Cookware has been used by humans since practically the beginning of time. Over those years, the transformation that cookware has taken has greatly changed. Everything goes through change and advancement, even something as simple as cookware. There are all sorts of pots and pans out there: stainless steel, Teflon, porcelain, non-stick, and even copper. Copper cookware isn’t a new concept, however, it has received some backlash over the years.
Are Red Copper Pans Toxic?
A lot of the backlash that copper pots and pans receive is directly related to copper being a toxic substance., especially when being heated. While it is true that copper cookware shouldn’t be used to prepare acidic foods, like tomato sauces, things with lemon, etc, they can be used for risottos, etc. Acidic foods can react to the copper itself when heated, making it unsafe. However, copper pans in modern society aren’t strictly copper. They often have a lining or coating that creates a barrier between the food being cooked and the copper itself. This lining can be tin, stainless steel, or even ceramic. Due to this lining, it makes copper a safer option for cooking foods.
The red copper pan that has become quite popular is coated with ceramic. The ceramic coating on pans is considered safe as it contains no PTFE (a fluorinated plastic chemical coating) or PFOA (another synthetic compound used in other pans). These chemicals are used to create non-stick surfaces and there has been concern about their effects on people’s health when used. When they are considered safe on products like Teflon pans, etc, some people like the peace of mind in knowing there aren’t any artificial or weird chemicals in their cookware surfaces.
Ceramic has a great non-stick property without the need for additives to its coating. This is the biggest attraction to red copper pans. Moreover, the ceramic coating when combined with copper pan bases can cook foods better than traditional pots or pans. This is because copper has a high thermal retention and conductivity rate than other metals. Because of this, the copper heats much faster than its counterparts, thus cooking foods more evenly. This is another attraction to the red copper pan as an essential piece of cookware.
While it is great at cooking foods more evenly and with more consistent heat, what are some pros and cons of a red copper pan? Below are the Pros and cons of red copper pans.
Pros And Cons Of Red Copper Pans
- Even cooking
- Quick heating
- Oven safe (up to 500 degrees)
- Scratch-resistant surface
- No need for grease or butter due to ceramic coating
- Easy to clean
- Typically more expensive than traditional cookware, as copper is more expensive
Ceramic coated red copper pans have more pros than cons, however, they are worth the extra expense for better-cooked foods. Moreover, while cleaning is easy, it does require proper cleaning rather than regularly to maintain the cookware. This simply includes not allowing foods to sit in the pan and washing them immediately. Acidic foods can be cooked in ceramic coated red copper pans, however, they should not simply sit in there. This is true for cooking in them as well. Considering that copper heats faster, the need for keeping foods in the pan for extended periods of time is not necessary. Things like sauces shouldn’t be made in anything copper, coated or not, as they require a long time to blend ingredients.
When it comes to cleaning these pans, once again continuous cleaning is needed. Rinsing after every use is required and a small paste of baking soda and water to lightly clean the surface. More importantly, harsh scrubbers should never be used. While ceramic is considered scratch resistant, this is really only true for the utensils that are being used on them. Harsh dish scrubbers could compromise the ceramic, possibly causing minor scratches. Even a minor scratch on a red copper pan coated with ceramic could be an issue. To fully prevent this, only non-abrasive dish sponges should be used.
It is also important to note that red copper pans coated with ceramic will not get burnt food on the bottom. The only true way to ensure this is to not cook with really high heat. Because copper is such a great thermal conductor, high heat simply is not necessary. Medium heat is more than enough to get the copper to the right temperature. While they are safe for up to 500 degrees in an oven, cooking on the stovetop at high heats is not recommended. When thinking about this concept, it is important to remember the reasoning for putting a pan in the oven. Pans are only put in ovens to finish off a food. Finishing off certain meats, etc are done at higher temperatures when most of the food has already been cooked. Thus, putting the pan in the oven at no more than 500 degrees shouldn’t be done for extended periods of time.
What Sizes Do Red Copper Pans Come In?
Red copper pans can be the traditional circular size or even square in size. They can come in a variety of sizes based on someone’s needs. Bigger families might find a bigger size more appropriate while just a husband and wife would find a smaller size better. No matter what, there are sizes out there to fit the needs of any hungry family! Below are the common sizes for red copper pans!
Sizes Of Red Copper Pans
- 10-inch round pan
- 12-inch round pan
- 1.5-quart pan
- 2.5-quart pan
- 10-inch square pan
- 12-inch square pan
The variety of sizes provides a wide range of choices for people! Not only do they come in a good size selection, but they are generally good quality. Red copper pans are safer than traditional, older models of copper pan sets. This is primarily due to its ceramic coating. If a copper pan is coated with ceramic, stainless-steel, or tin, they can be safe to use! Even more so, these pans are truly versatile!