Stainless steel cookware is a powerhouse in the kitchen and provides a great sear to meats, fish and more. With proper use and care, stainless steel cookware can last a lifetime. Follow these simple instructions to get the optimal performance from your cookware.

Getting Started:

Unlike cookware with non-stick coatings, stainless steel cookware is not inherently non-stick. However, proper use can ensure strong performance and easy food release. Read on to learn how to get the best results from your stainless steel cookware.

Preheat your stainless-steel cookware on medium-high heat. Use the “water droplet test” to know when it’s preheated. To do so, add a few drops of water to the pan; the droplets should keep their shape and move around the pan. It’s now ready to use; let the droplets evaporate, making sure the pan is dry.

Next, add the oil, letting it heat briefly. With stainless steel cookware, the oil helps create a smoother surface that prevents the food from sticking. As such, plan on using a bit more oil than you would with a seasoned cast iron pan or a non-stick pan. You’ll know the pan is ready when the oil spreads across the pan and has a slight shimmer.

Quick Tip: If the oil is too cold it won’t spread. If too hot, the oil will be very active in the pan, leading to smoking. If the oil does inadvertently become too hot, carefully and immediately remove the pan from heat to let it cool down. Do not splash or add water to an overheated pan that has oil in it.

Cooking Know-How:

As a rule of thumb with stainless steel cookware, medium-high heat is the ideal temperature for browning and cooking, depending on what you’re preparing. If the heat is too high, food can stick and burn, while in contrast, heat that is too low may keep food soft or soggy.

For best performance, start with room temperature food that is fairly dry. Pat foods dry with paper towels in preparation if need be. Food that is too cold causes the temperature of the pan to drop and may cause the food to stick to the pan.Along the same lines, overcrowding the pan with too much food added at once will have the same effect as a cold pan or cold food, causing the temperature of the pan to drop.

To ensure a good sear, do not move the food around too often; as the food cooks it will naturally release from the pan, making it easier to slide your spatula under and turn food over. If you find your food is sticking and has not yet browned, try leaving it to cook longer until it lifts easily from the pan.

All PADERNO stainless-steel pots and pans are compatible with all cooking surfaces, including induction, for ultimate versatility.

Care and Maintenance:

While some stainless steel pots and pans are dishwasher safe, it is recommended that you hand wash your pans to maximize their life span.

Let the pan cool before pre-soaking. This prevents warping and damage to the pan, and allows for easier removal of any stuck-on bits with a wooden spoon before washing with hot soapy water.

Following these instructions will help you enjoy your stainless steel cookware for years to come.