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Cooking delicious meals requires the right utensils. So, whether you want to brown your meat for stew or you need to sauté some veggies for your side, you have to buy the right skillet for your kitchen.
A skillet is simply a frying pan with a flat, wide bottom and slanted sides. Its unique and versatile design makes it ideal for all types of cooking techniques, ranging from stir-frying to searing.
So what’s the best skillet in the market?
As with any other kitchenware, buying the ideal skillet is not a walk in the park – you have to compare the different sizes, materials, features and prices to find one that fits your needs.
Fortunately, we have done all the research for you!
Today, we present the top 9 best skillets for your kitchen, starting with our overall pick, which is the All-Clad D3 Stainless Cookware 12-inch Fry Pan with Lid.
Here are the best frying pans and skillets you can buy:
- Best overall - All-Clad D3 Stainless Cookware 12-inch Fry Pan
- Runner up - Cuisinart 722036H Chef’s Classic 14-inch Open Skillet
- Best Value - Rachel Ray Hard-Anodized Skillet
- Best Cast Iron Skillet - Lodge L8SK3 Cast Iron Skillet
- Best Design - T-Fal E93808 Professional Nonstick Fry Pan
- Best Nonstick - Anolon Nouvelle Copper Hard Anodized Nonstick Skillet
- Best Budget - Farberware Aluminum Nonstick Frying Pan Set
For the complete product list, please continue reading...
Top 9 Best Frying Pans & Skillets Reviews
1. Best overall - All-Clad D3 Stainless Cookware 12-inch Fry Pan
Dimensions: 20.5 x 12.5 x 2 inches
Weight: 4.5 lbs
Material: Stainless steel
This skillet is made from high-quality stainless steel and aluminum. As you are probably aware, steel is an extremely durable material and a good conductor of heat. Besides, it does not contain any chemicals or elements that could be harmful to your health. The aluminum core also works effectively to ensure even heat distribution.
The pan measures 12 inches in diameter, making it ideal for all types of cooking techniques. It features sloped sides and a wide flat surface for easy flipping, turning, searing and browning. Given its size, the skillet can comfortably hold up to 4 chicken breasts at a go.
It has a long, double-riveted handle that stays cool on your stovetop even when cooking at very high temperatures.
And the best part is that the skillet comes with a lid that you can use for simmering or to keep your food hot after cooking. You no longer have to warm your food every now and then.
2. Runner up - Cuisinart 722036H Chef’s Classic 14-inch Open Skillet
Dimensions: 22.9 x 14.7 x 4 inches
Weight: 1 lb
Material: Stainless steel
Cuisinart is a household name when it comes to manufacturing high-quality kitchen items and appliances. It is therefore not surprising that the Cuisinart 722936H is one of our favorite skillets.
Loved by culinary artists and newbies alike, this skillet delivers a truly professional performance. It is made from durable stainless steel, and it has an aluminum-encapsulated base for fast and even heat distribution.
The interior of the pan is made of pure steel. With this in mind, you should not expect the cooking surface to discolor, chip or contaminate your food. Moreover, the skillet has sloped sides and tampered rims that effectively prevent spills, splatter and drips while pouring your ingredients.
As if that is not enough, this skillet is stovetop compatible and oven safe. It can withstand extreme oven temperatures of up to 550°F. On the other hand, the pan is freezer safe, meaning that you can leave your food in the pan and refrigerate.
It also comes with a long, stay-cool handle and a helper handle for safe and comfortable handling.
Even though the skillet is dishwasher friendly, we highly recommend that you wash it by hand to get the best results.
3. Best Value - Rachael Ray Hard-Anodized Skillet
Dimensions: 24.4 x 14 x 3.4 inches
Weight: 2.87 lbs
Size: 14 inches
Material: Anodized aluminum
Color: Gray with orange handles
The Rachael Ray Hard-Anodized Skillet is another top-quality nonstick frying pan worth checking out. This skillet is highly popular, simply because of its association with celebrity cook, Rachael Ray.
It has a 14-inch diameter, making it one of the largest skillets in the market today. In addition, its expansive size can hold all your ingredients at once without splattering and spilling.
The pan is exceptionally durable thanks to its hard-anodized aluminum construction. Apparently, this type of anodized aluminum is 30 percent harder compared to stainless steel, making it the perfect choice for all types of cooking.
Additionally, the cooking surface heats quickly and evenly while preventing the formation of hotspots. The nonstick surface, on the other hand, ensures superior food release and easy cleaning. All these factors go a long way to ensure that your food cooks evenly without burning.
Besides, the frying pan can withstand extreme heat on your stovetop or in your oven, up to 350°F. The rubberized grip handles are also heat-resistant and can stay cool during the entire cooking process.
