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Sep 18, 2008 06:22 AM

Just One All-Clad: Copper Core Fry Pan or Stainless Sauté?

If you had to chose ONE all-clad sauté pan, would you choose:
10" Copper Core Frypan ($180)
10" Stainless 4qt Deep Sauté ($170)

I feel like the depth is really nice on a sauté pan, but definitely can't register for the super expensive copper core one ($315). There is the option that I could return other gifts to get one if it's REALLY worth it...

As far as a fry pan goes... I usually use cast iron, but stainless steel is nice for acidic things...Do those of you with SS fry pans use them often? For what?

Also, does anyone have any experience with Sur La Table's stainless cookware brand? It seems pretty heavy and nice.
They have a saute pan for $80.

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  1. From what I've read, the home cook is unlikely to get any advantage with copper cored SS. I bought n All-Clad fry pan with high expectations, and wound up scrapping it. Took 20 minutes to clean after each use. My favorite now is French-made carbon steel.

    1. if I had to choose only one, I'd go with the saute. It's more versatile. I've seen the sur la table's cookware and I think All Clad is better quality, though i've never used it. AC just seems sturdier. It's overpirced, though, no doubt about it. You could also consider Sitram or Pedrano for stainless.Bridge Kitchen seems to have a nice selection.

      1 Reply
      1. re: chuckl

        If you're going for one, I'd definitely get a 12". My do everything except eggs pan is the AC SS 12" frypan. I cook for one or two and never think the 12" is too big. I haven't found myself longing for the steep, higher sided saute pan.

      2. If you don't have a thick aluminum core 10 or 12" non stick saute pan, get one with a lid, choose size depending on your family size and cooking habits, far more versatile than a SS saute pan IMHO. SS is very sticky for a saute pan. If you already have the NS, an SS type saute pan, I'd choose the deep, will have some use too allowing meat utensils and acidic food cooking.

        1. If I had to choose from just those two, I'd pick the saute pan. However, if I could expand my options a bit, I'd go for the MC2 line instead of the stainless.

          5 Replies
            1. re: maggiej

              It's made of aluminum and lined with stainless steel. The aluminum is thicker than the middle layer in the stainless line, and because the aluminum is directly exposed to the heat source, it's more efficient. You get all the benefits of a stainless interior, plus more aluminum to spread heat. All-Clad "does not recommend" putting MC2 in the dishwasher, as opposed to "DO NOT" (in all caps) put the LTD anodized in the dishwasher. The stainless and copper-core are both listed as dishwasher safe (as my copper-core can attest, it's safe). I've used the copper core and MC2 lines, and while the copper core line is slightly better, I definitely think it's not worth the extra money over the MC2, unless you're willing to pay extra for definite dishwasher-worthiness. Also, the MC2 performs *noticeably* beter than the stainless line, and as a bonus *it's cheaper*.

              CAVEAT: The MC2 line will *not* work on induction stoves.

              1. re: ThreeGigs

                is anyone worried about health hazards of all that aluminum?

                1. re: maggiej

                  There really are not any health hazards -- your aluminum is 100% shielded by the layer of SS. This is besides the fact that aluminum doesn't really hurt you. The main concern with Al. is usually Alzhiemers -- and that is pretty much a myth.

                  Also, the brushed SS line is the same as the SS, only the ouside is brushed. I think LTD and MC2 are the two best All-Clad lines there are -- Copper-Core isn't worth the money, and there is more SS in the pan than copper.

                2. re: ThreeGigs

                  anyone know how MC2 compares to Williams sonoma's "Brushed Stainless Steel" line?