I love the flame of a gas stove, yet there’s also something amazing about the science and tech behind induction stoves.
Stoves that beam energy directly to the cookware, creating heat inside the pan.
As ever, what I prefer might not be right for you anyway! I’ll walk you through the options and help you find the best induction cookware set for your kitchen.
Yet if you want to beam right to my favorite then I would choose the Gotham Steel Stackable Pots and Pans Set.
What is the Best Cookware for Induction Cooktops?
For cookware to be suitable for induction cooktops it needs to have a magnetic metal in it. Normally this is iron, sometimes described as a ferrous metal. Most metals are not magnetic.
Turning to common cookware materials; steel (made of iron), or iron (eg cast iron) are magnetic. Aluminum, titanium, copper and ceramic are not magnetic, so they aren’t suitable for induction cooktops.
But it doesn’t stop there! It’s very easy to make any pots and pans induction compatible by adding a steel disc to the cookware. This can also help with heat conduction.
It would be wrong to say that steel or cast iron make for the best induction cookware sets. Anything can work well on an induction stove IF it has a decent sized steel disc inside.
What Should You Look For In The Best Induction Pans?
It would be tempting to say that the induction compatibility is a binary choice – either it is or it isn’t. This would even be true to an extent, but there is a little bit more to it.
Sometimes cookware is nominally induction compatible but doesn’t always work well on induction stoves. This might be because the steel disk is too high and on less powerful stoves is too far away. (It could be many things!)
There’s another issue though – warping. The bottom of the pan must be flat against the induction cooktop. It needs to be as close as possible to the stovetop as:
- The induction stovetop normally turns off if it doesn’t detect something on it.
- The further away the pan is, the less power reaches it.(Due to something called the inverse square law the drop off is quick and exponential). This is arguably the case on any stove, but to a lesser extent as heat rises. In the case of an induction stove the heat is generated in the pan so it is particularly affected.
I’m only going to show you decent induction cookware. I’ll highlight if it warps easily. You also need to be careful not to dent it!
What to Look For In Cookware Sets Generally?
Leaving aside induction for a minute – what makes a good cookware set?
Firstly does it have all the pots and pans you need? Fortunately in many cases there are different size options with different pieces. I like to have:
- At least one frying pan, deep enough to double as a sauté pan
- A big stockpot
- A smaller saucepan
- A steamer
- See through lids for everything
Of course you will have your own requirements!
Other than that I also look at convenience and safety:
- Is the surface safe? (Some people are concerned with PTFE)
- Is it dishwasher safe?
- How easy to clean is it?
- Is it oven safe?
- How long will it last?
If you aren’t just cooking on induction stoves, consider checking out my gas stove cookware guide.
Best Induction Cookware Set Reviews
I’ve known Gotham as a cookware manufacturer that produces nice copper tone cookware. This 15 piece “stackmaster” cookware set was a bit of a surprise for me!
As ever with Gotham cookware, it does look good.
Better than looking nice, it stacks. I never have enough room in my kitchen to fit everything I need. Stacking is a way a cookware manufacturer can show they get it. They get that not everyone has a big show kitchen. They get that we don’t all have unlimited storage space.
The great design doesn’t stop with the stacking. This cookware set has 3 see through, glass lids that are interchangeable across all the pans. So you can cover any pan you use.
The copper tone on these pans makes them look a little old fashioned, but they are actually cutting edge! By using a blend of ceramic and titanium they achieve a PTFE – free nonstick. (PTFE is the active ingredient in Teflon). Gotham claims no oil or butter is needed but I would suggest using a little.
Is this nonstick surface safe? Well, ceramic is one of the safest cooking surfaces so I’d be happy with that. Titanium shouldn’t be a problem. So it should be safe, but I’m always a bit cautious with new technology. Ceramic is probably going to be the future of nonstick.
Reports about this ceramic nonstick talk about how easy it is to clean, even after food has been burnt on it.
The user reports on these pans are positive, and complaints are minor. Gotham has been selling this type of ceramic nonstick for years. This gives me great comfort around safety.
They are expensive, but worth the investment in quality.
They should last at least a good few years and are a nice set to have.
