It’s tough to find a great ceramic frying pan, and it’s not because they are don’t exist.
My experience is that most people searching for “ceramic” cookware specifically want a pan that is Teflon-free. Our challenge is that many kitchen products that are marketed as “ceramic” also contain Teflon in the nonstick coating. Their advertisements may be ambiguous or straight-up misleading about this fact.
In this article I’ll be covering ceramic frying pans made without Teflon, what you should look for when buying one, and a few of my favorites. If you’re simply looking for a library of which pans contain teflon and which don’t, you might start here instead. And if you want non-stick cookware, but don’t really care if it contains Teflon then jump over to my article on all types of nonstick cookware.
If this is all to confusing..well, just leave me a comment at the bottom of the article. I’m here for that too. For the rest of you, I hope you’ll find this to be a good primer on choosing (and using) the best ceramic skillet for your kitchen.
In This Article
Our Top Picks – Ceramic Skillet
Deep Pan With Lid
Detailed Reviews of The Best Ceramic Frying Pans
The Paris Pro is the original Greenpan, now sold with an improved version of the brand’s signature Thermolon ceramic non-stick coating. This model features an upgraded design to the stainless steel handles and solid stainless steel lids.
Paris Pro will work on all cook surfaces except for an induction stove. The pans are oven and broiler safe to 600 F.
What we like
- Especially lightweight
- Excellent heat conduction
What We don’t
- Not compatible for induction cooking
- Heavy handle can cause the pan to tip on some stoves.
The GreenLife Softgrip is an excellent entry-level ceramic skillet, for the price. The cook surface is silicon-based ceramic atop an even heating aluminum core. Owners love the white color because it provides extra contrast to see the done-ness of their food.
Spray oils are a definite ‘no-no’ for this pan. They tend to quickly build up residue and impact pan performance. And while the soft grip Bakelite handle provides a comfortable feel to the pan, it may be less fitting for use in the oven or a gas stove.
What we like
- 7 Great Color Options
- White cook surface is a value-add in low light situations
What We don’t
- No lids available
- Some issues with handle overheating on a gas burner
The Vesuvio was among the longest lasting pans we reviewed. The construction is solid, but at 4.7 lbs is not overly heavy. We like the 13” version to feed a family, but you can also purchase a 9.5” or 11” pan if you have fewer mouths to feed.
We were impressed by the responsiveness of the brand to user feedback and questions. They publish video tutorials in response to owner questions, like “how to revive lost pan.”
Vesuvio is not a good fit for induction surfaces. Still, we felt the combination of performance, durability, and customer service were worthy of our top spot.
What we like
- Oven safe to 450 F
- 9.5″, 11″, 13″ Size Options
- Sturdy hand feel
What We don’t
- Not a fit for induction cooktops
- Only the 11″ pan comes with a lid
What To Look For
If you are reading this article, it’s likely you already know that ceramic is right for you. Ceramic skillets are easy to clean, cost friendly, and non-stick when maintained properly.
Before purchasing, you should also be aware that ceramic pans are not known for their durability. Even the best products tend to scratch, chip or wear faster than other types of cookware. It is common that ceramic cookware will last 2 years or less.
If you’re comfortable with the strengths and challenges of ceramic cookware then this is the article for you. If you’re seeking non-stick performance and greater durability, then you might consider traditional nonstick options.
Materials selection is important for your health and safety. Most ceramic pans sold today are actually “ceramic coated.” This means the pan is constructed of metal with ceramic glaze atop the cook surface.
The FDA has identified that some decorative glazes may contain lead or cadmium which can leach into food at toxic levels.
In our view, you should also avoid pans that were manufactured using PFAS or PFOA. Some recent studies have linked these materials to health conditions.
Single Pan vs Cookware Set
A frying pan, also known as a skillet or fry pan, is a shallow pan with a flat bottom. The sides of the pan rise from the cooking surface at a low angle or curve.
Frying pans are great for frying, flipping, and sauteing food. They work well for eggs, omelets, single pancakes, stir fry vegetables, and pan searing meat.
If you need a pan that holds liquid then you may consider using a saute pan instead. These are also great for cooking larger dishes or across longer periods of time.
The primary difference between a frying pan and saute pan is the angle of the pan sides. The edges of a saute pan rise perpendicular to the cook surface, compared to the low angle rise of a frying pan’s side.
Saute pans are excellent for reducing sauces, braising meat or greens. They are also capable of slow cooking wet dishes like curry or black beans at low temperatures.
