I’ll let you in on a little lifestyle blogger secret: cookware is one of those things that’s always a better buy when purchased in a set, and those sets almost always end up going on sale. When they do, snap them up—and then either set them to work in your kitchen, or set them aside to one day become an awesome gift for someone special. When this Cuisinart Hammered Collection first caught my eye, I knew it would only be a matter of time before it became an unbeatable deal at Best Buy.
Another trick sits in roughly the same space. Low-quality cookware sets will often offer a small savings, but high-quality sets? Well, those sales will often knock your socks off. And when they do, they make it possible for you to buy the very best and still stay within your budget.
The Cuisinart Hammered Collection fits both of these little blogger secrets perfectly. It’s a large set, with eleven pieces (including four lids) that will fully stock your kitchen. Every single one is weighty and well-made, and you can feel the quality in each.
Heat Surround technology and Tri-Ply construction in the Cuisinart Hammered Collection
The Cuisinart Hammered Collection features the brand’s Heat Surround technology, which is designed to ensure an even heat distribution throughout the pan. I found that this tested pretty reliably—but, of course, heat distribution is fairly even on all stainless steel pans. (If you want to see the difference between an even and uneven heat distribution, just compare a stainless steel pan to a cast iron one!)
I saw good heat distribution all the way to the sides of the small skillet that I tested, which I was happy with. The Heat Surround technology works hand-in-hand with Cuisinart’s often-flaunted Tri-Ply construction: a stainless steel interior, a pure aluminum core, and a stainless steel exterior. The stainless steel interior and exterior give you durability and some degree of non-stick qualities.
The aluminum core heats evenly, but also keeps consumers safe. While there has been no strong evidence to suggest a causal link between aluminum-finished cookware and the development of Alzheimer’s, many consumers still choose to play it safe. This Tri-Ply construction gives you the even heating of aluminum, paired with the reassurance of a stainless steel cooking surface.
Stainless steel for the stovetop or the oven
Another thing that I love about the Cuisinart Hammered Collection is its high-quality, thick-bottomed stainless steel. That makes it compatible with all stovetops, including induction. Even if you don’t own an induction stovetop now, I always recommend buying induction-friendly cookware. A good cookware set should last you decades, and you can never say for certain what your next stove will be!
The same qualities also make this entire Cuisinart set oven-safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit—which I personally love to use to finish steaks in the oven. (You get that really nice, crisp sear on high heat in barely any time at all, and then pop it in the oven for a hot couple of minutes to cook the meat evenly throughout.) It’s also great for breakfast meals like omelettes; although, I’ll admit that I still stick to my cast iron for pan-style cornbread.
Once you cook or bake with this set, it’s important to note that each piece is also dishwasher-safe and can be used under the broiler or in the freezer. One of the many perks of a great stainless steel set is that they can go anywhere, and this set is no exception. The hammered finish makes these pieces ideal for serving as well. They look great as part of a holiday meal spread, and literally seem to sparkle under my stove lights—the many facets glisten on the stovetop and will help camouflage any dings or scratches it may acquire over time.
Cool Grip handles and Flavour-Lock lids in the Cuisinart Hammered Collection
What seals the deal for me with the Cuisinart Hammered Collection is the line’s stainless steel Cool Grip handles. I haven’t cooked anything extensive in these pots and pans, but they perform well for their sizes and shapes.
The Cool Grip handles are thick and comfortable, but they’re somehow not too heavy. They don’t add a ton of weight to each item. I’m wary of some stainless steel pots and pans because they sacrifice handle comfort for weight; these manage to give you a comfortable grip without feeling like long, heavy sticks in your hand. I have a pot that’s shaped very similarly to the smallest pot here, and when I filled each with water and poured it out, the Cuisinart Hammered Collection pot was significantly easier to lift and pour—despite being heavier overall. The better handle construction gave me a more secure grip, and took the pressure off of my joints when tilted.
What’s in the Cuisinart Hammered Collection
Finally, Flavour-Lock Lids seal in moisture and ensure a comfortable fit. There are less lids than bottoms in this collection, but each one is multi-use. In total, this eleven-piece set includes the following:
- Four lids of different sizes, to fit each piece
- One 0.9L (1 quart) open pour saucier
- One 1.89L (2 quart) saucepan (shown with a lid)
- One 2.37L (2.5 quart) casserole pan (shown with a lid)
- One 8″ (20 cm) skillet
- One 3.3L (3.5 quart) sauté pan (shown with a lid)
- One 5.7L (6 quart) stockpot (shown with a lid)
- One 10″ (24 cm) skillet
I get a lot of use out of my small sauciers (they’re great for making sauces and—shh, this is a secret—ramen or chicken noodle soup at 3 AM) as well as my skillets and saucepans. I found that these lose their sparkling look quite quickly, as food and sauces singe the insides, but that’s pretty standard for stainless steel.
One last thing to note is that this collection doesn’t have rolled rims, but other Cuisinart sets do. Rolled rims are a little thinner and are turned outwards for easier pouring, but whether or not they’re a necessity for you is a personal preference. I don’t make a ton of sauces, so for the most part, I don’t notice the difference. If I had to pick between rolled rims and these gorgeous, Cool Grip handles, though, I would pick the handles in a heartbeat!