This is a review of Hexclad Hybrid Cookware.
I love my stainless steel cookware, but it’s prone to sticking, even with proper use and care. I enjoy the convenience and easy cleanup of non-stick cookware, but it’s notorious for having a short lifespan.
But what if you could combine the best of both worlds? What if there was a pan that had the durability of a stainless pan along with the food release and easy cleaning of a non-stick pan?
That’s exactly what Hexclad Cookware purports to do. I found Hexclad Hybrid Cookware to be a solid choice, provided you use it correctly and manage your expectations.
But I’ve broken down the pros and cons of hybrid cookware, as well as the alternatives. Is Hexclad cookware right for you?
Here are the Hexclad cookware sets I review in this article:
- 7-Piece hybrid cookware set – Recommended
- Hybrid Frying pan – For those who just need one pan
- 6-Piece Hybrid Pots set – Just Pots, no Pans
And these are the alternatives:
- Circulon 10-Piece Stainless Nonstick set – Quality Mid-Range Set
- Blue Diamond 11-piece stainless non-stick set – Budget Ceramic Set
- All Clad Tri-Ply Non-Stick Frying Pan – Premium Single Frying pan
Keep reading my Hexclad cookware review to find out more.
What is Hybrid Stainless Steel?
Hybrid technology seeks to enhance the cooking experience by combining a nonstick surface with stainless steel construction in one pan.
This combination serves two purposes. One, stainless steel provides extra weight and durability. It also can handle higher temperatures.
Nonstick pans do not generally last as long. One reason for this is that many nonstick pans have a plain aluminum core.
While aluminum is highly conductive, it’s a softer metal and susceptible to warping and damage. Also, aluminum is reactive with food, whereas stainless steel is inert and won’t react with acidic food.
But stainless steel is known for sticking, especially with food like eggs. Adding a nonstick coating to the cooking surface allows people to enjoy the benefits of stainless steel cookware while having the food release of a non-stick pan.
Several companies manufacture hybrid nonstick cookware, including Hexclad, All-Clad, Circulon, and Blue Diamond.
All About Hexclad Cookware
Hexclad is an American-based company out of Los Angeles. Hexclad pans are manufactured in Asia, but they don’t specify which country exactly. Chef Gordon Ramsay is a spokesperson for the Hexclad brand.
Chef Ramsay explains how he uses Hexclad in the video below:
Hexclad is a true hybrid between stainless steel and nonstick cookware. Its unique design features a hexagonal laser-etched pattern of slightly raised stainless steel peaks. This cooking surface is supposed to be abrasion-resistant and safe for metal cooking utensils.
Now on to the Hexclad Cookware Review itself.
Hexclad Hybrid Cookware Overview
Hexclad 7-Piece Hybrid Stainless Steel Cookware Set
One of the most popular options, this Hexclad hybrid cookware set comes with 7 pieces, including the following:
- 12-inch (30 cm) stainless steel pan with lid
- 10-inch (25 cm) stainless steel pan with lid
- 8-inch (20 cm) stainless steel pan with lid
- 12-inch (30 cm) large stainless steel wok
The lid for the 12-inch (30 cm) pan can also work with the wok. These pans offer versatility, allowing you to cook a variety of cuisines in a single pan.
Hexclad Cookware Review: Features
Let.s take a look at some of this set’s main features.
Typically a cookware set this size contains at least one sauté pan or saucepan. This Hexclad cookware set does not, however. It opts for a wok and three frying pans with lids.
A wok is an unusual choice for most starter sets, but it makes sense in a lot of ways. A wok is perfect for stir-fry and other quick-cooking stovetop methods. And while you usually need very hot oil for stir-fry, this pan won’t require you to use high heat to get perfectly-cooked food.
Some users said their Hexclad wok was their go-to for cooking, while others said they didn’t use the wok at all.
As far as the other pans, the 12-inch (30 cm) pan is an ideally sized nonstick skillet for cooking family meals. if you cook for a family. If you’re cooking for one or like doing single-serve dishes, the 8-inch (20 cm) nonstick pan is suited for that. The 10-inch is the happy medium and will work for most people’s needs.
A lot of thought has gone into each Hexclad pan included in the set, which is admirable. Though, of course, everyone’s needs are different so make sure this is useful for you.
Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Construction
The Hexclad Hybrid pan has a tri-ply stainless steel construction with a middle layer of aluminum. The layers of magnetic stainless steel help this nonstick pan have increased durability and heat retention, while the aluminum core acts as a heating element.
The result? A Hexclad pan that heats quickly with a nice, even heat distribution.
And if that’s not enough, the magnetic stainless steel makes a Hexclad hybrid pan compatible with induction cooktops. Just be sure that the pan completely covers the burner surface area.
Hexagon non-stick surface
Hexclad uses a patented hybrid technology with stainless steel peaks and a ceramic non-stick surface for the valleys. The laser-etched hexagon design is unique to Hexclad pans. This design is supposed to allow you to get the perfect browning while using less oil.
