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Looking for skillet that doesn't warp

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zak4899 Jul 4, 2008 10:53 PM

Hi,

I have a glass top range and the skillets I had so far are all bulging/warping on the bottom so they spin on the perfectly flat glass top on the slightest tap on the handle. I had a few expensive Calphalon skillets, they all did that. In contrast, I have an old german Silit skillet that is steel/enamel and has no non-stick coating, but it sits perfectly flat. Haven't seen anything like that with non-stick coating to buy here in California.

My only two requirements:
- No cast iron because this is too heavy to handle.
- Non-stick coated.

Thanks for any tips!

Zak

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  1. todao RE: zak4899 Jul 5, 2008 10:35 PM

    All-Clad cookware bottoms are, in my experience, flat as a pancake. May I suggest you pick one up from a local shop with the understanding that you can return it (without using it) if it doesn't rest flat on your range when you get it home. If All-Clad doesn't work for you try the same process with other brands until you find the product that suits your needs.

    1. c
      chuckl RE: zak4899 Jul 7, 2008 07:09 PM

      you can also try sitram, which has a disk on the bottom for conductivity. They're not cheap, but neither are all clad

      7 Replies
      1. re: chuckl
        r
        RGC1982 RE: chuckl Jul 7, 2008 07:41 PM

        I have never seen a non-stick pan made by Sitram. Are they available?

        1. re: RGC1982
          k
          Kelli2006 RE: RGC1982 Jul 7, 2008 08:01 PM

          Sitram offers a Cybernox coating that is broiler safe and scratch resistant, unlike Teflon.

          Emerilware has a nonstick coating and a disk bottom.

          1. re: Kelli2006
            d
            dscheidt RE: Kelli2006 Jul 7, 2008 08:48 PM

            And not non-stick, also unlike teflon.

            1. re: dscheidt
              k
              Kelli2006 RE: dscheidt Jul 8, 2008 12:18 AM

              Some that have used Cybernox feel that it is superior to Teflon.

              1. re: Kelli2006
                d
                dscheidt RE: Kelli2006 Jul 8, 2008 08:03 AM

                Not in my experience, nor that of anyone i know who's owned them. It's perhaps less sticky than a stainless pan, but no where close to being teflon.

            2. re: Kelli2006
              c
              chuckl RE: Kelli2006 Jul 8, 2008 11:04 AM

              nonstick sitrams look like this
              http://www.homeclick.com/1/2/339032-n...

              I haven't tried them yet, has anyone?

              1. re: chuckl
                w
                will47 RE: chuckl Nov 4, 2011 09:22 AM

                I gave my folks one, and they have been pretty happy with it.

                http://www.deiequipment.com/s.nl/sc.2...

        2. r
          RGC1982 RE: zak4899 Jul 7, 2008 07:34 PM

          Cast iron IS your best bet. I know you say you find them heavy, but is this because you are tossing the contents? I don't have a lot of strength to pick up really heavy pots, but I use it all the time on my glass cooktop. It is virtually indestructible unless you are silly enough to put cold water in a hot pan, in which case it might just crack. Don't be afraid of scratching the cooktop. However ... if you want a lighter non-stick pan, here is my experience:

          1) I have been disappointed too with my Calphalon skillets. They were spinning after just a few uses. I recently purchased the two-fer set that is being promoted and I really think they are unstable on my cooktop; 2) I have had great success with disk bottom stainless steel pans, some of which come with both non-stick and regular interiors, and I think I prefer those. The disk bottom pans seem to have the right amount of thickness so that warping is not an issue unless you put a hot pan into cold water. I think disk bottom pans are the best choice for a glass top range for this very reason. I have a non-stick skillet from an older line of Cuisinart that has disk bottom construction, and it works great after ten years of moderate use. 3) I have also used an inexpensive T-Fal for a long time until the coating wore out, and found this to be my favorite for things like eggs. In fact, after my disappointing experience with my new Calphalons, I am going to try to find another one.

          I would avoid the All-Clad Limited, which contains anodized aluminum, since I have had to toss one of those pots due to warping just last year. I don't own an All-Clad stainless steel pan with a non-stick coating, but I have heard that they are good.

