With so many cookware brands on the market, it can be tough deciding which one is right for your needs and budget. Should you go with a trusted classic like All-Clad or Cuisinart, or consider a relatively new brand like Anolon?
In short, Anolon cookware is an excellent option combining high performance, quality materials, and reasonable prices. While not as well known as some competitors, Anolon has been building outstanding pots, pans, and bakeware since 1991.
In this detailed Anolon cookware review, we’ll cover everything you need to know about this brand to determine if their durable and affordable cookware is a good fit for your cooking style and kitchen.
Specifically, we’ll discuss:
- Anolon’s company background and reputation
- Anolon’s top cookware collections and product lines
- The materials used in Anolon pans and how they perform
- How Anolon compares to leading brands like Calphalon and All-Clad
- Pros and cons of Anolon pots and pans
- Reviews from real Anolon customers
- Care and cleaning recommendations
- Our top Anolon cookware recommendations for 2023
- Where to find the best prices on Anolon pots and pans
After reading this comprehensive review, you’ll have all the information you need to decide if Anolon’s innovative cookware designs deserve a spot in your kitchen!
A Brief History of Anolon Cookware
Before we dive into the specifics of Anolon pots and pans, let’s learn a bit about the company itself.
Anolon was founded in 1991 by veteran cookware engineers in Corpus Christi, Texas. Their goal was to create high-quality yet affordable pans using the latest cooking technologies.
In the 1990s, Anolon pioneered the use of hard-anodized aluminum in cookware, which distributes heat quickly and evenly. They’ve continued to innovate over the years with improvements to nonstick coatings and other design features.
While not a household name like some competitors, Anolon has earned a reputation among cooking enthusiasts for bringing innovative features down to moderate price points. They focus more on performance than brand cache.
Today, Anolon is owned by Meyer Corporation, one of the largest cookware companies in the world. Their pots and pans are sold by major retailers like Amazon, Macy’s, and Bed Bath and Beyond.
Now that you know a bit about Anolon’s origins, let’s explore some of their most popular cookware lines.
Top Anolon Cookware Lines and Collections
Anolon offers a wide variety of cookware to suit different cooking needs and budgets. Here are some of their top product lines:
Anolon Advanced Hard-Anodized Nonstick Cookware
The Anolon Advanced collection is a high-end line constructed of hard-anodized aluminum with a premium nonstick interior coating.
The standout feature is the heavy-gauge copper core layered into each pan’s aluminum base. This provides superior heat conduction for a noticeable boost in temperature control and evenness when cooking.
With its combination of professional-grade materials and performance, the Anolon Advanced line is the top choice for serious home cooks. It’s comparable to All-Clad’s copper core and tri-ply stainless steel cookware.
Anolon Nouvelle Copper Stainless Steel Cookware
This beautiful Anolon line has the elegant look of copper cookware at a fraction of the price.
The Nouvelle collection features stainless steel pans encapsulated with a thick copper-colored aluminum core. The result is excellent heat distribution paired with a lustrous, almost vintage aesthetic.
While not as pricey as the Advanced series, the Nouvelle still provides professional-quality results. It’s a great value for copper-style cookware.
Anolon Accolade Hard-Anodized Nonstick Cookware
The Accolade is Anolon’s newest collection and a workhorse line suitable for most home kitchens.
It consists of hard-anodized aluminum cookware coated with Anolon’s premium Autograph 2 nonstick interior. This provides easy food release and quick cleanup.
Well-constructed and competitively priced, the Accolade series offers the convenience of nonstick paired with Anolon’s durability and performance. It’s a notch above entry-level sets.
Anolon Authority Hard-Anodized Aluminum Cookware
A step above the Accolade, the Anolon Authority line features tri-ply stainless steel encapsulated aluminum cores. This provides superior heat distribution for flawless cooking results.
With its combination of tri-ply construction, anodized aluminum, and polished stainless steel, the Authority series competes with premium brands at a mid-range price point. It’s a great introduction to tri-ply cookware.
There are other collections like Anolon Vesta and Anolon Armor, but these four represent Anolon’s core product offerings combining value and quality. Now let’s break down the materials used to make them.
Anolon Cookware Materials Explained
When considering any cookware purchase, it’s important to understand the properties and strengths of the metals and other materials used. Here are the key materials found in Anolon’s cookware lines:
This is the foundational material for most of Anolon’s cookware. Hard-anodized aluminum has had its surface oxidized to create a tough, gray matte finish that’s highly durable.
The anodizing process also makes the surface non-reactive so it won’t react with acidic foods. Hard-anodized aluminum evenly spreads heat and is resistant to hot spots and warping. It provides excellent cooking performance at a moderate price point.
