These Are the Best Nonstick Cookware Sets, Based On Our Tests

Our top pick is the GreenPan SearSmart Ceramic Nonstick 10-Piece Cookware Set.

We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products—learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

best nonstick cookware sets
Photo: Courtesy of Food & Wine / Jennifer Causey

Whether you're in the market for a high-performance chef-style cookware set or an affordable starter collection of pots and pans, a minimum of a few pieces are essential to meal prep. However, a proper nonstick cookware set will ensure cooking and cleaning isn't a hassle. When it comes to nonstick cookware sets, additional considerations, like whether or not they are truly nonstick — and therefore easier to clean — come to mind. You will want to determine if your cookware set will streamline the cooking and clean-up process or leave you standing at the sink scrubbing off stuck-on food that was supposed to glide off. The proper nonstick cookware set will round out your kitchen collection and make cooking and clean-up easier.

What chemicals and materials are used to make the pans resist stains, oil, and grease might be another consideration when choosing a nonstick cookware set. Thus, popular marketing terms like "healthy, non-toxic, PFOA-free, PFAS-free, and Teflon-free" are often listed as a selling point.

Our editors tested over 20 top brands to select the best eight. A five-tier rating system identified strengths and weaknesses in various tests and performance metrics, which our editors evaluated before choosing the best nonstick cookware sets. The overall favorite was GreenPan SearSmart Hard-Anodized Ceramic Nonstick 10-Piece Cookware Set, but there are plenty of other great sets to choose from. Read on for more details on what cookware made the top eight list and why some tested brands fell short.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: GreenPan SearSmart Hard-Anodized Ceramic Nonstick 10-Piece Cookware Set

Best Nonstick Cookware Sets
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at Greenpan.

Pros: The nonstick coating performs very well, and our testers liked that food didn't stick in the pan rivets.

Cons: There was some inconsistency in temperature throughout the pan during testing.

This cookware set from GreenPan comes with 8- and 10-inch frypans, 1.5- and 2.25-quart saucepans with lids, a 5-quart casserole with lid, and a 3-quart sauté pan with lid. The cookware material is made with hard-anodized ceramic, diamond-infused Thermolon™ — a patented alternative to Teflon, with high heat tolerance and a metal-resistant surface. It's listed as PFOA-free, PFA-free, lead-free, and cadmium-free. Each piece comes with durable stainless steel handles, and the cookware is oven and broiler safe up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit, the highest oven temperature rating in all the brands tested. The lids are made with durable tempered glass with an oven temp up to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. The largest 5-quart pot also has "helper handles," making it easier to move. According to the manufacturer, the set is dishwasher safe, although most nonstick last longer if hand washed. The pans also have a patented technology that promotes optimal searing.

During our egg test, the 8-inch saute pan provided the perfect nonstick surface for cooking and rolling out an omelet from pan to plate. Our testers found that no egg stuck to the rivets. During the sauce test, the 1.5-quart pot produced a thicker film of cooked sauce on the bottom. The testers did notice there was some inconsistency in temperature throughout the pan. The rice pilaf, however, cooked well without sticking.

Overall, the pans felt evenly weighted so as not to be too heavy and comfortable to handle, with more cooking space due to pan design. In addition, our testers found the nonstick coating to be really durable. While this set is pricier than some similar brands, our testers gave it a strong five points in performance, design, and clean-up — favorably ticking most, if not all, boxes.

  • Construction: Hard-anodized ceramic with diamond-infused thermal; stainless steel handles
  • Temperature range: Safe up to 600° F; lids up to 425° F
  • Induction safe: Yes, although may not work on all cooktops
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • best nonstick cookware sets
    Courtesy of Food & Wine / Jennifer Causey

Best Splurge: Scanpan 14-Piece Classic Stratanium Nonstick Cookware Set

Best Nonstick Cookware Sets
Courtesy of Amazon

Pros: This cookware set was rated at the highest level for its ease of cooking and cleaning, plus the pan weight and feel are good.

Cons: The price makes it less desirable than more affordable brands.

This extra-large, 14-piece collection from the popular cookware brand, which received a five-star rating in all categories from our testers, includes an 8-, 10.25-, and 12.5-inch skillet, a 10.5-inch square grill pan, 1-, 2-, and 3-quart saucepans with glass lid, a 2.75-quart (10.25-inch) saute pan with glass lid, and a 6.5-quart Dutch oven with glass lid. The pan material is aluminum, ceramic, and Scanpans's "Stratanium technology," which consists of five layers of hard particles and wave-like layers interlocking to reinforce the nonstick coating. According to testers, this made the pans feel "different" (translation: more durable) than the other pans. The manufacturer lists this cookware as PFOA-free and Teflon-free. The set also comes with a steamer insert and trivets.

