Jul 28, 2023

Best Cookware for Gas Stoves in 2022

From cast iron, to nonstick, to stainless steel, we’ve selected the best sets to promote easy, even cooking.

By Cathryn Haight

Published on September 7, 2022

By Cathryn Haight

Published on September 7, 2022

Close your eyes and picture your dream kitchen: it probably has a well-equipped gas stove, right? Ours definitely does—there's just something so intuitive about cooking with gas, seeing the visual change in temperature as you adjust the knobs. And along with your dream stove, you’ll need a set of pots and pans that will do it justice, which is why we’ve taken the time to find the best cookware for gas stoves. We did intensive research to find the best set made in a variety of different materials—from cast iron, to non-stick, to classic stainless steel—so all cooks can find cookware that's simpatico with their preferences. And before we dove in, we consulted Jeremy Sewall—James Beard-nominated cookbook author and the pioneering chef behind iconic Boston seafood spot Row 34—to find out his favorite cookware for a gas stove is (spoiler alert: it's our overall top pick, too). Keep reading to see what pots and pans made the cut in our list of the best cookware for gas stoves.

Material: Stainless steel | Ply: 5 | Number of pieces in set: 10

Why we chose it: Five alternating layers of stainless steel and aluminum result in even cooking and supreme durability: we’re all-in on All-Clad.

All Clad pioneered the process of multi-clad construction—a God-send when it comes to quick and even heating—so it's no surprise that this set slots into our top spot. What's unique about this bonded 5-ply set is that it features two layers of thin, heat-conducting aluminum stacked in alternating layers with durable stainless steel. This prevents pesky hot spots—which can occur with flimsier pots and pans—and creates the perfect marriage of heat conductivity and retention, resulting in extremely consistent cooking (a big deal, given temperature consistency is harder to achieve with gas). This intelligent layering also helps mitigate burning (at the expense of it being a little less responsive to quick temperature adjustments than their thinner counterparts) and will keep food warmer longer with the stove off before you serve it.

And though this is a real workhorse of a set, it's not without numerous little luxuries: The sturdy handles of each pot and pan are comfortable to hold and heat resistant—each is even equipped with a small nub on the underside to get your attention if your hand is sliding too close to the danger zone. The lid handles are much wider and easier to grip, too. We especially love the flared rim of each piece, which helps with drip-free pouring (and in turn, keeping black marks off your pots). They’re also ideal for sliding freshly fried eggs from skillet to plate.

Material: Stainless steel | Ply: 3 | Number of pieces in set: 12

Why we chose it: Each piece in this robustly equipped set is well-constructed and performs great on gas, nimbly responding to quick temperature shifts for accurate cooking at a lower price.

You can give your entire cookware collection a refresh for under $300 with this 12-piece set—a good one at that. Each piece features premium stainless steel sandwiched around an aluminum core. The thinner walls and aluminum center allow these pots and pans to work in tandem with a gas burner—responding as quick to temperature shifts as the flame itself, which comes in handy for things like gently melting Parmesan into a velvety pasta sauce where you want your heat level to decrease rapidly. While we typically might gravitate toward the durability and heft of a 5-ply, we find this set performs surprisingly well given its thinner frame.

There's no skimping on other high-end design features either. The handles are riveted (rather than welded like on many lower-priced cookware pieces), so they won't snap off when transporting heavy batches of soup and sauce, though we’d recommend using a potholder while holding them as they can get a little hot. And the tempered glass lids won't shatter if they slip from your fingers—plus, they’re mostly interchangeable, saving you time rifling through your kitchen cabinets for the right fit. Bonus: Each pot and pan is oven and dishwasher-safe.

Material: Cast iron | Ply: N/A | Number of pieces in set: 5

When it comes to cooking with cast iron, our gas cookware expert—chef Jeremy Sewall—says it's Lodge or bust. The over 100-year-old brand is widely beloved by chefs, home cooks, and Saveur staff members alike—and this handy bundle of essentials includes a griddle, two skillets, and a Dutch oven. What we love about Lodge is that it's not too pricey, but performs exquisitely and offers a few smart details—like pour spouts on either side of the pan and a helper handle. Plus, the pans arrive pre-seasoned which is great for cast iron beginners, though we would recommend an extra preseason with oil just to improve the pan's nonstick capabilities right off the bat—even finicky foods like fried eggs will slide out smoothly. And though it might take a little longer for cast iron pieces to heat up, the retention and cooking consistency is unmatched—a big benefit when cooking with gas.

