Toss the Teflon

Recycla has found herself to be in a sticky situation lately. Specifically, she knows she shouldn’t cook with Teflon-coated pans, but how can she scramble eggs and not have them stick?

Why is Teflon bad? The chemicals used in its creation are now considered to be likely carcinogens. The high temperatures used in cooking can cause Teflon to come off and it’s made worse if you’re using a sharp utensil to stir your stir fry. You definitely don’t want toxins in your hash browns!

So what’s an eco cook to do? Luckily, there are options:

  • cast iron — Yes it’s heavy and yes it can be difficult to clean, but if it worked for your grandma, it will work for you. And, yes, some cast iron, such as Le Creuset is expensive, but it will last you for a lifetime and you’ll more than recoup your investment.
  • Cuisinart Green Gourmet — Three pan options with ceramic nonstick interiors and stay-cool handles. The scratch-resistant surface won’t peel, unlike Teflon. Made with 70% recycled steel.
  • All-Clad — Recycla is a big fan of All-Clad pans, as they aren’t coated with Teflon, but food doesn’t stick. These are heavy-duty cooking vessels and will last a lifetime. Accordingly, the prices tend to be higher, but you can find bargains on eBay and in stores like TJ Maxx or Marshall’s.

Do any of you have cookware you can recommend?

The Eco Women are not employed by any of the companies mentioned, nor were they paid to review these products. Image courtesy of Le Creuset.

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8 thoughts on “Toss the Teflon

  1. Crazy. I knew that about teflon and I’m still cooking with the Revereware I got in college–it’s a 7 piece set and it’s never done me wrong!

  2. We have the very old, my husband’s grandmother got them for wedding gifts, cast iron skillets and pots. They are well seasoned and nothing sticks! We love them!

  3. I really want to try the Green Gourmet stuff! We’ve had our cookware since we first started cooking together ~ 11 years ago ~ but that’s just not a fun thing to budget for… One of these days we will!

  4. My husband is a chef by trade and now works in the equipment supply side of all things involving commerical kitchens. As such, we have, of course, some of the best-of-the-best kitchen goodies, including a number of Le Creuset items.

    Having said that, their is a more economical alternative to Le Creuset – and it’s nearly identical to Le Creuset. (This is because the two brands are related.) It’s called Le Chasseur or sometimes just – Chasseur.

    I’ve read that it is actually commercial quality, while Le Creuset is domestic quality. I also read that Le Chasseur comes with a 10 year guarantee. Pretty good for a commerical product that would take a beating in a restaurant kitchen.

    You should be able to source it online or through your local Hospitality & Catering Equipment supplier.

  5. I have had a couple of teflon pans and I finally gave up on them because I eventually kill them. I have also had a cast-iron skillet for almost 14 years so of course it is now very well seasoned. If you go camping much, take it with and you can give it a real good season over the open fire. This past Christmas my hubby got me two more smaller cast iron skillets and I’ve found that if I use olive oil, food doesn’t stick as much as with butter or canola oil. Eggs are usually the worst but with the olive oil clean up is a sinch.

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