The pans have no rivets, which makes clean-up a breeze. Testers noted that you must manually screw the metal and plastic handles onto the lids after purchase, which might mean more efficient packaging, yet we do admit it seems odd for the price point. The pots, pans, and hefty plastic handles are oven safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.

The pots and pans are slightly heavy yet still feel balanced and comfortable to use. The 8-inch saute pan rolled out a perfect omelet without sticking. The sauce didn't stick or scorch, and the rice didn't stick or burn during the tests. Testers commented on the "great" nonstick coating, which manufacturers claim will reduce the amount of oil needed for cooking.

The grip is excellent, and while the pans are slightly more shallow than some, it might be beneficial when tossing and sautéing food. However, this shallow pan design feature may also be harmful and messy, causing spattering or spillage.

  • Construction: Aluminum and ceramic with multilayer Stratanium coating
  • Temperature range: Safe up to 500° F
  • Induction safe: No
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • best nonstick cookware sets
    Courtesy of Food & Wine / Jennifer Causey

Best Value: Farberware 15-Piece Nonstick Cookware Set

Best Nonstick Cookware Sets
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at Bed Bath & Beyond.

Pros: Our testers gave this cookware set a five out of five on these four criteria: temperature, performance design, and ease of cleaning.

Cons: The nonstick coating is good, but food gets stuck between rivets and pan.

This affordable Farberware set includes 1- and 2-quart saucepans with lids, a 5-quart Dutch oven with lid, an 8-inch skillet, a 10-inch frying pan with lid, five nylon kitchen utensils to prevent scratching, and a bonus medium-sized cookie pan. Lids are shatter resistant and allow for monitoring of food while cooking. The pans are aluminum with a silicone polyester coating that's not Teflon-free. Pots and pans are oven safe up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit; bakeware is suitable to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

The largest pot size is 5 quarts, and included are "helper handles." Lids are tempered glass with a metal rim and screw welded phenolic handles. While balanced, lightweight, and easy to maneuver, this cookware is also thin and feels lower quality compared to other professional cookware brands. Everything is dishwasher-safe; however, hand washing is generally recommended to preserve the nonstick coating.

During testing, pan surface temperature was inconsistent, and there was a noticeable chemical smell when heated. However, this might dissipate after multiple uses. The 8-inch skillet rolled out an omelet easily, but some egg stuck between the rivets and the pan. The rice and sauce both cooked well without scorching, sticking, or burning.

Overall, we found this to be a very affordable set that performed pretty well. Consider this the perfect beginner's set for someone not wanting to spend over $100. It also comes in various exciting colors, such as violet and teal.

  • Construction: Aluminum silicone polyester
  • Temperature range: Safe up to 350° F
  • Induction safe: No
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes, however, handwashing is recommended

Related: The Best Stainless Steel Cookware Sets for Your Kitchen

best nonstick cookware sets
Courtesy of Food & Wine / Jennifer Causey

Most Durable: Calphalon 10-Piece Signature Hard-Anodized Nonstick Cookware Set

Best Nonstick Cookware Sets
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at Bed Bath & Beyond.

Pros: Testers said this set felt "like professional cookware." It's made of heavy gauge, hard-anodized aluminum with a PFOA-free nonstick coating.

Cons: This cookware set is expensive and requires more effort to clean and maintain.

This durable cookware set with the Calphalon name brand has a professional feel. It includes a 10-inch omelet pan, a 12-inch skillet, a 2-quart saucepan with lid, a 3-quart saucepan with lid, a 3-quart saute pan with lid, and an 8-quart stock pot with lid. The tempered glass lids enhance the cooking experience as you can see what's happening inside, and its long stainless steel handles are cool to touch when cooking on a stovetop.

The pot and pan material consists of hard-anodized, durable aluminum interior with a PFOA-free and Teflon-Free nonstick coating, and the cookware is oven safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. The manufacturer lists the nonstick coating as metal utensil safe, although reasonable care should be used to as not damage the surface.

The skillets are heavy, similar to stainless steel. However, the handles are thick and sturdy to compensate for the heft of the pan. During testing, the surface temperature was inconsistent throughout the pan. Since this cookware is more durable and made with high-quality material, the type of stovetop may impact temperature performance. For the omelet test, the testers used the 10-inch skillet. The eggs stuck to the rivets and the pan was a bit heavy, making it harder to roll out and omelet with ease. The rice pilaf, however, cooked well and did not stick. During the sauce test, the sauce was cooked more near the edge of the pan, although it did not scorch or burn. All in all, our testers would recommend and purchase this professional nonstick cookware set.

  • Construction: Hard-anodized aluminum nonstick interior; stainless steel handles
  • Temperature range: Safe up to 500° F
  • Induction safe: No
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes, however, handwashing is recommended
  • best nonstick cookware sets
    Courtesy of Food & Wine / Jennifer Causey

Best for Pros: Le Creuset Toughened Nonstick PRO Cookware Set

Best Nonstick Cookware Sets
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available on Sur La Table.

Pros: This set is very easy to clean, consistent temperature, and good at preventing food from sticking to the pan.

Cons: Only six pieces come in the set, and it doesn't include a 12-inch skillet. In addition, some food sticks in the rivets.

Included in this set from Le Creuset is an 8- and 11-inch fry pan, a 3-quart saucepan with lid, and a 4.25-quart saute pan with lid. The design is streamlined with a durable, hard-anodized aluminum interior construction, giving it a professional look, and the set is also very easy to clean. The assortment of odd-sized pans in the set and the absence of a 12-inch skillet somewhat disappointed our testers, and the pans are on the heavy side, with a lighter feeling handle. This combination did feel unbalanced, but the cookware still rated high regarding design.

There was also a noticeable chemical smell after the pans were in the oven. Our testers found this unexpected from a just "out of the box" set; however, any chemical odor may dissipate after repeated use. Like other professional brands, extra care is encouraged when cleaning to maintain the coating. With fewer pieces in this set, it might be the perfect fit for well-stocked kitchens that only need a few, new good pieces.

While testing the 8-inch skillet, our testers found that the eggs stuck to the pan's rivets and sides. When it came to the sauce test, there was no visible scorching after ten minutes of simmering sauce in the 3-quart saucepan. The rice test yielded good results without sticking. Overall, the testers found the cookware maintained a consistent temperature throughout the pan when heated.

  • Construction: Hard-anodized aluminum interior; stainless steel handles
  • Temperature range: Safe up to 500° F; lids up to 425° F
  • Induction safe: Yes
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • best nonstick cookware sets
    Courtesy of Food & Wine / Jennifer Causey

Best Copper: Faberware Glide CopperSlide Ceramic Nonstick 12-Piece Cookware Set

Best Nonstick Cookware Sets
Courtesy of Bed Bath And Beyond

Also available on Bed Bath & Beyond.

Pros: This is affordable set performed well overall and is priced under $100.

Cons: Eggs stuck between the pan rivets during the omelet test. The surface temperature was slightly inconsistent throughout the pan.

This 12-piece cookware set comes with a 1- and 2- quart saucepan, 5-quart dutch oven, 10-Inch skillet (all with lids), and an 8.5-inch deep skillet, slotted turner, slotted spoon, and pasta fork. It's made of clad stainless steel and aluminum with a copper base and copper ceramic nonstick, Teflon-free coating. The cookware is oven-safe up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit but not induction-safe. Lids are tempered glass and metal, with a textured knob that feels like plastic and screw-welded phenolic handles. Only the Dutch oven has helper handles.

Overall, the handles feel very lightweight and, according to testers, "plastic-y," yet the pans are still balanced in weight. Do note: The low maximum oven-safe temp is a downside if you wish to cook at higher heat. The cookware is listed as dishwasher safe; however, hand washing is generally preferred to extend the life of the pans.

During testing, the sauce and rice tests saw no scorching, sticking, or burning. The eggs cooked evenly and rolled out of the pan easily onto the plate. Consider this an affordable option and great beginner set for under one hundred dollars. And with the copper coating, your kitchen will have an extra sparkle.

  • Construction: Aluminum with copper base
  • Temperature range: Safe up to 350° F
  • Induction safe: No
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • best nonstick cookware sets
    Courtesy of Food & Wine / Jennifer Causey

Best Large Set: Cuisinart 12-Piece GG-12 GreenGourmet Hard-Anodized Nonstick Cookware Set

Best Nonstick Cookware Sets
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available on Target.

Pros: Great-priced set with a strong brand name and overall firm performance.

