10 Best Stainless Steel Cookware Sets: Your Buyer’s Guide

stainless-steel-cookware

All-Clad

Investing in quality cookware is one of the best things any home cook or professional chef can do. Just like a quality knife set, we-made pots and pans are essential to cooking. So, if you’re looking for a set that’s perfect for all kinds of cooking techniques and tough enough for everyday use, look no further than these stainless steel cookware sets.

Favored for its durability and non-reactionary characteristics, stainless steel is the perfect material for your go-to pots and pans. While copper cookware, ceramic cookware, and non-stick cookware all have a place in the kitchen, stainless steel is the true workhorse. Our list of the best stainless steel sets features all the best brands and all the best collections. To find the perfect stainless steel pots and pans for you, read on.

Many of these pots and pans are available individually, too. Links are included below.

These Are The Best Stainless Steel Cookware Sets Available Right Now

All-Clad D5 Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 5-ply construction
  • Versatile set
  • Retains heat, evenly distributes heat
Price: $899.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Made In Executive Chef
  • Total package
  • Oven-safe at high temperatures
  • Quality brand, well-made pots and pans
Price: $649.00 Shop now at Made In Cookware Shop now Read our review
All-Clad Copper Core Cookware Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Sold as set or as individual pieces
  • Copper core is incredibly heat-responsive
  • All-Clad is a top cookware brand
Price: $1,252.58 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Made In Starter Set
  • Award-winning pieces
  • Induction compatible
  • High cooking temperatures
Price: $359.00 Shop now at Made In Cookware Shop now Read our review
All-Clad D3 Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Quality brands, quality cookware
  • 3-ply construction
  • Oven-safe to up 600-degrees
Price: $699.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Le Creuset Stainless Steel Cookware Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Larger set
  • Non-stick pans included
  • Attractive set
Price: $999.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Calphalon Stainless Steel Cookware Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Budget-friendly
  • Straining lids
  • Aluminum base
Price: $149.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
HexClad Cookware Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Oven safe up to 500-degrees
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Unique hexagon design
Price: $559.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
T-fal Stainless Steel Cookware Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Budget-friendly
  • Large collection
  • Stainless steel, aluminum and copper
Price: $185.97 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Cuisinart Stainless Steel Cookware Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Budget-friendly
  • Tri-ply construction
  • Multiple set options
Price: $250.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Our Unbiased Reviews
  1. 1. All-Clad Brushed D5 Stainless Cookware Set (10-Piece)

    Pros:
    • Features 5-ply construction of alternating layers of stainless steel and aluminum
    • Versatile 10-piece set that's perfect for searing, braising, sauteing, and simmering
    • Does a superior job of retaining heat and evenly distributing it
    • Quality brand and quality cookware set that's expertly made, durable, and long-lasting
    • Dishwasher safe
    • Oven and broiler safe up to 600-degrees
    • Flared edges for drip-free pouring
    Cons:
    • Some discoloration is possible if not cared for properly
    • Food can get stuck
    • Not as easy of a cleaning experience as promoted

    All-Clad is known for making some of the best stainless steel cookware on the market today, and their 10-piece D5 collection is definitely a show-stopper. Similar to the D3 set on our list, this collection of pots and pans is expertly made, well-constructed, high-performing, durable, and ideal for any and all cooking techniques. 

    Featuring five alternating layers of stainless steel and aluminum, each piece has flared edges for a drip-free pouring experience and holds and distributes heat evenly throughout the cooking surface. Perfect for searing, braising, sauteing, and simmering, the design of these stainless steel pots and pans only require medium heat to provide an excellent cooking experience. Compatible with all cooktops (including induction), and oven and broiler-safe up to 600-degrees, these dishwasher-safe pots and pans also feature uniquely-designed handles that offer superior balance and stay-cool elements so they don’t get hot on the stove.

