Are you tired of using cookware that lasts for a few days and wondering how to cook with stainless steel? Does the fear of toxic chemicals make you anxious? Or do you want a better material to cook with? Then stainless steel can bring you a joyous experience.
Stainless steel is an alloy that provides versatile functions with better results. It is a preferable product as it does not make your food toxic. However, getting through the science of cooking may seem difficult.
If you are worried about your eggs sticking to it, missing out on some cleaning tips, and panicked about the durability of the pans, then this article is all about how to cook with stainless steel.
1. Benefits Of Using Stainless Steel Cookware
Before we indulge in the concept of how to cook with stainless steel cookware, let us understand the benefits of using it. Why will you buy stainless steel when you have cast iron and nonstick pans to deal with? There must be solid reasons to convince you. Right?
The first thing you need to know before you learn how to cook with stainless steel is its durability.
Stainless steel is highly durable and stands out in the crowd of other materials. Let’s dive more into it. Though each material has its benefits, in terms of durability, cast iron can become rusty, and non-stick pans may get chapped. Stainless steel maintains its charm for a longer period.
1.2 Uniform Heating
Containers made from stainless steel are quite quicker in heating. You can have amazing food ready quickly, cooking with stainless steel pots. Uniform heating can even help to cook food evenly.
Stainless steel is safe to use. It does not contain any harmful chemicals that can react with food and make you visit a doctor.
Moreover, its surface speaks a lot. The shiny and smooth surface does not let dirt stick. It even prevents bacterial growth. That’s why it is also the most preferred material used in hospitals.
Unlike cast iron, the composition of stainless steel is such that it prevents corrosion and keeps it safe from oxidation.
In the 21st century, we talk a lot about sustainability, and while cooking, stainless steel convinces us to be sustainable. It can be recycled and repurposed easily without harming the environment.
When it comes to its versatile nature, stainless steel cookware acts as an amazing product. You can use them in gas stoves and induction. It is oven-safe, too.
1.7 Sleek Appearance
Improving the look of the interior of the house is the dream of each individual. And stainless steel cookware arranged beautifully in the kitchen with a blaze can make your kitchen light up.
2. How To Cook With Stainless Steel With Care?
Stainless steel is an alloy of iron and chromium. It is somewhat porous when seen under a microscope. So, handling it may seem difficult sometimes. Right? But don’t worry.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to cook with stainless steel effortlessly. This can be a solution to most of your problems.
2.1 Temperature And Heat Control
Heat has a lot to do with cooking. Perfect temperature can make your food delicious, while uneven temperature can spoil the taste. It is the same for the stainless steel cookware. Always cook the food on medium heat.
Cooking is an art related to science. Yes! Temperature adjustments can make a huge difference in your food. The perfect way to test whether the container is heated or not is by using the “water drop” method. It might look like an experiment, but it works wonders in real life.
Heat the pan, and add a drop of water to it, you might observe the following:
- If the water droplet evaporates from its surface, your pan is underheated and needs more time to heat up.
- The droplet forms a tiny ball and rolls on the surface. it is perfectly heated, and it’s time to add oil to it.
- Another situation may occur when it is overheated; in that case, the water will split into tiny droplets. And it’s an indication that the heat is too much. You need to sim the flame.
This happens because when the pan is heated, the pores get closed and hence can act as a nonstick surface.
2.2 Timing To Add Oil
Without oil, cooking is not possible. Oil is an essential ingredient in cooking, although the amount may vary according to the recipes.
The options for oil are numerous. You can use vegetables, olives, mustard, and many more. But timing matters a lot while cooking. If oil is put into a cold pan, it will remain in the vessel for a longer duration and break down to stick to the pan’s surface.
Cooking with cold oil can make the cleaning process too difficult. Moreover, the oil will burn at a high temperature. Hence, medium flame is preferred.
It is advised to add oil once the stainless steel pan is heated uniformly (avoid overheating). Swirl it all over the pan so that the oil reaches each corner of the pan. This ensures that the pan becomes non-sticky to a great extent.
2.3 Dealing With Proteins
Stainless steel is an amazing material to cook meat, eggs, and proteins. However, certain things must be remembered before adding them to the pan. Let’s discuss it in detail.
Always add the proteins in hot oil. When oil is heated, a space forms between the pan and the food, thus due to steam production. Thus, it avoids sticking to the surface of the pan. Don’t forget that your oil needs to be heated before you add the items.
When we put something in oil, its temperature drops significantly. This temperature difference can cause sticking. Hence, optimum heated oil can maintain this difference.
If you hear a therapeutic sizzling sound, then your oil is at optimum temperature. If that sound is not heard, let it heat slightly more.
2.4 Dealing With Frozen Food
While using refrigerated or frozen food, make sure to keep it at room temperature first and then add it to the hot pan. Adding cold food items into the oil, the steam cannot lift the food, and it will stick.
Don’t flip it immediately. Rather, wait for a few minutes to let it capture a golden brown color, and then you can stir it efficiently without sticking.
If you are using frozen meat, then make sure to dry it gently with tissue paper or cloth to remove excess water. This can help you to get a crispy output. The meat already contains a lot of water that can make your food soggy. This tip can give you a life-changing texture to your food.
2.5 Seasoning Of The Stainless Steel Pan
Seasoning stainless steel pan to get you more accurate results. Heat the pan and then add to it. Let it heat for a few minutes until smoke comes out of it. You are just heating the oil to season it. Hence, don’t worry about the oil burning. Food sticks to the cooking surface if not seasoned properly.
