I spend a lot of time in other people’s kitchens these days, which means I get a look into how people conduct a lot of their domestic business. One conclusion I’ve made is people don’t cook as often as they can because they often don’t find themselves with the right cookware. If you don’t have the right tools, you might be adding one more challenge and roadblock to the cooking process. Below is a video (yes, we’re doing videos now!) of the 3 pans (+ 1 bonus pan) that you’ll need to do about 95% of the recipes you’ll ever cook and also some more Q&A on cookware.
Question: Do you recommend purchasing those cookware sets?
C+S Answers: Nope! While those sets like to market themselves as a better bargain, they rarely are all the right things, and you’ll still always have to supplement. If you bought a stainless steel set, you’ll still probably want 1 or 2 non-stick items. I always recommend going a la carte for the few essential things (like the pans in the video above) and then add to your collection once you figure out what you’re really missing.
Question: Should I buy expensive cookware?
C+S Answers: Expensive cookware does not always equate to the right cookware. Think about it, do you really need a top-of-the-line All-Clad to boil water for pasta? Probably not. Purchase that piece from a trusted brand budget brand like Chefmate and save that money for investment pieces where quality matters. And when does quality matter? Our answer to that is anything that will be used at high heat and needs to retain heat well, such as a dutch oven or a stainless steel saute pan. When used at high heats, because these pans are better quality, they are often much more forgiving too. Try to sear a piece of meat on a cheaper stainless steel pan, and you’ll have staining and burning almost immediately. The expensive pieces are also made to last, so know that you’ll have it forever (which also means that you should figure out exactly what you need first before making a lifetime commitment).
Question: So what exactly do I need?
C+S Answers: We certainly don’t think you need much. For anyone just building their cookware collection these are the items we think you should purchase first (the first 4 are mentioned in the video above):
- Non-stick frying pan (about a 10″)
- Cast iron skillet
- Stainless steel saute pan
- 4 quart pot (for boiling pasta)
- 5 quart Dutch oven (for soups, braises, making rice)
- 9 x 13 Pyrex pan
- 1 medium baking sheet
Yes, that’s it. If you have those few things, you’ll pretty much be able to make 95% of all recipes out there. If you’re not, we promise your money back.
Want to learn more about essential cookware and kitchen tools? Check out our Amazon store.