    This set includes the following: 8-inch and 10-inch fry pans, 1.5-quart and 3-quart saucepans with lids, 3-quart saute pan with lid and an 8-quart stockpot with lid. Each piece is available for individual sale

    Different sized sets are also available:
    14-Piece All-Clad D5 Cookware Set – $1,599.95
    7-Piece All-Clad D5 Cookware Set – $699.95

  2. 2. Made In Cookware’s Sous Chef Collection (11-Piece)

    Pros:
    • Total package that includes 11-pieces of stainless steel cookware, non-stick cookware, and carbon steel cookware
    • Stainless steel coowkare is oven safe up to 800-degrees
    • Carbon steel coowkare is oven safe up to 1200-degrees
    • Non-stick coowkare is oven safe up to 500-degrees
    • Made In makes quality pots and pans
    • Ideal for all kinds of meals and cooking techniques
    • 5-ply stainless clad construction
    Cons:
    • Avoid metal utensils on stainless steel and non-stick pieces
    • Different pieces need different care and cleaning
    • Expensive

    If you’re looking for quality stainless steel cookware, look no further than Made In’s 11-Piece Sous Chef Set. What we’d consider the “whole package,” you really do get it all with this collection as it includes stainless steel pieces, carbon steel, and non-stick pots and pans.

    Featuring 5-ply stainless clad construction, the stainless steel pieces are made in the United States and in Italy. The entire collection features Made In’s signature stay-cool handles that don’t get hot, even when on the stove, and are oven safe up to 800-degrees. The non-stick cookware is oven save up to 500-degrees, while the carbon steel cookware is oven safe up to 1200-degrees. We know – that’s hot! Made In recommends avoiding metal utensils on the stainless clad and non-stick cookware, and the carbon steel wok should be seasoned prior to use.

    Everything you need to crank out perfectly charred peppers, fluffy risotto, seared fish, and beautifully braised chicken with ease, this set is ideal for anyone looking to upgrade their current collection, add to a wedding registry, or just need an excuse to add more fabulous pieces to their kitchen. Here’s what it’s included: 10″ Non-Stick Frying Pan, 10″ Stainless Steel Frying Pan, 12″ Stainless Steel Frying Pan, 12″ Blue Carbon Steel Frying Pan,  2 QT Saucepan with Lid, 4 QT Saucepan with Lid, 3.5 QT Saute Pan with Lid, 8 QT Stock Pot with Lid, 2 oz can Carbon Steel Seasoning Wax.

    Looking for a larger set? With an award-winning wok? Check out the 14-piece Executive Chef collection.

    All pieces are sold individually, too:
    Stainless Clad Pieces
    Carbon Steel Pieces
    Non-Stick Pieces

  3. 3. All-Clad Copper Core 5-Ply Bonded Cookware Set (10-Piece)

    Pros:
    • The copper core collection is sold as a set or as individual pots and pans
    • Copper core is incredibly heat-responsive
    • All-Clad is a top cookware brand
    • Dishwasher safe
    • Compatible with induction cooktops
    • Oven and broiler safe up to 600-degrees
    Cons:
    • More expensive option
    • Heavier cookware
    • Handles get hot

    This 10-piece collection of copper core pots and pans from All-Clad brings together the effectiveness of copper with the ease of stainless steel for an incredible cooking experience. Compatible with all cooktops, including induction, this series is favored for its superb responsiveness to heat. Ideal for making reductions and sauces, this set features everything you need for a variety of cooking techniques.

    Featuring five-ply construction, the extremely heat-responsive copper core is sandwiched between two layers of conductive aluminum with an easy to clean 18/10 stainless steel exterior and interior. These pots and pans heat up quickly, offer maximum control, and evenly distribute heat for a better cooking experience. These pieces are oven and broiler safe up to 600-degrees, are dishwasher safe, and come with a limited lifetime warranty.

    This set comes with the following: 8″ and 10″ fry pans, 2-quart and 3-quart saucepans with lids, 3-quart saute pan with lid, and an 8-quart stockpot with lid. Individual pieces are also available for purchase outside of the collection. Additional set quantities are also available.

  4. 4. Made In Cookware Starter Set (6-Piece)

    Pros:
    • This set features a variety of award-winning stainless steel pieces
    • All pieces are induction compatible
    • Stainless steel is oven safe up to 800-degrees, Carbon steel is oven-safe up to 1200-degrees
    • Attractive and versatile set
    • Stainless steel has 5-ply construction
    Cons:
    • Carbon steel needs to be seasoned before use
    • Carbon steel is hand wash ONLY, never put in dishwasher
    • Avoid metal utensils with stainless steel pieces

    Limited on space? Don’t need a large set? This 6-piece collection from Made In Cookware is just the cookware for you. Featuring both stainless steel pieces and carbon steel pieces, this collection might be small, but it’s totally mighty. Featuring everything you need to cook all kinds of meals, this collection contains three best-selling stainless steel products as well as a carbon steel frying pan. All pieces are induction compatible and the stainless steel pieces have 5-ply construction. The carbon steel pan needs to be seasoned before use. Stainless steel is oven safe up to 800-degrees, and carbon steel is oven safe up to 1200 degrees.

    Here’s what’s includes: 10″ stainless steel frying pan, 10″ blue carbon steel frying pan, 2-quart saucepan with lid, 8-quart stockpot with lid, and 2oz can of carbon steel seasoning wax.

     
  5. 5. All-Clad D3 Stainless Cookware Set (10-Piece)

    Pros:
    • All-Clad makes premier stainless steel cookware favored by chefs and home cooks
    • 3-ply stainless construction promotes quick and even heat distribution
    • Versatile set perfect for searing, sauteing, and simmering
    • Dishwasher safe
    • Compatible with all cooktops, including induction
    • Only medium heat is necessary when cooking
    • Oven-safe to up 600-degrees
    Cons:
    • Ships in March
    • Discoloring on bottom of pans if not treated properly
    • Some reviewers rmarked that food gets stuck

    When it comes to stainless steel cookware, All-Clad reigns supreme. Sure, their pieces might come with a higher price tag, but this brand of exceptional cookware is favored by chefs and home cooks at all levels. Featuring a classic stainless-steel style and durable construction, the All-Clad D3 Stainless Cookware Set is well-constructed, high-performing, and easy-to-cook-with. 

    Featuring 3-ply bonding and an aluminum core for a quick and even heat distribution, this collection is perfect for searing, sauteing, and simmering. Oven and broiler-safe up to 600-degrees with stay-cool handles that don’t get hot while on the stove, there isn’t much these stainless steel pots and pans can’t handle. All items included are dishwasher safe and are compatible with all cooktops, including induction.

    This 10-piece set includes the following: 8-inch and 10-inch fry pans, a 2-quart saucepan and 3-quart saucepan with lids, a 3-quart sauté pan with a lid, and an 8-quart stockpot with a lid. Each piece is crafted with quality materials to hold and distribute heat evenly throughout the pan, so only medium heat is needed for most searing, braising, sautéing, and simmering.

    Pieces are available individually as well.

  6. 6. Le Creuset Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Cookware Set (12-Piece)

    Pros:
    • Larger and versatile set that comes with 12-pieces
    • Two non-stick fry pans are included
    • Gorgeous design and finish
    • Features a high-performing surgical-grade stainless steel cooking surface
    • Tri-ply construction with aluminum core
    • Heats up quickly and evenly
    Cons:
    • More expensive option
    • Smaller sets are currently unavailable
    • Le Creuset is recognized more for their Dutch ovens and cast iron than stainless steel cookware

    Le Creuset is famous for their Dutch ovens, but their foray into stainless steel cookware hits all the marks for us. Featuring a gorgeous exterior, tri-ply construction, and a high-performing surgical-grade stainless steel cooking surface, this 12-piece set isn’t just a show-stopper, but it’s a durable and versatile set perfect for everyday use.

    Designed with Le Creuset’s iconic three-ring lids, stay-cool handles, and a full aluminum core, these pots and pans heat quickly and evenly. They’re also induction compatible, dishwasher-safe, metal utensil-safe, and infused with Titanium to prevent discoloration. And, while this is a more expensive set, this is an excellent option if your budget can allow for it.

