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Which is better 18/10 or 18/8 stainless steel cookware?

Views: 1,254     Author: China CHANGWEN Cookware      Publish Time: 12/07/2022      Origin:

Which is better 18/10 or 18/8 stainless steel cookware?

When it comes to buying stainless steel, you are likely to encounter three major options. These are the 18/10 vs 18/8 vs 18/0 stainless steel types. What is the difference between these types of stainless steel and which one is the best of all?

The key difference between these stainless steel numbers is the percentage of chrome and nickel in them. 18/10 steel means that it has 18% of chrome and 10% nickel. 18/8 means that chrome is 18% while nickel is 8%. 18/0 means that it has 18% chrome and 0% nickel.

Stainless steel cookers are mainly made of 18/10 and 18/8. This article will focus on the differences between 18/10 and 18/8 .

(1) The difference in nickel content determines the grade of stainless steel. In short, the higher the nickel content, the less easy it is to rust.

(2) Definition of stainless steel industry: 18/8 stainless steel belongs to “food grade”, and 18/10 stainless steel belongs to “medical grade”. (Because 18/10 stainless steel is very durable and corrosion resistant, and has no metal ion precipitation, it is the most advanced medical stainless steel at present, and surgical tools are made of it.)

(3) The representative of 18/8 stainless steel is 304 stainless steel, and the representative of 18/10 stainless steel is 304 stainless steel and 316 stainless steel.

(4) In general, the use of 18/8 stainless steel pots and pans can achieve the effect of rust prevention and meet the needs of daily cooking.

Common food grade stainless steel

In stainless steel, chromium and nickel have their own characteristics. Chromium gives stainless steel a unique luster and mirror effect. Nickel makes stainless steel more solid, and improves its ability to resist oxidation and corrosion, especially in acidic environments.

According to NSF international standards, the stainless steel used in food equipment must be 200300 or 400 series.

200 series

In the 200 series, such as 201 and 202, manufacturers replace nickel with manganese, which has the advantage of reducing production costs and the disadvantage of becoming more prone to corrosion or rust.

Although this series is also considered as food grade stainless steel, it is not high-quality stainless steel, so my suggestion is that when selecting cooking utensils, it is better not to choose Series 2 stainless steel.

300 series

304 stainless steel

So far, 304 is the most commonly used stainless steel grade in cooking utensils.

Sometimes, the cooker grading system describes 304 stainless steel as 18/8. As we are familiar with, the first figure is the percentage of chromium, and the second figure is the percentage of nickel, that is, 18/8 stainless steel has 18% chromium and 8% nickel.

316 stainless steel

The chemical composition of 316 stainless steel is 16-18% chromium, 10-14% nickel and 2% molybdenum.

18/8 stainless steel cookware manufacturer
18/8 stainless steel cookware manufacturer

In the cooker grading system, 316, also known as 18/10 stainless steel, is made of 18% chromium and 10% nickel.

It is rare than 304 stainless steel. It is a high-end version of stainless steel and is famous for its excellent corrosion resistance. In fact, it is also called marine stainless steel because it is used in the marine environment and can resist salt water erosion. 316 also has many medical applications, such as biomedical implants, so it is also known as surgical grade stainless steel.

However, this type of stainless steel is very expensive, so there are not many cookware to use.

Is 316 surgical stainless steel superior to 304 stainless steel?

In terms of corrosion resistance, yes.

However, in daily cooking, high-quality 304 stainless steel is enough for any food you want to cook. Unless you want to contain acidic food, 316 stainless steel is usually a better choice.

430 stainless steel

430 is magnetic and nickel free stainless steel. In the cooker grading system, the chromium content of 430 is 18%, and the nickel content is almost 0 (~0.75%), so it is called 18/0.

Because it contains no nickel, it is more prone to corrosion than 304 and 316430, and tends to lose luster slowly.

440 stainless steel

440 and 440C are also common food grade stainless steels. Their main advantage is that they can obtain high material hardness during heat treatment. They are generally used as kitchen knives because they are strong and sharp and can withstand wear.

440 Generally, cooking utensils and containers are not made because they are easy to rust compared with 304316.

To sum up, high-quality stainless steel, whether 304 or 316, is a better choice than most other available materials.

For example, aluminum pans with coatings will lose their stickiness over time. Teflon coating will disintegrate if overheated. Glass pots and ceramic pots have poor heat conduction and are easy to break. Copper will react with food. Cast iron needs to be dried, or it will rust.

Considering these factors, stainless steel is popular for its low maintenance, durability and relative inertia.

3. Rust causes of stainless steel cookers

Based on the understanding of stainless steel, if the cooker is rusty, it may be one of the following three reasons:

1. Composition of steel: nickel free 18/0 stainless steel is easier to rust than 304/316 stainless steel.

2. Steel quality: chromium is the key element to make stainless steel stainless. By definition, stainless steel must contain at least 10.5% chromium by weight, and high quality 304/316 stainless steel must contain 18-20% chromium.

