Finding the perfect set of cookware for your kitchen can be an overwhelming process. With hundreds of brands, styles, colors, and even materials, the options are kind of endless. Lately, there’s been a growing trend within the kitchenware community of ceramic cookware with wood handles but why? What makes this type of cookware so appealing? That’s what this quick guide is for! Let’s break it all down!
What are the Pros of Ceramic Cookware?
Ceramic cookware is one of the most popular and most used types of kitchenware. From pots to pans to bowls, ceramic cookware tends to reign supreme for a wide variety of reasons. First of all, there are two types of ceramic cookware, so let’s specify. The first kind is the traditional ceramic cookware that you make out of sand/clay and bake in a kiln. That’s not the kind that’s typically sold on the modern market. Instead, that would be ceramic-coated– cookware, which is the more popular option.
There are several pros to both kinds of ceramic cookware. There are several major pros to ceramic cookware, including the following!
Ceramic cookware tends to be more affordable than other options such as aluminum or cast iron. Of course, this will vary based on the brand of the cookware. It’s not a hard and fast rule that ceramic is less expensive, but for the most part, this material tends to be more affordable purely because it’s a naturally found substance.
Ceramic cookware, due to the materials, is naturally lighter in weight than cookware made from other materials. This is a significant pro for both professional chefs and the average grilled-cheese maker. The lightweight material makes it easy to store, you can even hang it by the handle if there’s a hole!
A significant pro to ceramic cookware is that it’s naturally non-toxic. Ceramic cookware started its rise in popularity right around the time that Teflon was deemed toxic to the human body. Since ceramic is made from natural materials (clay and sand), it’s a substance that contains no harmful chemicals, even when exposed to high heat conditions. This is in contrast to Teflon, which has shown to be toxic upon consumption, which occurs when the material is heated too long or too high as it breaks down and leaches into the food.
Ceramic cookware is also naturally nonstick. This makes it ideal for anyone who cooks often or just despises clean up! Since it’s nonstick, you’ll notice that you have no trouble flipping meats, stirring eggs, even tossing over your veggies. Everything slides right off the pot or pan and then you can just give a quick wipe!
Easy to Clean
Speaking of the clean-up, ceramic kitchenware is known to be one of the easiest to clean. Although it is not dishwasher safe, the material is naturally non-stick, so messes are rare. Typically, it just needs an easy wipe with a gentle soap and soft sponge and you’re good to go! If you do manage to have something stick to the surface, let it soak in some hot water and it’ll slide right off!
Why do Some Cooking Pans Have Wood Handles?
This can vary for a few reasons. Some brands just love the aesthetic, while others find it more affordable to manufacture. They also add a unique look to traditional pots and pans, a bit of a rustic touch if you will!
Is Ceramic Cookware with Wood Handles Oven Safe?
Is it oven safe? Yes…to an extent. Wooden handles are of course…made of wood…so they are very much flammable. Although some wooden handles have an exterior coating to help prevent the burning of the wood, these materials are often not oven safe for extended amounts of time.
So, whereas your ceramic pot/pan can withstand temperatures of up to 500 degrees, the wooden handles, probably cannot. If you let your wooden handles sit in an oven too long, the protective coating will begin to break down and release toxic fumes into the air and into your food, which of course, nobody wants!
What are the Pros of Using Ceramic Cookware with Wood Handles?
Now, there are a few pros that outweigh that above little con! Wooden handles do come with the following benefits:
Cheaper to Manufacture = Lower Retail Price
Since wood is an ever-present, naturally reproducing material, it’s often more affordable for manufacturers. This often means that they don’t have to upsell to such a high extent. That means you, as the consumer, are not paying as much as you would for pots and pans made with aluminum or cast iron handles.
Wood is also a lightweight resource. This reduces the overall weight of your pots and pans in the set, making storage and handling much easier. Nobody wants to lift up a hot and heavy pan so purchasing ceramic cookware with wooden handles is often a perfect option!
Lastly, they have such a unique, rustic look to them. There’s’ something just…cool…about combining wood with materials like ceramic or aluminum. It adds charm and your cookware will stand out amongst the crowd!
What are the Cons?
Of course, where there are pros to ceramic cookware with wooden handles, there are cons.
Little More Difficult to Clean
The wooden handles on some ceramic cookware can be a bit more difficult to clean. Although wood is naturally made to absorb water and then air-dry, it takes quite a while sometimes. It often needs a specific cleaning ritual so that you do not damage or warp the wood. This can be a drawback to anyone who prefer a fast and easy clean.
Wood is of course flammable so ceramic cookware with wooden handles should not be used over an open flame (such as on a grill). Some wooden handles do have a protective coating that can make this a little bit easier and reduce flammability. However, it’s common that the material used in the protective coating to not be able to withstand high temps. You’ll have to base this on the brand itself.
Breaks Down Easier
Wood is also known for breaking down fairly easily over time if it is not properly cared for. You will have to do some research to determine what your specific product requires. Every brand is different!
Final Thoughts on Ceramic Cookware with Wood Handles
Ceramic cookware with wooden handles does have its own set of pros and cons. However, it is one of the most appealing for a few reasons. Since both wood and ceramic of easily attainable resources, these products are often more affordable. They’re also usually lighter weight, which is highly beneficial. Keep in mind, cleaning may be a tad more difficult for wooden handles and it may also be more flammable. However, ceramic cookware with wood handles still outweighs the competition the majority of the time! Give it a try in your kitchen!