    This set includes the following: 8″ and 12″ non-stick frypans, 2-quart saucepan with lid, 4-quart saucepan with lid, 3.5-quart saucier pan with lid, 9-quart stockpot with deep colander insert and lid. 

    Pieces are available individually, too.

  7. 7. Calphalon Classic Stainless Steel Pots and Pans (10-Piece)

    Pros:
    • Quality budget-friendly pick from a reputable cookware company
    • Comes with straining lids
    • Features an aluminum base for quick and even heating
    • Attractive series of pots and pans
    • Comes with etched lines that make measuring ingredients easier
    Cons:
    • Only oven safe up to 450-degrees
    • Lid handles get hot
    • Some reviewers report discoloration after use

    Calphalon’s 10-piece stainless steel cookware set is a gorgeous collection of quality pots and pans. Built to last with time-saving features, this cookware comes with etched lines that make measuring ingredients easier than ever before, as well as straining lids eliminating the need for a colander. Made of brushed steel with impact-bonded aluminum bases for fast and even heating, this collection is great for all kinds of cooking techniques and meals including delicate eggs and seared steaks. It’s also dishwasher safe and oven-safe up to 450-degrees. And, at such a great price, you can’t go wrong.

    This collection comes with the following: 8″ and 10″ frying pans, 1.5-quart saucepan with lid, 2.5-quart saucepan with lid, 3-quart saute pan with lid, and a 6-quart stockpot with lid. 

    Some pieces are sold individually.

  8. 8. HexClad Hybrid Non Stick Cookware Set with Lids and Wok (7-Piece)

    Pros:
    • Oven safe up to 500-degrees
    • Dishwasher safe, scratch-resistant
    • Unique hexagon design
    • First-ever hybrid collection - features both stainless steel and non-stick surfaces on each pan
    • PFOA-free
    Cons:
    • Just a collection of non-stick pans + wok, not a complete set
    • More expensive option
    • Some say it's not as "non-stick" as some other options

    Stainless steel meets non-stick in this 7-piece collection from HexClad. Boasted as the first of its kind, this non-stick cookware features a unique hexagon design that’s created through a laser etching process. The process creates a hybrid surface made up of both stainless steel and non-stick surfaces. Pretty cool, right?

    Durable and built to last, this tri-ply or clad style construction helps to provide an exceptional cooking experience. Made up of stainless steel and aluminum layers, these non-stick pan options from HexClad conduct consistent and even heat throughout each pan. These pans are PFOA-free, oven safe up to 500-degrees, dishwasher safe, scratch-resistant, and easy to clean. They’re also compatible with induction cooktops and feature stay-cool handles.

    Set includes the following pieces: 12″ pan with lid, 10″ pan with lid, 8″ pan with old, and a 12″ wok. Unfortunately, these pieces are not currently available individually at Amazon.

  9. 9. T-fal Ultimate Stainless Steel Copper Bottom Cookware Set (13-Piece)

    Pros:
    • Budget-friendly option that still provides an excellent cooking experience
    • Large collection with 13 versatile pieces and a steamer insert
    • Multiple layer construction with stainless steel, aluminum and copper
    • Dishwasher safe
    • Compatible with induction cooktops
    Cons:
    • Oven safe but only to 500-degrees
    • Better set for beginners and novice home cooks
    • Handles get hot

    If you’re looking for a popular seller and budget-friendly stainless set, this one from T-fal is an excellent choice. Featuring multiple layers of copper, aluminum, and stainless steel, these pots and pans offer a high-end cooking experience at a more affordable price. With a copper bottom that conducts and evenly distributes heat, these pots and pans are ideal for sauteing or cooking temperature-sensitive food. This collection works best over medium heat, is safe to use on all cooktops including induction, is dishwasher safe, and oven safe up to 500-degrees.

    This set includes the following: 8″ and 10.5″ fry pans, 12″ fry pan with lid, 1-quart saucepan with lid, 2-quart saucepan with lid, 3-quart saucepan with lid, and a 5-quart Dutch oven with lid and stainless steel steamer insert.

