When you think of nonstick cookware, do you think of Teflon? While Teflon has been a popular choice for many years, there is another option out there. It’s safer, healthier and prevents food from sticking just as well if not better than Teflon. Clean up is a breeze too. Sounds good, right?
Ceramic cookware has become a popular choice for home cooks in recent years because of its superior nonstick qualities and the fact that it is more affordable than other types of cookware. It’s also easy to care for and for many ceramic pans, can even be put in the dishwasher for extra easy cleaning.
And of all pieces of cookware you own, choosing to purchase a ceramic fry pan makes a lot of sense since a fry pan is one of the most utilized pieces of equipment in any cooks’ kitchen. While ceramic does tend to be a little more expensive than Teflon nonstick pans (but still very affordable), there’s plenty of reason why you choose ceramic over other nonstick pans.
Whether you are a seasoned cook or a beginner chef just looking for something to cook some simple meals, we have compiled a list of the 10 best ceramic fry pans out there today. But before we get into the list, we’ll tell you why ceramic is best, how to care for your ceramic cookware and more.
In a Hurry? Here’s Our Top Picks…
Benefits of Ceramic Cookware
We mentioned that ceramic cookware is a safer and healthier cookware option. But what does that really mean? Here’s why ceramic reigns supreme, especially in the world of nonstick.
It doesn’t contain PFTE or PFOA. These chemicals are found in Teflon cookware and PFOA specifically has been linked to potentially causing cancer. While long-term health effects of PFOA are not yet known, it’s best to stay away from PTFE and PFOA if possible.
You don’t need as much oil. Thanks to its great non-stick surface you won’t need a lot of oil to cook food, which in turn means healthier food.
It’s non-reactive. You can cook acidic food without worrying about it reacting to ceramic (and thus potentially harmful elements leaching into your food!)
It’s easy to clean. Another reason why that non-stick coating is great— it’s also easy to clean which means no scrubbing off food. (More on how to care for your ceramic in just a bit.)
It’s lightweight. Since ceramic is usually paired with aluminum, a great conductor of heat, your sure to notice that the pan is lightweight making it easier to flip omelets, pancakes and more.
It cooks more efficiently. Again, with the aluminum as a great conductor and having to cook on medium to low heat (more on that in a minute) you’ll save some money on energy cost.
Cooking with Ceramic
Because of its nonstick surface, cooking with ceramic cookware is extremely easy. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when cooking with ceramic. Here are some tips to consider before you start cooking on your ceramic pan:
Keep the temperature lower than usual. Ceramic does not like the high setting on your stove. Since it cooks so efficiently and evenly, keep the setting low to medium when cooking. This will also prevent food from getting burnt on the pan.
Keep metal utensils away! Metal utensils will scratch and chip the ceramic. Stick with wooden or plastic utensils to avoid damaging the pan.
Use just a little oil. While the nonstick ceramic coating will prevent food from sticking, you will still need to use just a little oil or butter. This will help the nonstick surface last longer and of course, helps with flavor.
*Note: Never use non-stick cooking spray, because it will leave a residue that will be very difficult to get off.
Bring food to room temperature before adding it to the fry pan. Never put cold food in a hot ceramic pan. Allow it to warm up before cooking it. This is so that food won’t stick to the pan.
Be careful when putting it in the oven. While many pieces of ceramic cookware can be put in the oven, most won’t hold up to as high of heat as other cookware materials such as stainless steel. We’ve noted on each of the following ceramic pans if it can be put in the oven and to what temperature.
Why a fry pan?
Fry pans (also called a skillet) may be one of the most used pieces of cookware a person can own. From omelets to sauces to searing up meat and fish, fry pans can do almost everything. No matter how often you plan on cooking, having a fry pan in your arsenal is essential to a well-stocked kitchen.
Fry pans can sometimes come with a lid, while many do not. Consider what you plan on cooking. Choosing one that has a lid will make the pan more versatile (think: sauces). If a pan does not come with a lid, there are many universal lids available, although many manufacturers have the option of purchasing a lid separately.
