Is Calphalon Cookware Safe: Safety Guide for Home Cooks

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One of the most popularly bought cookware sets is Calphalon. Known for its signature non-stick and stainless steel cookware sets, Calphalon is the go-to cookware for many home cooks who are looking for sturdy and quality cookware that will guarantee years of amazing cooking. However, with the hype for eco-friendly and healthier options, many start to wonder about the type of surfaces many cookwares offer.

Nonstick Cookware: Is Calphalon Cookware Safe?

With proper care and maintenance, Calphalon is definitely safe and non-toxic. Its non-reactive surface, in its best conditions (i.e. neat and unscratched), does not pose any health risks. The non-stick surface of this cookware brand is actually made of PTFE; but contrary to belief, it does not cause cancer. Since 2013, all cookware coated with PTFE are PFOA-free, the chemical that can potentially cause cancer. 

Another known material used in making Calphalon cookware is aluminum, mostly as its inner core since aluminum conducts heat much faster than stainless steel. Most cookware brands, including Calphalon, use hard-anodized aluminum. Compared to pure solid aluminum, hard-anodizing the metal strengthens it and prevents the metal from easily reacting and corroding with other matter or chemicals.

Is Calphalon Teflon-free?

Yes, it is but Calphalon uses the same material as Teflon in creating its nonstick surface. Teflon is a brand associated with non-stick coating that is essentially PTFE. Though Calphalon does not commission Teflon to create its non-stick surface, it does use PTFE.

What is PTFE?

PTFE, or Polytetrafluoroethylene, is the generic name for Teflon. They are one and the same thing. It is a polymer material that’s also used to make plastic material but is commonly used as a nonstick surface for most cookware especially on fry pans and skillets. One of the most debated facts about Teflon is its toxicity. 

However, upon further studies, it shows that Teflon as a material is stable, non-toxic and non-reactive material. It only starts to disintegrate when exposed to high temperatures of at least 570 degrees Fahrenheit.

What is PTFE used for?

PTFE is practically used everywhere! The waxy non-reactive coating offered by PTFE is used for various needs but mostly for machinery to strengthen the metal and prevent it from reacting with many chemicals that pass through these machinery. Overall, anywhere that needs safe passage of food, minerals, and chemicals through industrial machines use PTFE as its surface.

Is PTFE dangerous?

On its own, PTFE is not dangerous. However, when made using PFOA, this is when PTFE can be of potential danger when consumed by people. PFOA is only possibly harmful when it is diffused into the air or consumed in large quantities, and this only happens when exposed to extreme temperatures (i.e. 500 degrees Fahrenheit).

But since 2013, PTFE has been created without PFOA. And with further research, PTFE is made sturdier and more stable making it less prone to disintegrating in high heat.

Is Calphalon Stainless Steel Cookware Safe?

Stainless steel is non-reactive and does not leach into our food when we cook with it. The only problem we have with stainless steel is when food sticks to it. The only danger we face when cooking with stainless steel is getting our food stuck and burnt on the cookware. 

Since stainless steel does need to be seasoned to make it nonstick. Calphalon and most popular brands always make sure to pre-season their stainless steel pots and pans with the purpose that you can start cooking with them right away. Unlike cast iron, it’s seasoning lasts longer and it is less likely to grip your food onto its surface.

Why Does Calphalon Use Stainless Steel?

Full-metal stainless cookware is highly durable and doesn’t have the dangers of containing PTFE or other chemicals to make it nonstick. Although stainless steel is a safe metal to use for cookware, it doesn't effectively conduct heat. To make it more ideal for cooking, it needs a high conducting metal as its core. This is where hard-anodized aluminum is used.

Aluminum core

Calphalon uses hard-anodized aluminum as its core. It’s highly conductive making it ideal for evenly distributing heat throughout your cookware. The hard-anodized aluminum is used by Calphalon as its base core in all of its cookware. Though aluminum heats fast and evenly, it leaches into our food even if it is hard-anodized.

Why Isn’t Hard-Anodized Aluminum Used As a Cookware Surface?

Hard-anodizing aluminum doesn’t prevent the metal from getting into your food. In fact, it only prevents it from disintegrating and corroding making the aluminum a great conductive core for many cookware but not as a cooking surface. 

A pure stainless steel cookware may be non-toxic but it is heavy and it heats slowly. With an aluminum core, you can add extra layers to make it stronger but lighter as well.

How to Care For a Calphalon Cookware?

  • Use your cookware on stove top cooking only. 

NOTE: Nonstick Calphalon cookware is quite sensitive to heat. Although it can still be used in the oven, it’s best to avoid baking food using nonstick cookware. That’s because the high heat inside an oven can cause the PTFE surface to disintegrate. 

  • Don’t use harsh chemicals and steel wire to clean your cookware.
  • Soak stuck burnt food in water to loosen food particles from your cookware. You can also boil water for a quicker release.
  • Always wash or rinse your cookware before and after cooking.
  • Use silicone or wooden utensils only.
  • Cook in low to medium heat settings.
  • Do no use the dishwasher.

Calphalon is a popular cookware brand and whether it has a PTFE or stainless steel surface with aluminum core, it still offers superb quality that focuses on user safety and health. Though not ideal for baking, it is relatively non-toxic and doesn’t pose much danger to anyone’s health. See "Greenpan Reviews" If you are looking for the safest ceramic cookware.