Are you intrigued by PFOA-free items? Read on to learn more about what it is and what it has to do with cooking.
When shopping for the perfect essentials and accessories for your kitchen, you’ve probably stumbled across cookware with the words “PFOA-free” scrawled across it. The invention of PFOA and its usage in cookware has a long and storied history that is still impacting our health today.
To learn more about PFOA and what it has to do with cooking, keep reading.
What Is PFOA?
PFOA, or Perfluorooctanoic acid, is a manufactured chemical that is created as a byproduct of producing fluoropolymers. Because of the properties of PFOA, it has often been used to make products that are designed to resist heat, water, grease, and sticking.
Among these products is a famous one: non-stick cookware. The process of creating these unique surfaces is fascinating. The answer lies in the coating, which sometimes uses PFOA.
While PFOA may sound useful, given that it is attempting to solve a kitchen cleaning headache, it has a major downside to it.
Discover the dangers associated with PFOA below.
What Are the Dangers of PFOA?
Unfortunately, the chemical that brought you non-stick cookware also brings some health concerns worth being aware of.
Many studies have found that exposure to high levels of PFOA could affect growth and development, reproduction, and damage the liver. These health conditions include (but are not limited to) kidney and testicular cancer, thyroid disease, liver damage, and cholesterol concerns.
PFOA is known to persist and not break down in the environment and has also been identified in bodies of water, land, and animals. It exists all around us and can easily be consumed by people.
This information about the health conditions associated with PFOA is enough to set off alarms. To avoid these health threats, it’s best to avoid PFOA altogether. However, that can be difficult to do when it seems so prevalent in the kitchenware aisles.
What Does It Have to do With Cooking
So, what exactly does all of this have to do with cooking? As we briefly mentioned, PFOA has been used in some cookware to give it its non-stick quality. A very common type of cookware that has been known to use PFOA in its products is Teflon.
Teflon is the brand name for polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). This synthetic chemical is similar to PFOA in that it also causes health risks when consumed. Ultimately, all of the chemicals that are used in these cookwares are wonderful in that they give you that non-stick quality, but the bad does outweigh the good.
PFOA, PTFE, and other harmful polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) can be consumed when people use these types of non-stick cookware. A common way that they can enter the body is through chipped or overheated cookware.
When the cookware gets scratched, the non-stick coating material can flake off and be ingested upon use. This can happen very easily, especially without caring for, cleaning, or storing your cookware properly.
What Is PFOA-Free?
PFOA-free cookware is exactly what you would expect: cookware that has no PFOA. Luckily, PFOA and Teflon aren’t the only things that can create non-stick kitchen products.
Some materials can provide a naturally frictionless surface for your cookware without the chemicals we discussed earlier and the harmful risks that come with them. One of our favorite materials for this is ceramic.
Ceramic provides a slick surface for your cookware and comes with so many benefits. At Caraway, our cookware is free of PFOA and PTFE, but it’s also free of PFAS, cadmium, lead, and other toxic metals that would otherwise be found in non-stick cookware.
Benefits of Ceramic Cookware
Ceramic cookware comes with benefits that traditional non-stick cookware doesn’t. But what exactly are those benefits?
Here, we highlight some of them.
Healthier Cooking and Easy Clean Up
Cooking with products that don’t contain harmful chemicals is great, but the health benefits go beyond just that. Traditional non-stick cookware that has PFOA and other chemicals still doesn't offer the most reliable clean. Even though it’s billed as non-stick, food sometimes still gets stuck.
The way around this is to make sure that your cookware is thoroughly greased. But using a lot of butter or oil in your cooking often isn’t what people want to be doing. With ceramic cookware, though, you don’t have to worry about that.
The ceramic material creates such a reliably slick surface that you don’t have to choose between your food sticking or coating your pans in tons of greasy butter and oils.
With ceramic cookware, when you go to clean up your dishes, the food comes right off with just a bit of warm water, soap, and a gentle scrub. Because of this, your cookware doesn’t have to endure intense scrubbing that can dull a lively evening or even cause your pans to chip. Plus, with less oils being tossed in, your food is healthier than ever.
Heat Conduction and Versatility
A common issue with cookware is that the food doesn’t end up cooking thoroughly. This is often due to the material that is used in the cookware.
If you’re using any one of our items in our Cookware Set, you’ll find that the surface heats up very evenly without any cool spots. This ensures that all of the food is cooked evenly and thoroughly, a quality that cast iron and stainless steel cookware often lack.
While some traditional non-stick cookwares also have this good heat conduction ability, they lack versatility. Our Cookware Set comes with four items—a Fry Pan, a Sauce Pan, a Dutch Oven, and a Sauté Pan. Each cookware item can function on any sort of stovetop, whether it be electric, induction, or gas.
On top of that, these four items are all you need in your kitchen in order to cook whatever you want. These items are so versatile that they can fit any of your cooking needs and can move right from your stovetop to your oven.
Additionally, the Cookware Set comes with a free Magnetic Pan Rack and Canvas Lid Holder for easy and convenient access to all your cookware. This safe (and aesthetically pleasing) storage solution with proper care results in products that last as long as you need them to.
The pop of unexpected color that our cookware can add to your kitchen is an added bonus that helps make intentional design and living even easier.
All of our cookware comes in a variety of colors, including Sage, Navy, Cream, Grey, Perracotta, Marigold, and, for a limited time, Brick Red. These colors are so vibrant that your cookware can even double as home decor.
Sign Us Up For Ceramic
Between the versatility, the colors, and the non-toxic material, PFOA-free ceramic cookware is the way to go. With an option like ceramic, it’s hard to imagine going back to the non-stick cookware that uses PFOA and other harmful chemicals.
Ceramic cookware is a slick solution to a sticky problem. Ceramic is part healthy eating, part easy cleaning, and part of a beautifully designed kitchen.