The best frying pans to buy in 2021

23 April 2021

Le Creuset frying pan

A good frying pan is an essential piece of kit for cooks of all abilities and kitchens of every size. Our guide lets you know which ones will really bring home the bacon.

No matter what you like to eat, you’ll always make use of a good frying pan or two in the kitchen. But not all frying pans are created equal, and different types – small, large, ceramic, copper – are better suited to different dishes and cooking styles. Whether you’re making a cooked breakfast, preparing a quick midweek dinner for a hungry family or working on a Masterchef-style feast, our list has you covered.

We’ve rounded up a selection of the best frying pans to buy in the UK right now, including tried-and-tested recommendations from the Mumsnet forums.

Here are the best frying pans to buy in 2021.

1. Best overall frying pan: Eaziglide Neverstick2 Non-Stick Frying Pan

Price: £47 | Buy now from Amazon

“We have one of these and it’s excellent.”

1. Best overall frying pan: Eaziglide Neverstick2 Non-Stick Frying Pan

Cooking up a storm in the kitchen couldn’t be easier with this Eaziglide Neverstick2 non-stick frying pan. Made from toughened aluminium, it’s hard-wearing and the non-stick surface makes it a breeze to clean. It can be used on induction hobs, is oven safe (up to 260°C) and can be popped in the dishwasher when you’re finished with it.

It’s a great all-rounder which makes it easy to highlight as our best buy. However, if you’re not completely happy, it also comes with a lifetime guarantee. One thing to note: it has a metal handle so you’ll need to use an oven glove when picking it up.

Key specs

  • Material: Toughened aluminium body with a solid stainless steel base
  • Size: 20cm, 24cm or 28cm
  • Suitable for induction hobs: Yes
  • Oven safe: Yes
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
Buy now from Amazon

2. Best budget frying pan: Argos Home Non-Stick Aluminium Frying Pan

2. Best budget frying pan: Argos Home Non-Stick Aluminium Frying Pan

If cheap and cheerful is what you’re after, you can’t go wrong with this aluminium frying pan from Argos. It distributes heat quickly and evenly and has a Teflon non-stick coating and a bakelite handle which can withstand high temperatures. Suitable for most types of hob (apart from induction), it’s also dishwasher safe.

Key specs

  • Material: Aluminium
  • Size: 28cm
  • Suitable for induction hobs: No
  • Oven safe: No
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
Buy now from Argos

3. Best cast iron frying pan: Le Creuset Cast Iron Frying Pan

“Mine is 13 now and still going strong!”

3. Best cast iron frying pan: Le Creuset Cast Iron Frying Pan

It’s clearly at the expensive end of the price scale but it’s hard to find a prettier pan for your kitchen! Le Creuset’s pans come in a range of brilliant colours including volcanic orange, teal and cerise, and they are clearly made to last. The enamelled cast iron skillet frying pan has a pouring lip and is suitable for ovens, grills, BBQs and all hob types including induction hobs. The pan retains the heat more than other pans and is ideal for frying, searing, slow cooking or baking on a medium heat. There’s also a neat little hook in the handle for hanging it up.

As with all cast iron pans, it’s obviously on the heavy side so make sure you’re comfortable handling its weight before you decide to buy.

Key specs

  • Material: Cast iron
  • Size: 16cm, 20cm or 23cm
  • Suitable for induction hobs: Yes
  • Oven safe: Yes
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
Buy now from Amazon

4. Best ceramic frying pan: GreenPan Venice Pro 24cm Ceramic Non-Stick Frying Pan

“I used my GreenPan today. I bought it because I wanted a small non-stick pan. I cooked eggs in it and it was great.”

4. Best ceramic frying pan: GreenPan Venice Pro 24cm Ceramic Non-Stick Frying Pan

Another popular brand with Mumsnetters, the GreenPan ceramic pan is great at stir frying and braising and the pan’s coating is toxin-free at any temperature.

Because it’s PFAS-free, no toxic fumes are released even when accidentally overheating. It has a magnetic coating on the base which guarantees better stability and ensures your pan will never warp, wobble or scratch over time. For long-lasting performance, it’s recommended to heat the pan up gradually and use nylon or wooden utensils.

Key specs

  • Material: Stainless steel and hard anodised aluminium
  • Size: 24cm
  • Suitable for induction hobs: Yes
  • Oven safe: Yes
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
Buy now from Amazon

5. Best frying pan for steak: Dawson’s Living Cast Iron Frying Pan

5. Best frying pan for steak: Dawson’s Living Cast Iron Frying Pan

With the look of a Le Creuset but without the price tag, this "Dawson’s Living frying pan will provide that perfect chargrilled stamp on your steak. It comes in a variety of colours to suit all kitchens and it has a drainage lip for pouring away fat. It can be used on ceramic, solid plate, gas, halogen, induction and radiant hobs and is oven safe up to 240°C. It comes with a reassuring 10-year guarantee.

Key specs

  • Material: Cast iron
  • Size: 23.5cm
  • Suitable for induction hobs: Yes
  • Oven safe: Yes
  • Dishwasher safe: No
Buy now from Amazon

6. Best frying pan set: Stonetastic Granite Non-Stick Frying Pan Set of 3

6. Best frying pan set: Stonetastic Granite Non-Stick Frying Pan Set of 3

If you want bang for your buck, this set of three pans is perfect as it should meet all your different demands in the kitchen. From fried eggs to pancakes to sausages – this set can handle it all. The pans have a granite coating which provides a non-stick, scratch-resistant surface and each pan is constructed from forged aluminium to provide better strength and durability. The handles are made from high-strength stainless steel which means they’re long-lasting.

