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Jun 30, 2009 08:37 AM

non stick fry pan dilemma

I'm looking for a new 12" non stick fry pan. Needs to take high heat and I'd like to be able to use metal tools in the pan. I've been told the Scanpan is good and so is Swiss diamond.
I'd love some feedback. I don't trust the sales help in the stores!

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  1. Why do you feel the need to use metal utensils in the pan? You'll shorten the life of ANY non-stick pan by doing so (and that includes Scanpan and Swiss Diamond). And, I don't care that they come with lifetime warranties -- there's no reason to believe that either company will be around in 50 years, let alone 15...

    Just go to Marshall's, TJ Maxx, HomeGoods, etc. and buy yourself a $15 or $20 "teflon" (i.e. PTFE) pan. Use silicone, plastic or wood utensils and it'll last for a few years. When it's dinged up and losing its non-stick properties, recycle it, and buy another cheap pan.

    Using that method, I can almost guarantee you that you'll NEVER EVER break even on your initial purchase price if you buy a Scanpan or Swiss Diamond...

    1 Reply
    1. re: Joe Blowe

      i know you are not a fan. Those cheap pans have hot spots and do not cook evenly. SD stands behind what they make. It there is a problem they will replace it with no questions. Sometimes they have even thrown in an extra pan as an apology for your troubles. Get your discount stores to do that.

    2. I'm a big fan of my one Swiss Diamond pan. I do use metal utensils in it and haven't seen a problem. I have the 12 inch frying pan and use it often.

      1. Have scanpan pieces and it's pretty good. Much more impressed with Cusinart's greenware non-stick (and it's not break the bank expensive).

        1. If you need to use high heat, then any non-stick surface is a bad choice. When cured and cared for properly, cast iron is a non-stick surface. AND you can use metal utensils to your heart's content. But you must be willing to maintain the pan properly. If you do that, you'll have years of great service from it, and so will your grandchildren.

          3 Replies
          1. re: Caroline1

            Actually - the Swiss Diamond can be used up to 500 degrees, I believe, and I've used it in that hot an oven. It also produces a very nice sear.

            1. re: Caroline1

              I have a cast iron and it's wonderful. But you really don't want to put anything acidic in it. I know, nothing browns like cast iron. Cleaning and caring for it is simple, mine is as smooth as glass and it's probably 40+ years old. I picked it up at a tag sale for a buck! Only issue is that it's just 9". But you are making me think I should get a new 12" anyway.
              I want the non stick for certain things.......maybe I'll just get a cheapie and toss it when it wears out.

              1. re: cockadoodlewe

                I'm curious what kind of problems you have with acidic ingredients in cast iron? I've been making ratatouille in my 12" cast iron chicken fryer for... oh, maybe 50 years with no problem. But it was far from new and very well seasoned, even then.

            2. You want non-stick, you want metal utensils? Easy....cast iron. Believe me, once you switch to cast iron, you'll never go back. Frankly, my sister bought me a scanpan. I HATED IT! Get yourself a 12 inch cast iron (pre-seasoned) frying pan for under $20. You won't be disappointed and it'll last a lifetime. I can't believe what a difference cast iron has made in my kitchen. Caution: There's a small learning curve regarding seasoning and cleaning, but there's plenty of help available here. It's no more difficult than keeping a scanpan.


              8 Replies
              1. re: Ambimom

                I hate not to endorse quality cookware, but I just don't get it. I have cast iron, and admit have some good that were gifts and they are ok, but honestly use them rarely. I use my CI most of the time and use my stainless pans I have had for years (revere ware) and my very inexpensive non stick pans from target or Walmart, I think mine are target. I have had them close to 10 yrs and still going strong. I have used metal but I try not 99% of the time. They are great. A few scratches but $20, I couldn't be happier. I just don't see the need to spend that much for a pan or pot which to me cooks the same. I have cooked it some top quality pots and pans and not impressed. I would rather spend my money on a nice bottle of wine, a nice dinner and night out on the town.

                But you need to buy what you are comfortable with and what type of cooking you do.

                1. re: Ambimom

                  What did you hate about the Scanpan? Just curious.
                  I'm liking the cast iron more and more!

                  1. re: cockadoodlewe

                    Just a quick note ... I cooked in a scanpan just last week at a friends house. He was so proud of his purchase. It was ok, but I just couldn't see spending the money when my 20.00 pan did the same thing. Personally I didn't dislike it but just wasn't impressed for the price.

                    There are some things I use my non stick for, some my stainless, and others my cast iron. They are my 3 favorites.

                    1. re: kchurchill5

                      That's actually how I feel..........I just want the non stick for "some things"!

                      By the way I also love my 9 1/2 qt Le Creuset. Useful for tons of things. I use it at least twice a week if not more.

                      1. re: cockadoodlewe

                        My only problem with that, and I have lots and lots of LC is that with some back problems it is getting very difficult to lift. Give any of it up????????????Snow ball's chance in hell.

                  2. re: Ambimom

                    I own a Scanpan and I own 4 vintage iron skillets. I use the scanpan to do sauteing and egg frying. I use the iron skillets for high heat cooking and baking. I do not think the iron can do what non-stick does. I learned to make omelets in an iron skillet, and it took loads of fat. An omelet in a non-stick frypan takes practically no fat. It depends on the type of cooking you do. I think a non-stick skillet is a good and practical piece for any kitchen to have.

                    But you cannot use metal utensils on a most non-stick pieces. By the way, QVC advertises that you can use metal on at least some of its non-stick pieces. (I've never used their stuff.)

                    1. re: Ambimom

                      I have lots of le Creuset and cst iron as well as Chantal (love the copper fusion) non-stick. My problem is my back. I cannot lift a loaded cast iron pot or skillet. A bulging disc and bone spurs on my spine make my Swiss Diamond my go to pans, after that the Chantal. A new copper fusion saute pan will be coming home with me this week. Be aware that Chantal has 2 lines. The quickest way to discern which is which is by weight and the handle. On the copper fusion the handle is solid. On the less expensive line the handles are open. They are enameled inside and out and a very easy clean up. Nice thing is that if you are lucky enough to acquire an induction burner Chantal copper fusion works beautifully on them.

                      1. re: Candy

                        i actually did break down and buy the pan I was threatening to buy. Cooked skate wing in it last night. Beautiful!