- Material: Aluminum
- Oven safe: Up to 600°F
- Induction safe: No
- Sizes available: 10″
- Warranty: 2 years
Rounding out our list of the best nonstick fry pans is GreenPan. This popular pick is no stranger to best-of lists and has product reviews aplenty that testify to its longevity and durability. People who have had their GreenPan for years report barely any wear. Our sister site, Epicurious, has meticulously tested this pan and liked its even heat distribution and scratch resistance.
Ceramic vs. Teflon Nonstick Pans
Nonstick coatings come in two forms—polytetrafluoroethylene (also known as PTFE or by the brand name Teflon) and ceramic.
PTFE gets a bad rap because of its association with perfluorooctanoic acid (or PFOA), a man-made chemical that is a legitimate health concern. While PFOA was historically used in the manufacturing of PTFE, since 2015, all cookware sold or made in the USA must be PFOA-free. If you’re picking up an off-brand pan at a discount store, it is possible that it was manufactured using PFOA, so we recommend sticking with a reputable brand if you’re going all in on that nonstick cookware set.
But it gets more complicated. Both PFOA and PFTE are what’s know as polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). PTFE has been identified as a safer alternative to PFOA, but the research really is still ongoing to understand the full health and environmental impact of these chemicals. It’s also potentially concerning that there are a whole lot of ways a company can obscure its use of particular unregulated PFAS. A piece of cookware or pan set that says it’s PFOA-free could use lesser-known PFAS chemicals currently unreviewed by regulators, and they are not obligated to disclose the PFAS that they use.
And if you’re not feeling gross enough already, brands use made up names to further obscure their nonstick cookware’s association with PFAS chemicals. Names to look out for if you’re concerned about these nonstick coatings include DuPont Platinum, T-fal, hard-anodized aluminum, and Dura-Slide. Ultimately, the decision about whether or not you want to use this kind of cookware is, of course, personal. But we recommend these few safety tips: Don’t use metal utensils on nonstick cookware. Don’t use anything higher than medium heat. And don’t expect the broad functionality or durability of cast-iron cookware: These pans should be replaced when they show signs of wear and tear, and shouldn’t be used to sear or go in the oven.
Because of these concerns, a recent market for alternative nonstick cookware has opened wide—and direct to consumer companies offering “nontoxic” pans in a variety of photogenic, muted colors flood your Instagram feed. “Ceramic” may sound like the more artisan or less industrialized option, calling to mind a carefully thrown earthenware vessel on a potter’s wheel, but this is actually clever branding. Ceramic nonstick pots and pans are made of metal and coated with what is essentially melted-down sand, or silica. Ceramic coatings tend to be less nonstick-y than PTFE coatings, and they sometimes have durability issues. But many home cooks prefer ceramic because of the common belief that PTFE could be harmful or unsafe.