about using a nonstick pan if you want to make meals like morning tostadas. An enameled cast iron would be appropriate for recipes like skillet roasted chicken right now, but we can’t stress enough how important we think both of these materials are.