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Best Pans for Steak in 2023: The Ultimate Guide To Steak Perfection Every Time!

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The perfect steak is a family favourite in any kitchen and you must have the best pans for steak to ensure you achieve the perfect sear. There are many different types of pans to consider when purchasing the best pan for cooking steak. Whether you’re a novice cook or a seasoned steak professional, I will set out the varying types of pans on offer as well as recommendations that will inform your purchasing decision. 

The material and type of pan used is an important consideration and it is important to think about what is your preference when it comes to your kitchen. 

Types of Pans: Best Pans for Steak

Cast Iron Pans

best pans for steak cast iron

Cast Iron pans are heavy duty pans that have stood the test of time in kitchens. This kitchen essential offers excellent heat distribution and retention which ensures that mouth watering juicy interior, and the delicious seared crust on your steaks. With cast iron pans, the natural non-stick properties develop over time and use which renders cast iron pans a versatile choice for all types of cooking techniques. Cast iron pans can be used on the stovetop and in the oven, which means you can start by searing your steak on the stovetop and finish the cooking process in the oven, which is a popular technique for cooking steak. The drawback to cast iron pans is that they require the correct care and maintenance to prevent rust and maintain their seasoning.

Recommendation: Cast Iron Skillet


  • USA Made
  • No non-stick coating
  • Can be used on stove and in the oven
  • Quality made


  • Must season pan with oil after every use
  • Will take a long time for the surface to naturally become non-stick
  • The factory pre season is not sufficient, must pre season before use

What customers love:

  • A fantastic pan for any kitchen once you get used to taking care of cast iron pans
  • Food is delicious after cooking on a cast iron pan
  • It can last forever!

Carbon Steel Pans

Carbon steel pans are the desired choice for professional chefs as they offer excellent results when cooking a steak. It is similar to cast iron, in that carbon steel pans have superb heat retention properties which is best for even cooking and a seared crust. They are lighter weight than cast iron rendering these pans easier to use and more responsive to changes in heat. Much like cast iron, carbon steel also develops non-stick properties over time and use. Carbon steel also requires proper seasoning after every use and like cast iron, is a bit more time consuming to tend to.

Recommendation: Carbon Steel Pan


  • Lighter than cast iron
  • Retains more heat than stainless steel
  • Naturally non-stick (still requires seasoning)
  • Perfect for searing meat
  • Once seasoned, the seasoning lasts multiple uses


  • Must season pan with oil after every use
  • Use on gas stovetop only for best results
  • Not dishwasher safe

What customers love:

  • Once seasoned, it is a fantastic pan to use for cooking anything
  • Isn’t made with non-stick coating
  • Heats faster than cast iron

See Also: The Best Wok for Electric Stoves

Stainless Steel Pans

best pans for steak stainless steel

Stainless Steel Pans are a top contender when cooking steak. They are a popular choice in kitchens and cook steaks to perfection. Durable construction and excellent heat conductivity allow these pans to retain and maintain correct temperature control which is crucial when achieving the desired result when cooking your steak. The stainless steel ensures a crust is developed and is easy to clean which makes it an excellent choice. Stainless steel pans do not retain heat as effectively as cast iron, however, are more responsive to changes in heat. Stainless steel pans are also suitable for both stovetop and oven cooking. Another consideration with stainless steel pans is that you will have to use oil to ensure a non-stick surface. 

Recommendation: Stainless Steel Pan


  • Compatible with all cooktops
  • Lasts a lifetime
  • Easy to clean
  • No non-stick coating
  • Works well for searing steak then finishing in the oven


  • Handle is not easy to grip
  • Must use oil to ensure food does not stick
  • Not dishwasher safe
  • Can be unsteady on a flat surface/cooktop

What customers love:

  • Fantastic for sauteing and frying, perfect for steak
  • Sturdy and well made
  • Perennial winner of America’s Test Kitchen best frying pan award

Non-Stick Pans

If convenience and hassle free cooking is up your alley, non-stick pans are a popular choice for cooking steak. The non-stick coating on non-stick pans renders them ideal for cooking lean pieces of steak and means you can use less oil in your cooking. Non-stick pans will not achieve that same crust that the other materials can, however, you can still cook a juicy steak with minimal effort and effortless clean up. Non-stick pans are available in an array of materials such as ceramic or aluminium. It is imperative to use utensils made from silicone, plastic or wood on these pans to avoid scratching as they scratch easily.

Recommendation: Non-Stick Pan


  • Non-stick coating which is PFOA free
  • Oven safe
  • Even heat distribution
  • Very easy to clean


  • Non-stick coating does not last as long as other materials such as cast iron, carbon steel or stainless steel
  • Scratches easily

What customers love:

  • Quality pan great for everyday cooking
  • No oil is needed due to non-stick properties

Conclusion: Best Pan for Steak

It is essential to choose the right pan for you and your kitchen when cooking a perfect steak. You may prefer the classic cast iron pan, the accuracy of stainless steel or the convenience of non-stick, each option brings unique qualities to your steak searing. The best pan for steak depends on personal preferences as well as cooking style and the level of control you wish to achieve throughout the cooking process. So now you’re equipped with the right information to use the best pans for steak, get ready to cook the best steaks of your life!

See Also: The Best Pots and Pans for Electric Stoves

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