          2 Replies
          1. re: RGC1982
            azhotdish RE: RGC1982 Jul 7, 2008 09:06 PM

            As far as flat-bottom and non-stick is concerned, I suggest looking into Scanpan.

            1. re: RGC1982
              bootspur RE: RGC1982 Apr 6, 2011 05:16 PM

              thank you, this was very informative.

            2. Candy RE: zak4899 Jul 8, 2008 09:21 AM

              Swiss Diamond. Very flat bottoms, heavy cast aluminum coated in diamonds. You can use metal utensils in them and they will not scratch. Limited life time guarantee and great customer service. They are made to be used on all cooktop surfaces. I love mine and all of us in the shop use them. No warping and very even conductivity, no hot spots. Not inexpensive but worth the price.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Candy
                kaleokahu RE: Candy Apr 6, 2011 07:05 PM

                Hi, Candy:

                I know you're in the biz, so maybe you know...

                What IS the limited lifetime warranty? The reason I ask is that my SD skillet is rapidly losing its nonstick properties after about 6 years of light use. What will SD do?

                Thanks,
                Kaleo

                PS: I have no problems with flatness or warping, and just a minor problem with handle loosening.

              2. jfood RE: zak4899 Jul 8, 2008 09:33 AM

                jfood has one of those concave Calphalon skillets as well. It was the result of the little jfoods cooking some eggs or grilled cheese and then placing under the faucet while still hot.

                jfood bought a ~$20 Calphalon replacement about two years ago, instructed the family that they can leave the pan on a cool burner when finished and jfood will take care of that night. So far, 2 years later, still lookin' good.

                So you may just want to try a NS Calphalon and leave to cool on an unused burner until it is cool to the touch before cleaning. If that puppy sizzles when you place under water, the warping will follow.

                5 Replies
                1. re: jfood
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                  iyc_nyc RE: jfood Jan 7, 2011 08:11 AM

                  Does this mean it's not good to put frozen food (e.g., meat or veggies) or cold broth, soup, etc., into a preheated pan (stainless or CI)? It always sizzles when I do that.

                  I usually try to defrost my meat of course, but tried to fry some burger meat the other day straight from freezer and realized it might not be good for the pan.

                  1. re: iyc_nyc
                    jfood RE: iyc_nyc Jan 7, 2011 01:41 PM

                    Good question...

                    I do not think that the temperature drop from placing a little cold broth into the pot would be as severe to cause the warping.

                    1. re: iyc_nyc
                      e
                      E_M RE: iyc_nyc Jan 8, 2011 04:39 AM

                      It isn't a good idea to drop frozen solids in a pan, not because they will harm the pan, but because they won't cook properly. If frozen or very cold, when you put them in the pan, the temperature will drop. Also, the food won't begin to cook, but will begin to release water. So you will be almost boiling whatever you are trying to cook. You will end up with mush.

                      1. re: E_M
                        i
                        iyc_nyc RE: E_M Jan 8, 2011 06:22 AM

                        Yes - thanks. I only do it rarely, when I'm super rushed and heating up already cooked food or cooking meat.

                        But are you sure this isn't bad for the pan? How is this different from putting a hot pan under cold water?

                        1. re: iyc_nyc
                          c
                          Chowrin RE: iyc_nyc Jan 8, 2011 12:30 PM

                          water is huge heatsink. put a lot of nearly cold water into a hot pan, and you might have problems.

                  2. MMRuth RE: zak4899 Jul 8, 2008 11:10 AM

                    I've been extremely happy with my 12" Swiss Diamond skillet. Non stick, safe up to 500 degrees in the oven, I believe, and great customer service. They replace the handle that I broke at no charge to me.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: MMRuth
                      Candy RE: MMRuth Jul 8, 2008 12:21 PM

                      i had a customer bring back an 8" with a broken handle, it fell out of the dish drainer. He brought it in on Monday and I had a new handle for him on Thurs. One of mine came from a bad run, it happens. It developed a few blisters. It was replaced immediately. Got to love customer service like that and having a great pan too.