Unlike other pans, this skillet also has a helper handle for easy transfer from the stove or oven, and when serving directly from the pan.
4. Best Cast Iron Skillet - Lodge L8SK3 Cast Iron Skillet
Dimensions: 16.1 x 10.7 x 2 inches
Weight: 5 lbs
Material: Cast iron
If you are looking for a pan that you can use straight out of the box, then this Lodge Cast Iron Skillet is exactly what you need. It comes already pre-seasoned, hence you don’t have to go through a long seasoning process.
But that’s not all…
The frying pan is an UPGRADE of the original Lodge Cast Iron Skillet as it consists of an additional helper handle, unlike the previous version that only had one handle. You can use the extra handle to stabilize the skillet on your stovetop or when carrying the pan. The handle also has a loop for easy storage.
Contrary to other pans – which consist of synthetic coatings – its protective coating is made from 100 percent vegetable oil. This means you don’t even have to wash the skillet prior to your first use.
As you are aware, cast iron is renowned for its versatility and durability. With that said, this skillet is proudly made in the USA from high quality cast iron extracted in South Pittsburg, Tennessee.
Notably, this particular skillet is 10.25 inches in diameter, but you have 8 other options (ranging from 3.5-inch to 15-inch) to choose from. It is therefore not surprising that the Lodge L8SK3 is highly regarded as one of the best cast iron skillets.
5. Best Design - T-Fal E93808 Professional Nonstick Fry Pan
Dimensions: 18 x 12.5 x 2.5 inches
Weight: 2.3 lbs
Material: Stainless steel
The T-Fal E93808 is a professional skillet available in FOUR different sizes and at an amazing price.
The pan features a pro-metal non-stick interior that is scratch-resistant and extremely durable. Considering this, you can use this fry pan with metal utensils safely without worrying about scratching the cooking surface.
What is even more interesting is that it has a unique thermo-spot indicator that shows you when the pan is ready for cooking – the thermo-spot pattern quickly disappears and turns red to signal that the skillet has reached the ideal temperature for cooking.
The pan conducts, distributes and retains heat quickly and evenly for consistent cooking results. It also features a stainless steel base that is suitable for all outdoor grills and stovetops, including induction.
To protect your fingers from burns and scalds, this nonstick skillet comes with a sturdy, soft-touch handle for enhanced comfort and maximum grips. Moreover, it is oven safe up to 400°F and the riveted handle stays cool throughout the cooking regardless of the temperatures.
Cleaning this skillet has never been easier. You can wash it by hand or toss it into the dishwasher.
Backed with a lifetime warranty, you’ll never need another pan once you have this skillet in your kitchen.
6. Best Nonstick - Anolon Nouvelle Copper Hard Anodized Nonstick Skillet
Dimensions: 18.5 x 10.5 x 5.2 inches
Weight: 4.8 lbs
When buying a frying pan or a skillet, you should check whether it comes with a nonstick cooking surface or not. If the skillet is not nonstick, then you should be ready to remove stuck foods from the pan after cooking.
To avoid all the inconvenience, the best option is to buy the Anolon Nouvelle Copper Hard Anodized Nonstick Skillet.
This skillet has a nonstick cooking surface and it is made from durable copper. As you know, copper is a good conductor of heat, which means that your food will cook much faster and more evenly when you use this frying pan.
Moreover, the skillet is compatible with nearly all heat sources and cooking methods, including induction. You can use it on your stovetop, charcoal grill or even in your oven. Apart from that, it has a five-layer metal base for optimal heat control.
While the pan is made from copper, the handles are crafted from stainless steel and are attached to the skillet using hi-tech riveting technology. The handles also have loops for easy storage.
Notably, this skillet is available in FOUR different sizes, and you may buy it as a set of two or individually.
7. Best Budget - Farberware Aluminum Nonstick Frying Pan Set
Dimensions: 11.8 x 4.8 x 18.8 inches
Weight: 3 lbs
Wouldn’t it be great if you could get three nonstick frying pans at the price of one?
Well, the Aluminum Frying Pan Set from Farberware is essentially a set of three skillets available at a very pocket-friendly price.
Whether you want to sear chops or fry eggs, you can always be sure of finding a skillet from this set that fits your specific cooking needs. The smallest skillet measures 8 inches while the medium skillet measures 10 inches in diameter. On the other hand, the largest skillet in the set is 11 inches in diameter.
What’s more, you get to choose your ideal pan from a wide range of different colors and handles, including rubberized and stainless steel handles.
The stainless steel handles can withstand heat up to 500°F while the rubberized handles are oven safe up to 350°F. You can therefore use these skillets on any cook-tops safely and conveniently.
The aluminum surface conducts and distributes heat throughout the pan, for even cooking. And the most important part is that it has a nonstick cooking surface for effortless food release and easy cleaning.
