12 best non-stick frying pans
Some are designed just for vegetables, others are strengthened with diamonds
Non-stick frying pans have a layer of artificial or ceramic coating that prevents food from sticking to the surface. They cook food quickly, and shouldn’t require more than a small drop of oil, not only making food healthier, but also reducing the washing up afterwards.
But which product should you buy? Ideally, a good frying pan will last for many years.
We tested a range of frying pans to determine how well they stood up to a number of factors.
First, how well they cooked a range of foods, from eggs and vegetables to fish and meat.
Second, how quickly and evenly they heated up and the effectiveness of the non-stick technology, both when it came to cooking and when it came to washing up.
Third, we examined how easy the pans were to hold and move around the kitchen, as well as whether they could go in the oven and dishwasher for convenience.
We also looked at the health and environmental benefits of each pan, and whether they were free from chemicals.
We considered the appearance and style of the pans, too: it doesn’t hurt to add style as well as substance to your kitchen. Some of the pans on this list are pricier than others, but many come with a lifetime guarantee, which can represent a sound investment for serious cooks.
Tower Cerastone Forged Frying Pan, 24cm: £9.99, Amazon
For a great deal on a quality frying pan, look no further than Tower’s forged aluminium frying pan with ceramic stone non-stick coating.
We cooked a variety of ingredients on the pan and found it required barely any oil, heated up quickly and evenly and was easy to clean after use.
We also liked the silicone handle, which was soft to the touch and remained cool throughout our testing, and the sleek graphite look was a stylish addition to our kitchen. It’s suitable for all hobs and can also be put in the dishwasher.
Le Creuset Toughened Non-Stick 26cm Deep Frying Pan: £78, Amazon
While it might be more expensive than other brands, Le Creuset is worth splashing out on, especially considering its toughened non-stick products come with a lifetime guarantee.
The 26cm deep frying pan is beautifully sleek, but it also has impressive specs: it’s made from forged aluminium for a strong finish, is PFOA-free, can be used on any hob and is also oven and dishwasher-safe.
We found it heated up quickly and evenly, and its non-stick finish meant we could get away with cooking with very little oil and it was also easy to clean.
The specs also say the pan is tough enough to cope with metal utensils, although it’s best to limit this to preserve the life of your pan.
Swan Retro 20cm/28cm Fry Pans: £24.99, Amazon
To bring a quaint feel into your kitchen, invest in a pair of Swan retro frying pans, which, at £24.99 for a pack of two different sizes, are a steal.
Coming in a variety of colours, from duck egg blue to bright red, the PFOA-free frying pans are suitable for all hobs, and its ivory ceramic non-stick inner coating worked well using hardly any oil when we cooked a variety of ingredients.
We particularly liked its curved handles, which stayed cool throughout use, and the fact it was so easy to clean.
Tefal Veggie Pan: £36, John Lewis
Tefal is well-known for its expertise in creating high-quality, affordable non-stick cookware, and its veggie-only pan is no exception.
Launched exclusively for cooking vegetables at a time when more and more of us are going meat-free, it guarantees cooking vegetables keeping up to 30 per cent more vitamin C.
The veggie pan has plenty of impressive features, most notably its Thermospot heat indicator pattern, which turns an appropriate green once the pan is at the correct temperature for cooking vegetables to retain nutrients and flavour.
We found the durable ceramic non-stick coating easy to clean by hand, but it’s dishwasher-safe too, giving it extra points for convenience.
BergHOFF Gem Frying Pan With Detachable Handle, 24cm: £45, House of Fraser
The BergHOFF Gem frying pan was one of our favourites during testing, not just because of its sturdy cast aluminium material, durable non-stick coating and excellent and quick heat distribution when cooking a chicken dish, but most of all for its removable handles.
Incredibly easy to attach and detach with just a simple click, the removable handles don’t only come in handy when storing the pans in small spaces, but are also useful when transferring the product from the hob to the oven and even then to the table for serving.
The only downside is that it’s not dishwasher-safe, but it was quick and easy to wash up.
Viners Forged Aluminium Fry Pan: £21.99, Amazon
A versatile product, this frying pan is made from forged heavy gauge aluminium for strength and durability, but is also pleasantly lightweight for easy cooking. It’s suitable for all hobs, is dishwasher safe and we found the non-stick coating easy to clean.
