Choosing cookware is not as easy as it seems, especially with so many different brands on the local market. With various materials for different items, there is also an issue of selecting the right material for the task.
Hence, keeping all these factors in mind, it is crucial to make the right decisions in order to get your money’s worth.
Whether you are a professional who can cook world-class dishes at will, or an amateur chef looking to up your skills, with this guide, we got you covered.
By the end of this article, you’ll know how to choose a cookware on a budget. So, let us dive in!
Understanding Your Budget
While this may seem like a no-brainer, it is imperative to have a good idea of your budget.
Many people tend to get carried away or end up becoming too restrictive when they shop for cookware.Throw in a few quality brand names, and the dilemma becomes unendurable.
Understanding your budget makes your job so much easier and efficient. Depending on whether you are willing to spend a few hundred or several thousand, you can pinpoint your exact requirement in terms of quality.
Buying cookware should be a lifetime investment, and deciding on how much you are willing or able to spend should put you on the right track for this investment.
We hope to make you choose the best cookware set under 200, and this is your first step.
Knowing the Right Material
The next step is to know which material you need your cookware to be. Always make sure to check if it is a conductor of heat (i.e., it can heat food easily) and also if the material is safe and has been approved by international standards.
As a general rule of thumb, stainless steel is the best material out there in terms of weight and safety. The cookware should ideally have a copper or aluminum core.
And the core is a disc at the bottom that helps in heating. Note that a copper core cookware could be more on the expensive side.
If you a person who likes to store food away for a prolonged time, ceramic cookware is a good choice to store food in.
Being non-toxic and long-lasting, your food will not react with it, making it safe and also durable.
The Type of Cook You Are
Everyone has different cooking habits and tendencies. Your cooking habits can influence your cookware choices.
If you cook because you have a passion for it and like experimenting, it is wise to go for aluminum or stainless steel products with copper cores. Both are long-lasting and strong.
You should be prepared to invest time in taking proper care of your cookware, as they can be high maintenance.
These types of products can be expensive but also visually appealing, so high-quality cookware is something you should go for if you are into aesthetics.
If you run a tight schedule and cook just to make it through the day, your cookware should be easy to maintain and safe to store food in for prolonged periods.
Stainless steel with an aluminum core is a good choice, as are ceramics. Both are budget-friendly and are easy to maintain.
Types of Food You Cook
If you are into frying and searing, go for stainless steel cookware with an aluminum core. This material can easily sustain high temperatures without taking damage, which is an important feature for high-temperature cooking.
For simple boiling or heating needs, stainless steel is still a good choice, but cast iron might be a better option. Make sure you take care of cast iron cookware as they can rust.
How Many Pieces You Need
How many pieces of cookware you need can depend on a couple of factors, such as the number of people you are cooking for and why you are cooking.
If you are cooking for a large family, say, 7-8 people, you must go for non-stick frying pans of size 10 inch, preferably.
Also, make sure you have a large pot with a lid as well as frying pans with lids. A 10 item set should be enough, but keep an eye on your budget as well.
If you cook professionally or as a hobby, then extra frying pans and pots are essential. Pans should be non-stick, preferably.
Going for a 15-item set is a good choice, but you may have to buy some items individually.
Knowing Your Cooking Stove
Most houses have an induction stove that runs on electricity. The cooktop is magnetic, so only magnetic materials will be heated.
For this type, cast iron cookware is ideal, as it’s highly magnetic and will heat easily. Not to mention, it will be cheaper as well.
Avoid aluminum products in this case, as they will not heat and will be a waste of money. If your stove runs on gas, any type of cookware will do.
However, copper will heat up faster and thus save precious cooking time, in effect saving your gas bill.
Things to Steer Clear off
Whatever you buy, never go for pure stainless steel items. Stainless steel items must always have a copper or aluminum core in order to heat.
Also, try to avoid cheaper-than-usual frying pans made of nylon or non-stick material. Those tend to get damaged easily.
While choosing cookware can be difficult while on a budget, it does not have to be a painful experience.Hopefully, this article equipped you with enough information to get started.
But remember, many factors come into play when choosing the right cookware set, so try not to rush into things. Make your investment worth it.