Sauce Pans are one of the most versatile pieces of cookware you may ever purchase. Read how they’re not only a cooking necessity but also part of your aesthetic.
Make sauces? Soup? Your top secret pasta recipe (or just some mac and cheese from the box)? Yep, yep, yep! These are all things you can do with a Sauce Pan, but there’s more. We thought we’d pop in and give everyone a refresher on Sauce Pans 101 because once you really know what they’re all about, they become much more useful to you, we promise.
What Is a Sauce Pan?
Sauce Pans are what you need for dishes like risotto, mac and cheese, soups, and sauces—it’s one of the most versatile style of pan out there.
Sauce Pans have small, rounded bases with tall, straight sides. These relatively higher sides translate to plenty of room to keep yummy stuff contained when hot food gets jumpy (splatters of red pasta sauce aren’t a cute look on anything or anyone). Any eggs benedict fans out there? A Sauce Pan is the perfect tool for poaching eggs, and frankly, there’s no better way to do it.
When cooking dishes that are liquid-based or boiling water, a Sauce Pan will be your best defense against cross-fire drips, drops, and splatters. You’ll never finish a recipe and then have to clean up the sticky oil droplets that bounced out of the pan because, with a Sauce Pan, even the bounciest of hot oil stays contained.
Unlike Fry Pans, which have no lid, Sauce Pans do have a lid, allowing them to function as a miniature Dutch Oven when your actual Dutch Oven is occupied (or just hanging out on your counter acting as the perfect decor piece). Given Sauce Pans are already oh so useful, choosing an oven-safe one will be the cherry on top and facilitate easy transfers of mac and cheese from the stovetop to the oven for that finishing touch broil. This Sauce Pan comes in several beautiful, modern colors and features non-stick ceramic and stainless-steel handles.
The Sauce Pan holds three quarts, but it also holds your kitchen look together.
Sauce Pan vs. Other Pans?
It’s a big wide world of cookware out there, and we know things can get confusing. Some of us had parents teach us the ins and outs of the kitchen - what the different types of knives are used for, how to set the table properly, some basic recipes for survival, and other general kitchen know-how. One area of kitchen know-how is the different types of pots and pans and their respective uses. Not all of us learned these skills and accumulated this knowledge from our parents, and that’s okay.
Whether you’ve figured it out on your own or perhaps have been lucky with your guesswork, we’re here to help clarify once and for all. Using the correct cookware for different purposes does matter, and it can make all the difference. And where the difference in the final result isn’t major, the ease at which you’ll arrive at that final result will be.
While you probably don’t need all of the different pots and pans under the sun, the essentials every respectable kitchen needs are a Fry Pan, Sauce Pan, Dutch Oven, and Sauté Pan.
When someone says “pan,” your mind probably jumps to picturing a Fry Pan. Fry Pans are flat-bottomed and shallow with sloped, bowl-like sides perfect for cooking up all of the classics like pancakes, vegetables, and a nice omelet.
For general clarification, Fry Pans and skillets are the same things. They both have flat bottoms, flared sides, are shallow in depth, and have no lid. When people say “skillet,” they’re often referencing a cast iron skillet, which is simply a Fry Pan made from cast iron material. Cast iron definitely has its strong points, but we’re pretty partial to ceramic cookware (and not just because it’s absolutely stunning).
If there’s one cooking vessel that serves more than just looks, it’s a Dutch Oven. Dutch Ovens are your savior for dinner parties, meal prepping, and one-pot wonders. Featuring a large, heavy-bottomed base with much higher sides than a Fry Pan or Sauce Pan, Dutch Ovens are designed to perfectly slow-cook generous volumes of stews, roasts, and boils.
If you’re not yet convinced that a Dutch Oven is a necessity in every kitchen, did we mention they also create the perfect environment for baking some good old artisan-style bread? Well, they do. Just saying.
Sauté Pans fall just about right in the middle between the design of a Fry Pan and Sauce Pan. Sautéing is a method in cooking that translates to frying food at high heat using a relatively small amount of oil or fat. The Sauté Pan is designed to do this specific job perfectly, and it does! Sauté Pans have wider bases with medium height sides, allowing food to move around quickly and reach that perfect “golden fried” level throughout.
Sauté Pans are another item no kitchen can do without. These pans are designed to cook a large number of ingredients without overcrowding. High sides and a wide base facilitate quickly tossing ingredients without spilling. A Sauté Pan is ideal for saucy dishes like curries, and its conductive abilities make it an excellent option for braising meat or frying vegetables. Entertaining a large dinner party or having the extended family over for a meal? This pan will be your new best friend.
How was that for a pots and pan run down? Do you feel well equipped with cookware knowledge, ready to take on your next recipe, and use the appropriate pan for doing so? We bet you do. Woohoo!
Sauce Pan Materials
Not all Sauce Pans are created equal.
