If you are looking for durable, non-stick pots and pans, ceramic and granite are both good options. Both are attractive materials that will allow you to create a variety of healthy meals with ease.
Related: Best Granite Cookware Sets
Related: Best Ceramic Cookware Sets
Although they have similar qualities, there are a few differences that you should consider very carefully before making a purchase. Keep reading to find out which one is the right choice for you.
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Granite Cookware Features
Despite its name, granite cookware does not actually contain any granite. Instead, it consists of a stainless-steel inner core that is covered with glass. The glass is made by fusing porcelain enamel at very high temperatures to create a non-stick surface.
The look of the cookware closely resembles granite, as it has a solid black surface with smaller flecks of gray or white scattered throughout.
Our favorite granite pan, available in 7 colors and 3 sizes:
Advantages of Granite Cookware
Granite cookware has numerous advantages:
Disadvantages of Granite Cookware
Just because granite cookware has numerous advantages does not mean there are not some disadvantages to consider. Here are just a few:
Ceramic cookware is a generic name given to pots and pans with a clay-based coating. (1) There are two different types of ceramic cookware.
The first is ceramic coated, which consists of an aluminum center that is then covered in ceramic.
The second is 100% ceramic, or a mixture of clay and water that is kiln fired and covered in a glaze. Most sets on the market are ceramic coated rather than being 100% ceramic.
Our top ceramic pan recommendation:
Advantages of Ceramic Cookware
There are several advantages to using ceramic cookware:
Disadvantages of Ceramic Cookware
There are some disadvantages to ceramic cookware as well:
Granite vs Ceramic: Health Concerns
One reason people choose granite or ceramic cookware is safety. Traditional non-stick pans usually contain Teflon, a dangerous substance that has often been associated with flu-like symptoms in humans. Breathing fumes from Teflon can even be fatal to pet birds.
Unfortunately, some of the same chemicals used in Teflon can also be used in cheaper granite or ceramic cookware as well. Before buying, always ensure that the pots and pans you are eyeing are free of the following:
Age a Factor in Safety
In particular, ceramic cookware made before or during the 1960s may be hazardous to your health. During that time, ceramic pots were created using a lead-based glaze that in turn would often leach into food, especially when heated. Be especially mindful of this when purchasing ceramic cookware at a flea market, auction, or antique store.
The Food and Drug Administration (2) has since established guidelines for non-stick coatings, to include the amount of leachable lead. To be sure, look for sets marked as being free from PTFE and PFOA. PFOA was phased out of production in 2015, so you should have no problem when purchasing a newer set.
If the inner coating becomes scratched, stop using your granite or ceramic cookware right away. Once the non-stick surface has been compromised, harmful chemicals can then leach into your food if they are indeed present.
Granite vs Ceramic: Cooking Methods
Granite pots and pans can be used to fry, bake, roast, sautee, or perform nearly any other cooking function. This type of cookware disperses heat evenly to prevent burning. As a result, granite roasting pans are often used to prepare a Thanksgiving turkey.
Acidic foods will not react with graniteware. This means you can prepare a variety of dishes without worrying about the safety or taste being affected.
Ceramic may hold a slight edge over granite when it comes to heat retention. Foods prepared with ceramic cookware will stay warm longer, making it an ideal choice for entertaining. At the same time, ceramic pans are slightly heavier so it will be more difficult to transport covered dishes.
Both will require the use of plastic or wooden cooking utensils. Using metal in either ceramic or granite cookware can scratch the non-stick surface, thereby rendering your pots and pans nearly useless.
Granite vs Ceramic: Cleaning and Durability
Both are very easy to clean. Even so, graniteware is more dishwasher friendly than ceramic is. Many manufacturers will claim their ceramicware is dishwasher safe, but I would not recommend using it. You may find this out the hard way when your beautiful ceramic pot begins flaking or peeling its glaze.
Although graniteware is considered rustproof, it may still show signs of rust after a while. To counteract this, you will need to store your cookware in a warm area where there is plenty of airflow. Wiping the surface with a few drops of oil from time to time might also help ward off rust. There is no need to do this with ceramic cookware. Even when it contains a metal core, ceramic pots and pans rarely if ever display any signs of rust.
It is virtually impossible to break granite cookware. Ceramic on the other hand may break, crack, or chip if dropped. If you tend to be clumsy in the kitchen, you might want to go with granite rather than ceramic.
Granite vs. Ceramic: Which is Best?
Granite and ceramic are both excellent choices when it comes to cookware. Consequently, the decision may largely come down to a matter of personal preference. To enjoy the maximum benefits, purchase a high-quality set that does not contain any harmful chemicals. Doing so will allow you to prepare delicious meals that you and your family will enjoy for many years to come.
Here are some of my favorite cookware sets from both materials: