Ceramic Vs. Teflon Frying Pans [Which is Better?]

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Ceramic non stick pan vs. Teflon is a hot debate in the culinary world surrounded by speculations, confusion, and often fear.

And it’s the first decision a consumer has to make when he goes out to buy non-stick cookware. The questions that boggle his mind are:

  • Which cookware is most safe?
  • Which will last long?

The questions about maintenance and performance also come to mind. Not to mention, price and durability factors. All such things combined will help you decide which cookware is better. To clear all the confusion, we have compared ceramic and Teflon non-stick pans side by side, covering all aspects.

Ceramic Vs. Teflon Frying Pans [Which is Better?]

The main difference between Ceramic and Teflon is the non-stick coating composition. While Teflon (PTFE) has a notorious reputation for adverse health effects, Ceramic is considered a healthy alternative option. But besides safety concerns, Teflon is more long-lasting, whereas Ceramic non-stick pans are more prone to scratches and lose non-stick quality considerably faster than Teflon.

Teflon Overview

Teflon is made of the most frictionless substance PTFE (Polytetrafluoroethylene). Teflon is the brand name of the chemical and was discovered in a lab by a researcher who worked for the DuPont company. The company later branded the chemical as Teflon in 1945 and used it in various industries such as firefighting, surgical instruments, etc.

Teflon was first used in the non-stick coating in the 1960s and soon took the cookware industry by storm.

The T-Fal brand introduced Teflon in the pots and pans. Later many other cookware companies followed suit to produce their own lines of non-stick cookware.

Ceramic Coating Overview

Ceramic non-stick coating is based on the combination of Silica (sand) and Oxygen. The coating, known as the sol-gel ceramic coating, is either sprayed on or glazed on the aluminum core of the cookware.

Ceramic non-stick isn’t made entirely of ceramic but has an aluminum core like Teflon non-stick cookware.

Just like Teflon, two or three layers of sol-gel coating can be applied to ceramic non-stick to make the cookware more resilient, scratch-proof, and long-lasting.

Safety of Teflon Cookware

It is one of the main concerns when choosing between ceramic and Teflon cookware.

The reason is Teflon’s composition had a chemical PFOA in it that was lethal to human beings and animals alike. It was causing health threats like cancers, birth anomalies, infertility, and various other diseases. But the PFOA substance was banned by the EPA. So, Teflon non-stick pans manufactured after 2013 are now considered safe.

However, you can’t overheat the Teflon coating (above 500° F) as it releases toxic fumes, causing Teflon-flu, which can result in mild fever, headaches, or chills in humans. Not just that, the fumes are lethal to birds. If this explanation gives you a peace of mind then you can check these best selling non-stick pans without Teflon.

For more information read “Is Teflon cookware safe” to learn about Gen-X – the chemical which replaced PFOA.”

Is Ceramic Cookware Safe?

Ceramic was introduced as a healthy alternative to Teflon non-stick pots and pans. It is generally considered safe, but the aluminum core gets exposed if the coating is scratched. Aluminum can leach into food which can cause neurodegeneration in human beings.

The older ceramic non-stick pans also had traces of lead and cadmium in their coating, which can cause osteoporosis. New ceramic pans from renowned brands don’t have Lead or Cadmium in their coating. If you’re unsure about the presence of toxic chemicals, you can check the manufacturer’s details about the product.

Read in detail: Is Ceramic Non-Stick Cookware Safe?

Temperature Tolerance – Ceramic vs. Teflon Coating

Teflon has a temperature tolerance of 500° F. Heat more than that, and the coating will start showing signs of degradation. If you frequently cook food on high heat, the food will start sticking.

On the other hand, ceramic pans are high-heat resistant. The coating doesn’t start chipping until the pan is heated up to 800° F. (426° C), but the food release characteristics start affecting at the temperature of 662° F.

Since many foods can be cooked under 500° F, any non-stick pans can be used. But for high-heat stir-frying, ceramic is the better option.


All non-stick pans will eventually get scratches, and their non-stick quality will diminish over time due to daily wear and tear. However, non-stick pans made of Teflon have a better lifespan.

A study conducted by Chemorus shows that “Teflon™ nonstick coatings for cookware outperform and outlast “ceramic” coatings 7 to 1.”

But a lot depends on the way you treat the pan. If you adhere to the manufacturer’s guidelines in using and maintaining it, you won’t have to replace your non-stick pan any soon.


As for performance, both Teflon and Ceramic non-stick pots and pans would perform excellently initially. Their performance will decrease as soon as their non-stick coating wears off. Their performance is directly related to durability. If you are using a triple-coated non-stick pan, the pan will not only be durable and scratch-resistant, it will also perform exceptionally well.

In general, Teflon performs better than Ceramic non-stick pans because they are more durable. However, a ceramic pan with triple coating can outperform a Teflon pan with a single coating.

Oven-safe Temperature

Teflon non-stick pans have a maximum temperature threshold of only 500° F. In contrast to that, some ceramic pans can endure 600° F temperature as well. So, if you want a non-stick pan for oven recipes, you can go with ceramic non-stick pans.

Care & Maintenance

Teflon and Ceramic non-stick pans require similar care and maintenance. You shouldn’t use any steel spoons or spatulas on them, nor can you cook at high temperatures. Similarly, washing them in the dishwasher will deteriorate the coating in no time, and scrubbing hard with a metal scrubber will cause scratches. The same rules apply to both kinds of non-stick pans.


Price of non-stick pans, whether Ceramic or Teflon, varies depending on the brand and collection. Teflon is usually cheaper than ceramic, but Teflon pans from premium brands come with a heavy price tag too.

Check some of the prices of Ceramic and Teflon pans here.

Teflon Non Stick Cookware Ceramic Non Stick Cookware

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Ceramic pan safer than Teflon?

Yes, ceramic pans are considered safer than Teflon. And no matter how much you heat your ceramic non-stick pans, they won’t emit any toxic fumes. It isn’t the case with Teflon. New ceramic pans have rooted out the dread of toxic chemicals such as lead and cadmium in the coating. But after the ban of PFOA, Teflon non-stick cookware is also considered safer.

Does ceramic last longer than Teflon?

No, Ceramic non-stick pans don’t last longer than Teflon. But it also depends on how well you use the non-stick pans. If you use ceramic coated pans with proper care, it will increase their shelf-life. Also, triple-coated or triple-layered ceramic pans are more long-lasting than single-coated ceramic pans.

Why do ceramic pans lose their nonstick?

All pans, irrespective of their manufacturing material, lose their non-stick quality with time. Even the best ceramic non-stick pans also lose their non-stickiness due to wear and tear or scratches. The trick to using ceramic pans is never to cook on high heat, scrub the pans, or use steel spatulas on them to prolong their life.

Wrapping Up!

While ceramic is considered a safer non-stick pan than Teflon, Teflon lasts longer than ceramic non-stick pans. Both Teflon and non-stick pans require the same maintenance and care. So, base your decision to choose between them on your preference and needs. If you are worried about toxic fumes or chemicals, you can choose ceramic. But if your preference is a non-stick pan with remarkable and long-lasting performance, then Teflon is the way to go.

About Amelia

Hello, I’m Amelia. Welcome to my blog KitchenUnder100.Com. Over here I regularly post kitchen hacks, reviews of kitchen tools, utensils and related articles. My mission is to search and recommend the best kitchen products, so you don't waste your precious time and money on anything that is not worth it.

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