Material: Stainless steel | Ply: 5 | Number of pieces in set: 14

Why we chose it: Even delicate foods can slide out of this stainless steel set like butter, thanks to a special treatment process that makes the interiors of the pots and pans more nonstick.

Demeyere is a favorite of European chefs and we can see why. What sets this cookware apart from other stainless steel varieties is that its surface is treated through a special process which gives it extra nonstick properties and extra durability. We also love how thick the base of each piece in this set is, which won't warp with the quick heat fluctuations that you can pull off on a gas stove. Its aluminum core is thicker than in certain other pots and pans, which does wonders to improve conductivity, but the handles won't get hot since their open v- shape guides heat away from your fingers. We also how manageable the long handles feel in the palm, and the sturdy lid handles and helper handles on some of the pots are open enough and large enough to easily grip with oven mitts. And of course, the 5-ply stainless steel construction will hold up to daily use.

Material: Aluminum, nonstick coating | Ply: 3 | Number of pieces in set: 12

Why we chose it: No pot or pan will ever look as good sitting on your stove as one of these—their glossy shine and candy colors are almost as impressive as their slick nonstick interiors.

This eye-catching cookware isn't just for looks, it has exceptional nonstick properties. You can slide a burger patty or seared Brussels sprouts out with just a gentle tilt of the pan (and in turn, it cleans up with a swipe of a dish towel). These retain heat relatively well for nonstick, which is wonderful for cooking with gas. And of course, the heat spreads around well given the substantial aluminum core. Plus, the coating is mineral-based and non-toxic. Although the paler colors available are lovely, we’re a bit worried they could get black staining over time, so perhaps opt for a darker color if these are going to be in your regular rotation. A little detail we love: there's a notch on the underside of the handle to let you know when your hand is entering the hot zone.

Material: Stainless steel exterior, titanium and aluminum core | Ply: N/A | Number of pieces in set: 10

Why we chose it: Layers of titanium give this cookware set extra strength, so they’re tough enough to get tossed around a professional kitchen (or your everyday cooking rotation).

Hestan's Nanobond line claims to be 400% stronger than stainless steel—and we believe it. These luxe pots and pans are professional grade: they’re handcrafted in Italy from thousands of wafer-thin titanium layers bonded together between a stainless steel surface and extra-conductive aluminum core. They stand up extremely well to everyday wear and tear and are resistant to scratches. We also love the intelligent design elements incorporated into this set. For example, the sides of the skillets stand up straighter than others, which gives you more cooking room, cool touch handles, and flush rivets (which will wipe clean and won't collect food bits). And most importantly, they heat evenly across the base and side walls, so you won't have to shuffle around your meat or veggies as much to get a consistent cook. (They’re also usable up to 1,050°F, so feel free to cook with these on the grill, too if your heart or recipe desires.)

Material: Carbon steel, beechwood | Ply: N/A | Number of pieces in set: 1

Why we chose it: One of the best woks out there: carbon steel provides a sturdy base, while a textured interior promotes airflow under food and keeps it from sticking to the surface (no more burnt eggs or mangled fish filets!).

Woks are incredibly versatile and tailor-made for open-flame cooking, so we decided to include one of our favorites in our list. This one is crafted from carbon steel (which is extra sturdy) and has a unique dimpled interior texture, which gives the pan great nonstick properties straight from the box since there's less material for food to stick to (though we do recommend an initial seasoning for best results). The interior also undergoes a nitriding process that results in a unique iron nitride coating that combats rusting and increases durability. The long handle (and the accompanying lid's knob) is shaped from beechwood, which not only looks elegant, but also doesn't hold heat at all.

Perhaps the top benefit of cooking with gas is how nimble it is in responding to a cook's needs when changing temperatures; it heats in a flash and adjusts immediately with the turn of a knob. A good pot or pan for a gas stove must possess three important qualities: the ability to heat evenly, to retain heat, and to shift temperatures with the stove. Much of this comes down to ply—or, how many layers of material make up the vessel. We feel that 5-ply is the sweet spot for gas stoves, since it's thick enough to heat evenly and hold onto to heat to promote consistent cooking (unlike 3-ply), yet thin enough to react to temperature changes (unlike 7-ply).

