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You might not give much thought to roasting pans outside of the holiday season. While roasting pans are certainly helpful when it comes to cooking large Thanksgiving turkeys and holiday roasts, they’re also highly versatile pieces of cookware that can come in handy in everyday cooking. Roasting pans can be used to roast chicken or vegetables, bake one-pan meals like lasagna or deep dish pizzas, bake desserts for a crowd, and simmer gravy and pan sauces on the stovetop. Here, our seven of our top roasting pan picks for every kitchen and budget.
High-end look and feel
Durable and lightweight
Can use on stovetop, but only on low heat as metal may warp on higher setting
The first thing you’ll notice about this roasting pan is its sleek, mirrored stainless steel finish. It’s attractive and looks good enough to go straight from the oven to the table for serving. It’s a good-sized pan at 16 inches long—not too big and not too small. It fits easily across two stovetop burners, has a flat bottom for easy pan sauces, and is still roomy enough to fit approximately a 20-pound turkey, two small roasting chickens, or a large casserole to feed a crowd.
This pan features riveted, contoured handles that provide a sturdy and comfortable grip going in and out of the oven and a tapered rim that makes pouring pan juices and gravy less messy. Both the pan and rack are dishwasher safe to make cleaning up extra easy.
The construction and performance of this roasting pan match its high-end look and feel. Owners of this pan praise the tri-ply stainless steel construction for being durable, lightweight, and even heating. A matching stainless steel V-shaped cooking rack is included. Use it to drain roasts, position meat over vegetables, or remove it for added versatility. Mark Jenner, barbeque professional and founder of Food, Fire, Friends, says this roasting pan is his top choice “not only for roasting, but as a carrying device for piping hot BBQ items, a marinade container, and more.”
Stylish and functional
Handles are a little awkward
Rack is smaller than pan so it may move around
This roasting pan is designed with style in mind. It features a brushed stainless steel exterior, brushed handles, and a mirrored stainless steel interior cooking surface. The handles are triple-riveted for extra support so you can feel secure transferring heavy dishes in and out of the oven. The handles are also gently curved inward, which looks attractive, but some customers find the orientation uncomfortable and a little small for gripping with bulky potholders.
It’s not all about looks, though. This roasting pan is constructed of stainless steel surrounding a heavy-gauge aluminum core for fast and even heating and browning. Jessica Randhawa, the creator behind the popular food blog The Forked Spoon, owns this roaster and recommends it for its durability. “After over six years of professional cooking, the roasting pan shows almost no signs of wear or tear that Barkeeper’s Friend cannot polish up,” she says.
It comes with a nonstick coated V-shaped rack that is spacious enough to hold up to a 25-pound turkey. The rack’s handles face the opposite direction from the pan’s handles, which makes it easy to remove from the pan. However, some users complain that the rack is smaller than the pan and prone to sliding around. Other points to consider: The pan is dishwasher safe, has a slightly raised bottom, and is backed by a lifetime warranty.
Porcelain coated nonstick without PFAs or PFEs
Lightweight, but sturdy
Not suitable for stovetop burners
Raised bottom might make it more difficult to clean than smoother bottom
If your roasting plans are contained to an annual Thanksgiving turkey, this roaster might offer plenty of value to meet your needs. GraniteWare produces porcelain-coated steel cookware in the USA that is naturally nonstick without any of the potentially harmful chemicals found in traditional nonstick coatings. As for appearances, the speckled enamel coating is available in black or blue and has a vintage kitchen vibe.
This roaster is thinner and more lightweight than stainless steel-constructed pans. It’s a great option if you're concerned about lifting heavier pans, and it will provide more sturdiness than a disposable foil roasting pan. It comes with a matching cover, which helps collect rising steam and redirects the moisture back onto the meat for enhanced moistness. The pan can hold up to 15 pounds of meat with the cover and 20 pounds of meat without the cover.
This roasting pan is not ideal for stovetop burner use, which is something to keep in mind if you’re planning to make gravy in the same pan as your turkey drippings. The pan has raised channels on the bottom, which prevents you from easily whisking together a lump-free gravy. Some owners complain food has a tendency to stick to the raised bottom, but the pan is dishwasher safe, which should make cleanup easier.
Excellent heating and performance
Flared sides promote heat circulation
Upright handles make it easy to move in and out of oven
Flared sides make it too uneven for casseroles or baked goods
All-Clad’s stainless steel cookware collection is known for its superior heating and cooking performance. The brand's stainless steel roasting pan has an aluminum core surrounded by an 18/10 stainless steel exterior and a signature starburst finish on the cooking surface that helps prevent food from sticking. It also features extra-roomy upright handles for a secure grip moving in and out of the oven and flared sides for optimal heat circulation.
Owners of the pan credit the flared sides for producing extra-crisp and evenly browned chicken and turkey skin. Be aware the flared edges may make this pan too uneven to contain casseroles and large batches of baked goods, like cornbread or cobbler.
This roasting pan comes with a flat cooking rack, which may be preferable for cooking “flatter” roasts, like spatchcocked poultry, brisket, and whole fish. The pan is available in two sizes and has a flat bottom, so making gravy on the stovetop burner is easy. It’s more expensive than other stainless steel roasting pans, but it’s backed by All-Clad’s lifetime warranty.
Enameled cast iron retains heat well
Perfect for roasting as well as slow-cooking, searing, and more
Available in a variety of colors
Roasting rack not included
On the pricier side
Le Creuset is renowned for its line of high-performance enameled cast iron Dutch ovens available in a rainbow assortment of colors. Its roasting pan is a favorite among chefs, food bloggers, and other food experts for being durable and attractive and for having superior heat distribution and retention. This roaster has excellent heating performance at both low and high temperatures, making it a multi-functional vessel for recipes that require slow-cooking, braising, searing, and caramelization.
The roasting pan is available in several colors so you can match it to your kitchen decor or other Le Creuset pieces. With a colorful exterior and spacious size, this roasting pan can also be used as a serving dish. Besides looking good, the enameled cast iron is easy to keep clean. Jessica Formicola, recipe creator and founder of the food blog Savory Experiments, chooses this roaster as her go-to because of the ease of care. She says the enameled cast iron “rarely scratches” and “doesn’t have the same care as bare cast iron.”
This roasting pan is on the heavy side and lacks a cooking rack, which may be a turn-off for some home cooks. This roasting pan is on the expensive end, but Le Creuset owners tend to become devotees, keeping their pieces for a lifetime and even passing them down to younger generations.
Super heavy-duty construction
Upright handles are easy to grab
Roasting rack is nonstick
Very heavy, so it may be difficult to lift for some
At 10.5 pounds, this roaster is one of the heaviest on this list. If you’re planning to cook lots of heavy turkeys or large cuts of beef, you might appreciate the extra durable strength and sturdiness of this pan. The pan’s handles are upright, dual riveted, and large so you can easily and comfortably grip them with oven mitts. The handles on the included nonstick rack are also extra roomy, extending well over the edges of the pan so it’s easy to remove heavy roasts from the pan.
The pan is made of tri-ply stainless steel surrounding an aluminum core and is oven safe up to 500 degrees. Like similarly constructed stainless steel pans on this list, the Anolon roasting pan is praised for distributing heat quickly and evenly. This roaster has a slightly raised bottom, which means oil and liquids tend to collect around the edges of the pan.
Nonstick coating is PFOA-free
Food releases easily
High pan sides minimize splatter
Nonstick is susceptible to scratches if using sharp/metal tools
If you’re a fan of nonstick coated cookware but also appreciate the aesthetic of stainless steel, this is the roasting pan for you. It features a luxe, highly polished stainless steel exterior and a PFOA-free nonstick coated cooking surface. Owners of the pan say cleaning the nonstick interior is a breeze since food releases easily and it’s also dishwasher safe.
The pan is 16 inches long, has up to a 25-pound capacity, comes with a V-shaped nonstick rack, and is oven safe up to 500 degrees. Upright, riveted stainless steel handles provide stability lifting heavy dishes out of the oven, and the high pan sides help minimize splatters. As with all nonstick cookware, you’ll want to avoid using metal utensils since they can scratch the nonstick coating.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats
Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Sharon Lehman, the author of this roundup, knows the importance of trusted cookware. She has owned and used cookware from several brands on this roundup including All-Clad, Anolon, Cuisinart, Calphalon, Le Creuset, and GraniteWare. When it comes to prepping a weeknight roast chicken and the annual Thanksgiving turkey (her favorite!), she reaches for the top-rated Cuisinart Chef’s Classic roasting pan.
This piece was edited by Bernadette Machard de Gramont, an LA-based writer who specializes in global food and wine content. She researches and tests a variety of cookware, bakeware, and wine tools, and interviews field experts for their insight.
When thinking about what size roasting pan you need, consider what type of food you want to roast. If you like to cook up a gigantic turkey for the holidays, you’ll need a large pan, but if you’re just planning to roast chickens, vegetables, and other smaller dishes, a smaller one may be sufficient. Also, consider how much storage space you have.
Consider the shape and design of a roasting pan before purchasing. A roasting pan that has a raised bottom will be harder to use on the stovetop for preparing sauce and gravy, as liquids will collect around the edges of the pan.
Roasters are made from a variety of materials, and each will cook your foods slightly differently and require different methods of care. You’ll also want to choose something that isn’t too heavy for your needs. Stainless steel cookware is highly durable and offers longevity. Nonstick roasters may be prone to chips and scratches that require more frequent replacement. Certain materials, like cast iron, produce heavier cookware that will require more muscle to move between oven and table. Remember: A heavy roasting pan will only be that much heavier once you place a large piece of meat or turkey in it!
Do you want a lid with your roaster? How about a roasting rack? There are models that come with both, as well as those that are just bare-bones. Also, when looking at a pan, check to see what type of handles it has and if you find them comfortable to use.