We’ve all had frustrating experiences with cookware that sticks, right? At some point in our lives, we felt amazed by the magic quality of non-stick Teflon pans, but perhaps reluctant to use them too much because they contain the chemical Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE).
I began searching for an alternative and came to learn about non-stick copper cookware. Two great choices for any kitchen are Red Copper or Copper Chef cookware. Both are popular sets with great characteristics and you’ll want to know more about each, before committing to either.
For any impatient readers, although both brands offer hassle-free cooking sets, I prefer Copper Chef cookware. Continue reading to find out why, and get to know a couple of alternatives, as well.
Things to Consider Before Buying Ceramic Copper Non-stick Cookware
Do keep in mind that most copper ceramic cookware has little-to-no copper. Some of these pieces are infused with minimal amounts of copper, while others only imitate that attractive burnt orange color.
This doesn’t mean that these pots and pans are low-quality. Companies use other metals, like aluminum, instead of copper, for heat conduction. Sometimes these other metals can be more durable than copper.
Copper is an excellent conductor of heat, as well. This means the pan’s surface will spread the temperature evenly, without causing any hot spots that can burn your food. The heat conduction and accumulation can also help you save energy throughout the cooking process.
It’s important to note that if your chosen pots and pans do contain copper on the inside of the pan, that this material can be toxic, as well. Use acidic ingredients, like tomatoes or vinegar, in small quantities and make sure the cookware has a durable coating to avoid this issue.
Both the Copper Chef and Red Copper cookware sets are properly coated, so rest assured you won’t see copper leaching into your food with these products.
A noticeable feature of ceramic copper cookware is that it’s non-stick, yet it doesn’t contain the harmful ingredients that Teflon does. As we all know by now, both PFOA and PTFE are common substances in Teflon pots and pans. The higher the temperature, the more dangerous it becomes.
Another benefit to this non-stick ceramic coating is that you won’t need much oil or butter, indicating you can cook healthier alternatives here.
By the way, these aren’t the only non Teflon pans, for more see my guide to the best non-stick pan without Teflon.
With all of these features in mind, let’s see how Red Copper vs Copper Chef stack against each other!
Red Copper Cookware And Pans
These pots and pans feature a non-toxic coating that’s free from harmful chemicals like PTFE and PFOA.
BulbHead Red Copper Copper-Infused Ceramic Cookware is a non-stick, 10-piece set.
If you’d rather test out or experiment with the brand before committing to the whole set, you can purchase piece by piece. One versatile example would be the Red Copper 10 inch (25 cm) Non-Stick Pan by BulbHead.
While the cookware’s coating is non-stick, the instructions clearly indicate that you should season the pan with vegetable oil before cooking. You’ll want to also use a little butter or oil during the cooking process, so things don’t get sticky.
This coating has an aluminum bond to help distribute heat evenly and to avoid hot spots while cooking.
The manufacturer claims the set is scratch-resistant, but there have been reports of peeled and chipped coating after some use. Avoid this by foregoing metal utensils, instead, stick with plastic or wooden implements.
This set is also dishwasher safe, except for the pan itself. If you want the pieces to last you in the long run, I recommend sticking with hand washing. Using warm water and mild soap should do the trick, given the non-stick coating.
Red Copper pans are oven safe up to 260°C (500°F), except for the lids which you’ll have to leave out. There are four lids in this set.
Besides the pots and pans, this set has an aluminum steamer insert. It’s not a must but it’s a promising add-on if steaming is your thing.
- Oven safe up to 260°C (500°F)
- Aluminum steamer included
- Not fully non-stick until seasoned
- Lids are not oven safe
- Easily scratchable outside
- Can’t be used on induction stovetops
Check out my Red Copper Cookware and Pan guide for more info.
Copper Chef Pans and Cookware
The Copper Chef Cookware 9-Pc. Round Pan Set is one of those sets that only mimics the appearance of copper, but rather beautifully. So, is Copper Chef safe? Of course!
You won’t need to worry about PTFE, as it’s Teflon-free, or copper leaching into your food. Instead, this set has an aluminum core covered by an advanced Ceramic-Tech non-stick coating. Your food should slide around the pan with ease.
It has a stainless-steel induction plate built into the bottom, making it possible to use it on all stovetops, including induction. The aluminum core and steel plate both help distribute high heat evenly and fast.
All of the Copper Chef pieces are heat-proof up to 454°C (850°F) and oven safe to boot. This is really high for nonstick cookware, which is normally limited to 260°C (500°F).
The thermal shock resistant lids are safe for use in the oven, as well, but only up to 260°C (500°F). There are two lids included in this set, which fit all the pieces.
The set, including the single Copper Chef 10 inch (25 cm) round frying pan, is 100 percent dishwasher-safe. However, it might be better to stick with warm water and a sponge to care for the interior overtime.
All of the handles are riveted, providing an extra-secure grip. But do keep in mind that these handles can get extra hot. Keep a kitchen glove around to be on the safe side.
Again, there are reports of pealed coatings or risen centers. Yet plenty of users also have a great experience with these pans. I personally think if you stick to the instructions and don’t damage the pans with sharp utensils, sudden temperature changes, or harsh detergents, they’re going to last.