  10. 10. Cuisinart Tri-ply Stainless Steel Cookware Set (10-Piece)

    Pros:
    • Budget-friendly pick perfect for any novice home cook
    • Tri-ply construction with aluminum core
    • Multiple set options including 7, 10, 12, and 13 pieces
    • Induction cooktop compatible
    • Dishwasher safe
    Cons:
    • Better set for newer home cooks
    • Information on oven safety is limited
    • Heavy

    Cuisinart’s affordable stainless steel cookware set is incredibly popular, durable, and reliable. Featuring tri-ply construction with an aluminum core and stay-cool handles, these pots and pans are dishwasher safe, induction ready, and come with stylish tempered glass lids.

    Here’s what’s included: 1.5-quart saucepan with lid, 2.5-quart saucepan with lid, 3-quart saute pan with lid and helper handle, 6-quart stockpot with lid, and 8″ and 10″ skillets.

    Cuisinart’s stainless steel cookware comes in a variety of sets: 7-pieces, 10-pieces, 12-pieces, 13-pieces

Why Buy Stainless Steel Cookware?

Durable, reliable, non-reactionary, and virtually indestructible, stainless steel cookware is definitely considered amongst the "workhorses" in the kitchen. Ideal for browning and braising, stewing and sauteing, pickling and pasta sauce-making, and so much more, these versatile pots and pans are favored for their ease-of-use and ability to move from the stove to the oven to the broiler with ease. Most collections are also compatible with all cooktops including induction, are dishwasher safe, and easy to clean.

As with all cookware types, these pots and pans have a few drawbacks, too. Mainly, stainless steel isn't the best heat conductor. However, the best stainless steel cookware sets all feature multiple layers with cores made of materials that are excellent at conducting, retaining, and distributing heat.

If you're in the market for an incredible cookware set, or just want to purchase one or two pieces, make sure you're selection is stainless steel. Sure, these collections might be more expensive than some others, but quality pieces will last you a lifetime.

Stainless Steel Pots & Pans: Which Core Is Best?

As we mentioned above, stainless steel on its own isn't the best at conducting heat. So, when looking for a stainless steel cookware set, it's best to find one that features a core that can compensate.

The most common type of core found in stainless steel pots and pans is aluminum. Aluminum cookware was actually pretty prevalent in American homes before stainless steel came along. While there's some debate over the safety of these types of pots and pans, aluminum is an excellent source of heat, and therefore, makes an excellent core in stainless steel cookware sets. Because aluminum is just used as a layer in the construction of these pieces, there are no health or safety concerns.

A less common type of core, but more effective, is copper. Copper cookware is renowned for its heat-conducting capabilities. With a long history that dates back centuries, copper pots and pans offer a more high-end cooking experience. Unfortunately, they often come with bigger price tags. The All-Clad Copper Core collection on our list is an exceptional cookware set that features All-Clad's iconic 5-ply construction, with a copper core sandwiched between layers of aluminum and stainless steel. A great option if you're looking for the cooper cooking experience with the appeal and ease of stainless.

What Is Carbon Steel Cookware?

Chances are you've seen the term "carbon steel cookware" whilst looking for the best stainless steel pots and pans. Heck, our list features cookware collections that include carbon steel pieces. Relatively new to home cooks, carbon steel has been used in professional kitchens for years. Similar to cast iron in that it's comprised of both carbon and iron, it differs in a very big way: it's incredibly strong and virtually indestructible. 

Versatile cookware that's perfect for delicate eggs as well as hearty steaks, there isn't much carbon steel can't handle. It's also a great conductor and even distributor of heat, durable, and is oven safe at extremely high temperatures - like, 1200-degrees! Two things to note, however: it needs to be pre-seasoned before use, and can only be washed by hand with hot water and a soft-bristle brush. Absolutely NO soap.

Made In has helped introduce carbon steel cookware to the masses and their award-winning pieces are truly incredible. So, if you're looking for quality pots and pans that can really do it all, we recommend this chef-preferred material. Made In's current collection features an award-winning wok, frying pan series, paella pan, and roasting pan. All are affordable, gorgeous, and fan-favorites. 

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