Move over, stainless steel—copper is the new star of the show
Trendy cookware brand Made In now offers its stunning cookware in copper.
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You’ve probably seen copper pots and pans while scrolling through Instagram or Pinterest, hanging stylishly in the kitchens of celebrity chefs and lifestyle bloggers alike. Not only do they add glamour, but they also are touted for their excellent ability to quickly conduct and evenly distribute heat. They’re responsive, too—turn down the heat a nudge and you’ll immediately notice the difference, making copper the choice of material for cooking seafood, delicate sauces, caramel, and chocolate.
However, these gorgeous cooking vessels aren’t for everyone. Hefty price tags aside, they have a reputation for being high maintenance, as the traditional copper cookware is lined with soft metals prone to damage. Made In, the expert-approved popular cookware brand, has stepped in to solve this issue with modern technology and European craftsmanship.
What you need to know before buying copper cookware
I’m the type of person who cares about a product’s functionality as much as its appearance. Copper cookware, though beautiful and elegant, is an area I’ve avoided for years due to many concerns.
First, copper itself is reactive, which means any acidic foods can cause copper to be leached into food. For this reason, copper cookware is traditionally lined with tin, which is inert. But tin-lined cookware has its own downsides—it’s a relatively soft metal with a low melting point, which means tin-lined pots can’t sustain high temperatures and are prone to scratches. The good news is you can find places that offer re-tinning service, but this service means additional cost on top of already pricey cookware.
This Made In set stands out as it’s lined with top quality stainless steel, a feature allowed by recent technological breakthroughs. Though not as good of a heat conductor as tin and silver, the material has big advantages: It’s indestructible, non-reactive, and relatively affordable. In my opinion, the increased durability more than makes up for a couple of minutes waiting for a pot to heat up.
Something to note: You can’t put the Made In copperware in the dishwasher, and you’ll need to dry them immediately after washing. Otherwise, the copper will discolor.
What’s in the set?
The six-piece cookware set includes a 1.9-quart saucepan with lid, a 5.2-quart rondeau (braiser) with lid, and a 5.2-saucier with lid. Both the round-shaped rondeau and saucier are 11 inches in diameter, which allows them to sit on the stove comfortably without too much overhang. Overhanging or an odd shape can make heat distribution uneven.
What we like
This cookware is amazingly responsive, as one would expect based on its copper construction. I was curious about how sensitive the cookware would be to temperature changes, so I placed the saucepan into the rondeau filled with hot water like a bain marie (a heated water bath). The saucepan was able to catch enough heat to temper chocolate with ease.
When cooking shrimp risotto, I was able to cut my normal cook time in half, thanks to its heat conductivity. I’ve also found the saucier great for sautéing the shrimp without the need to use high heat, which risks overcooking the shrimp.
The saucier and rondeau are spacious enough to cook for a small family and have plenty of leftovers. The roominess also means when you have sufficient space to stir your risotto or other such dishes without anything spilling over.
Though the pots themselves heat up quickly and can get incredibly hot, (I touched them lightly to test, but that doesn’t mean you should!) the stainless steel handles remain cool. The ergonomic design of the handles made them comfortable to hold and maneuver throughout cooking. Both the rondeau and saucier are wide enough to hold a large amount of food but not too wide to cause uneven heating.
What we don’t like
The rondeau and saucier may serve different purposes as one has a curved side, but they have the same capacity and look similar, so home cooks may not need both. The good news is, each item in this set can be purchased separately so you can pick the ones that suit your needs the most.
During testing, I used the saucepan a lot to reheat stock. The lack of a spout made pouring the hot liquid unnecessarily difficult and messy, which was particularly troublesome knowing that copper needs to be thoroughly cleaned or there’ll be corrosion.
Is the Made In copper cookware set worth it?
If you’re looking for an expensive-looking cookware set that can perform well, then you’ll find that this set of cookware not only complements your home decor, but also improves your cooking experience. Each piece in the set is great at cooking delicious meals, as well as doubling as serving ware that’ll surely spice up your table decorating game (once we can safely gather again, that is).
Intrigued? Keep in mind that Made In offers a 45-day trial period on its cookware—if you’re not happy about your purchase, you can return it with the shipping cost covered by Made In. If this set isn’t in your budget, check out the other cookware sets we've tested.
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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.