While it heated up rapidly and evenly when we used it to cook steak, we found the only downside to be that the handle heated up too. We'd recommend wearing oven gloves when using it.
JML Copper Stone Pan, 20cm: £19.99, JML
Copper is the colour of the moment when it comes to kitchenware, and this JML pan fuses together the best of several materials to create a durable, stylish option.
There’s a rustic hand-sculpted wood effect handle, a forged aluminium core and stainless steel base, a durable non-stick ceramic coating for easy cooking with no oil and the cool outer copper layer for extra style points.
We found the pan heated up quickly, with excellent heat distribution, and it’s very versatile, being safe for any hob and also for the oven and dishwasher.
Robert Welch Campden Non-Stick Frying Pan 28cm: £74, Amazon
Robert Welch has long been known as a reliable brand for excellent cookware, and its Campden non-stick frying pan is a perfect example of how the designer fuses style and quality for efficient cooking.
Made with durable stainless steel and tough PFOA-free Excalibur non-stick coating, we found this to be one of our favourite frying pans when both cooking and cleaning up: it heated up evenly, fried a range of foods at a fast speed and was effortless to wash up.
Extra points for the stylish, shiny stainless steel outer layer, and the fact it’s safe to use on any hob, as well as in the oven and dishwasher.
Eva Solo Heat Controlled Frying Pan, 24cm: £130, Formahouse
Swanky Danish cookware brand Eva Solo is renowned for their elegant, effective cookware, and this streamlined stainless steel frying pan would make a smart addition to any kitchen.
It’s pricier than many of the other frying pans on this list, but it has quite the list of impressive specs, not least the induction heat control technology and excellent PFOA-free non-stick coating.
This ensures that on an induction hob, the frying pan will never get hotter than 230°C, helping to ensure food never gets burnt and that the coating doesn’t get damaged.
While the heat control works only on induction hobs, you can use the pan as normal on any other cookers. Plus, it’s dishwasher safe for convenient cleaning.
Circulon Momentum Hard Anodised 30cm Frying Pan: £53, Amazon
We were big fans of this large frying pan on testing, which we found to be reliable, quick and truly non-stick when cooking a range of ingredients, from meat to vegetables.
Its size is convenient when cooking a larger meal, and it ticked all the versatility boxes: it’s dishwasher and oven safe, compatible with all hobs and even comes with a lifetime guarantee.
The pan was quick and even to heat up, and uses the brand’s three-layer system of non-stick circles, both on the interior and exterior, to guarantee efficient, effective cooking that won’t stick and that’s easy to clean up.
GreenPan Venice Pro Ceramic Non-Stick 24cm Frying Pan: £50, GreenPan
A reliable option with environmentally-friendly and healthy benefits, GreenPan’s Venice Pro ceramic non-stick frying pan is enhanced with diamonds for extra durability.
The brand is well-known for its eco-friendly outlook, and this range is no exception: the products are made from natural materials derived from sand, and are free from chemicals including PFOA.
We were impressed by how quickly and evenly the pan heated up and the breakfast we cooked showed no signs of sticking to the surface. It has lots of other benefits, too: it works on all hobs, and is oven and dishwasher safe.
Lazy Man Frying Pan: £22.99, Amazon
If you regularly cook a full English breakfast, make your life easier with the aptly-named Lazy Man frying pan, which works on all hobs.
The sizeable frying pan, made from heavy duty die cast aluminium, is split into five separate compartments so you can cook your eggs, beans, meat, hash browns and vegetables all in one go, in one pan, without having stacks of washing up once you’ve finished.
We found the pan heated up quickly and evenly, and, thanks to its non-stick coating, was a doddle to wash up.
The Verdict: Best non-stick frying pans
We were particularly impressed by the Tower Cerastone Forged Frying Pan, which was versatile, stylish and incredibly easy both to cook with and to clean, all at less than £10.
For those with a bit more of a budget, you can’t go wrong with either the Le Creuset Toughened Non-Stick 26cm Deep Frying Pan and the Robert Welch Campden Non-Stick Frying Pan 28cm, both of which we can see being investments for life.
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