Viking Cookware is one of the biggest and best brands to consider when it comes to buying quality kitchenware.
Over the years, they have done an impressive job of adding various sets and lines of products to their catalog. Coming with the promise of providing the best cookware at an affordable price, they must have been doing something right if they are in the market for this long.
Today, we take a hard, long look at most of the cooking sets Vikings has in the market. Here, we look at what makes them special and where they could be major dealbreakers for some.
If you have been looking to add some Viking cookware to your kitchen, this is the piece you have been looking for.
How did Viking Cookware Come to Be?
The best companies are those borne out of the need to solve a problem rather than just make some money, and the same is true for Viking.
Founded by Fred Carl, Jr. in the 1980s, he had the dream for Vikings Cookware when he started building his own home and couldn’t find the right range of cooking sets that he wanted. This supported him into creating a franchise that would be known today for bringing high-quality picks to the market for a fraction of the price, while still delivering on all fronts.
Although the first manufacturing plant of the company was set up in Mississippi, USA, they now manufacture some of its products in China and Belgium.
Today, they have a wide range of products – starting from the 3-ply stainless steel cookware, 3-ply copper clad cookware set, 5-ply stainless steel cookware, their set of anodized products, non-stick design and as well, enameled picks.
1 Viking Professional 5-Ply Stainless Steel Cookware Set (5 Piece, 7 Piece & 10 Piece)
For the best cooking performance and energy management, Viking developed this 5-Ply cooking set. What makes it special from the others they have in the same series?
The 5-Ply cooking set is developed with five different layers of metal meshed together for a single, uniform effect.
Mere looking at the items in this set, you might not notice that it comes with three aluminum sheets in between the stainless-steel interior and exterior.
The importance of this is the better heat conduction by the aluminum sheets, allowing for better heat distribution in the sides and bottom of the pan. That enables the pans to reach uniform temperature faster, providing for a more even cooking.
The stainless steel on the outside of this cookware set makes it suitable for all kinds of cooking tops – with the inclusion of induction stoves too. Furthermore, all the units have their handles attached by means of riveting, ensuring they do not just fall off after continuous use.
It is even better that each handle has a double rivet in place, helping to handle weights in the cooking pans and pots better.
Given that the sets come with important units for handling different kinds of cooking, the pressure is evenly distributed to ensure the entire set lasts long.
On another front, all units in this set are safe for use in the oven, boiler and on grills – up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit, at least.
If you are someone who does a lot of frying, you might soon find it unappealing that Viking has left out a lid from the frying pans.
Likewise, the finish is not as great as you might expect. Users have reported getting scratches on the base of the metal pots after first use. That, and there is the tendency for cooking materials (such as salt) to stick to the bottom of these pans.
Notable Picks in the Set
Some of the most notable single picks in this set are:
- Fry Pans – These are made available in 8 inch and 10-inch options. You can also decide to pick up your preferred option in either the stainless steel or non-stick model, depending on your kitchen needs.
- Sauce Pans – Like the fry pans, these are also available in options of 2 and 3 Quarts. They both come with a stainless-steel lid and manufacturing specs as the other units in this set.
2 Viking Contemporary 3-Ply Stainless Steel Cookware (5 Piece, 7 Piece & 10 Piece)
Like the model above, this set also comes with multiple layers of metals for the best experience. Unlike the layer above, this set is as unique as they come. What’s different under the hood?
Here, Viking made use of three different layers of metal – hence the name of the entire set.
Like the set above, Viking opted for an aluminum middle layer in between two stainless steel materials for the best effect. The stainless steel on the outside and inside will help make the cookware compatible for cooktops while it’s aluminum core promises better heating with improved heat distribution.
Made in the form of a Windsor pan, this cookware set is as aesthetically pleasing as it is functional. Speaking of functionality, angled-out conical sides provide for better evaporation. This is in addition to heat-retaining walls to ensure faster cooking times.
Finally, the use of glass lids makes it possible to keep an eye on your cooking without having to open the pot – dropping the internal cooking temperature in the process.
On the outside (both interior and exterior) of this set comes heavy gauge stainless steel which will take about any kind of abuse you throw at it.
The handles on every unit in this set might have been designed for a secure grip, but they are meant to do so much more. One look at the rivets on them, and you know they are there to stay.
Able to withstand up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit in all of ovens, boilers and grills, this cookware will handle a massive range of cooking operations without breaking a sweat. Of course, the glass will not survive that much heat, capping out as 450 degrees Fahrenheit instead.
To put your mind at ease on the durability, Viking has promised a lifetime warranty on the product.
