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Saucier - 2 quart or 3?

  • k

I am planning to add an All-Clad SS saucier to my kitchen and I am hesitating between 2 quart or 3. I usually cook for two, when entertaining not usually more than 4. It seems that 2 qt would be fine for most of my needs but I am wondering if anyone has found any limitations or compelling reasons to go with the larger size? Also, other than the obvious sauces/risotto what uses have you found for your saucier? Thanks!

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  1. knet, of course, the decision is a very personal one. We can tell you our experience, however. Of all the pots and pans that we have owned in 37 years of marriage, the one that my spouse uses almost as much as all of the others combined is the 20 cm Demeyere Apollo "conical sauteuse" (54920), http://www.thecookwareshoppe.com/prod... , which has a nominal capacity of two liters (2.1 quarts, approx.). Tonight I plan to use that very pan to cook up a batch of one of our all-time favorite seasonal recipes: Clarisse Schiller's Umbrian pasta con sugo di asparagi -- YUM! The 2 liter saucier is ideally suited to that task, as we know from past(a) experience. http://books.google.com/books?id=FxaE...

    1 Reply
    1. re: Politeness

      Sounds like a nice dinner! I think the 2 quart would probably be the right size for me, I don't want to come to regret the choice if I should find out later that there is any particular task that the 2 quart just won't accomplish. Thanks for the input and the Demeyere looks like a beautiful pan as well.

    2. I have the 3 quart and can't imagine having anything smaller, even if I'm cooking for two. I love this pan and use it as my sautee pan, too. (I know purists are wincing!) I just got an email from Willams-Sonoma touting their their new exclusive AC pan that's a cross between a saucier and a sautee pan. At $130, it's a great deal. (I can't believe I just said that!) But, it's 4 qt. http://www.williams-sonoma.com/produc... I wish they made a smaller one!

      6 Replies
      1. re: SailingChef

        SailingChef - that is a nice pan!. I am a bit surprised I haven't also had the WS e mail as I am on the list but I don't believe this pan is on offer in Canada yet. And it would be too large, so I too would wish for a smaller one! Interesting that you use it for saute as well, I was wondering about that possibility. ALso poaching - have you done any in the saucier?

        1. re: SailingChef

          I have a 2 quart Demeyere that I love but it was too small for caramel and puddings, so I bought a 3 quart, and it is JUST right!

          1. re: SailingChef

            Same here...except I recently went ahead and bought the 2 quart, as well (I needed a lid and the All Clad outlet had SUCH a sale it wasn't that much more than just a replacement lid in that size <g>). But it's unused, so far. I just keep reaching for the bigger one, as I don't have to worry about slopping over the sides when I whisk, and it's a great size for steaming vegetables, and it sits sturdily on the burner even when empty (whereas the 2 qt., empty, has a tendency to tip due to the handle weight).

            1. re: SailingChef

              Wms-sonoma is selling the four qt. All-clad essential pan for a hundred bucks as part of a father's day sale.

              1. re: SailingChef

                Williams Sonoma is now selling an All Clad "Essential Pan" in the 3 quart size. The profile looks very much like a saucier, and when I look for a 3-quart saucier in the D5 line, I come up empty.

                So it appears that All Clad has replaced the 3-quart D5 saucier with the Essential Pan. It's currently $130. I'm hoping it drops to $99 before I cave in and buy it at $130.

                It will fill the gap between my 2 qt sauce pan and my 4 qt stock pot (actually a sauce pan with loop handles, which works better for me anyway.)

                I keep thinking I need to downsize, but they keep coming out with new stuff I can't live without . . .

              2. I find it very hard to get any perspective re the size/volume issue. Obviously people eat different amounts and cook for different numbers of people. As an example, the whole dutch oven thing; having cooked enough for about 7-8 meals in my 4.5 qt LC (at about the max volume it holds) I was surprised to hear people saying they would never have less than 6qt or higher. I think 4.5 is LOADS.

                If possible, I'd suggest purchasing from a store that will give you 14 days to try one, and return it for the other pan if it's too small (go for the smaller first to avoid getting store credit for the difference). You can get a rough idea from here, but only you will truly know what's perfect :)

                1. Depends on how you will use the pot. I have both sizes, and use the 3 quart much more often, especially if I use a whisk. The 2 quart is just too small in which to adequately whip anything, though it is useful for more gentle stirring.

                  1. I have a 3qt and a 1qt. Use them both. Never felt the need for something in between.

                    1. Soop - I took some advice here and tried out a large saucier. It was 4.5 qt borrowed from a friend and I have to say I see your point. It was huge. I could see using it once a year if I get around to cooking for 7 - 10 but frankly otherwise it would just take up some real estate. I am still trying to get my hands on a 3 qt to try before I decide, I can't quite make myself buy one with the intent of cooking in it and returning it so I am hoping I will be able to borrow one for a test run.

                      1. I have a 2 and a 3 qt saucier(mine aren't AC but size not brand is relevant I'm assuming).

                        I cook for 2 90% of the time but use the 3 qt a bit more often. Just made a small batch of mac and cheese and the 3 qt was perfect for making the sauce and had plenty of room to mix in the pasta. Also I use this one for custards.

                        I do use my 2 qt though - especially for sauce making. I have a 2 qt saute as well so that gets used for things like risotto which ma be why I don't use this one as often.

                        If you're planning mostly sauces and risottos for a couple people I"d start with the 2. If you're thinking you'll do a lot of custards and the like or cook for more than a couple people I'd start with the 3.

                        1. Hi knet -- I'm in the midst of making the same decision, and was wondering which size you went with and how happy you are w/your decision. I also cook for two, and would use it for sauces, risottos, polenta and the like. Ziggylu, based on your advice, since I don't make much in the way of desserts (or anything that needs serious whipping/whisking) it sounds like I'd better off with the 2 quart...which comes with the added bonus of being significantly cheaper!

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: herring

                            Hi Herring. I went with the 2 quart and I have honestly been so happy with it. I can't imagine needing larger. I have done sauces, risottos and many more things. I usually cook for two and sometimes more people and so far I have had no regrets. I feel the 3 quart would be too big. Obviously the people who write that you can cook smaller amounts in a larger pan but not vice versa are completely correct but so far I have not had any reason to regret the two quart. A lot of that decision for me has to do with space and also honestly I don't like wrestling with big pans unnecessarily!

                            1. re: knet

                              Thanks, knet! I'm still undecided, but was leaning toward the 2 qt. I have some serious space constraints in my kitchen, so tend to labor over these decisions! I was also considering the Calphalon tri-ply chef's pan, which is really just a 3qt saucier, at BBB for just $50, which of course means $40 after the coupon. Price concerns may win out over space concerns!

                          2. Hi, I am also considering to buy a saucier and wondering which size and which brand. All-clad is the natural choice as I love all the pieces I have. My criteria are 1) price, 2)poring lips or flared rim, 3) induction capability.

                            - AC 2QT SS saucier dos not have poring lips
                            - AC 3QT SS has both version, with a lip/without. Two lips at both sides.
                            - AC Copper-Core saucier has a flared lip. ( not induction capable and price around $300!!! too much for me.)

                            I am now looking at "Chef's Pan"s 3qt with other brand, analon, calphalon, and le creuset SS but there seems not so many choices if I want to have a lip and induction capability.

                            I may go with le Creuset 3.5QT. My concern is that might be a bit too big and the bottom looks flatter than typical sauciers.

                            1. You can cook 2 quarts of something in a 3 quart saucier, but you can't cook 3 quarts of something in a 2 quart saucier. I'd go for the larger one. Use my 3 quart one a lot, although, admittedly, usually for smaller amounts. The round bottom really helps in the whisking, etc. You might want to look at the All Clad irregular web site, where I buy almost all of my All Clad stuff. Their idea of an irregular is a small scratch, which, after one use, isn't even visible. Site is: http://www.cookwarenmore.com/. Present cost of an MC 2 all clad 3 qt saucier is $91.80 plus shipping

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: trakman

                                Yeah. I recently got an "irregular" 10 quart rondeau, there, and since they were having a sale it was aproximately half of retail, if not more (can't remember exactly).

