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    Which Cookware is The Best? Stainless Steel vs Hard Anodized

    Numerous technologies are developed which makes our life easier and more convenient. Science has completely the changed the perspective of life as compared to ancient time. Now distances and speed cannot be the barriers between two people. We have telephones which connect people who are living in geographically distant places.

    At present individuals have facilities like fast moving bullet trains, aeroplanes which can cover a long distance in a fraction of the time. But these applications have affected our environment and consequently our health drastically. Mexican cooking is an example of modern type cooking.

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    Many appliances like oven, non-stick pressure cookers, and pans help in cooking process and as a result of which this task has become easier. These things enhance the look of one’s kitchen and make them look classy and elegant.

    But choosing the perfect cookware is the matter of biggest dilemma because this work is not a cup of tea. There is some mind-boggling options are present in the market which may confuse anyone while purchasing cookware. Nowadays most of the people prefer to purchase either a hard anodized cookware or a stainless steel one.

    How Stainless Steel And Hard Anodized Cookware Are Manufactured?

    Choosing good cookware seems to be a very daunting task because there are various types of cookware available in the market. Some are good for health by not producing toxic while some can cope up wear and tear of daily life. Stainless steel and aluminum are the two most preferred utensil materials. These two materials are widely used in kitchen stuff all over the world.

    Image Credit: http://www.thecookwareadvisor.com/how-to-choose-cookware/

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    Stainless Steel

    Stainless steel is an alloy which is the homogeneous mixture of metals like chromium, carbon, nickel, molybdenum and steel, etc. intermixed in appropriate proportions wherein aluminum is a pure highly reactive metal. Stainless steel is a heavy-duty, highly durable and versatile cookware option. It is resistant to dents and dings too. As aluminum is a metal, hence it is a very good conductor of heat which is helpful in preserving energy. Pure aluminum is highly active metal and can react with any alkaline or acidic food stuff very fast.

    As a result of which it leaches into the food and makes it toxic which is harmful to a body after consumption. This is the reason aluminum has lost its place from the favorite lists of chefs and house wives. Moreover, aluminum with some impurity is used for solving this problem.


    View more Have a Look at Some of The Best Stainless Steel Cookware For Enriching Cooking Experience!

    Hard anodized cookware

    To overcome the drawbacks of aluminum cookware manufacturers have found a new way of making safe and convenient utensils i.e. hard anodized aluminum. In the anodized form, the aluminum porous surface is renovated into a non-porous, smooth and non-sticky surface which is assumed to be ideal for cooking.

    Everything in this universe has two phases i.e. good and bad and hence some limitations of this material exist too which we will see later.

    Hard Anodized Cookware

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    Differences between Stainless Steel and Hard Anodized Aluminium

    • Heat conductivity

    Aluminum is an excellent conductor of heat so as anodized aluminum material. That’s why food cooked in the utensils made of this material is evenly cooked without any sticky hot-spots. Moreover, this cookware comes with a coating of a non-sticky material which makes cooking an easy task. Whereas on the other hand stainless steel is not a very good conductor of heat resulting in uneven heating of food leaving hot-spots in the vessels which are very difficult to remove. To improve the overall heat conductivity of stainless steel a coating of copper or aluminum is done at the bottom of utensils.

    So if you are planning to buy a stainless steel cookware then buy one who has aluminum or copper coated base.

    • Non-stick coating

    After undergoing numerous electrochemical reactions, a layer of aluminum oxide is formed on the surface of the anodized aluminum utensils. Non-stick cookware is a boon for health-conscious eaters because it prepares food in minimal oil which results in low fat and cholesterol meal. Moreover, it provides the convenience of easy clean up. These gray colored anodized aluminum pots have a non-stick coating which repels the food and do not allow them to stick. It is scratch resistant too. Thicker the coating, even distribution of heat will be. Stainless steel cookware does not come with such non-stick coating.