For all its good intentions, the Viking Contemporary 3-Ply Stainless Steel Cookware is made in China even though it is advertised otherwise. However, you might be willing to look beyond that for the functionality this set brings on board.
Speaking of functionality, the small frying pan is not evenly matched with its insanely long, heavy handle. That can cause it to tip over by itself during use.
Perhaps the biggest problem with this unit is its bad sticking habit. Just about anything that can stick will surely stick, so get ready for some serious cleaning after frying operations.
Given that the unit was not advertised as a non-stick pan in the first place, though, this should not be too much of a dealbreaker for you.
Notable Picks in the Set
All the individual units in this set stand out in the operation they offer. Still, we are impressed by the engineering and functionality of the:
- Fry Pans – The set comes with both the 8 inch and 10-inch frying pans. Depending on which set you go for, you might get either or both of these. Note that they are made from stainless steel, so they will have items stick to them (depending on use)
- Sauté Pan – The specialized sauté pan comes in a dependable 3.2-quart sizing option. It also ships with its own glass lid which aids better cooking in more ways than one.
3 Viking Hard Anodized Non-stick Cookware Set (10 Piece)
Beyond cooking sets with multiple layers stands a non-stick alternative. While the former units pride themselves in carrying layered metals to ensure faster cooking and better heat distribution, non-stick options are developed to make the user’s life easier.
Food items tend to stick to the inside of cookware when they are in use – and this is especially common when you are engaging in frying operations. To combat that, these units have been coated on the inside with PFOA-standard non-stick coating.
What that means is that food will no longer stick to the inside of the pot, making cleaning operations a breeze. Fortunately, this set doesn’t sacrifice functionality for merely ensuring foods can be scraped off easily.
Coming with a middle layer of aluminum, heat transfer across the bottom and sides of the cookware is as effective as can be. The middle aluminum material, being anodized so much it has become twice as strong as steel, suddenly becomes better for heat management and transfer.
Coming with measurement lines on the inside, the cookware becomes more functional in the addition and reduction of ingredients during cooking. Did we mention the glass lids for better monitoring of your cooking without having to open the pots/ pans?
One big issue with non-stick cooking materials is the eroding of the non-stick material over time. Thankfully, Viking has provided three layers of non-stick coating to fight against that.
All the units in this set have also been specially treated for compatibility with ovens, grills and induction cooktops. However, the smaller (8 inches) frying pan is not suitable for use on induction cookers.
Barring that, cleaning the cookware is a breeze, all thanks to the engineering. Likewise, they are suitable for cleaning in the dishwasher if that is more of your thing.
Completed with firmly riveted handles to ensure longevity, the tempered glass tops will also do well to resist breaking from impact and heat.
It is interesting that there is not much to go on here. These pans work as well as they are described, and you would hardly find anything you didn’t like about them.
Common user reviews have mentioned the handles getting a little warm to hot at times. This is to be expected if you are using the cookware on the closed cooktop (such as closed grills and ovens).
Likewise, some users have even reported that all the pans are induction cookware-compatible, as opposed to what the manufacturer advertises.
Notable Picks in the Set
Personally, we love all the units in this cookware set category. We are especially in love with the:
- Fry Pans – which have been developed in two size ranges of 10 and 12 inches, best accommodating any and all frying operations.
- Dutch oven – Lest we forget, the non-stick Dutch oven pick is also a beauty to behold. Coming in at a 5-quart capacity, this unit will handle anything you throw at it.
4 Viking Enamel Cast Iron Cookware Set
Taking the cookware game to another level is this addition from Viking. Coming with the standard cooking options and wares that you would see on every other cookware; the internals are as different as can be.
It is one thing for cookware to look great on the outside – all thanks to the enamel coating. It is yet another thing to make sure all parts of the cookware engineering make it functional enough for the work it is intended for.
The latter is what Viking was able to achieve here.
When discussing the technology behind the make of this set, two things should be kept in mind. The first is on how this unit comes with a cast iron finish while also adding enamel to the entire feel.
For the first part, cast iron is one of the most conductive metals on the market today. That makes it a very good fit for your kitchen since you now get to cook foods at low to medium temperatures while getting the same effect you would from other cookware at high temperatures.
Going over to the enamel side, things get a little more interesting. Even though the material is not a designated non-stick coating, it does offer some of such services to users. This makes it possible to cook your foods and have an easy cleaning process at the end of the day.
Whether you would be cooking for long, searing your meat, frying something with the pans or going with an of such operations, you can be sure that it will be done as efficiently as possible.
