Your kitchen is the heart of your home. It’s a place where family and friends gather to share stories and delicious food. Because a delicious baked good or home-cooked meal is the quickest way to everyone’s heart, you want to ensure you serve your guests with the best—so why shouldn’t that include the cookware you use?
Cooking is an art, and any experienced chef knows that a dish is only as good as the ingredients you use; you always make sure you have the freshest produce and the perfect spice blends so you can get grandma’s signature recipe just right. While fresh, delicious ingredients will certainly set you up for success, a true artist can’t work without the proper tools.
Every painter needs a paintbrush, every carpenter needs a hammer, and surprise—every chef needs a pot set in their home. It’s time to put the same amount of love and care into choosing the perfect cooking pot as you do the freshest ingredients at the grocery store. Your family’s favorite recipe deserves to be cooked in a pot that will ensure its quality and taste. Without further ado, let’s look at some of the best pots for your kitchen.
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Quality Over Quantity
There are so many sizes of pots and pans on the market, but how many cooking pots do you really need to make dinner? If you cook regularly, you have probably amassed a cookware collection. That’s why it’s crucial to consider what you currently own when choosing your next cookware set. What do you use most often? Even if you like to cook for your large, extended family, you most likely have a go-to cooking pot. The rest of your cookware likely sits in a cabinet, unused and collecting dust.
Consider clearing out your cabinets and replacing that collection with only a few cooking pots that are high-quality enough to withstand daily cooking. If you’re not a great cook or just starting your journey, it’s even more imperative that you love every piece of cookware in your kitchen. You’ll feel more motivated to cook and try out new recipes if your pot set does most of the work for you.
What to Look for in a High-Quality Pot Set
It’s tough to choose between a stainless steel pot—less risk of peeling or flaking—and a nonstick one, which allows for easy cleanup and less residue. But what if you didn’t have to choose? Brands like HexClad offer pots equipped with special technology that layer the best cookware materials into one. These pots have a unique hexagonal design with raised stainless steel bumps to aid in proper cooking. They also feature a layer of aluminum in the middle for thorough heating and divots of non-stick material on the bottom for easy cleanup.
Truly high-quality pots and pans should adjust to your cooking style, meaning they should be safe for both ovens and metal utensils. Sometimes you need a metal utensil to flip that pancake or burger, but it’s generally unsafe to use metal utensils with most pots and pans due to flaking. Plus, if your new pot or pan is versatile enough to use on the stove and in the oven, you can cut down on some of those baking sheets cluttering up your cabinet.
Finally, look for pots and pans with safety features; pots that are both dishwasher-safe and have safety handles are a must. If you’re using your kitchen to entertain guests, you would likely rather spend time visiting and eating with them than washing dishes after dinner. Safety handles are always an advantage, too, especially if you have kids who like to help out in the kitchen.
How many pots do you truly need in your kitchen, and which one is best for which recipe? It’s best to start with three different pots—one small, medium, and large, so you can choose a pot depending on how many people you’re serving. Start with a two-quart, three-quart, and eight-quart pot.
Eight-quart pots, also known as “stock pots,” are perfect for large batches of soup, stew, chili, curry, and pasta. These pots can serve a family of four or more, making it a perfect choice for that family get-together or potluck.
A three-quart pot is a standard size and can be used for just about anything. Use it to make sauce, heat soup, or boil water. It’s also great for smaller portions if you only plan to cook for one or two. If you choose to use a lid to aid in the heating process, make sure it fits snugly and doesn’t allow steam to escape.
A two-quart pot or saucepan is perfect for sauces, vegetables, or rice. If you use it for sauce, be sure it is steady and lightweight so you can expertly drizzle the finishing touches on your food.
Even if you live in a small household, it’s always best to have at least three pots of varying sizes in case you decide to serve more guests. You don’t want to be the house that runs out of everyone’s favorite dish! Not to worry, though; as long as you use the right tools, you’re sure to wow your friends and family with your cooking.