The nonstick coating is the highest grade Japanese ceramic coating, free of toxic or harsh chemicals. It does contain some PTFE (a.k.a. Teflon). It’s also infused with diamond dust to increase durability.
This layer of nonstick is on both the cooking surface and the outside of the pan, under a rim of stainless steel.
Users were not as impressed with the nonstick quality, though. Many people had issues with food sticking to the pan. It’s unclear if they followed all the proper use and care instructions, but that could possibly be a factor.
Hexlad does recommend seasoning their nonstick skillets before first use and every so often thereafter. Seasoning the pan is a fairly simple process. Simply heat your pan to medium-low and spread 1 tablespoon of oil around the pan. Let the pan sit for a minute or two. Then you can start cooking!
Learn more about this process by watching the video below:
(I don’t normally recommend seasoning a nonstick pan but I assume the manufacturer knows best. I think this does reflect that Hexclad are doing something different with their nonstick skillets. Different isn’t always better though!)
You will have to use at least a little oil or butter when cooking with your Hexclad pans. The manufacturer also recommends avoiding high temperatures on the stovetop. High heat can make sticking worse, so low to medium heat settings are better.
Hexclad claims this cookware is safe for metal utensils such as spatulas and whisks. They do not recommend sharp utensils, like metal forks. Several customer reviews backed up this claim. Customers could successfully use a metal spatula without scratching the nonstick coating.
I always recommend avoiding using metal utensils around non-stick, because even if it doesn’t scratch it, it will increase the wear and shorten the life over the long term. Instead of a metal spatula, opt for a silicone or wooden one.
In short Hexclad nonstick coatings do appear to be an innovative and interesting technology, yet need to be treated with care in real life.
Handles & Lids
Each Hexclad pan comes with stainless stay-cool handles. Customers liked the pot rack hole on the end of each handle. Some said the smallest pan was off-balance due to the weight, but others said the pans handled well.
These Hexclad pans feature domed and vented tempered glass lids with stainless rims. Several liked the lid vent for steam to escape. Others liked that the lid to the largest 12-inch (30.48 cm) pan also works with the wok.
Do you enjoy cooking stovetop-to-oven food? An oven-safe set of cookware is a must. For those that plan to make frittatas or baked macaroni and cheese, you don’t have to let this cookware slow you down.
This Hexclad Hybrid set is oven-safe for temperatures up to 500°F (260°C). The glass lids are also oven-safe up to 400°F (204°C).
Ease of Cleaning
For those who want dishwasher-safe pans, you’re in luck. You can put your Hexclad cookware in the dishwasher. To hand-wash, simply use mild soap and warm water. For stuck-on food, let the pans soak for a few minutes before cleaning.
In the case of stains or dullness, use a product like Bar Keeper’s Friend to restore shine. Hexclad claims you can even use steel wool or abrasive scrubbers on your pans. Be careful though as I believe this could shorten the life if done regularly.
Several customers said these Hexclad pans were easy to clean. Some complained of a black residue that came off the pan upon the first wash. Some even had this problem after a few washes.
While this residue may be disconcerting, it’s not uncommon with a new cookware set. A good scrub with Bar Keeper’s Friend should take care of the issue.
To get tips on cleaning your Hexclad cookware, watch the video below:
If you’re trying to stick to a tight budget while searching for pots and pans, this Hexclad set may not be your best option. The tri-ply construction and patented laser-etching all add to this cookware’s value and cost.
One thing to consider is that this brand does offer a lifetime warranty. That gives consumers peace of mind when spending a good chunk of change. But this warranty does not cover neglect, abuse, or improper use. Hexclad also requires the customer to pay for shipping charges. Several reviews complained about the warranty, so just be aware.
The bottom line? This Hexclad set is a pricier choice. But if you wish to reap all the benefits of hybrid nonstick stainless cookware, it might be worth it.
More Hexclad Cookware
There are plenty of other Hexclad products available. I’ve briefly reviewed two of the more popular choices below.
Hexclad Hybrid Stainless Steel 12-Inch Frying Pan
If you don’t want a complete set of Hexclad cookware, you can purchase individual pieces. This Hexclad Hybrid pan has a diameter of 12 inches (30.48 cm) and comes with a glass lid.
The Hexclad pan features the same tri-ply stainless steel construction and nonstick surface as the full 7-piece set. Some users had issues with the nonstick coating peeling off. But overall, the reviews were positive regarding the pan’s performance.
If you just want to get a Hexclad skillet this is a decent, affordable choice.
Hexclad 6-Piece Hybrid Cookware Set
These Hexclad pots and pans feature the same construction and nonstick surface as the 7-Piece set. The main difference in this set is which pieces it includes.
Instead of frying pans, this set includes three covered pots. A 2-quart (1.89 liters), 3-quart (2.84 liters), and 8-quart (7.57 liters) pot come with this Hexclad cookware set. These pans do show more stainless on the exterior than the frying pans.
