Best Saute Pans

Characterized by its wide flat base, tall straight sides and a tight-fitting lid, a sauté pan is incredibly versatile. The large surface provides enough room for movement as the meat and vegetables are flipped or tossed in the pan so that they are not overcrowded and the tall sides make it easy to access the food with a spatula while retaining liquids and preventing splattering. The technique of sautéing uses moderately high heat and a small amount of fat to quickly cook foods, retaining their texture and flavor.

Here are the best saute pan for each category:

  1. All-Clad Tri-Ply 3-quart – Best Overall Saute Pan
  2. T-Fal 6-quart Copper Ceramic – Best NonStick Saute Pan
  3. Calphalon Tri-ply 5-quart – Best 5-Quart Saute Pan 
  4. Cuisinart Multi-clad 3½-quart – Best Stainless Steel Saute Pan
  5. Anolon’s 5-quart NonStick – Best Anodized Aluminum Saute Pan

All-Clad Tri-Ply 3-quart Stainless Steel

The All-Clad Tri-Ply 3-quart Stainless Steel sauté pan is well designed and offers superior strength, heat conduction, and durability. Worth every cent it costs, this pan is incredibly versatile and will stand the test of time.

4.6/5

Best Overall

T-Fal 6-quart Copper Ceramic Nonstick

T-Fal’s 6-quart copper ceramic nonstick sauté pan offers superior nonstick coatings that have proven to be very durable. This sauté pan can withstand extremely high heats both on the hob and in the oven without compromising the nonstick layer, which is remarkable.

4.3/5

Best NonStick

Calphalon Tri-ply 5-quart Stainless Steel

The Calphalon tri-ply 5-quart stainless steel sauté pan combines aluminum and stainless steel giving you the ultimate in quality and heat conduction. It is spacious and solid, but not too heavy and uncomfortable with work with, and is equipped with the helper handle one needs when carrying a larger pan. 

4.6/5

Best 5-quart

Cuisinart Multi-clad 3½-quart Stainless Steel 

Cuisinart offers the best stainless steel design in its multi-clad 3½-quart sauté pan. This sauté pan offers all the benefits the more expensive brands offer, but at a much better price and without compromising quality or functionality in any way. Perfect for family cooking, the pan is oven safe to 550F, as well as broiler safe and dishwasher safe.

4.2/5

Best Stainless Steel

Anolon’s 5-quart NonStick

Anolon’s 5-quart nonstick sauté pan lasts for many years because it is made with superior quality materials. The anodized aluminum, graphite nonstick and SureGrip handles can handle rigorous use and high oven temperatures. This pan does not warp and the nonstick coating outlasts most on the market if it used according to the manufacturer’s instructions. This is an excellent aluminum sauté pan.

4.2/5

Best Anodized aluminum

List of Reviewed Saute Pans

All-Clad Tri-Ply 3-Quart Stainless Steel

Features And Performance

This pan has an aluminum core, with a magnetic stainless steel exterior and a stick-resistant stainless steel interior, and it works very well on medium temperatures. It heats evenly from base to rim, holding its heat very well, and releases the food once it is cooked. It is a nice size for the average family with enough surface area for dry heat and good depth for moist heat. It is sturdy but not heavy and the stainless steel lid fits well to facilitate heat control and retain moisture when braising. The pan is oven safe to 500F, but not broiler safe, and while it is advertised as dishwasher safe the manufacturer recommends hand washing.

Quality And Durability

Excellent materials are used in the 3-ply bonded construction of this pan, from the thick-gauge aluminum to the 18/10 stainless steel and they deliver a top-quality pan that is extremely durable. The design offers warp-resistant strength and ultimate heat conduction. All-Clad offers a limited lifetime warranty.

User Reviews

While this pan is more expensive than many other sauté pans, customers who have purchased it are thrilled with the pan. The only complaint some have is that the handle is a little uncomfortable to hold but with regular use, they become quite comfortable with it. 