                    2. Onepotmeals RE: zak4899 Jan 6, 2011 01:39 PM

                      I am reply now, incase someone is still looking for a flat pan. I also have a ceramic top, and yes even All-Clad Warps. What you are looking for is a very think solid piece of aluminum bottom clad to the pot or pan. No, cast iron is not an option since it will split within minutes. They cannot handle the heat the radiant burner give off. I must have replaced all my All-Clad at least once, till I finally gave up. I now use my old set of 25 years, that has a solid piece of aluminum on the bottom. They have never warped. Funny isn't it?

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Onepotmeals
                        Politeness RE: Onepotmeals Jan 8, 2011 02:57 AM

                        Onepotmeals: "No, cast iron is not an option since it will split within minutes. They cannot handle the heat the radiant burner give off."

                        Cast iron does not split on any range or cooktop that one can install in one's home. Thousands -- probably tens of millions -- of cooks use cast iron pots and pans on radiant burners every day. Cast iron crucibles are used in the aluminum smelting industry for handling of molten aluminum. If the radiant burner gives off enough heat to split cast iron, the greater worry would be that a pot with an aluminum disk bottom would melt into a pool of molten metal on the cooktop.

                        1. re: Politeness
                          Onepotmeals RE: Politeness Apr 7, 2011 10:50 AM

                          Politeness.... You should read up before making statements. Not only does the manual state "NO CAST IRON", I had forgotten and put my cast iron long grill on the double burner and it did in fact cracked right in half within 2 mins. My statement is obviously from personal experience and not from a nonsensical pool of molten metal. LOL!!! I crack myself up.

                      2. s
                        sueatmo RE: zak4899 Jan 7, 2011 07:41 PM

                        I am mystified by your problem. I have cooked on a glass top with non stick pans for years. My pans have not warped. In the past I have had to discard frypans with worn non-stick coatings, but I now heat in them no more than medium heat. Using med heat and storing carefully, my pans are performing better.

                        Early on with my cooktop, I decided not to use cast iron. However I am using cast iron on the cooktop now with no problem. I am not having warping with them either.

                        Is it possible you are cooking on the highest heat setting all the time?

                        At any rate I have a discounted Cuisinart non-stick (8") and a more expensive Scanpan (10") which are not warping. I'd recommend either one.

                        1. l
                          la2tokyo RE: zak4899 Jan 7, 2011 07:56 PM

                          As jfood said, never put a hot pan into a sink full of water. That is the surest way to warp even a top quality pan. Some pans may be warp resistant, and some may warp without putting them in water when they're hot, but generally speaking it's a bad idea.

                          1. s
                            sueatmo RE: zak4899 Apr 6, 2011 05:43 PM

                            I use a Scanpan and a Cuisinart skillet. Both are nonstick. Both are laying flat after over a year of use. (Probably more like 3 years of use.) The trick with non-stick skillets is to use them on med heat--no higher. My cast iron skillets have not warped on my glass top stove either; and I use them on high heat. Nor have my old Cuisinart Everyday stainless pots.

                            Some pans do move around on the burners, but not necessarily because they have warped. My big wok has always tended to shift because of its size.

                            1. r
                              rjm2010 RE: zak4899 Nov 4, 2011 12:02 AM

                              Avoid Calphalon Unison Nonstick 12-in. Covered Skillet. It warped in less than 2 months!

                              1. Robin Joy RE: zak4899 Nov 4, 2011 12:34 AM

                                I have a couple of these Moneta pans here in the UK and they perform perfectly on my glass cooktop. No hint of warping or rotating. About $55 for the 12" frypan:

                                http://www.lawsonshop.co.uk/productin...

                                A google search shows Moneta for sale in the US, but it doesn't look like the same range, and it seems pretty up-market and expensive!

                                1. t
                                  ThebigG RE: zak4899 Mar 12, 2013 06:50 AM

                                  I just got a new non-stick skillet made in Germany, it is a Berndes which I had never heard of before. It is extremely solid and flat when in use and cooks beautifully on my glass top. Their website says they are guaranteed never to warp! I got it at TJMax on clearance and now I am really happy to have found it. You live and learn.

                                  1. g
                                    GH1618 RE: zak4899 Mar 12, 2013 07:02 AM

                                    Scanpan claims on their website that their pans have perfectly flat bottoms and will not warp:

                                    http://www.scanpancookware.com/pages/...

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