Sauce Pans are made with a variety of materials, most of which use a copper-coated bottom to distribute heat evenly throughout the contents of the pan. Like all cookware, Sauce Pans will have a non-stick coating to prevent ingredients from sticking to the bottom, and this is where things can get tricky.
Teflon® - formally named tetrafluoroethylene - is a synthetic chemical used for coating traditional non-stick cookware. Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) and Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) are other scary-sounding chemicals within the family of Teflon®, and these chemicals are used in 95% of non-stick pots and pans.
As we scrub away at our pots and pans to remove last night’s residual ingredients or this morning’s scrambled eggs, we’re also scrubbing off their chemical coating. The chemicals are released into our home’s air and become loosened in the pan, ready to mix with our food the next time we cook. According to Cancer.org, one of Teflon®’s main ingredients is recognized as a “forever chemical,” meaning it stays in the body forever once ingested, even in tiny amounts.
Eat Healthy, Eat Safe
Ceramic-coated cookware is 100% non-toxic and free of PTFE, PFOA, PFAs, lead, cadmium, nickel, and other harmful metals. Non-toxic cookware means you’re eating what you cooked and what you cooked only, no residual synthetics. With traditional non-stick, it takes only two and a half minutes at 500° Fahrenheit for the cookware to begin leaching its chemicals. Clean cookware, made with non-toxic ceramic non-stick coating, is oven-safe for temperatures up to 550° and has no chemicals to leach.
Choose a Sauce Pan that is non-toxic and safe for your mind, body, and home. You may want to rid your home of toxins all at once and replace the entirety of your cookware. Out with the old and harmful and in with a new and fresh cookware set.
Things You Can Do with a Sauce Pan
You can do many different things with a Sauce Pan, but they truly excel when cooking with liquids. Sauce Pans are excellent for anything involving boiling, steaming, stewing, simmering, and deep-frying.
We’ll start with the basics: boiling water. Reaching for a Sauce Pan when you need to boil water should be just about second nature. Boiling water for pasta, potatoes, and making any type of grain such as rice, quinoa, or lentils are all perfect callings for a Sauce Pan.
Thanks to its tall sides, one of the best uses of a Sauce Pan is steaming vegetables. These high sides support even heating, and with its lid, Sauce Pans can double duty as a miniature makeshift Dutch Oven. With some water in the bottom, a pop-up vegetable steamer, and your favorite veggies of choice, your first course or side dish will be ready in no time. And of course, if you want to throw a sprinkle of cheese on there before throwing it in the oven for a finishing touch broil, go right ahead!
The right Sauce Pan can also be used for braising when you’re in a pinch (a Sauté Pan would be ideal, but Sauce Pans can suffice when your other pans are in use). When it’s as easy as throwing everything together in one little pot, there doesn’t need to be a special occasion to make a mouth-watering dish.
Once you realize how easy it is to use your Sauce Pan for deep frying, cooking becomes a whole different ball game.
Your Caraway Cabinet
So, you found the perfect Sauce Pan, and now you’ve been inspired to organize your entire kitchen? Try storing your Sauce Pan in its Magnetic Pan Racks and Canvas Lid Holder, which looks oh so organized, clean, and practical. Suppose you decide you’re no longer into cooking with chemicals and are ready to revamp your kitchen cleanliness. You probably need an entire new Cookware Set. In that case, you’ll also receive this cookware storage as part of the deal.
Magnetic Pan Racks are modular racks that perfectly house each pot and pan, ready for easy access and providing a slick storage look. A Canvas Lid Holder is the hottest new way to merge storage and design and serves as the perfect resting spot for all three lids, keeping them in arm’s reach, ready to help out with fried tortellini later tonight.
While we’re thinking creatively here, you can also use your Sauce Pan - and all cookware, really - to add a pop of color to your kitchen space. Color is a great tool to help brighten up a tired kitchen, but knowing where and how much to use can seem daunting. Colorful cookware can add artistic and sculptural elements of design, providing visual appeal in a unique way. Good thing your new non-toxic ceramic cookware comes in five subtle yet playful colors of Cream, Navy, Sage, Gray, and Perracotta.
Sauce Pan Superhero
You probably have a whole new appreciation for your Sauce Pan now, right? We hope so. Sauce Pans have so much potential to provide so much joy, and we just want everyone to know it.
Here’s a design tip: tuck your beautiful pots and pans away in a nicely organized cabinet, and leave this daring little pan out on the stovetop. The perfect size for making meals for one or two people, this Sauce Pan is part of an intimate kitchen experience. This pop of color (especially when it matches your Pot Holder) elevates simple cookware into a venerable art installation.
It’d be a shame to go through life struggling to transfer half-cooked recipes from pan to pot or pot to pan because you don’t have a does-it-all Sauce Pan. There are some simple ways we can make life easier for ourselves, and having a Caraway Sauce Pan is one of them. Clean cooking and good-looking, it’s a recipe for success.