Anolon and Circulon are considered to be direct competitors despite the fact that they belong to the same company known as Meyer corporation. Both brands are producing similar cookware collections that target different types of cooks. Thus, It is understandable if you are having a hard time choosing between these two.
Circulon vows to offer safe nonstick pots and pans that can facilitate our cooking without risking our health. But how does it truly compare to Anolon in terms of construction methods, design, price, and overall performance?
Anolon is regarded to be one of the very few nonstick brands that create reliable pots and pans that can handle the heavy demands of busy kitchens. Most of its cookware sets are recognized mainly for their performance and durability.
After professionally producing a handful of hard-anodized pieces, Anolon began combining its nonstick technologies with the multi-clad process to create cookware that can secure the superb performance of stainless steel while maintaining the nonstick aspect for easy cooking and cleaning.
Pros of Anolon Cookware
- Inexpensive. Anolon craft various cookware sets within all price range. From low to high range, you will definitely find a great set or individual pieces that suits your cooking needs without breaking the budget.
- Great nonstick quality. The way the surface is designed makes cooking and cleaning as easy as apple pie. The unique coating ensures a smooth interior with high durability to withstand the use of metal utensils, dishwashers, etc.
- Robust cookware. Anolon’s pots and pans are constructed using different materials starting from stainless steel to hard-anodized aluminum to create versatile yet highly durable cookware that can handle the demands of a busy kitchen.
- Excellent performance. The process this brand follows produces a variety of cookware that can provide superb heat control with an even distribution to handle even sudden temperature changes.
Cons of Anolon Cookware
- Multi-clad construction. Anolon does great work in crafting nonstick cookware. However, when it comes to the multi-clad category they fall a bit short compared to Vikings and All-Clad.
- Lack of compatibility. While the pots and pans this brand creates are oven-safe, most of them can only tolerate temperatures up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and a small number of sets can reach 500 degrees. Not to forget that some of their cookware lack the magnetic base to work in induction cooktops. See "Best cookware for Induction cooktop" for more information.
- Poor handles design. I didn’t like the way they design the handles for their pans. Depending on the cookware, some handles may fail to deliver the full protection of burn while some may not be completely fit for everyone to use due to the length.
Circulon as I have mentioned is part of Meyer corporation which is known as the second-largest supplier in the world. Aside from this one, Meyer owns several popular brands such as Farberware, Rachael Ray, and Anolon cookware.
This company follows strict U.S manufacturing control measures despite the fact that most of its affiliated factories are located throughout Southeast Asia.
Circulon is recognized for its non-toxic coating that provides superb performance. This brand combines its unique nonstick system “Total®” with the superior heat distribution of hard-anodized aluminum to produce formidable cookware that can rival famous brands that are dominating the mid and high-end range.
Pros of Circulon Cookware
- Superb coating. Circulon uses its unique nonstick signature “TOTAL®” and “SteelSHIELD” to create cookware that can deliver exceptional nonstick performance. Thanks to these technologies cleaning has become a piece of cake since you can literally clean every pot and pan effortlessly with your hands or just throw them inside the dishwasher.
- Affordable. This brand focus on crafting inexpensive cookware that anyone can afford. You can enjoy good quality cookware set to hone your cooking skills without breaking the budget.
- Diversity. Circulon crafts several models such as Acclaim, Momentum, and different types of accessories and kitchenware to cover all consumers’ needs. I find diversity is one of this brand’s strongest advantages since it presents you with a variety of cookware that you can pick from and does not limit your options to simply one or two.
- Great durability. Most of the pans and pots are constructed with hard-anodized aluminum to enhance durability to an extent that they can handle heavy use while securing long-lasting performance.
Cons of Circulon Cookware
- Induction compatibility. Most of the products produced are not designed to be used on induction cooktops. There are a few models that would work fine with induction stovetops such as Infinite, Symmetry, Contempo, Steel Elite, and Genesis.
- Not metal utensil-safe. While the nonstick surface does offer many features, it is still not strong enough to handle the daily use of metal utensils. I highly suggest always using wooden utensils to preserve the nonstick quality.
- Low heat tolerance. The majority of Circulon cookware can tolerate temperatures between 300 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit, while very few can reach 500 degrees.
Anolon vs Circulon: Differences and Similarities
Anolon and Circulon have earned their reputation through fabricating outstanding nonstick cookware that’s free from any harmful chemicals. Although both brands share some common similarities, they have far more notable differences. Without further ado, here are the main important distinctions that set these brands apart.