                                It took me several minutes, with my daughters's help (middle-aged eyes) to even find the "flaw": a few small (1/4 long) scratches on the BOTTOM of the pan. I have a stove with continuous cast iron grates and I slide my pots around constantly. Need I say more about this so-called "flaw"? :-)

                                1. re: Beckyleach

                                  Sur La Table has their own branded 2 qt saucier for $70.00. Does anyone have any experience with their line of pans? It is tri ply SS.

                                  1. re: Jane917

                                    I used to have a set of their triply. The earliest editions, it's since been upgraded. I've replaced all mine with copper, but that said I was always happy with it. For the price it's definitely a good option.

                              2. I use the 3 qt for 2 people and the 2 qt for 1 person.

                                1. I cook for one person. I like the look and feel of the 1-quart saucier from CIA (Culinary Institute of America), but I wonder if I really ought to stick with a 2-quart as a minimum, given the wise comment of one of the posters.

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: mcdcook

                                    As I wrote in the other thread, to me 1 qt is only for small and very limited tasks. I personally find 2 qt is more versatile as I wrote in the other thread but your "feel" should be right for your choice.

                                    In general, for tasks requiring whisking, I think 3 qt saucier is a better choice than 2qt as it has more room as others pointed out here. Some of my baking recipes require custard and I always feel the 3 qt is exactly right. So, If I had bought the 2qt, I might have regret it as it is the one of main point for me to buy a saucier. Last year I was torn between 2 qt and 3qt and helped by reading this thread. On this occasion, I would like to say thank you to all on this thread (especially people pointing out a whisking factor) to have guided me to a right direction! I love my 3 qt saucier a lot.

                                    1. re: hobbybaker

                                      COngratulations! It's always so nice to love your cookware. I am absolutely still loving my 2 quart saucier, purchased soon after I began this thread. I use the whisk without any problem but I think size is just always a personal decision anyway. BTW from your other thread, I know you didn't keep the little Mauviel because it was too small but did you have a chance to form an opinion on the evenness of heating? I have been debating the Mauviel sauteuse ( or alternatively AC d5 sauteuse, though I swore I would not get tempted by the d5!!!) Thanks

                                      1. re: knet

                                        knet - yes, I love my 3qt but nothing offensive to 2 qt holders:) I can afford to buy only one and I hit the right choice for me thanks to the people here:) Beside the size issue, I really like my 3qt saucier has its rim rolled, which is not typical for AC SS tri-ply sauciers. Only the version, a close-out 3qt SS I bought at Bloomies, and coppercore which is just too expensive for me. As for your question about Mauviel, I liked the size but induction capability was important to me. Also, I was not comfortable with the angle of the handle - kind of hard for me to keep balance especially when pouring. I personally like the angle of the handle of the AC 1qt saucier so much better. For a sauteuse with two handles, I assume no issue. I retruned it as unused, so I know nothing on the actual performance, but it is too small anyway to really see the even heating. Hope it helps your decision.

                                  2. My 2 qt. CIA saucier is the ideal size for risotto for two.

                                    1. I have a 1-qt saucier which is sufficient for making sauces for two. I use a regular large saucepan for making pasta sauce. I use something else to make risotto. I wouldn't want a saucier large enough to make risotto, but I can see a 2-qt being useful sometimes.

                                      1. I have a Falk 20cm saucier (1.8 quarts), that is the perfect size for 2-4 people. I would not need anything larger for that number. But this depends on portion size and type of food of course.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Sirrith

                                          I live alone, have a 4qt saucier that is one of my two most-used pans (the other a 10" nonstick frying pan), and I wish it were 5-6 qts. I like to have room to make a gallon of sauce or soup without it threatening to bubble over, or tip when moving it. If you don't want extra portions to freeze, you don't need a larger pan but I think it's more efficient and cost-effective to batch-cook. I have a 1qt pan and a 2qt as well. I might used them once a year, if that.