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Nov 20, 2011 10:27 AM

best $200 pot set?

Looking for a set of pots for my sister who needs hers replaced. She is not a fancy cook, her husband enjoys cooking, but they hardly need anything fancy at this point. Looking for somewhere between $150-$300 for a set.

They prefer it not to be teflon, and doesn't need to be non-stick, they have no real preference over material, just they need a few different sized pots. Induction will not be a concern ever. I have been looking at the following:

The Lagostina has a lot of good reviews, but i absolutely hate the look of them, The calphalon looks decent, but I am not so sure about anodized aluminum, the Cuisinart Green gourmet look nice, but I don't know that technology at all. I am used to professional pots or expensive pots that I can't afford, pot sets are out of my league :P

Amazon Canada doesn't have so much to offer, but Canadian Tire and The Bay seem to have a lot of sets.

Any assistance is extremely appreciated!

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  1. TeRReT,

    I may add a few things later, but I just want to quickly say a few thing. Your first ebay link of "CALPHALON Simply Ns 8 Pc Cookware Set" is to a nonstick cookware set. "NS" stands for nonstick. They are Teflon coating on anodized aluminum. If you read the product description, it states that "This all-inclusive cookware set from Simply Calphalon is simply irresistible. With its quick-heating, hard-anodized exterior and double coating of exclusive NONSTICK formula, you'll bring out the best in your kitchen meal after meal. 10-year warranty. "

    For your second choice, the "Cuisinart Green Gourmet 10 Piece Cookset". Don't get it.... Most of these green cookware do not last very long -- usually shorter lifetime than typical Teflon cookware. If you do a few search here, then you will see many people noticed their green cookware loses its nonstick ability in 6 months or so.

    Your third set "Lagostina Commercial Pro 12-Pc Cookset" is bottom disc stainless steel-aluminum cladded cookware.

    Your final set "KitchenAid 11-Piece Clad Stainless Steel Cookset" are all stainless steel-aluminum triply cookware.

    I will concentrate on the last two sets if your sister is against Teflon cookware. There are good solid reasons for full triply vs disk bottom cladded. Full triply allows heat distribution travels up to the side of the cookware. This helps produce a more even heating cooking surface even at the cookware edge. On the other hand, disc bottom has its advantages. It is usually much easier to make a very thick disk bottom construction and remain inexpensive and light. As such, this design can also produce a very even temperature cooking surface. The Lagostina disc bottom has a 6 mm thick aluminum which is very thick. Either sets are fine.

    *Edited* the Lagostina is a pure pot set -- only pot. The KitchenAid one has a saute pan.

    1. Here is a link to the Cuisinart site for a 12 piece set of try-ply stainless. It seems to be fairly complete for most cooking tasks. Someone on this site may have some experience with them. I have seen them and they appear substantial in weight and construction. But, I have no first hand knowledge of their performance.

      1. If Made in America is important, here is a link for Regalware try-ply. Like the Cuisinart, I have no first hand knowledge of this item.

        2 Replies
        1. re: dcrb

          ((The OP appears to be Canadian , so probably not))

          1. re: Dave_in_PA

            Oops! Well, maybe PEI (Prince Edward Island) Fusion Five cookware.

        2. America's Test Kitchen liked All Clad on the high end ($500 -yikes) and Tramontina (only sold at Walmart) on the low end ($200) because they're both tri-ply (stainless, aluminum, stainless), though the Tramontina is slightly smaller. Here is a link about possibly getting the Tramontina in Canada

          1 Reply
          1. re: pdxgastro

            I believe Consumer Reports also tests and rates cookware.

          2. When you say "best" you need to define it clearer. For example, are they minimalists have a small kitchen, where 12 pieces would be too much? Do they stir-fry (and need a wok)? Do they entertain often?

            For me, 12 pieces would be too much, even if it was all a good buy, because I don't want pieces I won't use. Also, 12 pieces generally include they need lids for every pot? Do they need two skillets AND a saute pan? Again, these questions are pertinent only if they hate clutter or are tight on space.

            FWIW, I am not impressed with my All-Clad for what they cost. I really like the Regalware tri-ply mentioned above. (I REALLY like them, actually.)

            Other things to look for that will make cooking easier are those with curved rims or spouts, and for people like me....sauciers or saucepans with interior capacity markings.