Pros: Non-stick; durable; glass lids; heavy duty; fairly easy to clean
Cons: Not incredibly non-stick
Rating: 4 out of 5
First posted 9/30/2000
We only have one piece of ScanPan cookware right now. Mom got it and decided that it was too big for her, since she mostly cooks for herself. So she called us up and asked us if we wanted it. We were quite happy to take it off of her hands.
It has a special non-stick surface bonded to the pan; it isn’t a coating, so it can’t wear off. It isn’t as slick as teflon, but it’s good for almost all non-stick needs. You might not be able to slide a whole drop of oil around on the surface without spreading it out like with teflon, but where it counts – how much the food that you cook sticks – it works very well (ADDED LATER: however, over time we found it doesn’t work as well as, say, the Cook’s Essentials non-stick with scratch guard).
Believe it or not, you can use metal implements on this stuff. I don’t mean in the way that some teflon says you can use metal implements on it, but will then pit and wear off in a few months. I mean you can really use just about anything you want on this stuff. Like I said, it isn’t a coating. You can’t wear it off. In fact, the manufacturer recommends that if it ever seems to lose some of its non-stick properties, you take steel wool to it. Now that’s impressive!
The ScanPan comes clean very easily. The process recommended by the manufacturer is that you put the pan under cold water while the pan is still hot, thus steaming the food off. Food sluices right off after a few minutes of soaking. And worst case, you can actually scrub this pan!
This is a very heavy-duty pan. It’s thick. It distributes heat very well. It actually takes a little longer to heat up than our All-Clads, it’s that heavy-duty. I think this is a bonus – it can be hard to get very even heat distribution when you’re using an old gas stove. When my tendonitis is acting up, though, I have to get my fiancee to lift this pan; it’s quite heavy!
I love the thick glass lids! The knobs really do stay pretty cool to the touch, although I’m paranoid and usually use a potholder anyway. You can see through the glass to what’s cooking underneath, which is fabulous. But it’s heavy-duty too, so you don’t have to worry about cracking it by putting it down a little too hard.
The item we have is the really wide, high-sided skillet. It’s such a fantastic shape, and not one we’ve seen around much. You have high sides so you can cook a decent volume of stuff in it, but it has lots of surface area on the stove, so you can also do sauteeing and such in it. We love it.
All in all, our ScanPan ranks almost right up there with our All-Clad and Cook’s Essentials. If it were a little more non-stick and a little lighter, our favorite would be a harder choice!