Cookware recommendations

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My 26 year daughter has asked for a "starter" cookware set for Christmas. I will be getting her other things so I don't want to break the budget. Recommendations? Stainless steel or non-stick? Recommended brands?

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  • CharChary
    CharChary Posts: 220 Member
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    T Fal cookware! It is affordable and nonstick. I am just starting out on my own/in my own apartment and got a whole set and its been almost a year and I still don't need any kind of butter or oil on a pan when I make eggs.

    wonderful pans!

    also get her some Rubberware! It's a youngins best friend.
  • Sharont213
    Sharont213 Posts: 323 Member
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    Spend as much as you can to get quality cookware that will last a long time. What kind of cook is she? Calphalon has some great pieces in both a nonstick and a "glide" format.
  • vvvalentines
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    I just moved out to my first "real" (non-campus) apartment. We have a few pots and pans. I mostly use my small nonstick frying pan, a medium metal saucepan with a lid for making rice/pasta, and a bigger nonstick stockpot for making soups. If she's cooking for just one or two, you can get a lot done with those pieces. Add a big casserole/baking dish and you're nearly set so basic cooking.

    I also use my stick blender all the time because I like smoothies and pureed soups.
  • StacyReneO
    StacyReneO Posts: 317 Member
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    I used to have T Fal til I learned about all the nasty chemicals it can leach during cooking if you get even the slightest scratch. I would go with a stainless steel set. You can find some great deals on QVC or HSN as well as using a 20% coupon at Bed, Bath & Beyond. I have a few stainless pieces I have purchased thru special sales, but honestly prefer all my cast iron pans and Le Creuset pots over anything. Cast iron pans are really inexpensive and last forever, only getting better and better with age and proper seasoning.
  • efcdcdb
    efcdcdb Posts: 392 Member
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    She's not really much of a cook. She is currently a graduate student and has lived the "college apartment" life with other girls, for years. She is planning on moving in with her boyfriend after the Spring semester, since that's when her current lease is up. I think she is interested in cooking, and learning to make new things - just hasn't had a lot of opportunity so far. I do have a 20% Bed Bath & Beyond coupon and was kind of leaning in that direction.
  • MeanderingMammal
    MeanderingMammal Posts: 7,866 Member
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    My 26 year daughter has asked for a "starter" cookware set for Christmas. I will be getting her other things so I don't want to break the budget. Recommendations? Stainless steel or non-stick? Recommended brands?

    Given what you've said I'd suggest stainless steel; wok and steamer stack should actually do for most use. Then some utensils, particularly a couple of good knives; chefs and utility or a large and small santuko.
  • navyrigger46
    navyrigger46 Posts: 1,301 Member
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    I like Cast Iron personally, but honestly, I'd cheap out on the first set of pans. Spend some coin on a nice bit of cutlery. The most important cooking implement is a quality knife.

    Rigger
  • vvvalentines
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    I like Cast Iron personally, but honestly, I'd cheap out on the first set of pans. Spend some coin on a nice bit of cutlery. The most important cooking implement is a quality knife.

    Rigger

    I agree on getting a good set of knives. That set only really has to be a couple steak knives, a utility knife, and a chef's knife (not a huge and $$$ block set) to get you through 95% of anything you might want to cook.
  • mmapags
    mmapags Posts: 8,934 Member
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    Go to a Restaurant supply store and get some good stainless steel. A 12 inch and an 8 inch frypan/sauté pan, a 1 quart, 3 quart and 5 quart sauce pans and a stock pot is a good starter set. This will be your highest quality, lowest cost option. Or go online to sites like Big Tray or Restaurant Equippers. I personally would stay away from junk like T-Fal. FTR, I am a professional chef and semi retired catering company and restaurant owner.
  • brika63
    brika63 Posts: 8 Member
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    I would stay away from non-stick coated pans. Toxins. There have been so many recalls and a lot of those products are still sold on the web.You could check Consumer Reports. They have plenty of reviews. I bought a set of Wolfgang Puck's Stainless Steel. Purchased on HSN. I love it. I never had a problem of food sticking or difficulty in cleaning.
  • meshashesha2012
    meshashesha2012 Posts: 8,326 Member
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    I would stay away from non-stick coated pans. Toxins. There have been so many recalls and a lot of those products are still sold on the web.You could check Consumer Reports. They have plenty of reviews. I bought a set of Wolfgang Puck's Stainless Steel. Purchased on HSN. I love it. I never had a problem of food sticking or difficulty in cleaning.

    agree with this. I love ny stainless steel cuisinart. not that much of an investment really considering how long the crappy sets last.
  • CorlissaEats
    CorlissaEats Posts: 493 Member
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    Do you have IKEA in your area? Both my mother and I really like their pots and pans. They are very affordable too!
  • Dgadd17
    Dgadd17 Posts: 49 Member
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    If you have one nearby, Costco is another great source for a good starter set of stainless. The cost is very reasonable, and you end up with a decent-sized set of cookware, often with bonus utensils included.
  • fittocycle
    fittocycle Posts: 827 Member
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    I vote for stainless. I have nonstick now and can't wait to get rid of the set in favor of stainless!
  • fittocycle
    fittocycle Posts: 827 Member
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    You could also check out ceramic cookware. From what I've seen, it has gotten good reviews!
  • efcdcdb
    efcdcdb Posts: 392 Member
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    No Ikea and no Costco. We have Sam's Club and BJ's. I actually bought a set of T-Fal at BJ's but then returned it. I am kind of leaning toward stainless steel after reading through some of these posts, and other online reviews. Thanks everyone. If anyone has other thoughts, keep 'em comin'!