Utensils and Stainless Steel: Guide to Selecting the Best Cooking Utensils for Stainless Steel Pots and Pans

Cooking vegetables with an american kitchen stainless steel pan

One of the many advantages of stainless steel cookware is its reliability. In fact, it’s so durable that you can use utensils made from virtually any material without worry. We could just tell you to buy any old thing and leave it at that, but at American Kitchen we want to make sure you’re getting the most out of your pots and pans. Read on to discover which utensils are right for you.

Pros  Cons
Bamboo
  • Durable
  • Affordable
  • Easy to clean
  • Stain and odor resistant 
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Not dishwasher safe
  • Extra maintenance
Wood
  • Germ and bacteria resistant
  • Easy to grip
  • Durable
  • Elegant
  • Difficult to clean
  • Stain easily
  • Not dishwasher safe
  • Will splinter and crack if not cared for
Silicone
  • Long-lasting
  • Heat Resistant
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Affordable
  • Many color choices
  • Easily damaged by sharp knives
  • May not be 100% silicone
Metal
  • Durable
  • Attractive
  • Thin and sturdy
  • Easy to clean
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Low maintenance
  • Pricier
  • Conduct heat
  • Chance of rust
  • May cause superficial scratches
Nylon/Plastic
  • Durable
  • Affordable
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Rigid and good for flipping
  • Food sticks
  • Melt easily
  • Less elegant

 

 

Using silicone utensils with american kitchen cookware

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Bamboo Utensils 

Not simply a renewable resource, bamboo is especially sustainable because it grows quickly and is harvested much like you would mow grass—the tops are cut off for use and the plant is allowed to continue growth. Durable and affordable, bamboo utensils should be hand washed to prevent them from soaking up moisture. They require infrequent oiling to keep them from becoming dry and brittle, making them more time consuming to maintain than other utensil materials. 

Wooden Utensils  

Available in a multitude of styles and types, wooden utensils remain classic in home kitchens. Prices can vary quite dramatically—elegant walnut or olive wood will cost you a pretty penny, while your basic beech wood is highly affordable. Wooden spoons and utensils are naturally germ and bacteria resistant and more environmentally friendly than some of your other choices. Being porous, they stain easily, are not dishwasher friendly, and must be oiled fairly regularly. 

Silicone Utensils

Silicone has become an indispensable addition to kitchens in recent years. These utensils are extremely affordable, and the wide range of colors in which they are available means they’re compatible with virtually any décor. Heat resistant up to 650 °F, you rarely have to worry about melting or scorching. Their flexible nature makes them extremely durable but mind the knives! Silicone is easily damaged by sharp implements. Buyer beware: many products marketed as silicone are not in fact 100% silicone, reducing durability and heat resistance. To check if your silicone utensils contain fillers simply bend them a bit and look for the telltale white mark. 

Metal Utensils

Metal utensils are a great choice if you’re looking for a heavy duty, super durable utensil. Though they tend to be pricier than other materials, they make up for cost with convenience. Easy to clean, dishwasher safe and low maintenance, they require little attention (though watch out for rust). They’re generally made to be thin enough to slide under delicate foods like piping hot cookies. Useful as they may be, if you’re trying to keep your stainless steel pots and pans looking pristine you may want to avoid metal. Though it won’t cause any real harm, metal utensils can cause superficial scratches on your gorgeous stainless steel. 

Nylon/Plastic Utensils 

Nylon and plastic utensils are by far the most affordable of any material. Though durable and dishwasher safe, they melt very easily if left unattended on the stove. They’re generally considered less aesthetically pleasing than their more expensive counterparts, and food often sticks to them, making for a more time-consuming cleanup. If you’re searching for a bargain, these are the utensils for you, though keep in mind that they may not stick around for long.