After it becomes quite hot, turn off the gas and leave it for a few minutes to cool down. And it’s done. Your cookware is ready to cook. It can even act as a nonstick pan without the worry of food getting stuck. You can even cook some acidic foods like tomato sauce.
3. Washing Tips
After understanding the science of how to cook with stainless steel cookware, we should also focus on its cleaning. Cleaning a stainless steel pan can be a tough task if neglected.
The cleaning process is also a part of cooking. Because if the cookwares are not cleaned properly, it can alter the delicacy of your food. So, let’s dive into some amazing tips for washing stainless steel containers.
- Although the stainless steel pans are dishwasher safe, don’t rely much on the dishwasher. Rather, manually clean it. It helps in maintaining a standardized cleaning method.
- Use a soft scrubber to clean the containers.
- Stainless steel is the safest material to work with acids. And if you find any kind of food particles stuck to it, which is hard to remove with soap, then vinegar is the solution. Boil water and vinegar in the pan for a few minutes and then gently rub it to remove the stains.
- Some mild stains can also be removed by using baking soda. You can just cover the surface of the container with baking soda and leave it for a few minutes. You can then remove it by gentle scrubbing.
- The exterior knob region and the rim are quite challenging to clean. But no worries, you can just use a brush to remove the untouched part. The bristles of the brush aren’t so hard enough to scratch your pan.
4. Stainless Steel Care Mistakes To Avoid
To find a solution for how to cook with stainless steel cookware, you should understand what mistakes you make while handling it. Here are the top 5 mistakes that should be avoided.
Wondering about mysterious rainbow stains in your stainless steel pans? What causes those stains? Overheating! Yes, heating the pan at a high temperature can cause a stain resembling the rainbow’s seven colors.
The most common reason for this is that the chromium contained in the stainless steel reacts with the air, and at high temperatures, it causes an oxidized layer. This layer has a hue of rainbow.
This stain isn’t harmful to the body but can be very difficult to remove. For this, the best solution is vinegar. Dissolve vinegar in water in the pan and then gently scrub with a soft scrubber. This can restore the cookware’s shine.
4.2 Non-removal Of Tiny Food Particles
It is a most important job to clean the utensils after cooking. Because if any tiny particle of food remains in the pan, it can cause a deteriorated situation as the burning of the food will be enhanced. The burnt food bits can even spoil the taste and aroma of the cooked food.
If you notice some white powder deposited on the surface, then it’s calcium. This problem arises when the utensils are not cleaned properly. This can even lead to bacterial growth. Hence, cleaning should be the foremost job.
4.3 Addition Of Salt To A Cold Pan
Noodles and pasta can seem delicious when cooked with stainless steel. But make note of one point: always add the salt to the water after it is boiling.
The salt can be a corrosive ingredient for the stainless steel. Adding salt at an early stage, when the cookware is cold, can cause major damage to it in the long run. This little trick can increase the durability of your shiny stainless steel cookware.
4.4 Cleaning The Hot Cookware
You might have experienced a sizzling sound when a hot pan is put under cold water. This might seem like a minute reaction, but it can harm your stainless steel cookware to a great extent.
When in contact with the water, hot surfaces can crack the container, which can be irreversible. The temperature difference is responsible for such action. Always maintain a gap between cooking and cleaning to ensure longevity.
4.5 Using Harsh Chemical
Harsh chemicals can be abrasive for the pan and can damage it. Also, use soft non-metal scrubbers to clean the stainless steel pans rather than using steel wool.
Mild soap with a soft scrubber can make your pan clean and avoid scratches. When you rub it with a stiff scrubber, it scratches the material and thus opens more pores. This event can cause the sticking of food while cooking next time.
5. Does The Quality Of The Stainless Steel Pots Matter?
Yes, quality matters a lot while dealing with food containers. Stainless steel comes in two categories: single-layer and multi-layer. The single-layer container can lead to discoloration, burning, and stuck pieces of food.
Multilayer can have a lot of benefits, like a magnetic coating that is induction-safe, better conduction, and high resistance to burning.
Hence, always try to hunt for better quality stainless steel pots that can make your work easy in the kitchen. High-quality products even prevent distortion of the shape of the containers.
6. How To Cook With Stainless Steel Pans In The Oven And Induction?
Yes, you heard it right. You can use stainless steel pots in the oven and induction. However, certain tips can enhance the way of your cooking. It is suitable for baking, searing, frying, simmering, and many more. Here is how to cook with stainless steel~
Stainless steel is a durable and sturdy product that ensures high-temperature tolerance in the oven. It is a wonderful option to choose as you won’t get a metallic flavor while cooking with it. But as a thumb rule, maintain an optimum temperature. Never exceed a temperature of 500 degrees Fahrenheit. It can damage the stainless steel pots. And make sure to properly preheat the oven before placing your dish in it.
While cooking in induction, make sure to use induction-friendly magnetic cookware so that you don’t have to face unexpected problems.
Good quality stainless steel pots are great for looking In induction. Also, take care of using a lid while cooking. This accelerates the cooking rate efficiently.
With a multitude of benefits and aesthetics, stainless steel welcomes your kitchen with hearty emotions. By understanding the basics of how to cook with stainless steel pots, you can make them your best friends. Everything from boiling pasta to having upside-down eggs can make your day.
Proper preheating techniques, seasoning, cooking, and cleaning can increase the overall shelf life of the stainless steel pans and make it worth mentioning. It is quite true that handling it with care can give you excellent results. We hope we covered everything on “how to cook with stainless steel”.
Then why are you waiting for? Try delicious mouth-watering recipes with stainless steel today, and have an amazing day.
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