People who love to cook often have a favorite pot or a brand of kitchenware or even a favorite spoon they like to use. Because when it comes to cooking or preparing dishes, what you cook with can be just as important as what you cook or the ingredients you use.
Some kitchen enthusiasts will swear by wooden cooking utensils while others will only use stainless steel. But which is the best option? We look at the pros and cons of these kitchen tools to help you decide.
Wooden Utensils: The Pros
Wood Won’t Scratch Your Pan
Wood is a softer material and is gentler on even the most delicate cooking surfaces. You can safely use them on your precious cast iron skillets and non-stick pans without fear of ruining them. They are also much quieter, which is important if you spend all day in the kitchen -- that scraping sound can really get to you after a while!
Wood Doesn’t Conduct Heat
Wood is a poor conductor of heat which is great news for dishes like soups or sauces that require a lot of stirring. The handle will stay cool enough to touch even if you leave the wooden utensil on the pot for an extended period. So, no burnt fingertips and no burnt lips when tasting!
Wooden Utensils are Comfortable to Use
With repeated use, wooden utensils will mold to your grip making them very comfortable which is great when it comes to those dishes that need a lot of love and attention. The handles on wooden utensils tend to be rounded so there are no hard metal edges and the smooth wood is easy to grip and pleasant to hold.
Wood is Eco-Friendly and Non-Toxic
Perhaps one of the most important benefits of wood is that it is a natural material. It is the most environmentally friendly kitchen utensil. They are extremely durable and when their time comes to retire, your favorite wooden utensils are also biodegradable.
Wood is also non-toxic and non-reactive, meaning that it won’t react with your recipe ingredients or leach harmful chemicals into your food.
Wooden Utensils: The Cons
Harder to Clean
Wooden kitchen utensils can be more difficult to clean and are more susceptible to staining. That said, if you wash them immediately after use (and don’t let food dry on them), it helps. Don’t leave them to soak as this will open up the wood grain, which also means they aren’t suitable for your dishwasher. You can protect them by giving them a rub with food-grade oil which helps moisturize and protect the wood.
They are pretty sturdy but there is always the possibility of breaking your wooden utensils especially if you don’t care for them properly.
Stainless Steel: The Pros
Easy to Clean
It's pretty easy to maintain the shiny finish of stainless steel. As long as you don’t leave dried food on it for days, all you’ll need is a gentle wipe to bring back your stainless steel utensils’ pretty shine.
If you’re dealing with something heavy like a huge chunk of meat, then stainless steel may be the better option. Stainless steel utensils won’t snap under the weight, and they won’t dent or chip. They are pretty much indestructible!
Stainless Steel: The Cons
Good stainless steel is expensive. You can get cheaper stainless steel but the quality is extremely poor. Stainless steel is a mixture of metals and if not created correctly, they can be harmful. Choose a higher quality to make sure it’s safe.
Can Damage Cookware
Stainless steel is a hard material and can damage the bottom of your pots and pans. Be careful if you use stainless steel utensils on stainless steel pots. A scratched stainless steel pot can leach harmful metals such as iron, chromium, and nickel into your food then to your body.
What will you Choose: Wooden or Stainless Steel?
Cooking is an art and having the right tools for the job can make all the difference to your kitchen experience. Choose the best utensil for your dish and your health!