When is the Best Time to Buy Cookware Sets?
A Popular Gift for College Graduates and Weddings, Cookware Can Be Expensive
Cookware, either purchased as separate pieces or as a set, is a common gift for college graduates, newlyweds and new homeowners. But while it is useful and helpful for any home, cookware can be very expensive. Shopping carefully during certain times of the year and at particular locations can help you save money and still get quality cookware.
When is the Best Time to Buy Cookware?
According to Consumer Reports, the best time to purchase cookware, both individually and as a set, is in November.
In preparation for the holiday season, retailers discount cookware items and often use them as an incentive to purchase other items. With the prevalence of holiday sales and Black Friday deals, you can get a high-quality set at a much lower price.
Infomercials may convince you that you need whole new sets of pans, but before you replace everything, double-check the brand. Expensive cookware and cookware endorsed by celebrity chefs are often not the best choice.
Before buying a whole set, also consider your actual needs; many people end up only using a few pieces of their set. It can be significantly easier to buy what you know you'll use regularly, such as a sauce pan or frying pan.
When choosing your cookware, consider what kind of oven you have and any special needs. For instance, if you have sensitive pets, teflon pans can be deadly.
If possible, handle the cookware yourself.
Make sure it's not too heavy, feels sturdy and that the handles feel secure. It can be incredibly dangerous to buy a cheaper pan with a handle. While cooking, the handle can break off, causing you to drop the pan and splatter hot food all over you.
What Types of Cookware Are There?
There are three main types of cookware:
- : These pans are simple and easy to use and clean. They do not need much butter or oil for cooking, but are easily scratched or damaged. Metal utensils should not be used.
- Uncoated: If you like to brown or braise your food, uncoated cookware may be for you. However, uncoated pots and pans are much more difficult to clean.
- Cast iron: While it may be impractical or cost prohibitive to get a full set of cast iron cookware, having one or two cast iron items is a good idea. A cast iron Dutch oven can be a good investment, helping you cook healthy meals and keep them warm for a long time.
Where to Buy Cookware
While you can get new cookware at any major retailer, you may want to consider other options if you're on a budget. Yard sales and garage sales can be an excellent way to pick up high-quality items. Many people do not cook very much and sell their pieces to save room; that can be a great way to pick up items that would otherwise be outside your budget.
Thrift stores are also a good source for cookware. Sets are often taped together but may be incomplete. If you're looking for just a few pieces, you can get excellent cookware for just a few dollars.