T-Fal 6-Quart Copper Ceramic Nonstick

Features And Performance

T-fal has added an eco-friendly ceramic nonstick to this pan that is PTFE, PFOA, Cadmium and lead-free. Food does not stick to this pan, it slides out easily and the pan is very easy to clean. The cooking surface can reach 700F, offering even heat distribution and is oven safe to 350F. The pan is suitable for use on an induction hob and is dishwasher safe. This sauté pan is unique with its square shape pan, stainless steel handles and air vent in the lid. 

Quality And Durability

Manufactured using heavy gauge aluminum, the pan itself is extremely durable. The ceramic nonstick coating provides superior stain and scratch resistance and is more durable than most nonstick coatings. This pan is covered by a T-fal’s limited lifetime warranty.

User Reviews

T-fal offers superior nonstick coating and customers are pleasantly surprised its durability. Some customers also commented that the lid handle gets very hot.

Calphalon Tri-Ply 5-Quart Stainless Steel

Features And Performance

Calphalon’s tri-ply design combines aluminum and stainless steel to ensure even heating from base to rim. The wide, flat cooking surface is great for browning, searing and sautéing, and the sides are low enough to allow air to circulate, keeping foods crisp but tall enough to prevent splattering. The pan is dishwasher safe, oven safe to 450F, broiler-safe, and suitable for all stovetops including induction.

Quality And Durability

The combination of heavy-gauge aluminum and stainless steel make this classically designed sauté pan strong and durable. It is eye-catching with its polished stainless steel exterior and satin-finished interior. The long brushed stainless steel handle stays cool on the stovetop and the glass lid is tempered for durability. It is covered by a full lifetime warranty.

User Reviews

Customers enjoy that this pan heats up quickly, cooks evenly, and is easy to care for. A few have found it heavy and too large for their stove and some have found that the bottom warps over time.

Cuisinart Multi Clad Pro 3½–Quart Stainless Steel

Features And Performance

Cuisinart’s Professional triple-ply construction ensures even heat distribution across the bottom and up the sidewalls of this pan and eliminates hot spots, even on medium heat. The tapered rims ensure drip-free pouring and the stainless steel handles stay cool when cooking. The stainless steel lid is tight-fitting, locking in moisture, nutrients, and flavor when cooking. Oven safe to 550F, this sauté pan is also broiler safe and dishwasher safe. 

Quality And Durability

Cuisinart’s limited lifetime warranty backs this top quality pan. The triple-ply design of aluminum sandwiched between two layers of stainless steel is super strong and very durable. The handles are riveted for strength and every part of this pan is built so that it can be used for many years.

User Reviews

This is a strong, sturdy pan with a tight fitting lid and customers are overwhelmingly thrilled with its design, functionality, and durability.

Anolon 5-Quart Nonstick

Features And Performance

This hard-anodized aluminum base is covered with a modern graphite nonstick coating inside and out so that nothing sticks to the pan and it is easy to clean, even if you mess over the sides. The interior of the pan is covered with a triple layer of premium nonstick coating to provide superior performance. Anolon’s signature SureGrip handles are riveted to the pan, are extremely comfortable and heat resistant, and are oven safe to 400F. 

Quality And Durability

Anolon is known for its premium design and quality and this sauté pan does not disappoint. Every single element used in the manufacturing of this pan is superior in quality from the aluminum to the graphite nonstick coating and SureGrip handles, and this is the reason for this pan’s incredible durability. This pan is guaranteed by Anolon’s lifetime warranty.

User Reviews

Customers enjoy cooking with this pan. It is spacious, versatile and genuinely long-lasting. Many customers who have followed manufacturer’s guidelines, and have used the pan on a medium heat without any nonstick sprays, have used their pans for up to 10 years.

Cuisinart 433-30h 5-Quart Stainless Steel

Features And Performance

This large sauté pan is made of premium stainless steel and has an aluminum-encapsulated base that heats up quickly and evenly distributes heat. The pan is oven safe up to 500F, and is also broiler and freezer safe, making this an extremely versatile pan. The tempered glass lids have a stainless steel rim and are oven safe to 350F.