- Oven Safe to 290°C (550°F)
- Dishwasher safe
- Interchangeable lids – every pan covered
- Light and easy to handle
- Very easy to clean
- Stay cool handle
- Lid handles get hot, so you need a towel to lift lids off
- Specific stacking order is inconvenient if you need the pan in the middle
- No steamer of pasta colander supplied
- On the pricier end of the range
Move over – here come the big boys! Top of the range quality, but at a top of the range price.
What’s included? 2 Frying pans (no lids), 1 sauté pan (with lid), 2 saucepans and an 8 quart stockpot.
Brilliant design and sturdy enough to last a lifetime. These are “forever” stainless steel pots and pans.
And that’s the problem for me. I’m happy to use stainless steel for pasta, or boiling water, but I like the comfort of nonstick for many things. I wouldn’t use these enough to justify the price tag!
If you use stainless steel for most cooking, and are willing to invest in long lasting cookware, then these pans could be ideal.
- Oven Safe to 315°C (600°F) – more than you could need
- Dishwasher safe
- Aluminum core spreads the heat evenly
- Sturdy, high quality stainless steel cookware
- 8 quart stockpot covers most uses
- Lids are not see through
- You may need a small loan to buy these!
- Handles can be uncomfortable
- Stainless steel is hard to clean
All-Clad also offer 5-ply cookware with even better cooking performance. If you are interested, I’ve reviewed the All Clad Copper Core cookware set. In Summary: It’s very attractive and excellent quality, but be prepared to pay for this.?
Alternatively the All Clad HA1 non-stick cookware set is also induction compatible. Check out my HA1 review here for more information.
One thing to bear in mind about All Clad is that it is pretty expensive and often not available. It can be worth your while to shop around, and essential if out of stock at your chosen retailer. Sukalde also offers the All Clad D3 cookware set (as well as other All Clad cookware).
This 10 piece stainless steel induction cookware set has most of the things I would need. It includes two frying pans, a sauté pan with lid, 2 saucepans and a stockpot.
My two complaints would be – why no lids for the frying pans, and where’s the steamer?
Of course you could always pay more for a bigger stainless steel induction cookware set. It is from the same manufacturer and has all the bells and whistles. I’m not sure it’s worth the extra cost though.
Steamers aside, it does tick all the boxes: Dishwasher, freezer and oven safe. It’s even oven safe to 285°C (550°F) – more than enough!
You can use it on any stove.
Since it is a stainless steel cookware set, expect to have to do some scrubbing. You can minimize this by using plenty of oil, pre warming the pan, and not burning anything.
This high quality cookware at a mid range price. I recommend this set, but I would also buy a separate nonstick fry pan to go with it. Stainless steel pots and pans are healthy, but it’s useful to have a frying pan you can use and clean quickly, even with sticky food.
- Oven safe to 285°C (550°F)
- Freezer safe
- Dishwasher safe
- Aluminum core helps food cook evenly
- Durable stainless steel
- Handles get hot to touch when cooking on high heat
- Hard to clean (stainless steel)
- Lids are not see through
- Not all pans have lids
- No steamer
These induction pots and pans are really beautiful. I mean you can tell someone has taken the time to design something exceptional.
But beauty isn’t everything in cookware and even has its downsides. Do you have other cookware, and how would it look alongside these pots and pans? Would these pans compliment, or clash with your kitchen?
Part of why they look so nice is the non stick ceramic coating, which also happens to be PTFE free.
They are all the “safes” – dishwasher, oven and freezer safe. However they are only oven safe to 175°C (350°F) – this isn’t very high so be careful.
The cookware set comes with 5 supplied utensils. These utensils, according to user reports, are not heat resistant. Either chuck them away or only use them for salads. This is still a great deal without the utensils.
These pans should last a few years, but not as long as stainless steel. Expect them to become less “nonstick” over time.
I like this induction cookware set, but it’s personality has to fit your kitchen (and you!) I would say it is ideal as the only cookware in a small kitchen where the owner wants something that looks really nice.
- Outstandingly beautiful
- Freezer safe
- Dishwasher safe
- Cooks evenly thanks to aluminum core
- Great combo – two saucepans and two skillets
- All pans have a lid that can be used (even if shared)
- Affordable price for quality pans
- Nonstick without PTFE
- Only oven safe to 175°C (350°F) – that’s too low!
- Supplied utensils are rubbish
- No steamer
- Not as nonstick as Teflon
This 11 piece stainless steel cookware set comes with a steamer insert, 2 frying pans, a sauté pan, 2 saucepans and a stockpot. The sauté pan, saucepans and stockpot all come with lids. So pretty much everything you would need!
The design is fantastic. It has markings to help measure ingredients, tapered edges to reduce spilling, and an aluminum core to spread the heat.
I want to love these pans but the quality could be a bit better. There’s too many reports of pitting, spotting and even rust to ignore.
These are mid range pans at a mid range price. If you don’t use acidic foods (like tomatoes) they should last a few years. They will eventually deteriorate.
If you are happy with this – by all means buy them. It’s decent cookware and not too expensive. Cuisinart could have done so much better though.
- Pretty much everything you could want in terms of pots and pans
- Aluminum core spreads heat
- Includes measurement markings to make recipes easier
- Tapered edges to reduce spillage when pouring
- See through glass lids
- Plenty of alternative sizes if you want a different set
- Dishwasher safe (but this could increase risk of rust)
- Oven Safe to 260°C (500°F)
- Freezer safe
- Don’t stack / nest easily for storage purposes
- Pans prone to spotting and pitting – some reports of rust
- Quality doesn’t match design
- Handles hot to touch on high heat
You don’t get quite as much cookware as with other sets reviewed here, but it’s enough.
Included are two stockpots, two saucepans and one frying / sauté pan with a lid. In fact all the pots and pans have see through lids with vent holes. Yes!
The thing is, this cookware set is very affordable. The most affordable out of all the stainless steel induction sets I’ve reviewed.
Apart from the lids being a little bit loose, they are well designed and high quality cookware. The trouble is, being stainless steel, they are more effort to clean!
Given how affordable they are, this could perhaps make a nice cookware set for a young adult leaving home. If you do gift this set, consider also buying a nonstick fry pan to for quick and easy meals.
- Cool to touch, comfortable, silicone handles
- See through lids with vent holes for all the pans
- Dishwasher safe
- Aluminum core to help spread the heat
- Durable stainless steel
- Not oven safe (due to nice handles)
- Lids don’t sit tight on pans mean steam (an spatter) can escape from edges
- Hard to clean (they are stainless steel…)
The blue gray on these pans is subtle but attractive. It doesn’t stand out enough to clash with other cookware, but it does make these pans look more “advanced”.
Are they actually more advanced? Bialetti advertises a new nanotec coating that is nonstick without PTFE. (PTFE is the active ingredient of Teflon). So on paper yes they are.
This coating is, allegedly, metal utensil safe and oven safe to 204°C (400°F).
That said – I wouldn’t buy this. I don’t like how little information I can find on the coating. Also, the quality of the product appears to be poor – which is completely unacceptable at this price.
My opinion – a budget product for a premium price
- Induction compatible
- Subtly attractive look
- PTFE Free nonstick
- Oven safe to 204°C (400°F)
- I don’t know much about this “nanotec” coating – is it safe?
- Pricey for what you get
- Not the greatest quality – reports of bowing in the centre
- Reports of rust
I thought I would throw a bit of a curveball with the last review. How about some cast iron?
Cast Iron isn’t normally thought of as induction stove cookware, but it can be. The big problem is that, as with all modern cast iron, the surface is hard and rough.
This works well on a gas stove cooktop where you have the grills supporting the pan. It’s not so great on a glass surface which can get scratched.
So why I have I included it? Well:
- It does depend on the surface of your induction cooktop – is it scratchproof? (If you aren’t sure – it probably isn’t scratchproof!)
- There is a work around – use a thin, smooth, heat resistant, non metallic, layer between the pan and the cooktop. I suggest baking paper! This should stop the cast iron from scratching the surface.
So back to this cookware set – what’s included? For a very reasonable price you get:
- 1 stockpot with lid
- 2 frying pans (1 small / 1 large)
- 1 griddle
It’s likely this isn’t enough, and I would also buy a lid separately for one of the frying pans. Still this is a great price for cookware that can last lifetimes.
It comes preseasoned, which takes some of the work away.
It’s not for me though. Cast iron is more work; it isn’t dishwasher safe and needs special care.
I’m happy to have ONE cast iron skillet which I use occasionally. This cookware is too much and it wouldn’t get used.
If you are happy to look after cast iron, and can make it work with your induction cooktop, then this cookware set is great value. Make sure you know what you are getting into first though!
- Pre-seasoned – saves some work
- Affordable cookware that should last lifetimes
- Oven safe
- Good value for cast iron
- Cast iron does need more care – make sure you understand what you are getting into.
- Not dishwasher safe
- Could scratch induction cooktop surface
Can nonstick pans be used on an induction stovetop?
Nonstick pans which are induction compatible, as many are, will work find on an induction stovetop. Yet most nonstick cookware sets are not induction cooktop compatible. Check the manufacturer’s instructions.
If you already have a cookware set that is not induction-compatible you can buy an induction diffuser plate. The induction stovetop will heat the diffuser plate which will heat the pan. However this isn’t as efficient as directly using induction compatible cookware.
Is an induction cooktop worth it?
Yes and induction cooktop is worth it if you are prepared to make sacrifices. The main sacrifice is that you are more limited in your cookware as it must be induction compatible.
You will also want pots and pans which don’t scratch the glass/ceramic surface which means cast iron can be a risky proposition (despite being induction compatible.)
Finally, you face losing some of the romance of cooking, especially if you are used to cooking with gas.
But in return, an induction cooktop is the most efficient and most responsive type of stove. Since it heats the pan directly there is no wasted heat, not intermediate.
Is stainless steel okay for induction?
Not all stainless steel cookware is suitable for induction cooking. Simply put, induction cooking relies on magnetism and not all steel is magnetic–check this by holding a magnet to the steel . If it sticks, you stainless steel cookware set is induction compatible, if it doesn’t , it isn’t.
Or just check the manufacturer’s instructions.
Since stainless steel can be induction-compatible, it can make for slightly better cookware. This is because the induction compatibility can be incorporated directly into the cookware, rather than needing an additional stainless steel plate at the the bottom.
In fact tri-ply stainless steel, with its three layers, is ideal for induction cooking. You have the inner food-grade non-reactive stainless steel layer. Then comes a middle layer of aluminum (usually) which spreads the heat well. And finally the base consists of magnetic stainless steel.
Is induction cookware better?
No. For normal cooktops induction cookware is not better, if anything it may have an unnecessary additional layer.
For induction cooktops, induction cookware isn’t better–it’s essential.
Is magnetic induction cooking safe?
Yes it is. Magnetic induction cookware is heated by a moving magnetic field. This motion of this magnetic field generates electric currents in the cookware thereby heating it directly.
It’s safe for two reasons:
- The magnetic field doesn’t affect human bodies in the same way as it affects magnetic material.
- The magnetism “disperses” quickly due to something called the inverse square law. This means that unless an object is right on top of the cooktop, it won’t receive much power from the field.
Induction cooking uses the same principles as wireless phone charging. This is in fact why the only dangerous thing would be to leave an electronic device on top of the induction burner–it will likely get fried. (Just as it would with any other stove if you think about it!)
In fact, since induction stovetops don’t get hot directly, induction cooking is arguably safer than other types of stove.
Best Induction Pots and Pans
The overall best induction cookware set is the Gotham Steel Stackable Pots and Pans Set. It seems to be designed with the convenience of the end user in mind, which is a big thing to me. They aren’t cheap but you pay for quality and they should last.
Unlike cast iron and high quality stainless steel, I don’t expect them to last forever. But nothing does!
If you’re not sure what to cookware to get, this induction cookware set is a good bet!
Best Stainless Steel Induction Cookware
If you know you want stainless steel then I would suggest Duxtop Whole-Clad Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Induction Cookware Set. In terms of quality it isn’t actually the best – that prize goes to the All-Clad D3 Stainless Cookware Set, Pots and Pans.
Other Induction Cookware
Another alternative is ceramic induction cookware. This is normally healthy and attractive, plus can look quite modern on an induction stove.
Of course you could pick up any induction-compatible cookware set, I do suggest checking out the reviews to see if it actually works well on induction stoves though.
I’ve seen products advertised as cookware sets for induction stoves, that then don’t work on the induction cooktop. What’s that about? If the pan warps slightly, most of the surface can be too far from the stove for induction heating to work.