According to the Cookware Manufacturers Association, aluminum cookware sales accounted for almost 60% of all cookware sold in the United States in 2015.
So basically more than half of us use aluminum cookware. However, it seems we don’t know enough about it…
My goal is to give answers to all those questions at the end of this article. And more … Questions like:
– What is anodized aluminum?
– What is non-stick aluminum?
– Difference between anodized aluminum and non-stick cookware?
And the main question: is aluminum safe for cooking?
So let’s get started…
Also Read: Cast Iron vs Aluminum Cookware: Which One To Pick
Why use aluminum cookware?
Aluminum is a great conductor of heat, making it an ideal choice for cookware. Aluminum has a thermal conductivity 16 times that of stainless steel.
It means that aluminum will heat up quickly, evenly, and 16 times faster than a stainless steel pot!
Aluminum is also the third most abundant element in nature. This means that aluminum cookware is generally affordable. Also, it is lightweight.
It’s no wonder we prefer aluminum cookware over all others.
Pros and Cons of aluminum cookware
Some advantages of Aluminum Cookware:
- Aluminum metal is easily obtainable that is found in abundance all around us.
- Cookware made of aluminum is much cheaper than steel and ceramic
- Aluminum cookware is usually lightweight.
- Large aluminum pots and other commercial cookware materials made of aluminum are very easy to operate and transport.
- The aluminum equipment is a durable material as long as it is well maintained.
- An aluminum cooking wire is an excellent heat conductor. That is why it heats up the cooking surface.
- An aluminum pan is ready to cook in moments for thermal conductive properties.
Some disadvantages of aluminum cookware:
- Aluminum is a very soft metal, so it is not as durable as stainless steel.
- Few studies have shown that aluminum cookware users are at an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
- Aluminum cookware can stain when cooked with acidic foods or acidic solution, especially vinegar.
- Aluminum cookware has a higher deformation rate if placed under cold water while the temperature is high from the gas range.
If you are concerned about the presence of aluminum cookware, my advice is to invest in stainless steel cookware or ceramic cookware.
Do aluminum leaches into food from cookware?
According to a study, 5 ml of Aluminum per kg of feed is six times the SRL (the specific release limit) set by the European society released from Aluminum Cookware.
From another research, the researchers noted that cooking in an aluminum pan with edible oil and drinking water did not cause as much leaching of SRL as acidic solutions.
In reality, a thin 0.5% citric acid liquid surpasses an intense 638 milligram per liter, indicating that TWI (tolerable weekly intake) of Aluminum for a kid scaling 15 kg will excel 298 percent (and its volume is. 83.6 percent) to 70 kg.
For an overweight adult, TWI contains 10 ml of lemon juice daily for one week.
Aluminum Cookware can also have a non-stick surface or anodized coating, which means that the pan will not react with acidic foods like vinegar, tomato sauce, etc.
What is non-stick aluminum cookware?
Non-stick aluminum cookware is aluminum cookware with a non-stick surface or non-stick coating. The nonstick coating can be PTFE-based (that is, Teflon-based) or ceramic-based. It may or may not be made of hard-anodized aluminum.
What is anodized aluminum cookware?
Anodized aluminum cookware is chemically bonded with oxygen to make it harder, sleeker, and better cooked.
The outside of aluminum bonds forms a layer of aluminum oxide with oxygen in an electrochemical process.
Pros of Anodized Aluminum Cookware
- The anodizing method makes the aluminum much less porous.
- Anodized aluminum cookware is also easy to wash.
- Stainless steel is thirty percent weaker than anodized aluminum.
- Anodized aluminum is not responsive as opposed to regular Aluminum.
- Anodized aluminum is not poisonous and highly resistant to heat. These types of cookware can be durable but are not guaranteed.
Cooking acetic foods in an aluminum pan quickens this breakdown. Therefore, it is best to avoid acidic cleaning products like vinegar.
Which is better: Aluminum vs Stainless steel cookware?
In any kitchen, regardless of size, it is healthy to have a balance between aluminum, stainless steel, and non-stick cookware.
While stainless steel cookware may be considered more of specialty cookware in style for some kitchens, it can dramatically change the outcome of meats and other browned foods.
For everyday foods, nonstick cookware can be a great option to provide quick cooking and cleaning.
To know the difference between hard anodized and stainless cookware in detail, click here…
Is aluminum safe for cooking?
Aluminum is a growing concern, especially due to its link to Alzheimer’s disease and other neurological problems that are becoming increasingly common.
But the difficulty is probably not with the aluminum cookware.
Many common type of foods and food additives contain aluminum, including pickling agents (alum), anti-caking agents (aluminum silicates), baking powders (sodium aluminum sulfate), and baking mixes (sodium aluminum phosphate).
The average intake of food additives for a person is about 20 milligrams per day. Non-dairy creamers, self-rising flour, processed cheeses, and cheese spreads also include aluminum.
Is Aluminum Cookware Safe?
While untreated aluminum is not dangerous, it should not be used with acidic foods, which can ruin both food and cookware. Overall Aluminum cookware is perfectly safe to use, but avoid cooking acidic foods on it.
Also, Anodized aluminum cookware is unlike regular aluminum, anodized aluminum is non-reactive, meaning that it doesn’t leach heavy metals into your food.
If you’re still worried about the idea of using aluminum cookware, do yourself a favor. Choose stainless steel.
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Aluminum is lightweight, affordable, and distributes the heat evenly all over the pan. It doesn’t retain heat particularly well though, so the temperature will fluctuate as food is added to a hot pan.
Cookware generally lasts around 3-5 years and can depend on how well it is maintained.
The main difference is that aluminum will have a uniform heat surface, while stainless steel will have hot spots at direct flame contact sites.
Because this style of cookware works so well in heat, it’s not really ideal for delicate foods.
Probably, It is safe. For most consumers, the amount of aluminum absorbed into food by cookware is unlikely to be harmful.
It is better for you to follow the safety advice…