Although the glossy enamel interior might look like it will get dull soon, it is surprisingly efficient against metal cooking utensils. You will also enjoy the fact that it doesn’t react with foods, keeping the flavor of your meals intact.
Besides the interior, cast iron is no slouch when it comes to strength. With any unit from this set, you won’t have to worry too much about getting dents and scratches in your pans from everyday use.
Finally, you should know that the Viking Cast Iron set may not only be used on stoves and grills but finds generous applications in the oven too.
Almost everywhere you turn to, all you would get are good reviews of this set. However, there will always be a few bad eggs in the set.
That is the case with some of these enameled units which are not non-stick, even though the material of make suggests they would be so to an extent. Following that, some users have also reported seeing rust set in on their units.
While Viking has not mentioned the suitability of this set on an induction stove, it would be great to stay away too. From what those who have tried said, you would be better off sticking to other cooktops.
It is unclear if Viking sells this unit as an entire set. Thus, you would have to pick out the units you want in the set and pay the price for that.
Speaking of, we have the:
Notable Picks in the Set
For those who have used items from this set before, you would agree that they have one of the best overall selections. However, we still have a couple of picks that stand out due to their quality of build and functionality:
- Fry Pans – Coming in two different sizes, you get to pick which ones goes best with the kind of frying operations you handle in your kitchen. Besides, the enameled coating also gives you a huge boost when cleaning the unit.
Although getting stuck food out of the pan could still take a while, it wouldn’t be as challenging as when you didn’t have enamel to use.
- Dutch oven – Just like the frying pans above, the Dutch ovens are also made available in different sizes. No matter which one you go for, you will be treated to the same level of class and comfort as you would on the other.
5 Viking 3-Ply Copper Clad Cookware Set
We already have a tri-ply set from Viking on this list, so what makes this one special? If the name has not already given it off, now is the best time to know that tri-ply units don’t come equally.
In fact, there is more to this set than meets the eye.
If you have been following from above, you will know we already established that tri-ply units have three different layers fused into one body for superior performance. The same is true here, but the layers are different.
On the outside of every unit in this set is copper which is not only a great conductor, but also provides class and visual appeal to the cookware. On the inside is stainless steel – chosen for the fact that it doesn’t react with food, eliminating the chances of food taste alteration or deposition of other materials in your food.
That leaves us with the core of this unit where an aluminum sheet resides.
The choice of aluminum is not far-fetched, given how the material is great for exceptional heat maintaining and transfer throughout the cooking set.
Inside the cookware are measurement markings to make addition and reduction of ingredients easier. Completed with tempered glass lids, it becomes easier to watch over the status of your cooking without having to lift the lid everytime.
Aesthetic satisfaction is one arm of excellence, but ergonomic brilliance completes the technology behind this setup.
The first point of call here is with the copper exterior. There is almost no type of abuse that this coating won’t withstand for you, so you’re covered in that department. Following that are the handles on the pans and pots which have been doubly riveted for both superior handling and long-lasting performance.
On the back of that, there is the fact that all the cookware in this set are compatible for use on all of ovens, grills and other kinds of cooktops. You might want to hold off on induction cooktops though since the manufacturer didn’t provide any such information.
However, you can always stock the units into a dishwasher after use.
Coming with glass lids makes things a little tricky for those who are doing oven-cooking. While the pans can withstand up to 500 degrees Fahrenheits in the ovens, the glass lids will only take up to 400 degrees.
Due to the lack of magnetic properties of the materials employed in the making of this unit, it is only substantial to say that it would not be an induction cooktop compatible set. Likewise, the amount of copper on the set is not known at all.
For those who have used copper cookware before, this could fast become a dealbreaker for you.
Likewise, remember that copper will require constant polishing if it is to stay the same way – or close – as when you bought it.
It is no surprise that Viking will offer one of the most cost-effective tri-ply units out there, and that is just what they have done with this one too. You can get the entire set for under $430 from the official retailer, and that is more of a deal than you would get from most rival brands.
Notable Picks in the Set
Whether you are getting the entire set or getting select picks, here are some units in this set that stand out among the rest:
- Sauce pans – The saucepans can be picked up in sizes of 2.25 or 3 quart. They both come with glass lids, making your cooking process even easier and better.
- Fry pans – If you were looking for glass lids on these ones, you might be disappointed. By these, we mean they come in more than one size option too. Your pick will obviously be based on how heavy your frying duties are.
There goes the main line-up of the Viking cookware. Whether you are gunning for the 3-ply set, desire the extra power and functionality of the 5-ply model or would like to get the non-stick option, you now have all the information you need to make a better decision.
Now that we have that settled, which of these sets would you rather go for?