Both brands use hard-anodized aluminum and high-grade stainless steel to craft their cookware. However, the construction methods they follow are quite different.
For the hard-anodized aluminum, Anolon combines it with its unique system “Autograph®2” which consists of a triple-layered, premium quality nonstick coating to produce robust cookware with a smooth surface that can deliver the best performance possible for the long run.
Circulon on the other hand combines this material with its Ultra Total nonstick system to improve the durability and versatility of its cookware to the highest level possible.
As for stainless steel, both brands use their unique technologies (SearTech™ for Anolon and SteelSHIELD for Circulon) during the multi-clad construction to create pots and pans that can offer the superior performance of stainless steel with a smooth nonstick quality.
Circulon uses two different technologies to coat its collections, “TOTAL®” and “SteelSHIELD”. Both help to secure an excellent nonstick performance, whether it’s easy food release or effortless cleanup. The only difference between the two is that the “TOTAL®” is used with hard-anodized aluminum while the “SteelSHIELD” is used with stainless steel.
Anolon on the other side crafts its nonstick cookware by implementing its signature coating “Autograph 2” which prevents food from sticking to the interior giving rise to a slick surface that can facilitate cooking and cleaning.
With regard to design, Both brands offer various cookware sets with different sizes and colors providing you with expanded options to get the right set for your kitchen design. However, Anolon prefers to cover the whole surface from edge to edge with its nonstick coating using cutting-edge technology for its cookware to make it easier for you to pour food on a bowl or plate smoothly.
On the flip side, Circulon has an integral hi-low groove design granting you the ability to cook and slide the food easily throughout the surface while reducing abrasion. The “hi” area permits you to use metal utensils to an extent while the “low” area protects the whole cooking surface to maintain a long-lasting performance.
RELATED: Best Cookware for Glass Top Stoves
Handling is crucial for everyone, especially home cooks. With great balance comes great control. Circulon crafts its handles using stainless steel with a rubberized super grip for easy handling and comfort. They are long enough to give you more room to hold. However, they can get hot under high temperatures.
What I like about this handle design is that it includes fold-in rings at the tip which facilitate hanging and storing the pots and pans.
As for Anolon, it has its own way of designing the handles to remain cold to the touch. However, considering the long period a home cook desires to cook certain recipes and the versatility needed to try different types of cooktops and ovens, the handles will fail to secure the full protection of burn you’d expect them to. Also, due to the length, some handles may not be completely suitable for every cook.
Both Anolon and Circulon lean toward crafting budget cookware that anyone can afford. Most of their inexpensive cookware sets are under $200. However, there are several high-end collections from Anolon that exceed $500 which are meant for professional chefs. Here are some examples of Circulon and Anolon cookware prices:
- Circulon Radiance Nonstick 10-piece Cookware Set: $200
- Circulon Elementum Nonstick 10-piece Cookware Set: $200
- Circulon Momentum Nonstick 11-piece Cookware Set: $200
- Circulon Acclaim Nonstick 13-piece Cookware Set: $240
- Circulon Ultimum Nonstick 11-piece Cookware Set: $300
- Circulon Symmetry Nonstick 11-piece Cookware Set: $320
- Anolon Advanced Hard-Anodized 11-piece Cookware Set: $300+
- Anolon Nouvelle Stainless Steel 10-piece Cookware Set: $300+
- Anolon Advanced Tri-Ply 10-piece Cookware Set: $300
- Anolon Allure 12-piece Cookware Set: $400
- Anolon Smart Stack 11-piece Cookware Set: $450
- Anolon Accolade 12-piece Cookware Set: $549
Circulon vs Anolon: Cookware Sets Comparison
Circulon Radiance Cookware Set
Circulon Elementum Cookware Set
Circulon Momentum Cookware Set
Circulon Acclaim Cookware Set
Circulon SteelShield S-series Cookware Set
Anolon Advanced Hard-Anodized Cookware Set
Triple-layer premium-quality nonstick
Anolon Nouvelle Cookware Set
Brushed stainless steel
Anolon Smart Stack Cookware Set
Anolon Accolade Cookware Set
Forged hard-anodized aluminum
The Final Verdict
Both brands use different methods with their unique technologies to produce nonstick cookware that could facilitate your cooking and cleaning chores saving you a lot of time and effort. However, if you are on a tight budget and looking for an inexpensive cookware set that could provide you with great nonstick performance then I recommend choosing one of Circulon cookware. Otherwise, go after one of Anolon’s high-end sets such as Accolade, AnolonX, or Allure for even greater performance and durability.