I Tried All-Clad’s Gorgeous New Fusiontec Cookware — Here’s My Honest Review
All-Clad is one of those brands I will always aspire to own more of. Their pots and pans really are top-notch. All-Clad cookware, while expensive, will last forever and perform incredibly well on day one and day 1,001. And like some other things within the kitchen space (blenders, food processors, and stand mixers, for example), I think it’s worth investing in the best-of-the-best that’ll stand up to the general wear and tear of cooking and cleaning. Of course, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t hurt your wallet any less when you press “checkout.”
Which is why I knew I was in trouble when I saw that the brand launched a new line: Fusiontec. The pinkish-red Rose Quartz colorway had me at first click, combining two of my greatest loves: pretty things and cookware.
All Clad’s Fusiontec line has a steel core (read: even heat distribution!), a ceramic finish, and a stainless steel handle. The pieces are oven safe to 500°F, induction friendly, and even dishwasher safe. And, like I said before, this cookware is stunning — available in metallic-like, sparkly finishes of Rose Quartz, Platinum, and Onyx Black. The line includes a 9 1/2-inch skillet, 4 1/2-quart “universal pan” with a lid, 7-quart stockpot with a lid, and 4-quart soup pot with a lid. You can get everything as a set for about $1,000 (eep!), or buy the pieces separately for about $180, $300, $300, and $250, respectively.
But how well did these pans perform — and are they worth the price? I tried them all out over the course of a couple of months. Here’s what I thought.
Which Pots and Pans Did I Find the Most Useful?
While I loved all of the Fusiontec pots and pans, I found myself reaching for the skillet and universal pan the most. I used the skillet to fry and scramble eggs, make omelets, sear salmon, and toast garlicky breadcrumbs, among other things. (Note: While the 9-inch skillet does not come with a lid, the lid of the stockpot fits it perfectly.) The universal pan reminded me of a braiser, with medium-height walls, a large cooking surface, and handles that were slightly curved upwards, making it easy to lift and move the pan. I used it for roasting a whole chicken, making one-pot pasta, braising chicken thighs, steaming greens, and searing meatballs and simmering them in tomato sauce.
As for the stockpot and the soup pot, I actually used the stockpot for large batches of soup and cooking pasta. And I found the soup pot to be the perfect size for cooking a side of rice for dinner, reheating soup and chili, and making queso. These pieces aren’t “must-haves” like the skillet or universal pan, but if you’re choosing between the two, I think the soup pot is handier.
But, Is Fusiontec Nonstick?
When I first heard about Fusiontec, I saw the word “ceramic” and immediately equated it with nonstick. But the Fusiontec line wasn’t truly nonstick: While it isn’t as nonstick as a nonstick skillet, it’s way more nonstick than, say, a stainless steel skillet. So, let’s call it somewhat nonstick. (I’m saying “nonstick” a lot!) This meant that, with a bit of fat, I was able to remove fried eggs, omelettes, pan-seared salmon, and sauces fairly easily. But it also meant that sticking did occur often, which wouldn’t happen with a true nonstick skillet, and there were often bits of stuck-on food to clean up.
How Easy Were They to Clean?
This brings me to cleaning the Fusiontec pots and pans. To do so, I followed All-Clad’s cleaning instructions: I soaked the (cooled!) cookware in warm, soapy water and cleaned it with a sponge or, if there were stuck-on remnants, my favorite non-scratch scouring pads. After some use, I noticed some dark spots on the surface of the pans that I couldn’t remove, so I sprinkled the surface with baking soda, added water, brought it to a boil, and used a wooden spoon to scrape and loosen the food particles. It worked like a charm! And my cookware looked as good as new.
Related: How to Clean a Nonstick Pan
The Bottom Line
I think part of the brilliance of this line is that you get a mix of the benefits of nonstick and All-Clad’s signature stainless steel cookware in one. Its steel core ensures even and quick heating, which means food cooks evenly, too. Is it perfectly nonstick? No, but it’s fairly nonstick. And unlike nonstick, the Fusiontec line is durable and scratch resistant. Even when I banged on the pots with a metal spoon, they didn’t dent or scratch. The black interior is also stain resistant (which can’t even be said of a Dutch oven that has a light-colored interior).
While a traditional nonstick skillet has an average lifespan of five years, I have confidence that, with a brand like All-Clad, I’ll be using my Fusiontec cookware for much longer than that.
This post originally appeared on Kitchn. See it here: I Tried All-Clad’s Gorgeous New Fusiontec Line — Here’s My Honest Review