Does everyone remember that awkward moment a few years ago when some people online thought that Jay-Z was cheating on Beyonce with Rachael Ray? I’m just putting this first to remind the fans of this celebrity cook that things could be a lot worse, so please don’t start World War 3.
All joking aside, it’s true that I’m just about to step on a few toes. We’re here to match two popular cookware lines and see which one comes on top. I’m not trying to say anything about Rachael as a person or a cook, or any of that stuff.
Actually, I think that Rachael did a pretty decent job with her products. But how do they measure up against Calphalon? Well, we shall see.
Get ready for the Calphalon vs Rachael Ray Cucina showdown.
Calphalon is one of the brands under the umbrella of the international manufacturer, Newell Brands Inc. This makes them related to other household names like Rubbermaid, Sistema, Sharpie, Crock-Pot, Yankie Candle, etc.
It was originally founded in 1963 by Ronald M. Kasperzak under the name Commercial Aluminium Cookware. It used to supply only restaurants and cooking schools with cookware, before becoming available to home cooks in the mid-80s. Today, the brand is still beloved by professionals and amateurs alike.
Since Calphalon pots and pans were originally made with professional cooks in mind, you can expect durability and performance from their pieces. But, not only are they intended to withstand years of use and abuse, there is a lot of innovation and problem-solving included in the design.
And to top it off, they don’t use Teflon, they have very eco-friendly production practices, and the pieces are modern and are very aesthetically pleasing.
Their Best Set – Simply Calphalon Hard-Anodized Nonstick 10-Piece Cookware Set
What’s in the box?
An 8-inch and a 10-inch frying pan, a 1-quart and a 2-quart saucepan, a 3-quart saute pan, and a 6-quart stockpot.
- Proprietary PFOA-free 2-layer nonstick coating for healthy cooking.
- Commercial-grade durability and quality at a reasonable price.
- Dishwasher and oven safe, suitable for all hobs.
- More expensive and no matching bakeware set, as compared to the set below.
This set is making an appearance because it has an almost identical composition as the one that will represent the Rachael Ray Cucina line. In truth, many others could be in this place and they would state the same point. Calphalon pots and pans are great performers, made to last and allow you to achieve all your culinary goals.
What makes this line a bit more special is the double layer of nonstick coating that promises that you can cook with no butter or oil whatsoever. And since that coating is not Telfon but Calaphlon’s own PFOA-free formula, you don’t have to worry about toxic chemicals leaching into your food.
For a little bonus, every piece from this set is oven safe up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, which is quite an improvement since most nonstick cookware can handle 350 max. And as a cherry on the top, we also have the industrial-grade brand standard hardware that will ensure that the handles are going nowhere no matter what.
Anyone who wants quality, durability, and innovation at a reasonable price.
Rachael Ray Cucina
Rachael Ray is an American TV personality, cook, author, and businesswoman. Her presenting and cooking style is quite fun, yet relaxed and casual, and it’s mirrored in her cookware line.
The products are made by the Meyer Corporation, aka the same company that makes Anolon, Circulon, Ruffoni, KitchenAid. etc.
This stuff looks good and performs well, yet you don’t have to pay an arm and a leg for it.
Since Rachael’s recipes tend to be easy, no-fuss, and very beginner-friendly, this reflects in the products as well. All sets are complete and include everything you would need to start cooking, including accessories like spatulas or baking sheets.
Their Best Set – Classic Brights 10-Piece Hard Anodized Cookware Set
What’s in the box?
An 8.5-inch and a 10-inch frying pan, a 3-quart saute pan, a 1-quart and a 2-quart saucepan, and a 6-quat stockpot.
- Complete set for an affordable price.
- Pretty durable with smart handle design.
- Dishwasher and oven safe.
- Not suitable for induction hobs.
There are a few sets from this brand that may seem more interesting since they have a bunch of accessories included, but quantity is not always better. At first glance, this set may seem ordinary, but the details set it up above the rest.
