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Caraway Cookware Set

Nonstick cookware is the most important part of a well-stocked kitchen. Unfortunately, nonstick usually means your pots and pans are coated with PTFE, often called PFOA1. Stainless steel is a possibility, but if you don’t oil your pan properly or set the heat too high, you’ll wind up with a mess that will take too much time and elbow grease to clean. Caraway stepped up to the plate to address these difficulties with its ceramic-coated aluminum cookware set, which promises to be nonstick for the rest of your life. While Caraway cookware is unquestionably the most visually appealing, looks can only get you so far.

Design: As beautiful as it is functional

If we had to judge only on the basis of design, we’d be sold right away. Caraway cookware comes in five dusty flower tones that may complement any kitchen decor. We chose the navy set, which is a stunning deep blue, but there are also cream, light gray, perracotta (a pink-terracotta hybrid), and sage to choose from.

Because the colors compliment each other so well, you have the option of mixing and matching instead of buying a single-color set. Keep in mind, though, that purchasing the package as-is saves you money—$65 to be exact.

If you get the set, you’ll get a 10.5-inch fry pan, a 4.5-quart saute pan with a lid, a 3-quart saucepan with a lid, and a 6.5-inch Dutch oven with a lid—basically everything you need in the kitchen. We just wish there was a smaller saucepan for cooking small amounts of rice or reheating leftovers, but it’s not a deal-breaker.

In terms of style, the cookware was the perfect size without being too heavy. We were able to make a Sunday family dinner-sized spaghetti sauce thanks to the large capacity of the Dutch oven.

The handles were well-placed because they were large and comfortable to grip and hold. Our only criticism is that they’re made of stainless steel and black rubber handles, so they get hot quickly and need to be moved in the sink with an oven mitt when draining fat or pasta. This isn’t a deal-breaker, as it happens all the time with cookware, but we felt it was worth mentioning.

Accessories: went above and beyond

Magnetic pan racks exactly hold each pot in an upright, sideways position, and the kit also includes a canvas lid holder that you can attach to the inside of your cabinet door for convenient access to the lids whenever you need them. When it came time to put the cookware away, the magnetic pan holder reduced the amount of room it took up in our cupboard significantly. These improvements immediately set the cookware apart from the rest of our collection, which is stacked in our cabinet. Another beautiful minor addition is two corkboard trivets embossed with the Caraway symbol.

Material: easy-to-clean and nonstick

Nonstick cookware is a kitchen must-have, but you occasionally have to choose between something that’s easy to clean and something that requires a lot of scrubbing.

With the Caraway set, you don’t have to choose because it gives you the best of both worlds. The pots and pans’ nonstick ceramic coating is free of PTFE (the main ingredient in Teflon®) and PFOA2.

Now for the bit, you’ve all been waiting for: the nonstick coating is incredible. Despite the fact that Teflon® is the gold standard of nonstick, the Caraway set outperforms every other pan we’ve tested by a wide margin.

Whether we were sauteing onions, melting butter, frying eggs, searing steaks, or boiling a pasta sauce, nothing stuck to the bottom of the pan. We were able to stir and flip the food with ease. When stirring and flipping, keep in mind that you can only use plastic, rubber, or wooden instruments to avoid scratching the nonstick coating, just like with other nonstick cookware.

Heating capacity: efficient and even

The Caraway is a great example of ceramic cookware’s ability to contain and keep heat to its maximum potential. The pots and pans became incredibly hot even when cooking on the manufacturer’s recommended low to medium heat, and our eggs and bacon cooked evenly and quickly.

Regardless of where the meal was placed in the pan, this was true. Bacon will not cook evenly if it is not correctly put in the center of other equipment, particularly large skillets. Alternatively, the bacon in the center of the sandwich may burn while the bacon on the outside remains raw. With the Caraway set, these concerns were completely eliminated for all of the items we cooked.

However, there was a learning curve for us. We’d gotten into the habit of turning up the heat in our older pans, but we didn’t have to because new cookware is so much more efficient and effective at transferring heat. We had to remember to turn down the heat.

The Caraway set can also be used on electric and induction stovetops. The pots and pans can also be used in the oven (up to 550 degrees), so they can replace heavier cast iron skillets in the kitchen.

Cleaning: Dishwasher not recommended

In our opinion, the most important feature of a cookware set is a tie between cooking performance and clean-up ease. It’s great to have a pan that can perfectly sear a rib-eye, but it kind of defeats the purpose if you’re left with baked-on steak crust for the rest of the pan’s life. Furthermore, if a non-stick ceramic cookware set claims to be unique, it must stand up to the hype.

Testing insight

Not only do we believe the Caraway cookware set is overhyped, but we also believe it lives up to the hype. All that was required to clean the pot after creating a rich meaty spaghetti sauce was a simple rinse and wipe with a clean sponge, and it was as good as new. Cleaning up after a cooked rib-eye steak was the same. The dark crusty areas rinsed right off with minimal effort.

If you’re unsure whether or not to use the dishwasher, we strongly advise avoiding it. We couldn’t find a definitive response on whether or not the set could be washed in the dishwasher, so we thought it wasn’t. We didn’t think a dishwasher was required because these pots and pans are so easy to clean, and dishwashers can harm cookware over time.

price: worth it

At first, we were taken aback by the $395 price tag. That’s about a hundred dollars each piece, after all! After spending some time in the kitchen with this set, however, we quickly realized that it is well worth the money. As Caraway puts it, “well-done cookware is unusual,” and you get what you pay for. The set has a high-end appearance and feels to it, and the cooking, once you get the hang of it, has a high-end feel to it as well. It also includes pot and lid holders, which are missing from other sets, and we think that kind of organization is vital.

competition: stacks up well

Because the Caraway set is so unique, it’s tough to compare it to other cookware. However, if you’re still not convinced, or if you’re searching for a larger set with more pieces, there are lots of other fantastic options available.

Cuisinart multi clad pro stainless 12-piece cookware set

When it comes to kitchen appliances, Cuisinart is a brand that you can’t go wrong with. The Multiclad Pro Stainless 12-Piece Cookware Set includes two saucepans, two skillets, a saute pan, a stockpot, and a steamer insert. Because it is stainless steel, cleaning is more difficult than with the Caraway.

T-fal initiatives ceramic 16-piece cookware set

If you’re looking for a larger set on a budget, the T-fal Initiatives Ceramic 16-Piece Set has a lot to offer. The main cooking surface is ceramic, just like the Caraway cookware, but for about a third of the price, this set also includes a square griddle, a smaller saucepan, and a set of appropriate kitchen accessories.

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