Safety is a major consideration when choosing cooking utensils. People are now much more aware of their health and want to avoid cookware that contains preservatives, chemicals, and toxic elements. In that case, stainless steel cookware can be an ideal choice for any kitchen.
This non-stick cookware offers toxic-free, durability, flexible, unbreakable, and budget-friendly. Even so, some people have been concerned about whether stainless steel cookware is safe to use.
Typically, stainless steel cookware is considered one of the safest materials for its ideal alloy. This cookware uses low-carbon, iron-based steel mixed with other materials that reduce corrosion and increase strength. Read the context to investigate the safety of stainless steel cookware.
Is Stainless Steel Cookware Safe?
Stainless steel is a metal of iron and carbon with nickel, chromium, and other elements.
Nickel and chromium make stainless steel strong, non-reactive, and resistant to corrosion and rust. These ingredients give the steel a bright look. Most stainless steel cookware is constructed of 18% chromium.
According to the National Sanitation Federation (NSF), stainless steel is food safe because it contains at least 16% chromium. For that, the surface of the cooking utensils is hard and non-reactive, bacteria will not be long lasting, and harmful layers of metals will not mix with food.
However, some people use aluminum cookware which can cause serious health problems. The WHO says that our bodies can absorb only 50 milligrams of aluminum per day. Thus, using aluminum-free cookware, such as stainless steel could be ideal for preventing neurotoxicity and Alzheimer’s disease.
What Makes Stainless Steel Cookware Safe?
In this segment, we have discussed a few qualities of stainless steel. These will help you know why choosing stainless steel cookware is safe.
Stainless steel cookware is made of high-quality metal, so it is non-perforated. Lower-grade metals are more porous and can easily expand when heated. For this, the food gets stuck in the cookware during cooking, which will be difficult to clean. In contrast, stainless steel doesn’t expand when heated, and cleaning cookware made with this metal would be a breeze.
No Risky Coatings
Cookware made of copper, aluminum, and Teflon is coated with ingredients that can enter your food from pots and pans. Besides, some elements react chemically when heated to a certain level, making you sick easily. On the contrary, stainless steel cookware has a chromium coating which is resistant to corrosion. It won’t be a significant threat to your health.
You will find some cooking utensils made of glass or enamel-coated, which offer poor heat distribution. Cooking with this type of cookware results in more or less cooking and can stick to the dishes. But with stainless steel cooking utensils, you won’t encounter any of these problems.
Different Types Of Food-Grade Stainless Steel
There is a variety of food-grade stainless steel, but we have demonstrated some significant ones. You will need to consider these food grades while buying cookware.
The 200 Series Food-Grade Stainless Steel is a chromium, nickel, and manganese hybrid. It is not so good for food-grade cooking utensils, and it is not even considered pure stainless steel. This food-grade has less nickel content and more manganese, making the cookware corrosive. Typically, when manufacturers have to make cheap replicas of anti-cookware, they opt for 200 series stainless steel.
304 and 316 are the two types of stainless steel 300 typically used to make cookware. 304 SS stainless steel combines 18% chromium and 8% nickel, making it more durable and shining. Besides, this grade has a better ability to resist corrosion and rust. On the other hand, 316 SS is another good metal for making cookware. This metal grade is usually used for medical equipment purposes because it can resist corrosion caused by salt.
430 stainless steel is the most adaptable sub-category of the 400 series. This metal is a combination of 18% chromium and 0% nickel. Although it is officially called nickel-free, it contains a small amount of 0.75% nickel. If there is no nickel in the cooking utensils, they will be at high risk of corrosion. As a result, the cookware will lose its integrity in a few days.
Advantages Of Using Stainless Steel Cookware
Apart from safety, stainless steel cookware offers several advantages.
Here we have discussed some significant benefits you will get using stainless steel cookware.
While nonstick cookware will scratch easily, stainless steel cookware is resistant to scratches and discoloration. Quality stainless steel becomes harder when heated up. As a result, you will get an even cooking surface, and the cookware will offer a longer lifespan than other metals.
Good Cooking Ability
Stainless steel cookware offers excellent cooking performance. They absorb heat quickly and distribute evenly from bottom to top surface. For that, you can easily use the cookware over a gas burner without fear of burning food.
Kitchen utensils made with stainless steel need simple care, as they don’t rust or have a delicate coat. You don’t have to face any trouble with peeling and pampering. You only need to clean the area when the cookware burns occasionally.
Stainless steel cookware is completely non-food-reactive. These kitchen utensils are perfect for cooking acid dishes like tomato sauce or cilantro lime fish. They don’t leach any harmful chemicals that make your meal unsafe. Besides, your cooking food will taste original and delicious.
Compared to other materials of cookware, investing in stainless steel cookware is a good idea. A wise investment not only saves you money but also keeps food safe. Besides, stainless steel cookware offers an incredible lifespan, so you don’t have to buy cookware frequently.
How To Choose The Safest Stainless Steel Cookware?
If you don’t want to purchase cookware often, stainless steel cookware will be an excellent investment.
Here we have explained how you can select the right stainless steel cookware.
Grade of Stainless Steel
We have already provided a complete overview of the different grades of stainless steel. Typically, most stainless steel cookware is made of 18/10 grade steel, which makes them high-quality cookware. 300 series grade stainless steel comprises 18% chromium and 10% nickel, making them more durable. Chromium helps make the cookware resist corrosion, and nickel keeps its sheen.
The heating capacity of stainless steel cookware varies from model to model. You will find some safe cookware in an oven up to 350 degrees. Some heavier cookware can withstand temperatures over 500 degrees. So, check the heating capacity of your chosen cookware to determine the temperature you can use the utensil.
Regarding stainless steel, the heavier the cooking pot, the better it will handle. If you are fond of cooking, heavy stainless steel cookware would be a good choice for durability. On the other hand, light cookware can easily fall around your stove, and they do not distribute heat evenly in the cooking utensils.
Some manufacturers offer a limited lifetime guarantee on stainless steel when purchasing cookware from an authorized store. These guarantees protect against defects in materials, construction, or workmanship. But you won’t get a guarantee on your cookware due to improper use, thermal shock, drop or normal wear and tear.
Stainless steel cookware is an excellent investment because they are safe and last longer. Compared to other metal kitchen utensils, this cookware is usually cheaper, so it’s worth the upfront cost. However, after reading this context, you might have understood whether stainless steel cookware is safe or not.
Typically, this cookware is completely safe since they are chromium and nickel alloy. These make the cookware more stable and safe than other reactive cookware such as copper and aluminum. Check out the segment above if you find it challenging to pick out the right stainless steel cookware.