There's new, greener nonstick cookware. How good is it? Consumer Reports just tested to get to the bottom of this.
Pots and pans look nice and shiny in the store, but NOT after a messy meal.
Nonstick cookware can help. Consumer Reports has tested something new-"green" nonstick pans with new kinds of coatings.
"There has been concern that cooking at very high temperatures can break down the coating on typical nonstick pans, releasing a potentially harmful chemical into the air," said Consumer Reports Dan DiClerico. "But our tests haven't found a significant health risk."
In all, Consumer Reports tested eight sets of "green pans," ranging in price from $100-$500.
For the tests, each pan is oiled once and then four eggs are cooked back to back.
Testers are looking at whether the egg sticks to the pan.
And machines scrub the pans up to two thousand times, to see how well the nonstick surface holds up.
This pan did fine, but this one did not.
"Another test measures how evenly a pan cooks." said DiClerico. "In that test, one of our "green pans, the Mercola Healthy Chef burned pancakes."
And the Mercola's ceramic handle broke on both the frying pan and the sauce pan.
But some of the "green" pans actually did better overall than conventional nonstick pans.
Consumer Reports named the Earth Pan Set a Best Buy. For $190, you get ten pieces, and it's dishwasher safe.
If you do lots of braising and browning of foods, you need uncoated pans.
Consumer Reports' tests found some good ones for under $200 for a ten-piece set.
They're Emerilware Stainless and Kitchen-Aid Gourmet Essentials Brushed Stainless.
Of course, they will be harder to clean than nonstick cookware.