But not so fast. Before you choose a fry pan, it’s important to choose the right size fry pan, which leads us too…
What size fry pan should I get?
If you had to buy just one fry pan, look for a fry pan that is 8- or 10-inches. These two sizes are pretty versatile for scrambling eggs as well as browning up smaller amounts of meat.
If you plan on cooking more food, have a larger family, or just want to have the option of a large size, having a 12-inch fry pan on hand is also a great option. This larger size makes it easier to stir-fry meat and vegetables and brown several portions of meat at once.
Fry Pan VS Sauté Pan
A fry pan and a sauté pan look very similar, but are not the same type of pan. So what’s the big difference?
A sauté pan has straight sides and is better for liquids such as sauces or braising. It also tends to be heavier than a fry pan and usually comes with a lid.
A fry pan, or skillet, on the other hand, has sloping sides so it’s easier to flip omelets, pancakes and the like. Fry pans may or may not comes with a lid and tend to be a little more lightweight than sauté pans.
Both types of pans are capable of making sauces and searing meats, but a fry pan tends to be a little more versatile. While having one of each is ideal, if you have to choose just one type of pan, a fry pan would be the winner.
How to Care for a Ceramic Fry Pan
As with all cookware, follow the care instructions provided by the manufacturer. There are a few universal tips to consider when caring for ceramic in order to get the longest life out of your cookware as possible.
Before washing any ceramic cookware, allow it to cool completely. Never try to wash hot ceramic cookware as this will cause the pan to warp.
For the longest life though, hand washing is best. In general, ceramic lasts longer when hand washed, but there are some that are okay in the dishwasher.
Never use an abrasive sponge or brush when cleaning your fry pan. Scouring pads, abrasive sponges and rough brushes can damage the nonstick surface. Use only soft sponges and brushes when cleaning your fry pan.
If possible, don’t stack your pans. Nesting can cause pans to become scratched. If you must, be sure to carefully stack and remove pans to avoid damaging the pans.
Top 10 Picks for Best Fry Pans
We’ve come to the list! Our top 10 picks for the best ceramic fry pans out there on the market today. We have a good mix of budget-friendly pans as well as pans that are a little bit more but will hold up to a ton of cooking.
Always keep your budget in mind as well as how much food you are planning to cook at any given time. You’ll find the perfect ceramic fry pan for you on this list.
1. Tramontina Ceramica Fry Pan
- Cream-colored ceramic cooking surface is...
- Ergonomically designed, stay-cool, &...
- Compatible with gas, electric and...
- Dishwasher-safe; Oven-safe up to up to...
- UPC - 016017080850
The Tramontina fry pan is a budget-friendly and eco-friendly choice that is great for both a beginner and the seasoned home cook. It’s also pleasing to the eye with its copper porcelain enamel exterior that comes in 4 colors: metallic copper, Mediterranean blue, metallic sand, and red rhubarb.
The ceramic coating on this pan is cadmium- and lead-free and is constructed of a heavy-gauge aluminum. The pan is available in an 8-inch, 10-inch or 12-inch option.
The stainless steel handle with convenient hole for hanging has a soft grip around it so the handle stays cool to touch. The ceramic coating held up well and was easy to clean, and even though this pan is dishwasher safe, we suggest hand washing when possible for a longer life.
- Beautiful porcelain enamel exterior in 4 different color choices.
- Very affordable.
- Eco-friendly materials.
- Heavy-gauge aluminum heats the pan up quickly.
- Dishwasher safe.
- 3 sizes available.
- Only oven safe to 350 degrees.
2. GreenPan Lima 3D I Love Fish & Veggies 10-inch Fry Pan
- Thermolon healthy ceramic non-stick...
- Less oils and fats needed to cook
- Dishwasher safe
- Stainless steel handles
- Coating is heat resistant up to 850oF as...
As the name suggests, this 10-inch pan is made specifically for frying up your veggies and fish. The ceramic coating on the GreenPan is heat resistant up to 850 degrees meaning this pan won’t peel, flake, chip or burn any fumes while cooking.