While you should feel free to use nearly any material on a gas stove, there are some that naturally perform better than others. And mostly, it takes a combination of materials. For example, stainless steel is often seen as the top choice for gas stoves—it's tough, non-reactive, and relatively easy to maintain—but it typically sandwiches an aluminum or copper core, which both are excellent heat conductors but prone to warping on their own. All in all, feel free to choose whichever material suits your preference (which is why we included a range in this article); —we know a nonstick devotee might not make the jump to cast iron overnight.

You can imagine how hard cooking over an open flame can be on your pans. That's why durability is paramount when it comes to selecting cookware for your gas stove. Look for vessels that have well-affixed handles on both their bodies and lids, with thick bottoms and high-quality materials. And don't be afraid of investing in a set that's on the pricey side (if your budget allows), since splurging on quality now will ensure your cookware will perform well now and for decades to come.

Beyond just the basic body of the pot or pan, consider if you’d enjoy any additional bells and whistles that would improve your cooking experience. Heat-resistant handles are wonderful when a pot holder isn't handy and glass lids vs. solid ones help you more easily monitor your food as it simmers away. Some materials might be dishwasher safe, cutting down on cleanup time. And if a shimmery copper exterior or candy-colored enamel gets you even more excited to spend time in the kitchen, we say go for it.

"What I like about cooking with gas is I can see it," says Sewall. "Seeing how high or low the heat is on what you are cooking is a great advantage when cooking and having the ability to make subtle adjustments gives you the best chance of success."

You don't need special pans to cook on a gas stove, though our chef expert feels some materials fare better than others. "Heavy duty stainless steel is also great for cooking but don't be afraid of a good ol nonstick pan for simple tasks," says Sewall. "I don't love aluminum pans on gas, they tend to be thinner metal and hard to control over direct fire from gas stoves."

Yes—in fact, it's one of chef Sewall's favorite materials to cook with. "I love cast iron when cooking on gas, it holds the heat better than most pans and gives a great cooking surface."

Black-bottomed pots are caused by quick, high-heat cooking or having too much heat concentrated on one specific area. Cooking longer over lower heat will prevent this, but don't worry if that's not possible—simply remove the marks with a little oven cleaner. A regularly cleaned stove also helps mitigate black marks, since food and oil left on the burners can smoke.

Sewall says: "Spend the money on good pans and take care of them. If you buy quality they should last for generations to come."

All in all, the best cookware for gas stoves depends on your preferences. If you’re a fanatic about cast iron or tend to stick to nonstick pots and pans, having cookware that you feel comfortable with ultimately wins out. However, it's best to have a set that retains heat, heats evenly, and is fairly quick to adjust to the temperature shifts intrinsic to cooking with gas. We love 5-ply stainless steel sets for this reason—with the All-Clad being our ultimate winner for its high performance at a modest price. The cookware set is both sturdy and stunning enough to be a kitchen heirloom for years to come.

To find the very best cookware for gas stoves, we considered the following categories: material quality, heat conductivity, heat retention, temperature responsiveness, and durability—taking advice from chef and award-winning cookbook author Jeremy Sewall during our search. Our winners are cookware pieces that will stand up to open-flame cooking and truly improve your technique—with no hot spots or warp-prone materials.

We also decided to focus mostly on sets—not only because a set looks streamlined in your kitchen cabinets, but because once you find a pot or pan from a line that you love (and more importantly, know how it suits your stove and cooking needs specifically) it's beneficial to carry that throughout your everyday cooking. However, there are many opportunities to mix and match individual items from the collections we featured if you prefer to build your arsenal piece by piece. We also decided to extend our research to find a top-notch wok, since they’re made for open-flame cooking.

Our Top Picks Best Overall: Best Value: Best Cast Iron: Best Stainless Steel: Best Nonstick: Best Professional Grade: Best Wok: Best Overall: Pros Cons Why we chose it: Best Value: Pros Cons Why we chose it: Best Cast Iron: Pros Cons Best Stainless Steel: Pros Cons Why we chose it: Best Nonstick: Pros Cons Why we chose it: Best Professional Grade: Pros Cons Why we chose it: Best Wok: Pros Cons Why we chose it: Things to Consider Before Buying Cookware for Gas Stoves Heat Conductivity Material Durability Finishing Touches FAQs What are the advantages of cooking with a gas stove? Do you need special pans for the gas stove? Can you use cast iron on a gas stove? Why is my gas stove making my pots black? What's a top, chef-approved tip for choosing cookware for a gas stove? Final Thoughts Methodology