The best alternative to Teflon is carbon steel cookware .Carbon steel consists of 1% carbon and 99% iron. In addition carbon steel cookware also has a natural non-stick coating and is more versatile than most other types of cookware.

It distributes the heat evenly through the base of the pan and along its sides. This allows food to cook quickly from top to bottom and from side to side simultaneously without having to rotate the skillet or stir the food.

Carbon steel is a good choice for traditional roast chicken, fish dishes, sauces and frying eggs on the stovetop after which it can be put in the oven to finish cooking under the broiler (grill).

Also, it is a very good heat conductor and this is the main reason why people choose to buy carbon steel cookware sets and it is best for frying, searing, sauteing and even grilling.

Carbon Steel Cookware Sets Vs Cast Iron vs Stainless Steel

Carbon steel is better than cast iron when it comes to cooking on the stovetop because of its weight, its heat conductivity and more importantly its handle design.

It has light-weight that cast iron skillet can’t match and also carbon steel has a huge variety of available cookware size and shapes.

It is better than stainless steel when it comes to price, weight, shape availability and handle design.  Stainless steel sometimes costs more for the same set with half the pieces in your desired sizes.

Carbon steel pans are great for browning or searing a dish as it possess a high-fired cooking point which leads to a higher temperature at the surface. This results in food items that have crispy outside and juicy inside, giving your dishes good texture and taste.

Pros of Carbon Steel cookware

For many reasons carbon steel cookware is famous among housewives and even chefs prefer it. Let’s talk about some pros of carbon steel cookware.

Cook food faster

Carbon steel cookware is a good conductor of heat so it cooks food faster than other materials. It distributes the heat evenly through its base and sides to allow you to cook from top to bottom and from side to side at once. This makes pan-frying foods such as steak, fish or chicken an easy task since the pan can get hot quickly and cook all of the meat evenly.

Carbon Steel Pans Are Nonstick and Require Less Oil

Carbon steel pans have a natural nonstick coating. Foods such as eggs and stir fries will slide effortlessly out of the pan, avoiding unnecessary oil or fat. This makes it an excellent choice for cooking healthy meals at home.

However, like all other types of cookware, carbon steel must be properly seasoned before use to avoid food sticking during cooking.

Durability and Safety

Made from tempered carbon steel, they possess a higher degree of durability than regular stainless steel pans do. Furthermore, carbon steel pans are heavy duty and can stand up to regular use in commercial kitchens if necessary without being dented or deformed.

Long Lasting and Easy Clean Up

Carbon steel cookware is known for its ability to last a lifetime with proper care, even in commercial settings. To prevent rusting it must be properly dried after washing before being stored in a cool dry place. It does not have the same chemical makeup as cast iron so it can be used to cook acidic foods such as tomato sauce without rusting.

Lightweight and Easy to Handle

Another advantage of carbon steel cookware is that it is very lightweight. Users with joint problems or weak hands will have an easier time handling the pans without struggling with the weight of heavy cast iron.

High Heat Resistant

Another great advantage of carbon steel cookware is it has the ability to withstand high heat. Because of its ability to retain heat, it is possible for carbon steel pans to be used even in a stove with an open flame or in a conventional oven which makes them quite versatile when it comes preparation methods.


Unlike other cookware, carbon steel is not expensive ,so it can be bought for less than $100. So if you’re looking for a budget cookware without compromising the quality of cookware, then carbon steel is the way to go.

Great for slow cooking

Carbon steel pans are great for the purpose of slow cooking due to its ability to retain heat. This property makes carbon steel pots ideal to use when you want to cook your dish slowly over low flame or at a low temperature.

Compatible with all kind of stoves

It doesn’t matter what kind of stove you have at home, carbon steel pans are compatible with all kinds of stovetops. They can be used on gas stoves, induction or any other type of cooking vessel that you might have at home.

Cons of Carbon Steel Cookware

Now let’s talk about some cons of Carbon steel cookware. Although carbon steel has many advantages, there are also some disadvantages of carbon steel pans which you should know before buying them.

Not Safe to Clean with the Dishwasher

You may have no idea but the carbon steel cookware is not dishwasher safe which means you must wash them by hand. This is the biggest drawback of these types of cookware. Harsh chemicals of the dishwasher can strip away the seasoning process, leaving your pan unprotected and susceptible to rusting. So avoid Cleaning carbon Steel Cookware in the dishwasher otherwise it will create rust.

Reacts with Acidic Food

Another disadvantage of carbon steel cookware is it reacts with acidic food which results in breaking down the natural non-stick seasoning of the pan.

It doesn’t mean you are not going to cook acidic food in this cookware. Buy you have to avoid highly acidic foods to protect the non-stick coating. If you cook highly acidic food, you have to re-season your pan to make it highly non-stick.

Requires Proper Seasoning

In order to make carbon steel non-stick you have to season it properly to get it to work properly. Seasoning isn’t difficult, but it is a time-consuming process and you have to invest time on it.

Carbon steel pans are relatively inexpensive to purchase; however, they need to be seasoned with oil before use to prevent food from sticking, whereas many nonstick pans do not require this extra step.


I hope now you are able to decide whether to buy the carbon steel cookware or not after reading all the above Carbon steel Cookware advantages and disadvantages.

Carbon steel cookware is the best choice for the starter and newbie, because it is very cheap and easy to handle with and it’s lightweight makes it easy to handle. If you are looking for a cookware for your Kitchen, where you can cook at low cost then carbon steel is the right choice for you.

If you like this article then do share with your friends and family members who might be interested in buying the carbon steel cookware. If you have any suggestions for us, then comment below and let us know.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is carbon steel healthy to cook?

The answer is Yes, carbon steel is healthy to cook because it is a really healthy metal. In fact, it is all-natural and has been used to produce cookware for thousands of years.
Cooking with carbon steel means that you choose a healthier alternative to non-stick pans and aluminum cookware since carbon steel pans require very little oil or fat for cooking and they are naturally non-stick.

Can you cook tomatoes in carbon steel?

As we said before, carbon steel reacts with acidic food and tomatoes are an acidic food, so the answer is no. If you do then the chances are to alter the taste and color of the food.

Is carbon steel toxic for cooking?

Since carbon steel cookware is made of carbon and iron and both are safe to use, so you can use carbon steel cookware to cook food in.

What is carbon steel cookware made of?

Carbon steel is similar to cast iron cookware as it is made of 2% of carbon and rest of iron. As it contains 1 or 2% of carbon which makes it less brittle and smoother. That’s the reason we can easily make lighter pan of carbon steel in this regard.