Just from the look of it, this pan is different from every other ceramic pan on this list. The bottom of the pan has a unique dimpled surface that allows oil to flow through the pan so it’s evenly distributed, cooking food evenly and also ensures you can stir and flip food without it sticking.
The pan feature GreenPan’s Thermolon nonstick technology which conducts heat more efficiently and doesn’t contain any lead, cadmium or PFOA. Thermolon also is very scratch resistant and very durable which in turn means a longer lasting pan for you.
- Dimple design on the bottom of the pan spread the oil evenly for better cooking.
- Won’t release toxic fumes thanks to its high heat resistance.
- Cadmium-, lead- and PFOA-free.
- Oven and broiler safe.
- Handle gets hot.
3. Scanpan Classic 9.5-inch Fry Pan
- Black pressure-cast aluminum
- Ceramic-titanium nonstick
- Patented spring-lock handle
- Will not warp, peel, blister or crack
- Oven safe to 500 degrees F
This Denmark brand has been making quality cookware since the 1950s, and the Scanpan is no exception. This ceramic titanium nonstick pan is tough enough to withstand daily cooking and is guaranteed to last a lifetime.
The body is made from 100% recycled aluminum and it is oven safe up to 500 degrees. It’s also safe for the dishwasher too. Their unique ceramic titanium is especially great for searing and browning meat without it sticking to the pan.
And on top of a great cooking experience (albeit a higher price tag), it has a lifetime warranty.
- Durable, very long lasting nonstick pan.
- Dishwasher safe.
- Oven safe to 500 degrees.
- Lifetime warranty.
- Made from recycled materials.
4. DaTerra Cucina Vesuvio Ceramic Coated Nonstick Frying Pan, 11-inch
- Superior Performance: Italian made...
- Best Nonstick Frying Pan That Lasts:...
- No Harmful Chemicals: Our nonstick pan...
- Versatile & Easy to Clean: Natural Gas?...
- DaTerra Cucina's Promise: If all other...
This large 11-inch ceramic coated nonstick pan is scratch-resistant and has a thick aluminum base which means the pan heats up fast and cooks food evenly.
This pan is made of eco-friendly materials and does not contain any PTFE, cadmium or lead. The ceramic coating contains a natural volcanic mineral.
The silicone handle is comfortable to hold and stays cool. The pan comes with a glass lid so you can see what’s going on in the pan. It’s also oven safe up to 450 degrees.
It is 2.5-inch deep making it great for stir-frying and flipping omelets. The price is a little high, but it does include the lid and will hold up to a lot of cooking.
- Made from eco-friendly, non-toxic materials.
- Deep sides make flipping and frying easier.
- Comes with a glass lid.
- Large 11-inch size.
- Aluminum base is thick and makes pan sturdy on the cooktop.
- Will hold up to frequent cooking.
- Price is a little higher.
5. Le Creuset of America Toughened 10-inch Nonstick Fry Pan
- Nonstick surface is non-PFOA and...
- Ergonomic, larger stay-cool handles
- Metal utensil-safe
Le Creuset produces high-quality cookware for a higher price but will last you for years to come.
This nonstick ceramic surface is triple-reinforced and will not peel or flake. It’s even durable enough to use metal utensils and to even put in the dishwasher.
The fully encapsulated aluminum core heats the pan quickly and distributes the heat evenly, and because of the magnetic stainless steel disk, it can be used on an induction cooktop.
The large stainless steel handle is hollow and cool to touch when cooking on the stove top. It also can handle up to 500 degrees in the oven.
- Triple-reinforced ceramic nonstick is durable.
- Safe to use metal utensils.
- Dishwasher safe.
- Oven safe to 500 degrees.
- A quality product will last for years.
6. Calphalon 2 Piece Classic Ceramic Nonstick Omelet Chef Pan Set
- Eco-friendly PFOA-free ceramic nonstick...