Quality And Durability

Sturdy and well made, this pan is built for long-term performance. It is heavy and durable, with a well-fitting lid. The pan’s handles are stainless steel, very comfortable to use and firmly riveted to the pan. This sauté pan is guaranteed by Cuisinart’s lifetime warranty.

User Reviews

This pan is so attractively designed that customers take it from the oven to the table to serve their guests. The glass lid fits very snuggly but the lid handles get hot. 

Emeril Lagasse 5-Quart Stainless Steel

Features And Performance

This is a large and spacious sauté pan, ideal for cooking for large groups. Made with an encapsulated aluminum base, this stainless steel pan warms up quickly. Suitable for use on all hobs including induction, it is oven safe to 550F and the glass lid is oven safe to 350F. The lid fits well, locking in moisture during extended cooking. This pan is also dishwasher safe for easy cleanup. 

Quality And Durability

The material used in the making of this high-quality pan is solid and durable and the stainless steel handles are riveted to the pan. The encapsulated base is a sturdy design that adds to the pan’s durability.

User Reviews

Customers have been pleasantly surprised how well this pan cooks large meals and how easily it cleans up afterward. It is a very large pan, sometimes covering a second stovetop burner and is quite heavy. Some customers commented that the lid handles get hot.

Calphalon Classic 5-Quart Nonstick

Features And Performance

Designed for everyday cooking, this sauté pan is made from hard-anodized aluminum with a double layer of nonstick coating. The aluminum heats up quickly and evenly distributes heat across the pan. The pan has a wide base and low sides making it spacious enough to sear meats and vegetables, allowing air to circulate and making it easy to stir and flip foods. The long, stainless steel handle stays cool while cooking and the oven-safe glass lid seals in moisture during cooking. This pan is oven safe to 450F.

Quality And Durability

Durable hard-anodized aluminum is used in the construction of this pan and the dual non-stick layer enhances its durability. It is covered by a full lifetime warranty.

User Reviews

While most customers are generally very happy with the purchase of this pan and its durability, some have commented that the aluminum is too light and that the pan warps with time. Some have found that the helper handle and the lid handle get very hot.

Cuisinart 3½-Quart Chef’S Classic Nonstick

Features And Performance

Hard-anodized aluminum and Cuisinart’s signature Quantanium nonstick coating make up this sauté pan. Food does not stick to the Quantanium layer and the pan is really easy to clean. It heats quickly on medium heat and the heat distribution is excellent. Oven safe to 500F, this pan is not dishwasher safe and must be washed by hand. The steel Cool Grip handles are securely riveted to the pan and the flared rim offers drip-free pouring. 

Quality And Durability

Covered by a lifetime warranty, this is a strong pan. While it is not very heavy, it is very sturdy. The multi-layer nonstick coating is strengthened with titanium particles making it extra strong and far more durable than average nonstick coatings. The hard-anodized exterior, Quantanium nonstick coating, Cool Grip handles and the tempered glass lid are all good quality and make up a durable nonstick sauté pan.

User Reviews

Customers enjoy that this pan heats quickly and evenly. Some have commented that the handles get hot and that the lid does not seal well.

Rachel Ray 5-Quart Nonstick

Features And Performance

Uniquely designed, Rachel Ray’s oval sauté pan is made to fit on one stove plate while providing the full benefit of a large 5-quart vessel. Its modern rubberized orange handles are eye-catching and very comfortable to work with. Made from hard-anodized aluminum with a nonstick coating, it heats evenly releases food quickly and the shatter-resistant glass lid seals well to hold in moisture and flavor. The handles are all securely riveted onto the pan and glass lid. The pan and its handles are oven safe to 350F and are also dishwasher safe. 

Quality And Durability

This is a beautiful pan that performs well and the hard-anodized steel provides a sturdy structure. The nonstick coating on this sauté pan works well and is durable. This pan is only oven safe to 350F and the manufacturer warns that using the handles in the oven may cause discoloration. This sauté pan is guaranteed with a limited lifetime warranty.

User Reviews

This pan is a good size for preparing a large meal and most customers are very pleased with its unique design and that it works well. Some customers found the pan warped slightly over time so that the lid no longer fitted tightly. 