Be familiar with the cook surface you intend to use with your frying pan. Before purchasing a new pan confirm that the product you select works well on that surface.
Cooktop compatibility will be most critical if you use an induction surface. Few ceramic non-stick products contain magnetic material which is required for induction compatibility.
To determine if your current cookware is induction compatible, try sticking a magnet to it. If it sticks, it should work; if it doesn’t, most likely it is not induction compatible.
Frying pans are commonly sized between 8” and 12”, measured by the diameter across the top edge of the pan. Because of this the actual cooking surface will be smaller than the advertised pan size.
As a general rule, it is helpful to use a pan with a diameter within 2” of your burner size for even cooking.
If your pan is much smaller than the burner size, the handle may overheat and melt the grip or become a burn hazard. Make this a special consideration if you are using a gas cooktop.
In our view, it’s more important to size your pan for the type of food you intend to cook rather than worrying about your cooktop specifications. Matching pan and portion sizes will provide maximum temperature control and help you conserve cooking oils.
|Size of Pan
|The perfect size for an omelet, two fried eggs, a single crepe or pancake.
|Great for scrambled eggs, sauce reduction, and bacon.
|Great for stir fry, reheating leftovers, and portions for more than 2 people.
One of the goals of this website is to help our readers get the most from their kitchen by minimizing clutter. Thinking about where you will store your frying pan is just as important as considering how you will use it.
If this is a daily use item, consider leaving it on the back burner of your cooktop.
If this is an occasional use item, find available cabinet space that doesn’t require you to stack this pan with other cookware. It will help your pan last longer. Or consider purchasing a pan with a handle-loop that can hang from a hook on the wall.
Ceramic cookware brands offer a variety of colors, handles and finishes. If you want a pan that stands out, you can easily find one. If you want a pan that fits in, you can find that too.
It is common for metal components of ceramic skillets to stain, such as bolts that fasten a handle to the cook surface. This is especially common if high cook temperatures are used with a pan, or if the pan is not cleaned frequently.
You can find ceramic non-stick skillets to fit a variety of budgets. Most pans retail in the $20-100 range.
Product lifespan for ceramic nonstick cookware is usually less than 2 years. When budgeting, consider that you may need to a replacement on a near(ish) time horizon.
In addition to setting good expectations, it’s incredibly helpful to get familiar with the most common ways people ruin their nonstick pans. They’re easy to avoid if you know what they are.
What are the pros and cons of ceramic pans?
Finding the right skillet for your situation means understanding the benefits and tradeoffs of ceramic. These pans will serve you well for many common cooking situations, but they aren’t a silver bullet for every kitchen.
Advantages of ceramic cookware:
- Exceptionally affordable
- Fast Heating
- Convenient non-stick cooking surface
- Better for high-heat cooking than Teflon
- Made without controversial chemicals or toxins
Disadvantages of ceramic cookware:
- Limited durability
- Nonstick coating fades quickly with abuse
- Few are compatible with induction tops
- Lower heat retention than cast iron or steel
When it comes to ceramic non-stick frying pans, you can choose to spend a little more and get a decent pan for your money. You can also spend quite a lot of money, but the reality is that even premium ceramic skillets generally don’t last more than a few years.
Of the 11 products we reviewed, the best pan in terms of durability, performance, ease of maintenance and price was the Vesuvio Professional Frypan by DaTerra Cucina. We especially liked the level of customer service offered by the brand to help owners get their pan performing at a high level. We also liked that the Vesuvio offers a 13” size to feed many mouths.
If you are comfortable spending a little more for performance, we recommend the Scanpan PRO IQ. Most owners say this pan has double the lifespan of middle-budget options. For us, this more than justifies the extra cost.
Are ceramic skillets healthy?
In most cases, ceramic cookware (like skillets) are made without PTFE, a fluoropolymer commonly known as Teflon that has been linked with multiple health and environmental controversies. Because there aren’t labeling guidelines on what products can be called “ceramic,” some companies have labeled PTFE products as ceramic. All of our recommendations are PTFE-Free.
Are ceramic skillets better than Teflon?
PTFE-Free ceramic skillets have several advantages over Teflon. They’re made without using a chemical compound that has been linked to multiple health and environmental controversies. They offer higher heat tolerance, and are typically priced more affordably.
What should you not put on a ceramic pan?
Avoid using aerosol sprays and oils with a low smoke point with ceramic nonstick cookware. Burning oil that travels past its smoke point can be difficult to clean, and may cause the nonstick quality of the pan to degrade quickly.