From the simple task of boiling pasta, to the more arduous process of making homemade sauce, every kitchen needs a reliable set of pots. For amateurs to pros alike, sauce pans are absolute must haves. While pots are a simple enough product, some serious thought should go into deciding which kinds are the right fit for your kitchen.
Size, price, durability and material are all important factors to consider when determining what pot to purchase. Do you just want something to make pasta or reheat soup? Or do you want a larger stock pot to tackle bigger recipes?
Pots seem to be a simple enough product, but don’t overestimate the importance of nailing this purchase. Sets of pots can be expensive, and leave you with an overstock of products that you may never even use, and that take up a ton of space in the kitchen. Instead, try to focus on grabbing individual pots that fit your kitchen and cooking style.
How to Select the Right Saucepan Size
Explore a large, well stocked kitchen and you’re bound to find saucepans of varying sizes. Different pots are ideal for different tasks, and unless you’re buying a set, it’s important to understand what kind of function you’re looking for from the pot. Pots can take up a ton of storage around the kitchen, and unless you cook for large groups, larger pots might be a waste of space.
There are a few standard sizes to choose from when it comes to saucepans. We like to keep a mix of different sizes around the kitchen. Here are the options, and what kind of cooking load that they are best used for.
Smaller Saucepans (1 – 2.5 Quarts)
These saucepans are available in measurements of .5 quarts. Ideal for single to smaller families, these pans are perfect for heating up small to medium sized servings of pasta, soups, and reheating modest amounts of liquids. These pots are also generally easy to store, and can be stacked in larger saucepans if needed. Even larger families tend to have a need for smaller pots. A true kitchen must.
Larger Saucepans (3-4 Quarts)
These larger pots handle much heavier volume, and are great for larger families, or cooks who churn out more food and cook for dinner parties or groups. These saucepans are big enough to tackle everything including roasts.
Types of Saucepan Material
Saucepans made from stainless steel heat quickly and consistently. They also look sleek and sharp in the kitchen, matching performance with a professional aesthetic. Generally dishwasher safe and easy to clean.
On the negative side, stainless steel can scratch and dent. And while they’re easy to clean, they are prone to burns and stains if not maintained properly.
Affordable and lightweight, aluminum is a more rare but trendy material option. These pots maintain heat well, and are more durable and scratch resistant than a lot of other metal options.
A nonstick, environmental friendly option that looks incredibly sharp and can be found in a wide variety of colors and designs.
While ceramic is simple to clean, it’s generally not dishwasher safe, and is prone to chips. The nonstick properties can also degrade over time, meaning they are less durable and trustworthy in the long run.
Care and Maintenance
Saucepans are generally pretty easy to clean and maintain, and a lot of that is due thanks to the metal finishes. These days most new saucepans are dishwasher safe, an excellent bonus when cleaning up after preparing a meal. Since oftentimes sauces or heavy liquids are boiled to high heat in pots, it’s also important to try to get off any food before it sets, thus making it more difficult to clean.
Some links to products on this website will earn an affiliate commission. This compensation does not impact how and where products appear on this site. For more information please view our advertising policy page.