    Hence foods get the stick on the surface of the vessel which is very difficult to remove. Moreover while cooking in stainless steel material we require more amount of oil, the consequent dish would be full of fats and cholesterols.

    • Durability

    Everyone prefers to purchase a cookware which lasts for many years. For many people buying cookware is an investment. But when the question of durability arises for both anodized and stainless cookware then we will be surprised to know that both are very much durable. Because of additional non-stick coating, the base of anodized utensils gets more firmed and sturdy. Hard anodized aluminum cookware is the strongest cookware available today.

    But with the passing of time, these coating may wear off revealing the bare aluminum which results in toxic food. Stainless steel cookware remains scratch free for an even long period. And suppose due to any reason it gets scratched on its surface then also it will not result in toxic food. However, high temperature may cause the deformation of the shape of utensils. The phenomenon of rusting and corrosion are common to stainless steel cookware.

    • Maintenance

    Due to the coating of non-stick, anodized utensils should be handled carefully. It should not be washed in the dishwasher because this coating may get decolorized and damaged. Wash with smooth hands and avoid the use of metal scrubber. These utensils are washed with smooth and gentle sponges.

    However, there is no fear of such things while washing stainless steel cookware. One can wash stainless steel vessels in the dishwasher or use metal scrubber because there is no question of eroding the metal surface.

    • Price

    The price of stainless steel pots and vessels vary as per the amount of nickel present in it. More will be the percentage of nickel; more will be the strength and durability hence higher will be the price of cookware. Availability of nickel enhances the quality of the product. Hence the price of stainless steel lies between inexpensive to expensive. However, the price of anodized aluminum cookware is moderate and very much affordable. It is not much expensive. In tailgating, parties people use to bring foods prepared in anodized aluminum cookware.

    When choosing the cookware to buy, the following condition and features need to be considered so as to help the user buy the best cookware:

    • Budget- the users should consider purchasing a cookware that limits their prices. Durability of the utensil is a factor of consideration as well as the user needs purchase a cookware that will last for long to cut the cost recurrent buying of the utensil
    • Size and the number of pieces an individual requires- for the cases of small families, small sizes are convenient. Few pieces are as well relevant for small families. 
    • Material- while buying a cookware, you need to consider the excellent regarding heat conductivity. 

    Pros of Hard Anodized Aluminum

    • An excellent conductor of heat
    • Cheap to buy

    Cons of Hard Anodized Aluminum

    • Reacts with both acidic and basic food.

    Pros of Stainless Steel

    • Easy to maintain
    • Do not react with food
    • Attractive appearance

    Cons of Stainless Steel

    • Poor conductor of heat

    Things to avoid while purchasing

    • One should buy a cookware having no coating of aluminum or copper at its bottom.
    • Vessels having no coating of non-stick and made of aluminum must be avoided.
    • If we purchase a good quality cookware of good brand, then it must be expensive. Cheap utensils may flake off over time. So do not play with your health by being a miser. Always purchase the vessels of good quality and a good brand.


    Everything in this world has benefits and drawbacks so as the stainless steel and anodized aluminum cookware. Before purchasing utensils ponder about all the pros and cons of material. Hence one should buy cookware after seeing all the aspects. Once buy cookware each of the type and decides you which one is better and suits you.

    Which Cookware is The Best? Stainless Steel vs Hard Anodized
    Article Name
    Which Cookware is The Best? Stainless Steel vs Hard Anodized
    Which cookware is the best? Hard anodized vs stainless steel difference, usage, reliability, and price of these products.
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    About the author

      Sarah Hanson

      My name is Sarah Hanson, Founder of CookyDaddy. My great passion is providing insights and advice on how to stay healthy and still get to enjoy trying out different types of food and cooking methods.

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      1 comment
      Scott - April 24, 2017

      It is difficult to take your ratings seriously when you left out the Calphalon Signature series (hard anodized) and the All Clad line. Unless you are only going for best bang for the buck. Circulon is clearer inferior to the Calphalon line in hard anodized.

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