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Jun 17, 2011 03:49 PM

stainless steel vs teflon

I'm having trouble figuring out exactly what one of the main pans we use in the house is.

on the back of the skillet it says "stainless steel" however it's also non stick and on the brand website all their skillets also say stainless steel non stick. from what I understand practically all nonstick is I don't understand? how can it be both stainless steel and nonstick? I'm thinking of phasing nonstick cookware out of my life but first I have to be able to differentiate them..? I tried the magnet test and it does stick btw...


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  1. Teflon is just the coating on the cooking surface. The pan itself could be made of any number of things - like aluminum or stainless steel.

    1. Nonstick is just the coating on the interior surface (cooking surface). You cannot have an entire pan made of Teflon. That would be a rubber/plastic pan. Like phrekyos said, the nonstick chemical is applied to a metal, usually aluminum, but it can be any other metals.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

        thank you very much for the explanation. wow I was totally off track

        the reason I even bring the topic up is that it was only recently brought to my attention that using nonstick pans on high heat is a no no, with ppl saying use stainless steel or cast iron instead (so I thought it was either or), but as you guys clarified for me a pan can be stainless steel with a nonstick coating. quite a few of the cookware I use was given to me so I'm not sure what it is :(

        thanks again

        1. re: ddhirlahelix3hound

          Is the inside shiny steel? or more of dull gray or black?