Cooks Standard Multi-Ply 5-Quart Stainless Steel

Features And Performance

This 5-quart sauté pan is made of 2 layers of 18/10 stainless steel and an aluminum core offering excellent heat distribution from base to rim. Oven safe to 500F, the riveted handles stay cool and the tight-fitting lid seals in heat and moisture. This is a versatile pan that can be used on any hob and in the oven, but it is not broiler safe. An additional bonus in the design is that the base of this pan is scratch-resistant and it won’t damage your hob. 

Quality And Durability

A multi-element alloy aluminum core is used throughout to attract heat and evenly distribute it throughout the pan. Top-quality stainless steel is bonded to the aluminum core inside and out, and is also used in the lid and handles creating a pan that is beautiful and very durable.

User Reviews

Most customers enjoy using this pan and find it efficient and versatile. Unfortunately, quite a few customers have commented that the base warps within a short space of time.

Woll Diamond Lite 5-Quart Nonstick

Features And Performance

Hand-cast in Germany, this aluminum sauté pan is covered in Woll’s signature ultra hard nonstick coating that contains diamond crystals and very fine nanoparticles. This composition creates a PFOA-free coating that is extremely scratch resistant, and to which food does not stick. The diamonds in the coating are excellent heat generators and together with the aluminum offer good heat conductivity. The cast handle is firmly affixed using a threaded brass insert and is safe to use, but on a pan this size there should be a helper handle. The pan is oven safe to 500F but the glass lid is only oven safe to 480F.

Quality And Durability

This pan itself is well designed and very durable. The handcrafting process ensures that the aluminum is unstressed and free of air pockets, which would decrease the pan’s durability. The extra-tough composition of the nonstick coating is strong enough to be used with metal utensils. This pan is covered by Woll’s limited lifetime warranty.

User Reviews

The nonstick feature of this pan is a huge hit with users and it works very well. Unfortunately, quite a few customers have commented that the nonstick feature only endures roughly 6 months of regular use before losing its effectiveness. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What Makes A Good Sauté Pan?

A good sauté pan should respond quickly to temperature changes, evenly distribute heat across the pan, have a secure-fitting lid to lock in moisture and be able to withstand the oven temperatures you need to use for braising. A helper handle makes lifting and moving the pan from the stovetop to the oven much easier, and is a must-have on larger pans that get heavy once filled with food. 

What Is The Best Size For A Sauté Pan?

The best size for a sauté pan depends on what you are going to use it for and the number of people you are cooking for. A 3-quart pan is a nice size and light to work with, amply cooking a meal for 4 people while a 5-quart pan is larger, a little heavier and suitable for catering for a crowd. The key is to make sure that the sauté pan is not overcrowded with ingredients when cooking.

What Is The Best Material For A Sauté Pan?

Sauté pans come in a variety of metals. Aluminum, which is an excellent heat conductor, is usually covered with a nonstick layer that ensures the food doesn’t stick to the pan and they are usually easy to clean. Stainless steel, on the other hand, is a healthier metal to cook with and does not alter the flavor of the food in any way and because it is porous it creates a smooth surface when it is hot so that food doesn’t stick to it. Stainless steel responds quickly to changes in temperature but is not a good conductor of heat. The combination of stainless steel and aluminum makes the best material for a sauté pan, offering the advantages of both metals and is very durable. The most durable sauté pans are those with warp-resistant bases. 

What Is The Difference Between A Sauté Pan And A Frying Pan?

The difference between a frying pan and a sauté pan is that a frying pan’s base is slightly smaller than its rim and it has curved, shallow sides. Frying also uses more oil than sautéing does and slightly lower temperatures.

What Do You Cook In A Sauté Pan?

From searing to browning, sautéing to braising, this one-pan can be used to whip up a one-pot meal. The large base of the pan makes it ideal for searing larger cuts of meat or bigger quantities at the same time. It is also very effective at quickly cooking vegetables while retaining their moisture and flavor and the tall sides make it ideal for reducing sauces. Once your meat is seared, and you’ve added your vegetables, simply put it in the oven with its tight-fitting lid and let it continue cooking in the oven.