HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >
What's your latest food project? Get great advice
TELL US

Safety of Ceramic Nonstick Cookware - "Ecopan"

t
tsbbklyn Jan 17, 2011 01:39 PM

A question on ceramic nonstick cookware - is it safe? We've been using our new "Ecopan," purchased at HomeGoods, which says it is PTFE and PFOA-free. The Ecopan Web site says it uses a water-based coating, which does not produce any toxic fumes. But it doesn't say what else is in the water-based coating. http://www.ecopan-cookware.com/index.php

It's really light and easy to clean. In fact, it's been working so well for us that we're not using our Le Creuset skillet, which used to be our go-to pan. But I do want to be sure the Ecopan is safe -- any ideas?

Thanks so much.

  1. o
    oceania Dec 30, 2013 10:28 PM

    It's almost 3 years - what's your take on it? Is it non-stick? I've been using a cast iron frying pan and it's a pan to make eggs regardless of how much I seasoned it.

    I bought a Ecopan but haven't used it yet, wanted to get some reviews before deciding to keep it.

    Thanks!

    2 Replies
    1. re: oceania
      a
      Alan408 Dec 30, 2013 10:38 PM

      They work well until the ceramic surface gets worn, lasts about 6 months under daily use.

      1. re: Alan408
        o
        oceania Dec 30, 2013 10:46 PM

        Thanks! Hmm 6 months doesn't seem to a long time - I wouldn't be using it daily, maybe 2x a week but doesn't really seem worth it giving how pricey they are. Would you recommend buying them?

    2. n
      nardo800 Jan 26, 2011 11:19 AM

      There seems to be a lot of confusion regarding the alternative non-stick products. They are definitely not "silicone" or like anything else on the market before. I've been using a couple of them; especially the "Earthpan 2" line for a while and am pretty happy with them, but:

      -They are not as slick as PTFE, but just as easy to clean.
      -They can be used for higher-heat tasks like searing meats, unlike PTFE.
      -The consensus is that they don't last as long as PTFE based coatings because ceramics are brittle and will break down as the metal expands and contracts. This effect is worse in the cheap ones (avoid thin metal, welded handles etc.).

      Hope this help your decision . . .

      1. t
        tsbbklyn Jan 17, 2011 06:40 PM

        I emailed the company, and they promptly replied. In case anyone's wondering, here's what they said:

        "Ceramic coating is an inorganic, nonmetallic material. Also, because it is ceramic and not PTFE nonstick, it is more durable to scratches. Nevertheless, the chemical composition of ceramica is quite similar with sand and clay so if it does degrade, it will not give any effect to health (non-toxic).

        As for its nonstick properties, we use silicone as a top coating for the interior. Silicone is a type of synthetic rubber created from bonded silicon and oxygen. Silicon by itself is a common component that makes up the Earth's crust - about 28% of them. The only trade-off is that the silicone coating is not as nonstick as teflon. It can only withstand up to 400F. So we do not recommend you to use high heat while cooking, just low to medium to increase the life of your cookware. Since, our coating are water-based, when you overheat your pan, this top coating will just evaporate to water."

        2 Replies
        1. re: tsbbklyn
          m
          mikie Jan 17, 2011 07:15 PM

          "Since, our coating are water-based, when you overheat your pan, this top coating will just evaporate to water."

          Really, at what temperature does water turn to water vapor? Answer: 212 degrees F, so where's the water going to come from, it should be long gone. It may be a water born slurry, but its not a water coating, the coating isn't going to evaporate. Not sure I'd buy what their claims are based on this statement. Most of the earth's silicon is silicon dioxide.

          "Silicone is a type of synthetic rubber..." yes, think of silicone breast implants, silicone rubber. If you're concerned about chemicals, you have just traded one set of chemicals for another. Do you use the silicone baking pans, this is probably about the same thing they are using for a coating.

          1. re: tsbbklyn
            Chemicalkinetics Jan 17, 2011 07:34 PM

            That is sad. We have silicon cookware for a long long time. In fact, silicon cookware is considered as lower grade of nonstick, as in Teflon - high grade nonstick, Silicon - low grade nonstick. If you wanted a silicon cookware, you could have gotten it very cheap.

          2. f
            ferret Jan 17, 2011 01:41 PM

            There's the rub; you can never prove safety to anyone's satisfaction. Or you can spend your life worrying that everything's going to kill you.

            Show Hidden Posts