Buying new cookware or bakeware is tricky...currently, there are many options for you to pick. There is the pricey, moderate, and well, cheap-o-stuff. One of my co-workers asked me for advice: She wanted a couple new pans but did not know where to start. I am please that she asked me and I am always happy to help and answer any questions!
First off know:
1) What type you want: either non-stick, stainless steel, or cast iron cookware.
2) Your budget. Cookware can get expensive. Set a limit!
3) Read consumer reports and customer reviews. Know the "big players" in the game.
Here are my top 5 questions to ask when you are going to purchase your cookware:
1) Does this cookware line get returned for poor quality?
Why: People will return cookware for poor quality. It might chip, flake, or warp. I have seen pans get returned after 6 months of use!
2) What cookware line never gets returned for excellent quality?
Why: Ask this to an experienced salesperson. They will see what gets returned and what never gets returned.
3) Is it OK to return cookware, even after 5, 10, 15 years of use?
Why: Good retail stores will let you bring back cookware, no matter how long you had it. They still want you as their customer! And since cookware is always changing and improving, your old line could of easily be discounted and a new and improved line took its place.
4) If it is a pricey cookware line, ask "Why is this so expensive?"
Why: Manufacturing in the USA and over-seas (mainly in Europe) will "up" the price. Is this a negative quality? No, I am all for jobs in America and over-seas, but they tend make cookware pricey and unaffordable for my lifestyle. Ask yourself, if it is worth it.
5) What would YOU (to the salesperson) buy?
This is very important. Why? A retail store can have MANY, and MANY, options for cookware. But a personal opinion goes ALONG when selling, trust me I know! Also, ask them if they would spend "x-amount of dollars" on this cookware.
Overall when selling cookware, I like people who do personal research before buying. I highly recommend doing this for yourself. Have any questions? Details? Comparison questions?
Ask: firstname.lastname@example.org Put "Cookware help" in the subject line, please.