Good cookware is expensive. When you buy a set for your kitchen, you should strive to use them in the right way so as to minimize damages and keep them in the best condition for long.
When you do this, you will not have to spend money on repairs or replacement and this makes it important for people to learn how to use and manage their cookware in their kitchen.
The current set that I have in my kitchen has served me for the last 5 years yet it still looks as good as new.
By employing the best maintenance practices, my cooking set has remained in top condition for this long and in this piece, I will share useful tips that you can implement in your kitchen to improve the lifespan of your cookware.
I will specifically focus on the mistakes people make when using their cookware and how to correct them.
1. Cooking in the wrong utensils
When preparing meals in their kitchen most people use metallic utensils like tongs, spatulas, and whisks to mix the ingredients up.
Of course, metal utensils look professional but they are your cookware’s worst enemy. This is because metal utensils are harsh on your cookware since they scratch the surface to leave ugly scratch marks and to expose the non-stick coating.
When the non-stick coating is exposed, pieces of it will get to the meal you are cooking and contaminate it.
This can have serious health repercussions and it is for this reason why you need to avoid metal utensils when cooking. Instead, use scratch friendly-utensils like wood and plastic that will not scratch the surface of your pots.
2. Cooking in high heat
People are pressed for time and when they get to the kitchen, they try to hurry things up by using high heat to cook their meals.
Subjecting your cookware to high heat is wrong and it will result in cookware deformation as a result of exposure to sudden temperature changes.
With non-stick pans, high temperatures ruin the non-stick coating and with time it will peel off to expose the inner surface.
The right heat setting to use on your cookware especially your non-stick pans is low to medium.
This will prevent the surface from wrapping and the non-stick coating will remain intact for long.
3. Poor washing habits
How you wash your cookware also affects their lifespan.
The wrong washing habits, in this case, include the use of harsh scrubbing agents and cleaners that eat into the surface of your cookware.
Steel wool is one of the scrubbers that people use in their kitchens not knowing that they are ruining their cookware as a result.
To clean your cookware properly, use gentle dishwashing soap and a soft sponge. Soak the cookware in water to soften the tough stains so as to ensure that you don’t use too much force when cleaning your cookware.
4. Using the cookware for storage
Most people use their cookware to store the leftovers.
It may look like a harmless practice but this is a bad move since the reagents in the food will react with the non-stick coating to cause wear and tear. The deterioration is even worse when the cookware was used to prepare acidic foods like tomatoes and lemons.
Once you are done preparing your meals, clear everything from the pot and wash it clean.
Your pots and pans were not designed to hold food for long so avoid using them to store leftovers.
Use a plastic container instead so as not to expose your pans to the reactive elements in the meals you have prepared.
5. Deeping a hot pan in cold water
When people are done preparing meals, most usually soak the used cookware in water in preparation for the cleaning later on.
Soaking cookware in water helps soften the stains for an easier cleaning experience but you should not do it when the cookware is hot.
This is because the sudden temperature change will make the surface of the cookware to deform. Your favorite pan will have even bumps on the surface and using it to prepare meals will be difficult.
Once you are done cooking, you should let the cookware to cool before you soak it in water or adding water to it. This will prevent the cookware from getting exposed to sudden temperature changes which is harmful to its structural integrity.
6. Preparing meals with cooking spray
People are increasingly using cooking sprays when preparing meals so as to ensure that they are not taking a lot of oil with their food.
This is a health-conscious move but the problem is that such cooking sprays are not compatible with non-stick cookware.
When used over a long time, the spray causes residue build-up on the cookware. This residue is usually difficult to remove and you will be forced to use harsh scrubbers to get rid of them.
You are, therefore, advised to stop using cooking spray on your non-stick pans if you want to maintain them in the best condition for long.
To keep your oil intake low, get an oil mister that you will use to coat your pan with a little oil.
7. Using the wrong cooking method
Most cooks usually heat their cookware for a bit before adding oil and then the meals that they are preparing.
This method, however, should not be used with non-stick cookware.
Preheating a non-stick pan damages the non-stick coating and this will ruin your cookware.
The best way to cook meals with your non-stick pans is to add oil to the pan before heating it. This will allow the pan to soak up the oil and this will prevent damage to the non-stick coating.
How you use your cookware determines its lifespan.
The right usage will see you enjoy your cookware for long. By avoiding the mistakes highlighted above, the chances of ruining your cookware are minimized and this will save you repairing or replacing.