Cons: Noticeable chemical smell when heated. Unclear if this will persist after multiple uses.

This cookware set from Cuisinart includes an 8-inch skillet, 10-inch deep fry pan with lid, 1.5-quart saucepan with lid, 2.5-quart saucepan with lid, 3-quart pan with lid, 6-quart Dutch oven with lid, and a steamer insert. The pan is petroleum-free and Teflon-free with a ceramic-based nonstick interior, while the handles are made from 70% recycled stainless steel. While the cookware doesn't include any helper handles, it is lightweight and balanced, making it easy to move from stovetop to sink or oven.

The 8-inch skillet performed well in the omelet test with no sticking, and the eggs rolled out easily. The 1.5-quart sauce pot was quick to simmer, although there was slight sticking in the grooves and on the sides after cooking. The rice cooked well in the 2.5-quart saucepan without sticking or burning, and the testers found the temperature was consistent across the pan surface.

Our testers liked the sleek and simple design and found the set very easy to clean, making the dishwasher unnecessary. The verdict: This cookware set is comprehensive and includes most of what you need. Consider this another good option for a starter set — with a slightly sleeker look — hence the higher price point.

  • Construction: Aluminum
  • Temperature range: Safe up to 400° F
  • Induction safe: Yes
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes

Related: We Tested the Best Egg Pans for Perfect Omelets, Scrambled Eggs, and More

best nonstick cookware sets
Courtesy of Food & Wine / Jennifer Causey

Best Starter Set: T-fal Ultimate Hard-Anodized Nonstick 12-Piece Cookware Set

Best Nonstick Cookware Sets
Courtesy of Amazon

Also available at Bed Bath & Beyond.

Pros: This set invluces a range of pan sizes, and is easy to clean with smart nonstick coated rivets. It's a great value for the price.

Cons: Temperature is a little inconsistent over pan surface. Overall, the design is lacking compared to other higher-end brands.

This starter set includes an 8-inch omelet pan, 10-inch frying pan, 1-, 2- and 3-quart saucepans with lids, 5-quart Dutch oven with lid, solid spoon, and slotted spatula. The pots and pans are very light, and, thus feel a bit lower quality. Our testers don't recommend using them in the oven because of the handles and the low overall safe temperature rating at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. However, a nice feature for less experienced cooks is the T-fal exclusive indicator showing when the pan is preheated and ready for cooking.

During the omelet test, some eggs stuck on the side, yet the omelet rolled out quickly. The 2-quart saucepan cooked sauce and rice well without sticking, scorching, or burning. Pots and pan temperature surface test showed some inconsistency; however, it was marginal.

Overall, the testers found the nonstick-coated rivets to be a smart feature and prevent food from sticking. The testers also found this set very easy to clean, and the deep pans are perfect for cooking larger batches for a family or crowd. The sizes of pans are good, and given the price point, this cookware set offers affordable and exceptional value with good performance.

  • Construction: Aluminum with hard titanium reinforced interior
  • Temperature range: Safe up to 350° F
  • Induction safe: No
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
best nonstick cookware sets
Courtesy of Food & Wine / Jennifer Causey

Our Favorite

After testing and reviewing over twenty nonstick cookware sets, our editors selected the GreenPan SearSmart Hard-Anodized Ceramic Nonstick 10-Piece Cookware Set as the best overall for its range in pots and pans sizes, durable coating, even weight, and optimal cooking space. We also found cleanup to be a cinch.

Factors to Consider

Usage

When shopping for nonstick cookware, it is important to consider how you intend to use the pots or pans you are shopping for. Nonstick skillets are essential tools for delicate ingredients like eggs or fish, pancakes or crepes, and for fast cleanup of easy meals like grilled cheese sandwiches. When choosing the right one, look at how you will most often use the cookware. For example, if you want to be able to sear on the stovetop and finish in the oven, you'll need one with oven-safe handles and finishes. You'll also have to decide if you need lids or not since some nonstick cookware, especially skillets, do not necessarily come with lids.

Materials

While most nonstick cookware is made with a Teflon coating, many new products on the market are promoted as nonstick, such as ceramic, enamel, and anodized aluminum. There are also pots and pans that, when properly seasoned and maintained, can develop nearly nonstick coatings, like cast iron and carbon steel. Teflon is the most nonstick of available surfaces but needs proper maintenance to ensure the coating does not get damaged. Ceramic is similar in that the coating can be damaged if improperly cleaned or the wrong cooking utensils are used.