Featured only in Anolon’s top-of-the-line Advanced series, a thick copper core is sandwiched between layers of aluminum to provide unmatched heat responsiveness and control.
Copper is prized in high-end cookware for its unparalleled ability to quickly adjust to temperature changes. This allows delicate foods like seafood or eggs to cook gently without overcooking. It’s the ultimate material for finicky cooks.
Anolon uses stainless steel for pan exteriors, lids, and in its Nouvelle cookware line. Stainless steel provides an attractive, durable finish that resists corrosion and staining.
It’s also an excellent complement to aluminum or copper cores, adding structural rigidity and allowing for stunning cookware designs. The downside is stainless steel alone is a poor heat conductor.
To create nonstick cooking surfaces, Anolon applies coatings like Autograph 2 and Quantanium to the insides of many of their pans.
When cared for properly, these nonstick finishes allow cooks to sear, brown, and fry with little to no oil as well as simplify cleanup. However, nonstick coatings gradual lose effectiveness over time.
Now that we’ve covered Anolon’s offerings and materials, how do they stack up against the competition?
Anolon vs. Calphalon, All-Clad, and Other Leading Brands
While Anolon isn’t as ubiquitous as some other major cookware brands, their products stand up well in terms of quality, performance, and value. Here’s how Anolon cookware compares to top competitors:
Calphalon – Anolon’s hard-anodized aluminum lines match Calphalon’s quality and nonstick performance at similar price points. Anolon’s higher-end collections offer better heat control.
Cuisinart – Comparable to Cuisinart’s mid-range products but pricier than entry-level Cuisinart cookware. Anolon often offers more durable hard-anodized construction.
All-Clad – Anolon’s Advanced and Authority collections come closest to All-Clad’s premium tri-ply, 5-ply, and copper core cookware. At a significantly lower cost while still delivering excellent cooking experiences.
Tramontina – Anolon provides a noticeable step up in durability, design, lifetime warranty, and cooking performance compared to entry-level brands like Tramontina. Worth the small extra investment.
While not as prestigious as the top brands, Anolon holds its own by combining quality materials, innovative engineering, and reasonable prices. You get impressive performance without paying for big marketing budgets.
Next, let’s examine the benefits and downsides of choosing Anolon cookware.
The Pros and Cons of Anolon Pots and Pans
Here are some of the key advantages to choosing Anolon cookware for your kitchen:
- Innovative and thoughtful engineering – From copper cores to unique finishing techniques, Anolon puts a lot of R&D into product design. Their new Autograph 2 nonstick coating outperforms previous versions.
- High quality hard-anodized aluminum – Anolon’s use of dense, hard-anodized aluminum for their bases and exterior layers results in cookware that distributes and retains heat effectively. This helps prevent hot spots while cooking.
- Excellent heat control – Models like the Advanced and Authority offer exceptional temperature regulation and responsiveness thanks to their copper and tri-ply cores. Great for finicky recipes.
- Attractive designs and colors – While not flashy, Anolon’s cookware has muted, upscale aesthetics that look great on the stovetop and complement most kitchen decors. Their Nouvelle line in particular has a unique copper-colored stainless steel finish.
- Durable nonstick interiors (when cared for) – Anolon’s Autograph 2 and Quantanium titanium nonstick coatings match other leading brands for nonstick performance. They provide easy release when intact.
- Lifetime limited warranty – Most Anolon cookware collections come with a lifetime warranty against defects. This matches top brands and demonstrates Anolon’s confidence.
However, there are some downsides to note as well:
- Prone to scratching – Like all nonstick interiors, Anolon’s coatings can scratch and lose effectiveness over time without proper care. You must use non-metal utensils and soft scrubbers.
- Not as versatile as stainless – Nonstick interiors limit how reactive you can cook and what utensils you can use. Stainless steel allows for higher heat searing and more freeform cooking.
- Lids prone to denting – Some users note Anolon lids dent relatively easily. The Freedom Induction line has a stainless steel lid to prevent this.
- Stock and availability issues – Certain Anolon cookware pieces will go out of stock for periods of time at retailers. Newer lines like Accolade have limited singular replacements pieces available.
- Hand wash only – All Anolon cookware must be hand washed to preserve the finishes. The nonstick interiors in particular require gentle cleaning by hand.
While not perfect, Anolon cookware delivers impressive quality considering the moderate prices. Next we’ll go over care and cleaning best practices.
Caring for and Cleaning Anolon Cookware
To get the most life out of your Anolon pans, here are some care and cleaning tips:
- Always use low to medium heat – Excessive high heat can damage nonstick coatings over time. Warm pans gradually and use oils or cooking spray.
- Don’t overheat empty pans – Heating an empty nonstick pan can permanently damage its coating. Always add a cooking fat or food before heating.
