The 9 Best Copper Cookware Pieces of 2020

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Our Top Picks
"The three-piece set from Copper Chef includes an 8-inch frying pan, a 10-inch frying pan, and a 12-inch frying pan."
"The set should easily cover all your kitchen needs."
"Besides being beautiful, the hammered copper exterior offers excellent heat control."
"The 4-inch high sides help reduce splattering and let you use it to cook sauces or when deep frying."
"It’s perfect for making large batches of fruits and jellies, as well as candy."
"Releases food easily, no matter if you’re cooking rice or melting sugar to make candy."
"This heats evenly so sugar will melt evenly with no hot spots or burning."
"Even heating all around, along with perfect heat transfer from pot to food."
"A large, shallow cooker is great for all sorts of one-pot meals, sauces, shallow frying, and much more."

Copper is very fashionable right now, particularly in cookware. As a component metal in cookware, it’s extremely responsive to heat changes. It is twice as conductive as aluminum and ten times more conductive than stainless steel. That responsiveness and conductivity make copper cookware perfect for cooking foods where heat regulation is important. Due to its luxurious look, copper is often used on the exterior of the cookware, either as a thin decorative layer or as a thicker, functional layer, particularly on the bottom of the pan.

Exposed copper develops a patina with age, but it can be returned to the previous shiny look using special cleaning products or some lemon juice and salt. While pure copper is seldom used when it will be in contact with food, there are a few specialty pots that are made entirely from copper. There are also many copper-colored pans that offer the look of copper at a lower price point, and without requiring the care that pure copper does. Whatever you're looking for, we've found the best copper cookware that will fit your needs.

Best Frying Pan Set: Copper Chef Round Pan 3 Pack

Very Good
What We Like
  • Chemical-free nonstick surface

  • Easy to use and care for

  • Retains and distributes heat well

What We Don't Like
  • Not actually made of copper

  • No lids included

The three-piece set from Copper Chef includes an 8-inch frying pan, a 10-inch frying pan, and a 12-inch frying pan. It ensures you’ll always have the right size whether you’re cooking eggs for two or pancakes for the family.

The pans are made from aluminum, so they’re very lightweight and easy to handle. They have a proprietary cerami-tech outer coating while the interior has a copper-colored nonstick ceramic coating. Our product tester finds that the nonstick coating is extremely effective, and praises the set's "lovely, shimmery shade of light copper"—though she notes that it lacks the same style and elegance of true copper cookware. A stainless steel bottom plate means the pans heat evenly and can be used on induction cooktops. The handles are riveted on for security.

These pans should be seasoned before use, but are dishwasher safe for easy cleaning. The pans are heatproof to 850 F, so you can use them in the oven as well as on the stove.

"This cookware diffused heat quickly and evenly with all the dishes I tried, with no noticeable hot spots."Tierney McAfee, Product Tester

Best Cookware Set: Cuisinart Chef's Classic Stainless Cookware Set

What We Like
  • Affordable

  • Very attractive copper-colored exterior

  • Dishwasher safe

What We Don't Like
  • Copper is decorative, not functional

  • Lid handles can get hot

Made from stainless steel with a blush-copper colored exterior, this Cuisinart product is a quality cookware set without the super-high price tag that often comes with copper. The cool-grip handles are contoured for comfort and perfect balance and they are riveted on for security. A metal disk with an aluminum core surrounded by stainless steel is attached to the bottom of each pan. Our product tester likes that this layered disk gave her quick and even heating. It also retained heat well enough that adding food didn’t make the pan temperature drop too much.

The glass lids fit snugly to keep moisture in during cooking. The pots are oven safe to 400 degrees, while the lids are oven safe to 350 degrees. All pieces are dishwasher safe for easy cleaning. The pots can be used on any cooking surface, including induction.

The set should easily cover all your kitchen needs. It includes a 1 1/2-quart saucepan, a 2 1/2-quart saucepan, a 3-quart saucepan, an 8-quart saucepan, an 8-inch skillet, and a 10-inch skillet. All of the saucepans include lids and you'll also get a steamer insert.

"The copper color on the exterior is not a functional copper coating that would affect the cooking performance. Instead, that color is all about appearance—and I really loved the appearance."Donna Currie, Product Tester

Best Hammered Set: Lagostina Martellata Hammered Copper 18/10 Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Cookware Set

What We Like
  • Retains and distributes heat well

  • Versatile in use

  • Beautiful design

What We Don't Like
  • Steep price point

  • Requires special care

Copper cookware is stylish, but hammered copper cookware takes it to a whole new level, with an artisan look that is distinctive and classy. Lagostina has a wonderful hammered cookware set that is sure to look great in your kitchen.

The cookware has a thick aluminum core for efficient heat distribution and a stainless steel interior. The lids are also stainless steel. Besides being beautiful, the hammered copper exterior offers excellent heat control. Our product tester also loves that the handles are designed to be comfortable to hold while they stay cool on the stove.

The cookware is oven and broiler safe to 500 degrees. It is compatible with all stove types, except induction.

"I love the style so much that we plan to put them on display in our kitchen on a wall-mounted rack." Tierney McAfee, Product Tester

Best Square Pan: BulbHead Red Copper Square Pan 5 Piece Set

What We Like
  • Nonstick, scratch-resistant interior

  • Large and deep

  • Easy to clean

What We Don't Like
  • Outside color may scratch off

The BulbHead Red Copper Square Pan comes with extras that make it even more useful: a vented and tempered glass lid, a fry basket, and a steamer/roaster rack. The 4-inch high sides help reduce splattering and let you use it to cook sauces or when deep frying.

The interior is a copper-infused ceramic that is nonstick, scratch-resistant, and oven safe to 500 F, so you can use it in the oven and under the broiler. A helper handle makes it easy to move and empty the pan, even when it’s full.

The pan should be seasoned before use. While it is dishwasher safe, hand washing is recommended.

Positive reviews highlight the pan's depth and high sides, which help prevent splattering. Many customers also rave about how easy the pan is to clean.

Best Jam Pot: Mauviel M'Passion 15-Quart Copper Jam Pan with Bronze Handles

What We Like
  • Durable, heavy-duty construction

  • Interior doesn’t react with fruit acids or sugar

  • Beautiful design

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

Traditional jam pots are made from copper, like this 15-quart copper pan by Mauviel. The copper conducts heat efficiently and the unlined interior doesn’t react with fruit acids or sugar. It’s perfect for turning excess or nearly-too-ripe crops of stone fruits or citrus into large batches of jams and jellies, as well as making candies like toffee and caramel.

Mauviel has been making quality copper cookware in France for 170 years. This sturdy pan has bronze side handles with copper rivets for secure transport on and off the stovetop. Hand washing is recommended to ensure it gives you years of delicious jams.

Customers give this jam pot high marks because nothing burns or sticks to the bottom. Plus, they love that it's heavy-duty and beautifully crafted.

Best Saucepan: Old Dutch Copper 2-Quart Covered Saucepan

What We Like
  • Sturdy but not too heavy

  • Nonstick coating performs well

  • Easy to clean

What We Don't Like
  • Lid and handle may get hot

This attractive and affordable 3-quart saucepot has a copper-colored T-Cerama coating inside that releases food easily, no matter if you’re cooking rice or melting sugar to make candy, along with an elegant dark gray exterior. The coating is scratch-resistant and metal utensil safe, so you can grab any spoon without worrying about damaging the pot. Several reviewers like that the pot is heavy-duty enough not to warp when heated, while its light weight makes it easy to maneuver.

The long handle is riveted on for safety and has a hanging hole on the end so it can hang on a pegboard or rack. The lid is glass, so it’s easy to monitor the cooking without letting the heat out. The pot is oven safe to 500 degrees and the pot and lid are dishwasher safe for easy cleaning when cooking is done.

Best for Sugar: Mauviel M'Passion Sugar Saucepan

What We Like
  • Heats up quickly and evenly

  • Easy temperature control ideal for sugar work

  • Beautiful, simple design

What We Don't Like
  • Very heavy

  • Only right-handed pouring spout

Made specifically for sugar work, this 1.9-quart saucepan is made entirely from copper for ultimate heat control. It heats evenly so the sugar will melt evenly with no hot spots or burning, and it’s reactive to heat changes so the temperature can be controlled easily. Customers gave this specially designed saucepan positive reviews for its easy temperature control and how quickly it heats up, though they warn that because of its all-copper construction, the body and handle can get very hot.

The distinctive conical copper handle offers a secure grip and is attached to the body with copper rivets for security. A pouring spout on one side makes it simple to pour scalding hot syrup safely and accurately. Not just for sugar, this can be used for making small amounts of jam or sauces. This should be hand washed.

Best Stock Pot: All-Clad Copper C4508 C4 8 Qt. Stockpot with Lid

What We Like
  • Attractive design

  • Heats quickly and evenly

  • Oven and broiler safe to 600 degrees

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

This extra-large 8-quart stockpot has an attractive copper exterior and copper layers bonded with copper for excellent heat control. The layers extend all the way to the rim of the pot for even heating all around, along with perfect heat transfer from pot to food. The pot heats quickly to high temperatures for perfect searing and browning before lowering the temperature for low-and-slow braising or stews. When it’s time for roasting or baking, the pot is oven and broiler safe to 600 degrees, so there’s no need to worry about using it in a home oven at the highest heat. 

The interior, handles, and lid are stainless steel for an attractive accent next to the copper. Over time, the copper will darken, but that doesn’t affect the cooking performance. While some cooks admire the dark patina, it’s simple to polish it to return it to the original shine.

Best Large Sauté: T-fal C4118274 Endura Copper Ceramic Jumbo Cooker

What We Like
  • Sturdy construction

  • Nonstick coating performs well

  • High sides prevent splatter

What We Don't Like
  • Handle may come loose

Small frying and sauté pans are fine when you’re cooking eggs or flipping a stir fry, but a large, shallow cooker is great for all sorts of one-pot meals, sauces, shallow frying, and much more. The 5-quart capacity is large enough to cook food for the family or a party and the copper color on both the interior and exterior adds a touch of elegance to the kitchen.

The nonstick ceramic interior keeps food from sticking, and cleanup is super-easy since the pot and lid are dishwasher safe. The lid is glass, so it’s easy to check the cooking progress at a glance, and it has a round top knob that’s easy to grab.

Many reviewers rave that this pan is truly nonstick, and they love that its deep sides help prevent spills. A few customers, however, have said the handle came loose over time, but add that it's easy to re-tighten.

Final Verdict

If you're looking to try out a copper pan for the first time, we recommend the T-Fal Endura Copper Ceramic Nonstick Jumbo Cooker for versatility and easy care. If you're looking for a full set to replace your current cookware, we recommend the Lagostina Martellata Hammered Copper 18/10 Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Cookware Set as a fantastic upgrade.

Why Trust The Spruce Eats

Donna Currie is a cookbook author who reviews products and writes roundups for The Spruce Eats. Her passion for quality cookware started when she toured a cookware manufacturer and saw how pots and pans were made.

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