Maintenance

While some nonstick cookware can be put in the dishwasher, it's best to hand wash them as the high heat can damage the coating, and the racks or other items in the dishwasher can scratch the nonstick interior. Since nonstick does not allow food to adhere, you should only need a soft rag or soft plastic brush and nonabrasive cleanser to keep it clean. If you are working with a nonstick surface that is "seasoned" to make it nonstick, such as carbon steel or cast iron, you will want to wash it gently with warm water and soap and then give it a thin coating of oil before storing. If you have stuck-on food with one of these surfaces, fill the pan halfway with water and bring it to a boil to loosen; do not use abrasive cleansers or scrubbers, as it will require re-seasoning.

The Tests

Our team of professional testers subjected over twenty nonstick cookware brands to many rigorous performance tests to determine the best sets. They evaluated temperature consistency and assessed pan design across brands. Using a 5-point rating scale, our team performed an omelet, sauce, and rice pilaf test to determine what cookware performed best as nonstick.

While some sets had unique features and qualities that performed well, the stand-out cookware scored highest in these key metrics: surface pan temperature and temperature consistency within the set, nonstick performance, design, ease of clean-up, overall perception of value, and price.

What Didn't Make the List

Strong Contenders:

  • All-Clad Essentials Nonstick Hard-Anodized Cookware Set ($400 at Amazon)
  • T-fal Signature Nonstick 12-Piece Cookware Set ($90 at Amazon)
  • Circulon Premier Professional 13-Piece Hard-Anodized Cookware Set ($300 at Amazon)

Results Still Simmering:

  • OXO Good Grips Pro Hard-Anodized Nonstick 12-Piece Cookware Set ($300 at Amazon)
  • Caraway Home 7-Piece Ceramic NonStick Cookware Set ($495 at Crate & Barrel)
  • Tramontina Nesting 11-Piece Nonstick Cookware Set ($160 at Amazon)
  • Cuisinart Dishwasher Safe Hard-Anodized 11-Piece Cookware Set ($160 at Amazon)
  • Ninja C39800 Foodi NeverStick Premium 12-Piece Cookware Set ($330 at Amazon)

Low Performers:

  • GreenLife Soft Grip Diamond Healthy Ceramic Nonstick 16-Piece Cookware Set ($80 at Amazon)
  • Misen Nonstick Pans ($55 at Misen)
  • Cuisinart Chef's Classic Nonstick Hard-Anodized 11-Piece Cookware Set ($170 at Amazon)
  • Anolon Advanced Home Hard-Anodized Aluminum 11-Piece Cookware Set ($300 at Amazon)
  • HexClad 7-Piece Hybrid Stainless Steel Cookware Set ($400 at Amazon)
  • Rachael Ray Cucina Hard-Anodized Nonstick 12-Piece Cookware Set ($190 at Amazon)

Pro Panel Q+A

We reached out to Bev Shaffer, a chef, culinary instructor, recipe and R&D specialist, and travel and food writer, to answer some key questions about nonstick cookware.

What is the difference between nonstick and hard-anodized cookware?

"Non-stick cookware has a manufacturer's special coating which makes it easy to clean and eliminates scrubbing." Says Shaffer. "Hard-anodized cookware has a bonded surface and traditionally lasts longer than nonstick."

How long does nonstick cookware last?

There is no simple answer to this since no nonstick cookware is forever. "Depends on how good the initial quality of the pan is and how you treat it," cautions Shaffer. "Using wood, silicone, or plastic utensils will extend its life."

Is nonstick cookware dishwasher safe?

Yes and no, says Shaffer. "If the manufacturer says you can, technically you can, but understand that it will shorten the life of the pan." You will always get a longer life out of your nonstick cookware if you wash by hand to prevent the high temperatures and harsh detergents from damaging the nonstick surface.

Our Expertise

Kara Mickelson is a professional chef, recipe developer, producer, writer, food stylist, an alumnus of UCLA and Le Cordon Bleu School of Culinary Arts, and the creator of Styled Delicious, a boutique culinary brand. She has trained in Spain and Napa at the famed French Laundry and has worked behind the scenes with top Food Network chefs. She is also the author of Friends: The Official Central Perk Cookbook. In addition, Stacey Ballis, a writer, recipe developer, and product reviewer who has been published on Food & Wine, Eating Well, Allrecipes, MyRecipes, Delish, and more, offered her expertise for additional research.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles