Which non-stick coating is right for me?


There is an almost unmanageable number of non-stick coatings on the market. The imaginative designations of the manufacturers do not make things any easier and also provide insufficient information as to whether the coating meets one's own requirements.

At this point we would like to give you some tips for the selection of the suitable non-stick product.

First of all, you should fundamentally clarify whether you want to choose a cookware with a classic non-stick coating or one with a ceramic coating.

 

Classic non-stick coating

Classic non-stick coatings are based on fluoropolymer technology. Fluoropolymers, such as polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), are extremely low-friction, heat-resistant plastics and have proven themselves for decades as effective and durable non-stick components for cookware.


The biggest advantages of classic non-stick coatings are

  •  best non-stick properties
  •  very long-lasting non-stick effect


Classic non-stick coatings are offered in various qualities which differ mainly in their durability. Higher quality non-stick coatings are made up of several layers. Particularly robust coatings additionally have reinforced primers / intermediate layers in which mineral or metallic particles are embedded, whereby an increased abrasion resistance and scratch resistance is achieved. These robust coatings often have a somewhat rough surface.


Risk of confusion!

Some fluoropolymer-based non-stick coatings are reinforced with ceramic particles. However, these ceramic-reinforced non-stick coatings have absolutely nothing to do with the ceramic coatings described below. Unfortunately, according to our observation, many not particularly expert dealers also confuse these two types of coating......


Stone coating?

There is sometimes confusion with non-stick coatings in a stone look. Sometimes you can read about "granite coating" or "stone coating" at dealers who don't take it quite so exactly. That's nonsense. There are non-stick coatings that may look like stone and may even contain "rock particles" for reinforcement, but in the end they are classic non-stick coatings based on PTFE

 

Olive oil coating?

There is also an "olive oil coating". However, according to the manufacturer, 96% of this is also made of PTFE, making it a classic non-stick coating in its core.

 

PFOA

Almost all non-stick coatings on the market today do without the previously used surfactant PFOA. PFOA has never played a health-related role in the end product anyway, as it degraded during the curing process of the coating. But as an environmentally harmful factor in production, it was an issue.

 

Which non-stick coating should it be then?

As already mentioned, the large number of coating names makes it difficult to maintain an overview. However, it should be noted that almost all non-stick coatings used by renowned cookware manufacturers come from one of the 4 major suppliers of non-stick coatings worldwide and are therefore always extensively tested coating systems.

In this respect, it makes sense to look more within a manufacturer's product range for orientation: Cheaper entry-level models usually also have simpler non-stick coatings, while more expensive models usually have reinforced, more durable coatings:

Therefore, if you want a particularly robust non-stick coating, you should usually not expect it in the manufacturer's cheapest cookware.

 

Here are some examples of products from the BEKA brand with different non-stick coatings:

BEKA frypan PRO INDUC 28 cm (no longer on offer)

KITCHEN FUN frypan TWIST 28 cm (a sub-brand of BEKA)

BEKA frypan CHEF 28 cm

BEKA frypan TITAN 28 cm

 

Regardless of this, even the best non-stick coating can be ruined in a short time due to incorrect use (overheating, use of metallic kitchen aids).

 


Ceramic coatings


Temporarily, ceramic coatings had a large market share. Ceramic coatings have a high degree of hardness and high temperature resistance. In addition, the usually quite smooth surface has a kind of lotus effect, making pans, pots and roasters with ceramic coating very easy to clean and keeping food from sticking.

Since ceramic coatings are not based on fluoropolymer technology and are therefore naturally PTFE-free, environmentally sensitive customers often feel particularly addressed of ceramic coatings because they fear that conventional PTFE-based non-stick coatings could cause damage.

The biggest advantages of ceramic coatings are

  • high degree of hardness
  • high temperature resistance
  • easy to clean

.
Particularly eye-catching are ceramic coatings in light colors, which are very widespread and have a highoptical appeal. However, grey and black ceramic coatings or coatings with a stone look are also used and have certain obvious advantages with regard to typical aging characteristics of the surface (darkening, micro-scratches).

The truth is that ceramic coatings need as much attention from the cook as a classic non-stick coating in order to last as long as possible. In particular, please do not be irritated by the high and sometimes explicitly advertised heat resistance of ceramic coatings: The often promised 400°C are already 100°C above the point of spontaneous combustion of most cooking oils. This information is therefore of a more theoretical nature. On the other hand, the non-stick effect of ceramic coatings quickly suffers even at low overheating, which is not immediately apparent in the coating, but is noticeable during frying.


From a trend product to a niche product

In recent years, the market for ceramic coatings has shrunk considerably because the hopes associated with it have not been fulfilled. With new, improved ceramic coatings, the coating manufacturers are trying to set new impulses and interest cookware manufacturers who in the past had to struggle with comparatively high complaint rates for ceramic-coated cookware. It remains to be seen whether ceramic coatings will make a major comeback (2018).