Outfitting a kitchen with quality cookware can be an expensive endeavor, which is why my wife and I started out with underwhelming hand-me-down cookware. We recently upgraded thanks to our friends at Made In Cookware, whose goal it is to create a superior product at a great value while partnering with the best raw material providers and expert manufacturers.
Made In follows the direct-to-consumer formula to provide a great value to their customers by cutting the middleman out of the equation. There are no resellers, distributors, or retailers looking for a cut of the profits, meaning that there are fewer markups do drive up the cost. That’s how Made In is able to use premium raw materials, work with some of the best manufacturers in the world, create new innovative products, and still cost less than other high-end brands.
High-profile investors and world-renowned chefs are flocking to back Made In, such as Brian Spaly of Bonobos and Trunk Club, Grant Achatz of Alinea, and Tom Colicchio, of Bravo’s Top Chef fame and Chef/Owner of Crafted Hospitality. Chef Tom Douglas, Barry Sternlicht of Starwood Capital, and Ezra Galston of Startling Line Investors round out the impressive group of backers. While normally I don’t pay much attention to who is investing in a company, for well-known chefs to attach their name to a cookware company means that they truly believe in the product. They put their money where their mouth is, so to speak.
The kind folks at Made In sent us a few of their most popular products to test and review and I was totally impressed from start to finish. Their pans come with basil seeds embedded in the tags, which is a nice touch. As soon as I unpacked them I could feel the quality construction in the thick 5-ply metal construction and stainless steel rivets that are made to last a lifetime. The pans are heavy enough to know they’re made with quality materials, but still easy to lift and move around the cooktop.
The stay-cool handles feel great in your hand and you can tell that they were thoughtfully designed for ergonomics. The bottom of each pan has a fun design that tells you exactly which pan you’re holding, including the size. After cooking on them almost exclusively for about a month, I could not recommend Made In Cookware enough. They’re an amazing value for the quality materials they’re crafted with and they perform similar to much more expensive pans.
The 3qt Saucier has become my go-to pan that I use almost every time I cook. The rounded bottom helps prevent hot spots and keep food from sticking in the corners. It’s crafted using Made In’s 5-ply cladding construction with stainless steel on the exterior and interior. This means that it gives you exceptional heat retention and control with the corrosion-resistance and long-lasting durability of stainless steel. I found the Saucier to cook incredibly well, boiled water much quicker than our old pans, and heated evenly. Including a lid, you can get this pan for $99 and it comes with a lifetime warranty.
The Stainless Steel Pan has a similar 5-ply construction to the Saucier, so it also provides fast and even heat retention and can transition from the stovetop to roasting in an oven up to 800-degrees. The stay-cool handle does stay cool while the pan itself is at searing temperature while the rivets connecting the handle to the pan are guaranteed for life. This pan is perfect for searing chicken or caramelizing onions and is available in three sizes; 8”, 10”, and 12” for $59, $69, and $85 respectively. My only complaint is that the sides are fairly wide, so you end up with a slightly small flat cooking surface on the bottom.
Made In’s Non-Stick Fry Pan has quickly become my daily egg pan due to its seriously slippery “Made Slick” surface. The pan’s coating is PFOA free and is triple-cured so that the coating will not degrade over time. Made In claims this pan will last 10 times longer than other premium brands. The Non-Stick Pan is also built with the 5-ply metal construction for even heat retention while also being able to go into the oven up to 500-degrees. I’ve never had to use any cooking spray or oil in this pan to keep it slick and it cleans so easily as everything just slides right off. The Non-Stick Fry Pan comes in 8”, 10”, and 12” sizes and sell for $69, $79, and $95 respectively. They also come in multiple colors, including grey, gold, and blue.
The Made In Blue Carbon Steel Frying Pan is a revelation in cookware. It’s the perfect hybrid of stainless steel and cast iron because it has cast iron’s heat retention, seasoning, and non-stick properties paired with stainless steel’s heat control, lightweight, and cooking speed. While it is lighter than a similarly sized cast iron pan, you’ll still notice the weight difference between this and a standard stainless steel frying pan. Once seasoned, the blue carbon steel frying pan is fantastically non-stick while searing food beautifully. This pan is oven safe up to 1,200-degrees and is made in France. You can grab the 10” Blue Carbon Steel pan for $69.
While I expected Made In’s pans to be phenomenal, which they were, what really surprised me was how much I liked the 8” Chef Knife. The blade is hammered from a single rod of nitrogen treated metal that has achieved a Rockwell hardness rating of 58-60, which means it will keep its edge a lot longer than most knives. The black knife is classic looking and feels nice and balanced in your hand while the blade is extremely sharp and cuts through meat, vegetables, herbs, and more with ease. The metal is X50CrMoV15, which sounds good but is a little above my pay grade. The blade is also full tang with stainless steel rivets so this knife will last in your knife block for a long time. The 8” Chef Knife goes for $89 and is available in red, black, and white.
I have to say that I was seriously impressed with Made In Cookware. Not only do they perform extremely well, but they are also reasonably priced for high-quality cookware. While you could spend $200 on a 3qt saucepan made by a famous cookware company in a store like Williams Sonoma, Made In makes a convincing value proposition with their $99 Saucier that’s built to last a lifetime. If I had a friend who was outfitting their new kitchen, I would recommend Made In Cookware 10 times out of 10.
Check out all of Made In’s offerings at MadeInCookware.com.
Source: Manufacturer supplied review samples
What I Like: Built to last; Aesthetically pleasing design; Excellent performance; High-quality materials and craftsmanship; Great value
What Needs Improvement: Bottom of the stainless pan was slightly small