Ceramic non-stick cookware removes the uncertainty created by Teflon pans regarding safety. Ceramic non-stick range is free of all the evils of harmful chemicals like PFOA and PTFE and brings the ease of cooking delicious dishes guilt-free (without using lots of oil).
And yes, ceramic cookware is aesthetically pleasing to look and cook and instantly uplifts the kitchen’s look. But like every other non-stick, ceramic cookware doesn’t last a lifetime.
In This Article
- How Long Does Ceramic Cookware Last?
- Expectation Vs. Reality in Ceramic Non-Stick Lifespan
- Why Ceramic Pans Lose Their Non-stick Ability?
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Wrapping Up!
How Long Does Ceramic Cookware Last?
Ceramic non-stick pans generally last less than a year even if you are properly taking care of the non-stick pan (by adhering to the non-stick usage rules). And if you are habitual of cooking at high heat or use metal spoons and forks, the ceramic non-stick cookware will lose its non-stick ability sooner than you’d expect.
Expectation Vs. Reality in Ceramic Non-Stick Lifespan
Manufacturers often state that the ceramic non-stick would last 2-3 years. But in reality, the non-stick starts deteriorating sooner than that.
So it would help if you kept a realistic non-stick ceramic lifespan in mind before splurging on a high-end ceramic set. What we are saying about non-stick ceramic pans isn’t just out of thin air but from experience and observation.
Over the years, we have tried several non-stick pans, including ceramics and Teflon, used and abused them, and replaced them. So we know why the ceramics don’t last long, how to improve their longevity, comparison with Teflon and when to replace the non-stick ceramic pans.
Most of the ceramic pans we owned never lasted more than a year (9-10 months maximum), and some even failed within the first six months of buying it. We even encountered pans that lost their non-stick ability after a few uses (or, you can say, abuse).
Why Ceramic Pans Lose Their Non-stick Ability?
Here’s why the ceramic pans quickly lose their non-stick quality.
High Heat Cooking
Ceramic non-stick is somewhat unforgiving, and high heat weakens the non-stick ceramic coating, which eventually starts chipping and scratching even if you are using a wooden or silicone spatula on it. For high temperature you can check these non-stick pans for high heat.
We often use steel spatulas on our non-stick pans, and while some tougher Teflon Pans can bear steel spatulas, they are the death of non-stick ceramic pans. Even after using steel spatulas a few times, we noticed scratches that can’t be fixed by any possible means. It is how we lost one of our non-stick ceramic pans after only a few uses.
Abrasive cleaning includes not only scrubbing it with steel wool vigorously but also includes washing it in the dishwasher. Even if the manufacturer gives a green signal to wash the ceramic pan in the dishwasher, the abrasive and harsh detergent of the dishwasher withers the non-stick coating.
Sudden Temperature Change
The sudden temperature change can cause the non-stick pan to warp. So avoid washing the pan immediately after cooking. Dipping a hot pan into the water also ruins the non-stick pan. Let it cool down completely before running the water over it.
Heating an Empty Non-Stick Pan
Unlike stainless steel pans, it is not advisable to heat the pan empty. An empty ceramic pan can heat so fast, which is detrimental to the coating. Always add a few spoons of oil and swirl it around before turning on the heat.
Why Some Ceramic Pans Last Longer than Others?
Not all ceramic pans are created equal. The type and strength of the coating, the method of curing the pan after coating, and the inner aluminum layer’s strength determines how long it will last.
You might have heard some brands work better than others. Let us tell you, even among brands, only a few among their range are long-lasting and perform better than others.
So, what makes the difference?
In general, if the non-stick coating is applied more than once and is cured over the highest temperature, it will last longer.
No idea about how the ceramic coating is applied? Let’s just briefly talk about it.
The truth is ceramic non-stick coating doesn’t have ceramic in it. The coating is made of inorganic silica and oxygen. The gel-like coating is then sprayed over aluminum or dipped into it. This process is known as the spin-coating technique. A rotatable fixture holds the pan, and the pan is rotated so that a thin, even coating is dispensed on the surface.
After the coating is applied, the pan is cured at a high temperature to make the coating more robust and scratch-resistant.
Some manufacturers apply the coating more than once. So, instead of a thin layer, the ceramic coating is thicker. Some ceramic coatings are infused with diamond dust to make them more resilient.
For example, the Blue Diamond pan is infused with diamond dust to make a stronger coating.
GreenPan Searsmart uses the most advanced Thermolon ceramic coating with the diamond infusion.
Some collections that have hard-anodized aluminum as the base material perform better than those with regular aluminum.
For instance, Calphalon Classic and Catham GreenPan use hard-anodized aluminum instead of regular aluminum as a base material.
When to Replace Your Ceramic Non-Stick Pans?
- When the food starts sticking and seasoning the pan isn’t enough to bring back the non-stick ability, it shows that the pan needs to be replaced.
- Slight scratches on the non-stick ceramic pan don’t mean it should be replaced, but when it is highly scratched, you need to replace it.
- If your pan is warped due to thermal shock and is now wobbly and uneven, it’s time to throw the pan.
- If the ceramic pan’s handle has become loose and can’t be fixed, replace the pan.
- If you use an older ceramic pan with lead or cadmium in the coating, it should be replaced.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is ceramic cookware bad?
No, ceramic cookware isn’t bad at all. In fact, it is toxic-free and makes healthier food than other non-stick pans. However, avoid buying the non-stick ceramic pan with lead or cadmium in the coating as these are toxic chemicals that can leach into the food.
Are scratched ceramic pans safe?
Minor scratches on ceramic pans don’t pose any health threat. But highly scratched pans should be avoided as it increases the chances of aluminum leaching in the food. Not just that, the tiny flakes of ceramic coating have the possibility of getting mixed in the food, which can be ingested accidentally.
What is the safest cookware for your health?
- Among non-stick cookware, ceramic non-stick is considered the safest, provided the coating doesn’t have lead or cadmium in it.
- Having said that, among regular cookware, stainless steel is also one of the safest cookware. And while cast iron can leach iron into food, it also falls under safe consumption limits.
- Enameled cast iron doesn’t leach iron in the food and is also one of the safest cookware around.
Most ceramic cookware has a lifespan of less than a year. Taking care of ceramic pans is the key to prolonging their life. Using abrasive methods for cleaning ceramic frying pans or cooking on high heat reduces the non-stick pans life to only a few months. And when we compare Teflon Vs. Ceramic in terms of durability, Teflon’s coating is stronger.