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Expert Shopper Kitchen

Best skillet

Which skillet is best?

If you spend any time in the kitchen, chances are you rely on a skillet for cooking many types of food. Occasional cooks and skilled chefs alike appreciate the versatility of this useful tool when it comes to stovetop cooking.

When you find the right size, material and price tag, your new skillet will likely become your go-to cookware essential, whether you’re frying up a quick lunch for one or preparing a dish for the family. Our top pick, the All-Clad Fry Pan, can survive high oven temperatures and is dishwasher safe.

What to know before you buy a skillet

Frequency of use

Budget-priced pans are okay for occasional use, but durable, high-quality skillets will withstand frequent cooking.

Lid vs. no lid

Not all skillets come with a lid, but models that do are worth it for cooking those dishes that need to be covered while on the stove.


Skillets come in different sizes, and some of the most common are 8, 10 and 12 inches.


It’s no surprise that skillets are made for cooking on a stovetop, but some are made of materials such as stainless steel or cast iron that you can use in the oven. However, keep in mind that some skillet handles are not oven-proof.

What to look for in a quality skillet


Aluminum: These pans are affordable and lightweight, but some have longevity concerns. Leaching of the metal is also an issue, especially if the skillet isn’t anodized.

Stainless steel: Stainless steel skillets are strong and made to last. Some can even be used in the oven, provided the handles aren’t coated in plastic. Although food sticking to the surface is a concern, some modern skillets have finishes designed to prevent this.

Copper: These skillets are pricey, but they look as good as they cook. However, they aren’t quite as durable as pans made of other materials.


Although nonstick surfaces are prone to scratches, they’re popular because they’re easy to cook with and clean. Many nonstick pans are also quite affordable.

How much you can expect to spend on a skillet

Regardless of the material you choose, you can find a quality skillet for $20-$50, with some higher-end models falling in the $80-$120 range. The exception is copper. These skillets are typically priced at $50 and up.

Skillets FAQ

Is there a skillet that can easily go from stovetop to grill grate?

A. Not all skillets can handle the intense direct heat of a grill, but one made of cast iron can. In fact, these pots and pans have been used to cook over open flames for centuries because they can withstand temperatures well over 500 degrees Fahrenheit.

What are some tips for maintaining a skillet with a nonstick surface?

A. You can increase the longevity of your nonstick skillet by only using utensils made of nylon, silicone or wood to stir and serve food. In addition, washing your skillet by hand with a soft sponge and mild dish detergent will help protect the finish.

What's the best skillet to buy?

Top skillet

All-Clad Fry Pan

What you need to know: A well-made, versatile skillet, it comes with a lid and a justifiably higher price tag considering all it has to offer.

What you'll love: It is crafted of durable stainless steel and aluminum with a surface that resists sticking. It can handle high oven temperatures and be cleaned in the dishwasher. It includes a limited lifetime warranty.

What you should consider: Frequent overheating can discolor pan.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top skillet for the money

T-fal Nonstick Fry Pan

What you need to know: This is the best pick if you need a decent pan at a price that won’t break the bank.

What you'll love: This is a practical skillet at the lower end of the price scale. Most foods easily slide off the nonstick surface.

What you should consider: The curved surface isn’t ideal for all foods and the nonstick coating can scratch.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Lodge Skillet

What you need to know: With proper cooking steps and care, this quality cast-iron skillet won’t disappoint.

What you'll love: Manufactured by a company known for quality cookware the cast iron is pre-seasoned. It is built to last, even when cooking with high temperatures.

What you should consider: Using it takes a little trial and error if you aren’t used to cooking with cast iron. Food can burn or stick fairly easily.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Jennifer Blair writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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