It is cheaper. Stainless steel without brands may have low chromium content. It is better not to buy low-cost products. After all, health is more important.

3. Too much acidic food, unqualified detergent or extremely salty environment will also lead to stainless steel rust.


18/8 stainless steel cookware factory
18/8 stainless steel cookware factory

Advantages and Disadvantages of Food Grade Stainless Steel Cookware

The biggest disadvantage of stainless steel is poor thermal conductivity, which requires aluminum or copper core to improve thermal conductivity. In fact, the thermal conductivity of stainless steel is 10 times lower than that of aluminum, which means that the heating time of stainless steel pan is 10 times that of aluminum pan (the thermal conductivity of stainless steel is 10-30 W/m/K, and that of aluminum is 237W/m/K).

Secondly, stainless steel is easy to stick to the pan. If you are not proficient in cooking, most foods will stick.

So why use it? Because stainless steel still has many advantages.

1. It is durable. You can knock, scratch and scrub it. It is also much harder than aluminum or copper, and its melting point is much higher than aluminum or copper, which makes it the most durable material of all ordinary cooking utensils.

2. The appearance is pleasing to the eye, and the polished luster of high-quality stainless steel looks very comfortable.

3. Easy to maintain. No special care is needed. If your stainless steel cooker looks old, you can clean it with vinegar or soda water to restore luster.

4. No chemical reaction occurs. Unlike pure copper and aluminum, which will react with acidic food, stainless steel is relatively inert and will not react with food.

5. Suitable for high temperature cooking. Stainless steel can withstand high temperature, high heat, no problem.

6. It is applicable to a wide range of cooking. Stainless steel is very suitable for frying, steaming, frying, boiling, stewing and other cooking methods.

7. Value for money. The stainless steel kit is usually reasonable in price and very durable. It usually lasts for 10 years, but 8 years is not a problem.

8. It can be used in combination with aluminum core or copper core (aluminum core is deeply embedded in two layers of stainless steel). In this way, the stainless steel has the advantages of durability, non reactivity, and thermal conductivity of other materials.

9. Safety cooker options. It is one of the safest cooking utensils on the market.

How to buy stainless steel cookers

1. Stainless steel grade

You should make sure that the cookers are made of 304 stainless steel, because they are the standard configuration of high-quality cookers.

2. Weight

When you hold it, you can feel its weight. Heavier pots need to be made of more materials and are not easy to produce dents. Of course, this will increase the cost, so it will be more expensive.

If you are shopping online, you need to check the comments to see if anyone is talking about the weight and robustness of the pot.

3. Core material

Stainless steel is a poor heat conductor, and aluminum or copper cored pot can improve the heat conduction efficiency, which depends on the thickness of copper core or aluminum core. The thicker the core, the more uniform the heat distribution.

It should be noted that the thickness of the aluminum core must be twice that of the copper core to obtain the same heat distribution, which means that the pot base with the aluminum core is thicker than the pot base with the copper core.

4. Compatibility of induction cooker

The electromagnetic cooker uses the principle of magnetic induction, so the cooker must be magnetic.

Stainless steel cookware with high nickel content has no magnetism. The bottom layer of the three-layer stainless steel cooker is made of 430 ferrite, which is magnetic and suitable for induction cookers.

How to maintain stainless steel cookers?

Compared with coated cookers, stainless steel cookers require much less maintenance, but attention should be paid to maintenance in order to last a long time.

1. Cook over medium heat. This helps reduce food adhesion.

2. Take the food out of the stainless steel pot immediately after cooking. Do not use stainless steel for high acid or high salt food, which can prevent corrosion.

3. Do not store food in stainless steel pan, especially acidic food (such as tomato food).

4. After cooking, let the pot cool before soaking, because soaking the hot pot in cold water may cause deformation.

5. Wipe the food immediately after cooling and when preparing for cleaning.

6. If your pot has stains or white sediment, you can use vinegar and water to clean it.

7. If food sticks to the pot, soak it for one hour to make it soft. Don’t let the pot soak too long, as this will increase the chance of pitting.

8. Do not use abrasive cleaner, cleaning cloth and steel wool to clean it.

9. Some stainless steel pots and pans will have aluminum layers. If the outer layer is damaged, aluminum layer exposure will lead to aluminum leaching. Therefore, if you use a stainless steel cooker, please pay special attention not to damage its surface.


Which is better 18/10 or 18/8 stainless steel cookie, you can visit Changwen to learn more. If you need stainless steel cookers, please contact us! Changwen is a professional stainless steel cooker manufacturer.

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