- Durable for easy, everyday cooking
- Hard-anodized aluminum construction
- Cast stainless steel long handles stay...
- Oven safe to 450 degrees F
On a budget? Or can’t decide on which size to get? The Calphalon 2 piece set comes with both an 8-inch and 10-inch pan. While it excels at making omelets it cooks much more.
The pan is hard-anodized aluminum with a ceramic coating for even, nonstick cooking. This pan is has a surprisingly high tolerance for heat and is oven safe up to 450 degrees.
The sloped sides and flared edges make it easy to not only flip an omelet but stir-fry vegetables and fry up meat. The price is also hard to beat for two pans, and it’s backed by Calphalon’s 10-year warranty.
- Affordable price.
- Comes with both an 8-inch and 10-inch fry pan.
- Hard-anodized aluminum cooks food evenly.
- Can withstand oven temperature up to 450 degrees.
- The stainless steel handle stays cool when cooking on a cooktop.
- White ceramic coating stains.
7. ZWILLING J.A. Henckels 2- Piece Ceramic Coated Stainless Steel Fry Pan Set
Another great set that costs more but will hold up to years of frying and sautéing. These pans feature not only the benefits of a nonstick ceramic coated surface but a 3 ply stainless steel construction, including an aluminum core, for even heat distribution and durability.
The stainless steel also gives the set a serious chef-look while the ceramic makes it easy to cook on. These pans work on any cooktop, including induction and have flared rims for easier pouring.
This set includes an 8-inch and a 10-inch frying pan. They are oven and broiler safe up to 400 degrees and can withstand the dishwasher as well.
- Comes with 2 commonly used sizes.
- Stainless steel is not only durable but makes for even cooking.
- Works on an induction cooktop.
- Oven-, broiler- and dishwasher safe.
- Cooks food evenly thanks to a mix of aluminum and stainless steel.
- A little pricey.
8. Cuisinart Elements Open Skillet with Handle Helper
- Heavy gauge aluminum core heats quickly...
- Handles are designed to provide a secure...
- Oven safe up to 350 degree F, allows you...
- Helper handle on the front of the...
- Lifetime warranty
This nonstick ceramic skillet features an extra handle for easy pouring and moving. The ceramic surface is Cuisinart’s durable, scratch resistant non-ceramic technology.
The handle stays cool and is riveted to the pan for extra security. Besides being PTFE- and PFOA-free, the ceramic coating is also petroleum-free.
It comes in a large 12-inch size, but sadly, cannot withstand very high temperatures and is only oven safe to 350 degrees. That also means it won’t withstand the dishwasher so be sure to hand wash this pan.
- Two handles for easy carrying.
- Cooks evenly and heats up quickly.
- Scratch- surface.
- Petroleum-free coating.
- Larger size.
- Oven safe only up to 350 degrees.
9. GreenLife Soft Grip 12-inch Ceramic Open Fry Pan
- Our healthy and easy-to-clean ceramic...
- Soft Grip's Bakelite handle is designed...
- Made from recycled aluminum and...
- Dishwasher safe, but most messes wipe...
- Rivetless interior to prevent snags and...
The Thermolon ceramic nonstick coating and aluminum body in the GreenLife open fry pan is free of PFAS, PFOA, lead and cadmium. The soft Bakelite handle stays cool and is comfortable to hold no matter how omelets you plan on making.
Its large 12-inch size makes it a great option for those who plan on cooking for families or a lot of food at once. While it states its dishwasher safe, this one is also another one that does better with hand washing in order to extend its life.
Choose from one of 4 great color choices including turquoise, red, burgundy and black, to match your kitchen. The price is also very reasonable for any budget.
- Bakelite handle is soft and comfortable to hold.
- Made without harmful toxins.
- Comes in 4 color choices.
- Durable aluminum body and long-lasting ceramic coating.
- Oven safe only to 350 degrees.
10. Almond Copper Pan
- DURABLE NONSTICK COPPER: Easily create...
- HEALTHY CERAMIC COATING: The beautiful...
- EVEN COOKING: Each Almond copper skillet...