- Use non-metal utensils – Metal utensils like steel spatulas can scratch nonstick coatings. Use wood, plastic, or silicone instead.
- Clean gently by hand – Use a soft sponge or cloth with mild dish soap. Avoid abrasive scouring pads.
- Rinse and dry thoroughly – Food residue and water spots can tarnish the finish. Fully dry cookware after each wash.
- Reseason stainless steel – Over time, use a small amount of oil to maintain the polished look of stainless steel cookware.
Follow these habits and your Anolon cookware should provide many years of excellent cooking performance.
Anolon Cookware Reviews From Real Customers
Beyond expert and editorial reviews, first-hand feedback from customers who actually own Anolon cookware provides the best insight into pros and cons.
Here are excerpts from a few notable reviews across retailers like Amazon, Macy’s and Bed Bath & Beyond:
“I absolutely love this set! The pans heat up quickly and evenly. Everything just slides right off after cooking. These are the best nonstick pans I’ve ever owned.” – Sarah M. (5/5 stars)
“We’ve been through 3 sets of pots & pans over the last 5 years and these Anolons are by far superior. The quality is obvious the minute you take them out of the box.” – Brian F. (5/5 stars)
“I cook for a family of 4 every day and these have held up great. Much happier with these than the Calphalon set we had before.” – Jessica A. (4/5 stars)
“The nonstick has already started peeling after 6 months of light use. Flaking right off the pan. I followed all the care instructions too.” – Janet D. (2/5 stars)
“The stainless steel lids dip and dent easily. After spending this much I expected more durable lids, but otherwise it cooks beautifully.” – Daniel C. (4/5 stars)
The vast majority of customers praise Anolon cookware for its durability, cooking performance, and value. Where there are complaints, scratched nonstick, dented lids, and stock issues are recurring themes.
Now that we’ve covered Anolon’s origins, product lines, manufacturing, performance, and real customer experiences, let’s get into our recommendations.
Anolon Cookware Buying Guide and Recommendations for 2023
Here are our top tips for choosing the best Anolon pots, pans, and sets for your kitchen and cooking needs:
Best Anolon Sets Under $200
- Anolon Accolade – A quality starter nonstick set with all the essentials at an affordable price point.
- Anolon Nouvelle – Attractive copper-color stainless steel for under $200. Excellent durability and heat distribution.
Best Anolon Sets Under $300
- Anolon Advanced 11-piece Set – A great mid-range introduction to Anolon’s copper core cookware. Sophisticated engineering at an accessible price.
- Anolon Authority – High-quality tri-ply set with lids that’s comparable to premium brands at 60% of the price.
Best Individual Anolon Pans
- 10″ or 12″ Anolon Advanced Frying Pan – For searing, browning, and frying, the copper core delivers unbeatable responsiveness and control.
- Anolon Nouvelle 3 qt saucepan – Perfect for simmering sauces, cooking grains, and boiling vegetables.matches
- Anolon Authority 5 qt Saute Pan – Extra deep sides and tri-ply aluminum core make this an incredibly versatile pan.
No matter your budget or needs, Anolon likely has a cookware option to fit. Focus on their Advanced and Authority lines for a step up in cooking performance.
Where to Buy Anolon Cookware Sets and Pans
Here are some tips for finding the best Anolon prices:
- Amazon – Fast shipping and prices matching other major retailers. Widest selection of Anolon cookware.
- Macy’s – Frequent discounts on Anolon sets and bundles. Allows for in-store returns.
- Bed Bath & Beyond – Honors coupons up to 20% off. Another option for in-store purchasing and returns.
- Anolon.com – Occasional sales and specials on clearance cookware.
- Kohl’s – Discounts and Kohl’s Cash provides savings opportunities on Anolon sets.
Check retailers weekly for Anolon sales and clearance deals. Sign up for newsletters so you never miss a discount code.
If you’re seeking quality cookware that performs like premium brands without the steep prices, Anolon delivers excellent options worth your consideration.
While newer than some competitors, Anolon has proven itself as an innovative force with collections like the Advanced and Authority series that rival top offerings from All-Clad and Calphalon.
Anolon’s hard-anodized aluminum and clever copper and tri-ply designs distribute heat quickly and evenly for precise cooking control. Their nonstick interiors make cooking and cleaning easy when intact.
Just take care when using to prevent scratches and opt for stainless steel cookware if you prefer more reactive cooking. With proper maintenance, Anolon pots and pans will serve you reliably for years to come.
Hopefully this detailed review gives you all the information needed to decide if Anolon’s durable, well-designed yet affordable cookware deserves a central spot in your kitchen! Let us know if you have any other questions.