by Margo Elena
Stainless steel and aluminum are the most common metals used for making cookware sets and other utensils. According to an estimate, more than 50 % of all kitchenware and cookware manufactured now days have either stainless steel or aluminum, at least in minor quantities. A detailed comparison about cookware made from stainless steel and cookware made from aluminum is discussed below.
Comparison is best done in terms of factors as it is easy to understand. Some important aspects with respect to a buyer as discussed below. Instead of common points which are strengths of both the materials, the debate between aluminum and stainless steel cookware is generalized using factors in which either of them manages to pip the other.
Cooking and roasting is principally dependant on the principle of thermal conductivity. The thermal conductivity of aluminum is quite higher as compared to stainless steel. For your information, copper betters aluminum in terms of thermal conductivity. This explains the fact that a lot of good cookware has a small coating of copper (between layers of steel) at the bottom end which meets the heat first.
Stainless steel on its own does not distribute heat evenly. Its only when certain other metals are added that there is a proper distribution of heat.
Reaction to Certain Foods
Aluminum is known to react with foods which have alkaline or acidic contents. That is the reason food items like some soups are not cooked in aluminum pans as aluminum particles may get trapped in your food. A standard alternative to this is the concept of hard anodized non-stick aluminum which is made through the process of electro-chemical anodizing which doesn’t allow the base metal to breach into food items. The surface of stainless steel equipment may pit if exposed to salty environment for a long time. Even if stainless steel comprises of a variety of metals, there is no or negligible particles entering food.
If materials used to make cookware are compared, aluminum cookware will be less expensive against cookware made up of stainless steel.
Apart from this, stainless steel is popularly used for making skillets, stock pots and other such cookware.
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