- Dishwasher and oven safe up to 454°C (850°F)
- Thermal shock resistant lids
- Heat efficient
- Aesthetically pleasing
- Suitable for all oven tops, including induction
- Handles can get too hot
- There have been reports of the non-stick coating not lasting
Red Copper vs Copper Chef: What’s the Difference?
These two beautiful copper cookware sets are both excellent products. Here’s what they have in common:
- PTFE/PFOA free
- They work better if you season them
- Heat-efficient and can spread temperature evenly
- Have oven-safe pieces—aside from the Red Copper pan and lids
Where these sets differ mainly boils down to the manufacturing methods and materials.
They both use aluminum but Copper Chef incorporates stainless steel, as well, while Red Copper has copper in it.
What’s more, Red Copper is more affordable and offers a useful selection of pots and pans. But it doesn’t come with oven-safe lids, as opposed to Copper Chef’s thermal shock resistant lids. Also, if you want to use induction stovetops, go with Copper Chef.
Temperature resistance is another important feature that gives Copper Chef an advantage in the Copper Chef vs Red Copper debate. Copper Chef can withstand much higher temperatures.
Finally, if you care about the weight of your cookware and want to lift them effortlessly, go with Red Copper’s light set.
Differences in a Nutshell
- Unlike Red Copper, Copper Chef is oven safe
- Red Copper has copper in it, but Copper Chef doesn’t
- Copper Chef has stainless steel
- Copper Chef can resist heat 1.7 times better than Red Copper
- Red Copper sets are more affordable
- Copper Chef set has two thermal shock resistant lids, while Red Copper has four lids that aren’t oven-safe
- Red Copper’s pots and pans are slightly lighter
Other “Copper” Choices
If you’re unhappy with the Red Copper or Copper Chef options above, here are a few other “copper” cookware alternatives.
Shineuri Cookware Set and Pans
What makes the Shineuri cookware set noticeably different is the Real Copper Stimulation Technology or “RCS-Tech” for short.
SHINEURI RCS-Tech Ceramic Coating 10 Pieces Cookware Set also uses a coating formula from Germany, which is non-stick and easy to clean as a result.
This brand uses actual copper in its products, except for the pan. The 10-piece set has a temperature-resistant coating of up to 232°C (450°F), which is lower than both Red Copper and Copper Chef.
It’s advisavle to use it mostly on medium-low heat.
An eye-catching factor is this set’s unbelievable price. A Shineuri pan costs half as much as Copper Chef!
If you’re looking for a pan alone, or if you’re considering adding this set to your kitchen, my advice is to buy the Shineuri 9.5 inch (24 cm) Copper Fry Pan first. It comes with a heat-proof lid up to 177°C (350°F).
You can use Shineuri cookware on gas, electric, ceramic, and induction stoves. They’re oven and dishwasher safe, and you should season them before cooking sessions.
- Made with RCS-Tech
- PTFE/PFOA free
- Efficient heating
- Works on all stovetops
- Dishwasher safe
- Not fully non-stick until seasoned
- Less heat resistant than other sets
- Reportedly “too light”
- Might scratch easily
Michelangelo Cookware Set and Pans
The Michelangelo copper non-stick cookware set is the most expensive of all the brands we’ve discussed in this review.
But this set comes with 12 pieces, as well as other unique characteristics. It has a ceramic and titanium coating, which is Teflon free, non-stick, and scratch-resistant. You shouldn’t use metal utensils with this set of cookware, just like the others.
There’s a durable aluminum body that increases heat-efficiency and reduces the energy spent on gas or electricity. It also has a tri-ply construction base, too, adding to the durability factor.
Every piece in this set comes with a separate lid (five in total), except for one pan. The pots and pans are dishwasher safe, but hand washing is recommended.
All pieces are also ovenproof up to 232°C (450°F). You can use them on all stovetops, excluding the induction type. There is one exception, though.
The Michelangelo 10 inch (25 cm) frying pan is induction friendly and comes with a lid if you buy it individually. The pan is not as cheap as Shineuri’s pan, but not as expensive as Copper Chef’s.
This set has ergonomic handles made of stainless steel, which stay cool on the stove and are easy to maneuver. Despite what it may seem, customer reviews indicate that the pieces are relatively light.
All in all, if you don’t mind that this set can’t resist very high temperatures and if you’re willing to spend a little more, I think the Michelangelo cookware set can be an excellent Copper Chef alternative.
- Tri-ply base
- Dishwasher safe
- Relatively lightweight
- Handles don’t overheat
- Not fully non-stick until seasoned
- A little pricier than the rest
- The maximum temp is lower than others
Red Copper vs Copper Chef in Conclusion
As I’ve said before, I would go with the Copper Chef’s 10-piece non-stick set. Let’s face it, the cookware offers better qualities, like higher temperature resistance and oven-safe lids. And I like the design, too, but that’s totally a personal preference.
Sure it doesn’t actually have copper in, but does it matter? Cooking efficiency, durability, price and looks are factors—metallic composition isn’t important in of itself.
The thing is, balancing all these factors, Copper Chef comes out ahead.
One Copper Pan
Looking for a single pan alone?
I wouldn’t go for Copper Chef’s single pan because it’s expensive, and you can get the whole set with a little more money. The Red Copper pan’s price is easily affordable, but it doesn’t come with a lid included.
For a single pan, I prefer the Michelangelo pan better because it hits the sweet middle ground concerning cost, and its quality is decent.