- TEMPERED GLASS LID: Oven safe to 500 F,...
- FOR MULTIPLE COOKTOPS: Whether your...
Besides its striking look, the copper ceramic coating cooks food evenly without any sticking, making for a great cooking (and cleaning) experience. The Almond Copper pan, as well as the included glass lid, is dishwasher safe and oven safe to 420 degrees.
This fry pan is 3mm thick and works on all cooktops, including induction and yes, even the grill! It comes in a 10-inch and a 12-inch size. The stainless steel handle is comfortable but it can become hot so be careful.
This pan works especially well for those planning to make a lot of eggs, including omelets, because of its sloped sides and nonstick surface. It is available in a 10-inch and a 12-inch version.
- Comes in 2 sizes.
- Cooks food evenly.
- Works on all cooktops and even the grill.
- Oven safe to 420 degrees.
- Comes with lid.
- Easy to clean – dishwasher safe.
- The handle may get hot while cooking so be careful!
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are PTFE and PFOA? And why is it so harmful?
A: PTFE stands for Polytetrafluoroethylene or better known as Teflon. PFOA or Perfluorooctanoic acid is the chemical used to make Teflon. PFOA burns off during the process of making of Teflon, but trace amounts can be left.
While PTFE itself isn’t a health problem, there has been some cause for concern when it comes to PFOA. Some studies have shown that PFOA can cause cancer and the EPA, as well as other organizations, continue to study the long-term effects of PFOA.
Q: Help! There’s food stuck on my ceramic pan. How do I get it off?
A: As we mentioned before, whatever you do, do not use an abrasive sponge or brush. If for some reason food gets stuck on, here’s what to do:
- Fill your pan with some water (2-4 cups) and bring it to a boil.
- Then add a tablespoon or two of baking soda.
- Let boil for a few minutes then take a wooden spoon and scrape the food that was stuck to the bottom.
- Allow pan to cool and hand wash as usual.
To prevent food from sticking in the first place, make sure you are using a lower heat setting.
Q: How long does a ceramic pan last?
A: This depends on a few factors, mainly how often you use it and if you care for it properly. Pans that are cooked with frequently or run through the dishwasher won’t last as long as ceramic pans that have been hand washed or not cooked on quite as frequently. In general, you can expect to get a few years out of your pan, give or take.
Q: Why won’t some pans work on an induction cooktop?
A: Induction cooktops heat pans up faster, use less energy and are safer than other cooktops. However, induction cooktops require pans to be made of a magnetic material in order to work.
Some of the ceramic fry pans on this list are induction compatible because they are made with a magnetic material (such as steel). Be sure to check whether or not the pan is induction compatible before purchasing.
Q: What are PFAS?
A: You may have heard of PTFE and PFOA, as we talked about before, but PFAS may be a new acronym. PFAS are man-made chemicals and include PFOA as well as PFOS, GenX, and others. Some PFAS can be found in a variety of products including food packaging and household products.
Unfortunately, FPAS have also been found in drinking water and living organisms. Like we spoke about before in regards to PFOAs, PFAS can have negative health impacts and should be avoided whenever possible.
It’s hard to beat ceramic. It’s a superior nonstick, affordable price, and of course, it’s a healthier alternative to a traditional Teflon nonstick. And of all pieces of cookware, having a ceramic fry pan is a smart idea. Fry pans can cook a variety of foods, and having a quality ceramic fry pan will make not only cooking a little easier but clean up too.
So if you are looking for a workhorse that will hold up to frequent cooking, we suggest you invest in Scanpan Classic 9.5-inch fry pan. This super durable pan can hold up to daily use and has a lifetime warranty. Rather than purchasing multiple fry pans in the course of a few years, it might be worth spending a little extra to have a pan that will last for the long haul.
But if you are on more of a tight budget, or perhaps aren’t cooking quite as frequently, the Tramontina Ceramica fry pan is a great choice. You’ll get the long-lasting nonstick cooking experience of ceramic without the headache of a high price.