The user reviews were glowing for this set. They loved how quickly and evenly these pans heat. Several were able to use metal utensils and cooking tools without issues. And like the other Hexclad sets, this one is dishwasher safe.
Are there alternatives?
Hexclad isn’t the only brand that offers non-stick stainless cookware. But while Hexclad offers a true hybrid, weaving the stainless and nonstick throughout the surface, other nonstick pans consist of a nonstick coating over stainless pan. A lot of the benefits are still the same.
Let’s look at some other nonstick cookware to compare.
Circulon Stainless Steel Non-stick Cookware Set
There’s nothing like being able to cook with an efficient and beautiful piece of cookware. This Circulon Stainless Nonstick set has an eye-catching design. It comes with the following pieces:
- 1.5-quart (1.42 liters) saucepan with lid
- 3-quart (2.84 liters) saucepan with lid
- 6.5-quart (6.15 liters) stockpot with lid
- 9.5-inch (24.13 cm) frying pan
- 12-inch (30.48 cm) frying pan with lid
- Slotted spatula
This particular set is a hybrid set, with raised stainless circles on a nonstick cook surface. These rings mean this cookware is safe for metal utensils, along with providing extra durability.
This set offers superb heat distribution, and it’s compatible with all stovetops, including induction. This Circulon set is also safe for temperatures up to 500°F (260°C). All in all, these Circulon pans offer a lot of versatility.
This cookware has beautifully crafted stay-cool handles that have a free-form design.
Unfortunately, a lot of customers had issues with food sticking to these pans. Just like with the Hexclad sets, it could possibly be due to improper use. Although we cannot know for sure. Just remember to use low heat and avoid sharp utensils.
This set is a good value. It’s not a budget option, but it is more affordable than a luxury cookware set.
If you are looking to shop around there is a very similar, but not exactly the same, 11-piece cookware set by Circulon on Bed Bath and Beyond.
Blue Diamond Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Ceramic Nonstick Cookware Set
Blue Diamond manufactures a variety of non-stick cookware. This 11-piece stainless non-stick set includes the following pieces:
- 8-inch (20.32 cm) frying pan
- 9.5-inch (24.13 cm) frying pan
- 11-inch (26.67 cm) frying pan
- 2-quart (1.89 liters) & 2.5-quart (2.37 liters) chef’s pans with lids
- 6-quart (5..68 liters) stockpot with lid
- turner and slotted spoon
Unlike the Hexclad cookware sets, these Blue Diamond pots and pans are not really a hybrid. They’re non-stick pans with a triple-layer stainless base. The ceramic non-stick layer is infused with diamonds for extra durability.
This set is oven-safe and broiler-safe up to 600°F (315°C). The glass lids are oven-safe up to 425°F (218°C). You can put these pots in the dishwasher, and they are also safe for induction cooktops.
The handles do not have the same comfortable design as the Hexclad pans, and there’s doubt about the long-lasting quality of these non-stick pans. However, this is a good value pick for those on a budget.
I couldn’t find this exact cookware set anywhere else, but I did find a 7 piece version on Bed Bath and Beyond. Check it out for alternative pricing / availability.
All-Clad Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Non-stick Pan, 12 Inches
All-Clad is a top-notch brand based in the U.S. They are known for their excellent stainless cookware, most of which is made in the U.S.A. This brand can be pricey, but its quality speaks for itself.
This tri-ply stainless frying pan has an aluminum core with stainless steel layers surrounding it. This fully-clad construction means excellent heat distribution. The non stick coating is easy to clean and allows you to cook with little oil.
This nonstick pan should not go in the dishwasher, and you should avoid using high heat when cooking with All-Clad’s stainless non-stick pan. Low to medium heat is better.
The handles stay cool on the stovetop, and this nonstick skillet is compatible with all cooktops, including induction. Another thing? This pan is safe for oven temperatures up to 600°F (315°C).
But this cookware piece will come at a steep cost. It’s a splurge piece. It also does not include a lid, so you’ll want to consider that, as well.
Hexclad vs All Clad
Although All Clad may have taken a simpler approach with their nonstick coating, when it comes to All Clad vs Hexclad I feel like All Clad has better achieved what Hexclad was trying to: a durable stainless steel nonstick pan.
If you are looking to shop around, this nonstick pan is also available on Sukalde. Since it is so pricey, it is worth checking the availability and the price in a couple of places.
Although quite different from hybrid stainless steel there are other alternatives like enameled cast iron and even cast iron with some similarities:
- They, if treated correctly, have some nonstick properties
- They are durable and hefty
Hexclad Cookware Review: The Last Word
If you want to cook with high heat or get a no-maintenance piece of cookware? Hexclad is not for you.
If, however, you are willing to put in a little time upfront curing your pan and follow the proper use and care instructions, I would recommend Hexclad Hybrid Cookware. It offers solid value, even in spite of a heftier price tag.
This cookware could become one of the most valuable tools in your kitchen. It offers excellent cooking performance without requiring excessive oil or heat.