Besides, these skillets are dishwasher safe, meaning that you can toss them into the washer for fast and convenient clean-ups.
8. Best Premium Skillet - Le Creuset Signature Iron Handle Skillet
Dimensions: 13.5 x 18.8 x 1.9 inches
Weight: 6.8 lbs
Material: Cast iron
If you are searching for a premium skillet that will give you good value for your money, then look no further than the Le Creuset Enameled Cast Signature Iron Handle Skillet.
This high-end skillet from Le Creuset comes with all the features you’ll ever need in a pan. For starters, it is made from high quality cast iron materials that could last for years. Moreover, cast iron is a good conductor of heat and it distributes and retains heat quite well compared to other materials.
Besides, its heavyweight design makes it compatible with all types of heating sources, including stovetops, ovens and outdoor grills. Apparently, it can withstand extreme temperatures above 400°F.
The skillet also comes with a helper handle designed for easier lifting when moving the pan from your oven to the table. The only blotch is that the handles are not heat resistant, meaning that you have to wear oven mitts to avoid burning your fingers.
When properly seasoned, this cast iron skillet develops a natural nonstick coating every time you use it. Furthermore, the black enamel interior surface does not require extra seasoning after first use.
Washing this skillet is equally easy. After all, it is dishwasher safe. However, we highly recommend that you wash it by hand to give the pan the best care possible.
9. Best Omelette Skillet - Calphalon Unison Nonstick Omelette Pan Set
Dimensions: 10.2 x 6 x 19.8 inches
Weight: 4.95 lbs
Making an omelette entails frying a host of different ingredients such as cheese, sour cream, bacon, milk and of course, eggs. As you know, these ingredients tend to become sticky when heated, thus you need a frying pan that comes with a nonstick cooking surface.
No other pan can make great-tasting omelettes like the Calphalon Unison Nonstick Skillet. This pan is made from durable aluminum, and it’s designed with TWO ultra-smooth nonstick slide surfaces for easy food release.
The flat, wide bottom conducts, retains and distributes heat evenly throughout the pan. It also comes with sloped sides that prevent spillages or splatter when tossing, flipping and rolling your food in the pan.
Most importantly, this skillet is stovetop compatible and oven-safe, meaning that you can use it for all types of cooking techniques. In addition, it features a long, quadruple-riveted handle that stays cool even under hot oven temperatures.
As mentioned earlier, this skillet is ideal for making omelette, but you can also use it for making crepes, cheese sandwiches, breaded fish, croquet-monsieur and crab cakes.
Here’s the point:
Choosing the best skillet for the money entirely depends on your needs and style of cooking.
For instance, if you want a pan for making omelettes and sandwiches, then you might want to consider the Calphalon Unison Nonstick Skillet.
On the other hand, if you need a skillet specifically for professional cooking, then consider the Cuisinart 722936H Chef’s Classic.
With that said, our overall choice remains the All-Clad D3 Stainless Cookware 12-inch Fry Pan with Lid. This skillet comes with all the properties you’ll ever need in a skillet. It is durable, easy to use and compatible with all heat sources. Moreover, it comes with a lid that quickly turns the pan into a cooking pot.
How to Choose the Best Skillet
Below are a few tips that can help you find the best skillet easily.
Ease of use
A good skillet should be easy to use and handle. Preferably, you should choose a fry pan that doesn’t require you to put too much effort into seasoning and cleaning it. Many skillets out there come pre-seasoned, meaning that you can use them right away out of the box.
Another point to consider is the size of the skillet. If you are cooking for a large group, then you need to choose a large skillet that can hold all the ingredients at a go. On the other hand, if you want to prepare solo meals, a smaller skillet would be the best fit.
Skillets are made from different materials, ranging from carbon steel to aluminum. Each of these materials has its upsides and downsides. Some are renowned for their durability, while others are popular for their ability to retain and distribute heat evenly.
A good frying pan should be moderately heavy. The extra weight makes it easy for the skillet to sit comfortably on your cooktops, and for it to retain heat for longer periods.
Skillets made from heavier materials are also more durable and oven safe. However, make sure the handle is sturdy enough to support the extra weight.
Ideally, the handles of the skillet should be long and sturdy. They should also be heat-resistant, for enhanced comfort and control.
Moreover, some skillets come with a helper handle for easy lifting when moving the pan from the oven or stovetop to the table.
Check whether the skillet has a lid or not, or else you may have to buy one separately, which might turn out to be more expensive. A lid comes in handy if you want to simmer your food or keep your delicacies hot after cooking.
Depending on your preferred style of cooking, you may have to buy a skillet that is stovetop compatible and oven safe. Skillets that are compatible with all heating options are the real deal since you can start your cooking on the stovetop and finish in the oven.