Ignore the pop of color on the handles (no matter how lovely that blue shade is) and look at their shape. They are in a perfect position and have a great curved shape for a secure and comfortable grip. Plus, that nifty thumb slot actually helps a lot.
This is a feature that is usually only found on premium cookware, but oh-so-welcome in a set that is perfect for a beginner. Then, there is also very sturdy hardware that makes sure that the handle is staying on through all of the tossing and flipping.
All pieces heat evenly and are easy to care for. And if you’re obsessed with everything in your kitchen matching perfectly, there is a <a href=”https://rachaelray.com/products/yum-o-nonstick-bakeware-set-with-lid?pr_prod_strat=copurchase&pr_rec_pid=6216225587382&pr_ref_pid=6216187904182&pr_seq=uniform”>bakeware set</a> that goes well with it.
A novice cook on a budget who wants a splash of color in the kitchen. Oh, and Rachael Ray fans.
The showdown: Calphalon vs Rachael Ray Cucina
Calphalon offers multiple collections at different price points. You’re bound to find a set no matter what your needs and wants are. So, whether you need performance, quality on a budget, or space-saving, you’ll find a set that suits you.
In comparison, Rachael Ray’s range is a bit more basic and repetitive. At least they offer a nice palette of colors if that’s what you’re looking for.
The quality of the Rachael Ray Cucina range is pretty much what you would expect for the price. It’s good enough for a beginner’s kitchen, but you will have to upgrade at some point. Though, they offer a limited lifetime warranty so you can be certain that it will take quite some time before you feel a need for an upgrade.
Calphalon, on the other hand, is revered for its high quality (especially when compared to the cost). Remember, these pieces are used in professional kitchens and culinary schools, after all. Of course, they also offer a (slightly more lenient) lifetime warranty.
Calphalon sets go for anything between $150 and $750, while Rachel Ray’s most expensive set is $250.
By the way, if you care about making your dollar stretch as far as possible, note that Rachael Ray sets don’t only feature cookware, but also often include baking sheets and cooking utensils as well.
Both brands are easily available online from their respective websites and major retailers. Though you can probably pop into your local Walmart and pick up a Rachael Ray set, Calphalon is also available from commercial kitchen supply stores.
Calphalon uses its proprietary PFOA-free nonstick coating, while it may not be the same case for Rachael Ray Cucina. They are keeping mum about what the coating is exactly with some sources saying it’s Teflon, while others claiming it’s PFOA-free.
This could be happening because they have switched to the safer nonstick coating at some point, or that the exact materials depend on the line and production series. To be on the safe side, check the box. If it says “PFOA-free”, it must be that because that could land in hot water otherwise.
Currently, there are no available reports of problematic practices during the production of either brand. However, their parent companies should stay under diligent observation.
A few years back, Newell Brands got in trouble for shutting down factories and moving them to China. Recently, they were under fire for work conditions during the pandemic in their factories in Australia. Both of these are related to other brands under their umbrella, and there’s nothing questionable happening with Calphalon as of now.
Rachael Ray’s line manufacturer has factories in the US, Italy, Thailand, and China. Here’s the problem: there’s no info anywhere where in China are those factories. If they are in Xinjiang, that can translate to high chances that they are using Uyghur labor camps.
Though, good news if you are a fan of Rachel Ray but don’t want to run the risk of buying a product of slave labor: all of her pieces are made in Thailand. Plus, there are no reports of any ethical issues as of now.
Which one should you pick?
There’s nothing wrong with wanting to support your favorite TV personality or buying products endorsed by them. If you are a fan of Rachael Ray, go for her cookware. It’s of decent quality and it’s not overpriced, so it’s also very suitable for someone who is setting up their first kitchen. Plus, you have more color options.
However, if quality and smart design are a priority, you have to pick Calphalon. And you don’t even have to go for their more expensive items to get either.