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Buying guide for best rachael ray cookware sets

Your kitchen countertop may be loaded with appliances, but the basics of cooking, from sautéing to frying to boiling to steaming, are done on the stovetop in pots and pans. A good set of cookware is a culinary essential, and some of the best cookware available today is from Rachael Ray, one of the biggest names in cooking and baking.

Rachael Ray rose to fame championing quick, easy, and healthy meals for inexperienced and expert cooks alike. She has shared her love of food through television shows, cookbooks, and her line of colorful and practical cookware that is among the most popular on the market. She offers skillets, woks, pots, and pans, as well as sets that may include accessories and extras, such as utensils. A Rachael Ray cookware set may include as few as 3 items or as many as 14, but regardless of the number, each piece is designed to make cooking easy and fun.

Our buying guide and recommendations can help you sort through what’s available in Rachael Ray cookware and find out what makes her products stand out from the rest.

If you enjoy her cookware, Rachael Ray also sells matching bakeware sets and accessories like utensils, salt and pepper shakers, and EVOO bottles.

Key considerations

Quantity

How many pots and pans do you need? That number will factor into what set you choose. If you only need a couple items to complete a set or for basic cooking, you might want to buy them individually. However, if you need a half dozen items, such as sauce pans, skillets, and stock pot, you might be better off investing in a set. You’ll save money, too. If you’re cooking for one or two people, you may only need a few basic items. If you regularly cook for a lot of people or make more elaborate meals, opt for a larger set of 12 or 14 items.

Nonstick

Most of Rachael Ray’s cookware sets contain nonstick pots and pans. They’re easy to use and easy to clean. However, nonstick pots and pans require a bit of special care to keep them working effectively. You shouldn’t preheat an empty nonstick pan, especially if it’s made of aluminum. The pan heats up rapidly enough, and too much heat can ruin the pan’s surface if it’s empty. Avoid using high heat, too, and only use wooden or silicone utensils to avoid scratching the nonstick surface.

Colors

Rachael Ray’s cookware distinguishes itself from the rest of the pack by offering pots and pans in a variety of colors. Nearly all of her cookware has at least a little bit of color, even if it’s just the handles or the lid. If you’re interested in a more muted look, there are anodized aluminum pots and pans in plain gray with gray handles, too.

Features

Brights collection


The pots, pans, and skillets in Rachael Ray’s Brights collection have a colorful enamel exterior in vibrant orange, blue, red, or purple. If you want to coordinate with a color scheme in your kitchen, or you simply want to add a contrasting hue, the Brights collection is worth investing in. The sets feature at least 10 items, and the pots and pans are made of nonstick aluminum and may be coated in porcelain. 

Cucina collection

This collection offers a blend of rustic look and feel with modern functionality. The colors in this collection are a bit more muted, though still eye-catching, tending toward those of fruits and vegetables, including cranberry, pumpkin, lemongrass, and agave blue. For those who embrace a country or farmhouse feel, this colorful cookware will give that sense of nostalgia. It may come in sets of 10 to 14 items and is made from aluminum, some with porcelain exteriors.

For your safety
Silicone-coated stainless steel handles stay cool, but oven mitts are still the safest way to move hot cookware, especially if the items are heavy or you’re working in a crowded kitchen.
STAFF
BestReviews

Accessories

Bakeware set: Rachael Ray Cucina Bakeware Set
If you’re someone who cooks often, chances are you’re interested in baking as well. Pick up this ten-piece bakeware set that includes everything you need to make cookies, breads, cakes, and muffins.

Kitchen apron: DII Kitchen Apron
Keep your clothes clean while you cook by wearing a kitchen apron. This cotton, one-size-fits-most apron from DII is both practical and colorful, and it comes in seven colors.

Pot rack: Vdomus Wall-Mounted Pot Rack
Display your colorful Rachael Ray cookware on a wall-mounted rack and keep your pots and pans conveniently close and safe.

Oven mitts: Big Red House Oven Mitts
Protect your hands while you’re fixing dinner with these protective and comfortable silicone and cotton mitts from Big Red House that resist heat to 480°.

Expert Tip
STAFF
BestReviews

Rachael Ray cookware set prices

In general, Rachael Ray cookware sets and individual pieces are less expensive than other popular name-brand cookware.

Inexpensive: For $25 to about $60, you can find individual saucepans, steamers, stockpots or skillets. This range does not include large sets, but you can find sets that include a pair of skillets, for example, in this range.

Midrange: You can purchase a Rachael Ray cookware set for between $75 an $150. These may feature up to 14 or 15 items and come in a variety of color options.

Expensive: For about $110 to $150, you’ll find most comprehensive cookware sets in the Cucina and Brights collections, including up to 14 or 15 pieces.

Tips

  • Show off your cookware. Most Rachael Ray cookware is colorful. Display your pots and pans on an open shelf or hang them on a rack when they’re not in use.
  • Take care of your cookware. Cookware can last many years if properly cared for. Be careful not to scratch the nonstick coating.
  • Mix and match colors. Even if you get a set in one color, you can buy individual items, utensils, and accessories in coordinating colors.
  • Don’t preheat empty cookware. Make sure there is oil, water, or food in your pan before you turn on the heat. If it’s empty, you could ruin the nonstick coating.

Other products we considered

Rachael Ray has plenty more single items and sets to satisfy your cooking needs. We like this hard-anodized Rachael Ray Cucina Wok that’s offered in a variety of colors and oven safe to 400°F. Most sets don’t include a wok, so it’s worth buying one separately.

We also recommend this 14-piece, hard-enamel Rachael Ray Cookware Set that includes kitchen utensils as well as a baking sheet.

Finally, another useful piece of cookware is a casserole dish. We recommend this durable, 5.5-quart Rachael Ray Brights Casserole Dish that comes in red with matching handles and a glass lid.

Silicone utensils are included in some Rachael Ray sets. These are safe to use on nonstick cookware.

FAQ

Q. How do I clean Rachael Ray cookware?
A.
While some Rachael Ray cookware is designated as dishwasher safe, it’s always best to wash it by hand if possible. Chemicals in some dishwasher detergents may decrease the lifespan of pots and pans, especially the nonstick variety. What’s more, the cookware could get scratched if something moved against it in the dishwasher. When washing cookware by hand, use a gentle cloth or sponge with warm water and soap. You can soak a pan in water to remove stuck-on food. It’s best to dry the cookware by hand as well.
 

Q. How should I store Rachael Ray cookware?
A.
Hanging up your cookware will protect the surfaces of the pots and pans, especially any nonstick items. Stacking cookware could scratch or dent it, which can ruin the nonstick coating. A wall shelf or hanging rack is best. If you have to stack the pans on a shelf or in a drawer, put something between them, such as paper towels to protect the surfaces. Make sure the cookware is fully dry before storing and keep it out of direct sunlight.
 

Q. What does “hard anodized” mean?
A.
Many pieces of Rachael Ray cookware are hard anodized, which means the product has been reinforced to be harder and more durable than similar products that haven’t been anodized. This is a process frequently done to aluminum to increase its longevity and promote even heating. Typically, cookware that is hard anodized is more expensive, but it should last longer than other options.

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