Key spec

  • Material: Aluminium
  • Size: 20cm, 24cm and 28cm
  • Suitable for induction hobs: Yes
  • Oven safe: Yes
  • Dishwasher safe: No
Buy now from Amazon

7. Best non-stick frying pan: Circulon Ultimum Stainless Steel 20cm Frying Pan

“I got two Circulon pans on Black Friday to replace a Lakeland one I’d had for 5 years. They’re fab.”

“I love my Circulon pans. My first lot lasted 20 years.”

7. Best non-stick frying pan: Circulon Ultimum Stainless Steel 20cm Frying Pan

Popular with Mumsnetters, the Circulon non-stick pan is very robust. It’s one of the deepest pans on the market and has a grooved design which protects the cooking surface by reducing abrasion. This helps make it so tough that you can even use metal utensils in it.

It has flat rivets on the inside which means there’s nowhere for food to get stuck and as a result, it's easier to clean. It’s been designed to withstand the abrasive properties of detergents so it’s fine to pop it in the dishwasher time and again. It’s fairly small but it’s perfect for cooking eggs and smaller pancakes and it comes with a lifetime guarantee.

Key specs

  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Size: 20cm
  • Suitable for induction hobs: Yes
  • Oven safe: Yes
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes

8. Best durable frying pan: Scoville Neverstick Frying Pan

“I’ve got the Scoville Neverstick pan and it’s amazing.”

“Another vote for the Scoville Neverstick! They're brilliant and I have the whole set now including saucepans, griddle, wok and various frying pans.”

8. Best durable frying pan: Scoville Neverstick Frying Pan

This pan claims to be five times stronger than other non-stick pans and lots of the reviews back up that declaration. As it’s non-stick, there’s no need to use oil or butter which could make cooking healthier and it’s 100% PFOA free. It's suitable for all hobs including induction hobs and is dishwasher safe. It also comes with a lifetime guarantee.

Key specs

  • Material: Aluminium
  • Size: 28cm
  • Suitable for induction hobs: Yes
  • Oven safe: Yes
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
Buy now from Amazon

9. Best frying pan for induction hobs: Oxo Softworks Soft Touch Induction Non-Stick Frying Pan

“The Oxo Softworks is amazing and it can even go in the dishwasher.”

9. Best frying pan for induction hobs: Oxo Softworks Soft Touch Induction Non-Stick Frying Pan

This pan is great for induction hobs and the multiple layers that make up the German-engineered, non-stick coating mean you can use less oil or butter when cooking, making it easier to cook healthy dishes.

It’s rated highly for its stability meaning fewer wobbles when you’re cooking, and as long as you use nylon or wooden utensils, it’s covered by a lifetime warranty.

Key specs

  • Material: Aluminium
  • Size: 20cm
  • Suitable for induction hobs: Yes
  • Oven safe: Yes
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
Buy now from Amazon

How to choose the best frying pan

There are two main things to consider when buying a frying pan. How much do you want to spend? And what size of pan do you need? A new frying pan doesn’t need to break the bank and there are some really great budget buys like the Argos frying pan recommended in our roundup. In most cases you can get away with spending around £20 for a non-stick pan. More expensive pans have more hard-wearing coatings meaning they’ll last longer and won’t need replacing as often.

There are a variety of sizes on offer. The one that’s right for you will depend on how many people you’re cooking for, how often you’ll be using it and what you’re whipping up. Most people find it’s worth investing in a couple of different size pans to cook different sorts of food, but if you’re after a one size fits all solution, a medium-sized pan with a reasonable depth will do the job.

What is the best frying pan material?

There are lots of different types of frying pan out there but there are three main materials with different pros and cons.

Non-stick pans are fairly easy to maintain and are great for eggs and pancakes. But they’re less robust and may need changing more often. Cast iron pans are hard wearing but can be harder to maintain and are normally very heavy. Stainless steel is good for browning and braising food and popular with professional chefs but they can be harder to master.

Which frying pans are suitable for induction hobs?

Induction cookware must be made of a magnetic-based material, such as cast iron or magnetic stainless steel.

Are frying pans dishwasher safe?

Some pans are marketed specifically as being dishwasher safe, but in general a dishwasher can make pan handles become loose over time, and wear away at the seals on your pan. Check the conditions of your warranty before you decide whether to wash your pan in the dishwasher, but these are the specific things to look out for:

Non-stick/anodised aluminium pans: The coating can wear out and break down, meaning your pan will no longer be non-stick.
Cast iron pans: These can rust and lose their seasoning. After rinsing with water, heat on the stove to completely dry.
Enamelled cast iron pans: These are very prone to chipping. Plates and bowls may hit against the pan during the cycle.
Aluminium pans: These can be extremely vulnerable to nicks and scratches.

What oil is best for frying?

Professor Martin Grootveld from BBC’s ‘Trust Me, I’m A Doctor’ generally recommends olive oil for frying, but he also suggests that frying in saturate-rich animal fats or butter may be preferable to sunflower or corn oil. Read his full article here.

What is the best frying pan to buy?

Not only do Mumsnetters rate the Eaziglide Neverstick2 non-stick frying pan highly but it receives glowing reports from professional product testers across the wider web. The pan gets top marks for durability and the non-stick surface is easy to wash and cooks things evenly. It’s oven and dishwasher safe and can be used on induction hobs. It’s a great all-rounder and our best buy.

How we chose our recommendations

Because we know that there’s nothing like a real recommendation, we first headed to the Mumsnet forums to find out what frying pans were being recommended.

We then did some research across the wider web, looking at which frying pans had won accolades or featured in ‘best buy’ lists, and what customer reviews said about them. Having collated all that information, we then narrowed our list down to the best frying pans online at the moment.

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