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Nov 11, 2013 10:08 AM

Crepe pan - answer to my omelette making needs?

So I've been searching for a pan that meets my omelette making needs, as I love breakfast and making omelettes. Now I make my omelettes a certain way that I've decided is my favorite way to make and eat omelettes, and it requires a pan that is non-stick, light weight, and safe to use under the broiler.

I had been using teflon non-stick pans in the past, but realized that it's probably not wise to stick them under the broiler and would prefer to avoid teflon in general now. Other non teflon options have handles that aren't safe for high heat as well. A roommate of mine had a Calphalon anodized aluminum pan, but I wasn't impressed with its nonstick abilities, especially over time. Now I love my cast iron pans for non-stick needs, but they're too heavy to maneuver and the rim doesn't have that gradual slope. I stumbled upon crepe pans, and I think they might be perfect for my needs - non-stick, not teflon, light-weight, and oven safe. Is there anything I need to know about these pans, do they really fit my omelette making needs?

I'm mostly torn between the De Buyer blue steel crepe pan and the Paderno crepe pan. I'm considering the Lodge cast iron round griddle as it seems like I can get multiple uses out of it, though it might be too heavy.

Lodge round griddle:

Feedback on how these pans perform would be greatly appreciated. Please no advice on omelette making methods - I realize I'm not making a classic French omelette, and you may have methods you think work better, but this is the method that most meets my preferences =).

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  1. In case it is helpful to know how I make my omelettes,
    I stir the egg mixture on medium low heat and swirl the mixture around the pan to evenly distribute and create a sort of crust on the edges. Then I top it with my fillings on one half, place it under the broiler briefly. I then slide a spatula along the edges and hold the pan vertically up by the handle and gently tap it down so omelette loosens up from the pan, then fold over the half without toppings over.

    1. A crêpe pan may work for you, but there are other steel pans which have a more conventional shape:

      Also, if you get away from the big name brands, you will have more selection in diameter of the pan.

      2 Replies
      1. re: GH1618

        Thanks for the link! I see a lot of options on there. To narrow it down, are there any pans you especially like that you think fit my criteria? After a few quick clicks most appeared to be non-stick. My understanding of "blue steel" is that it can be seasoned to be non-stick like cast-iron; are all the pans in that link "regular" steel?

        1. re: nanobabes

          I don't know about the difference between "blue steel" and other steel pans. I have a generic French steel crêpe pan which I use only for crêpes. It is sufficiently nonstick for that purpose. I haven't tried it with egg, but I expect with good seasoning and some oil or butter it would work for that, too.

      2. I have a crepe pan and a Lodge griddle. The lodge has a very small rim and the omelet pan an even smaller one. If that's what you want then these are a good choice. If you rely on the pan edges to stop the egg when you swirl the mixture, you'd need to be careful with these. If you leave space between the edge of the pan and the egg mixture, then these will work.

        I like the deBuyer crepe pan, but I have a lighter non-stick one. I'd probably get a steel one if I got another so I could use it on indduction. The deBuyer one has a much higher rim then mine so it might work for you.

        2 Replies
        1. re: travelerjjm

          Thanks for the input. I don't think the size of the rim will be too much of an issue, the reason I brought it up was that because the rim of my cast iron has a sharper angle than my other skillets, plus I'm not sure if that area of my pan is as well seasoned as the flat surface.

          What material is your current nonstick crepe pan? I may have misunderstood your post, is your current one a deBuyer pan? When you say you'd get a steel one next time, do you mean the blue steel one or stainless steel? (Gah, so many options!)

          1. re: nanobabes

            Mine is non-stick coated aluminum. from Cuisinart. I am not sure which I'd get. I have a nice carbon steel pan (frying, not crepe) that I really like, so I may get one of those.

        2. I love my De Buyer blue steel crepe pan (used for crepes and fried eggs). I have not used it for omelettes under broiler. If seasoned according to instructions (easy to do), it will give you great nonstick results. It is also very light. I would recommend the 9 1/2 inch size. The lip is not very high so you might want to compare lip height with Lodge lip height. Lodge should work well also, but is going to be much heavier.

          2 Replies
          1. re: wakondatch

            Question about the non-stick performance of blue steel, how does it compare, say between a teflon non-stick and a cast iron non-stick pan? With teflon - when new - it's as if eggs repel from the surface, and even scrambled eggs slide around with ease. With cast iron, I have no problem with fried eggs, though scrambled eggs - since I'm moving it around before its completely "set" - seem to cling a bit, though obviously not as bad as with stainless steel.

            1. re: nanobabes

              Carbon steel will likely fall somewhere between nonstick and cast iron, especially if it's not a newer cast iron pan. Carbon steel is smooth, like stainless steel. I have 2 DeBuyer crepe pans, a 10" heavy Carbone and a light 8" Force Blue (the blue steel you're looking at).

              After seasoning, it's really pretty slippery. You will need to use some butter for your omelets, but it should be slicker than today's cast iron. Sometimes my eggs slide right around, other times they stick a tiny bit, maybe on one edge. Any sticky spots easily release with a little nudge from a spatula.

              To sum up, with butter in it, it's almost as slippery as nonstick.

              EDIT - To find out how your omelets will work, I scrambled an egg in my Force Blue crepe pan a moment ago. I think, given the way you cook your omelet, it will function well. I mixed the egg with milk, then poured it into the buttered pan, preheated on 5/10 (flat top electric hob). It began to set up right away. Within 5 seconds of it hitting the pan, I began to lift and blend the egg. ZERO sticking. I only had tiny bits begin to stick late in the process (about 1 minute in), when there was no butter left to provide lubrication. The pan mostly wiped clean with a paper towel. FWIW, a frypan will work better for a scramble, for the obvious reason. My little exercise took some spatula skill to keep the egg in the pan. ;)

              For your omelets, where you fold as you plate, this pan should be stellar.

          2. Another thing to consider. The De Buyer crepe pan has an angled handle that may cause a problem in trying to get the omelett close to the broiler heat. The Lodge handle goes straigt out from the pan so would be easier to get the omelett close to the broiler heat.