At some point in your cooking days, you must have come across a recipe that requires you to use the stovetop and the oven for best results. The thing is, you would rather avoid washing two pots after cooking just one meal, which begs the question: can you put a pot in the oven? Read on to find the answer below.
Can You Put A Pot In The Oven?
The answer is yes, but in some cases, a big no. Here are two main factors determining if your pot can go into the oven.
a) Construction materials
Before tossing your pot into the oven, understand if the materials it is made of can withstand the high oven heat.
The first feature to look out for would be plastic parts, often the pot handles and lid handle. If you put plastic handles in the oven, there is a better chance they will melt, thus ruining your cookware and meal. In addition to plastic handles, wooden handles can also get damaged from the high heat, so it is best not to put them in an oven.
Secondly, be wary of a glass lid in a case where you need to cover the food inside the oven. Some glass lids are not designed to withstand high temperatures as they would shatter, thus spoiling your meals.
Thirdly, some materials are simply not suitable for cooking in the oven, especially Teflon non-stick pots. While these can prevent burning your recipe, the material can peel easily or have its elements penetrate your food to compromise your health.
Finally, a pot in the oven poses the struggle to get your food evenly cooked. So, understand how thick the pots and pans are as that indicates how well they will distribute heat to cook meals evenly.
b) Baking temperatures
Besides the materials your pot is made of, you also need to judge the pot's ability to handle different baking temperatures. For this, you will need to choose between different ovens and the recommended heat that will cook your food evenly.
Choosing the oven is suitable when you also need to consider the size of a pot. For example, a microwave oven will take a small pot, while a traditional oven can take a bigger pot. In addition, a microwave oven might not offer as high temperatures as you can find in a traditional oven.
If you wonder which pots to use for baking in the oven, read on to see which temperatures each type of pot can handle so you can make an informed buying decision.
Which Are The Pots You Can Put In the Oven?
Before you consider cooking in a pot using both the oven and electric or gas-range cooktops, here are the pots you need to be using.
a) Oven-safe pots
The easiest way to tell if you can put a pot in an oven is to look for an oven-safe symbol on its surface. Oven-safe pots and pans are built with the best materials to withstand high heat and abuse on cooktops.
b) Stainless steel pots
Stainless steel pots are often easy to use on the cooktop and in the oven, but there are a few considerations you need to make. This point is especially vital if your pot does not have the oven-safe symbol, as you need to adjust several oven settings to cook your food evenly.
Firstly, you need to ensure the pot is not too light-weighted as that is an indication that it can burn your food and leave a burnt smell in your oven. Then, it is also vital to ensure that if you need to cover your food in the oven, the pot does not come with a glass lid.
In addition, also avoid plastic on handles as these can cause a health hazard. A good stainless steel pot for the oven has oven-proof handles, and the lids can withstand the heat. Luckily, this pot can bake at 500 degrees F with no problems.
c) Cast iron pots
When you need a good pot for the oven, it is hard to go wrong with a cast-iron pot. The pot is made with a tough metal that is mostly non-stick and can even resist a live flame. When using it for the oven, you will only need to consider how heat-resistant the lids are, but the pots can easily handle 500 degrees F temperatures.
However, while there are pure cast iron pots and pans, you can also find the enameled cast iron pots. These are better suited for the oven as they are coated with a non-stick enamel coating.
Compared to the cast iron pots, the enameled cast iron pot is easier to use in the oven as it does not require a lot of seasoning to repel food particles. However, a cast-iron pan or pot will need to be seasoned properly as it can burn your food at high temperatures.
d) Carbon steel pots
If you have a carbon steel pot in the house, it is a great option to use in the oven as long as it is seasoned and does not contain plastic handles. The material is a cross between stainless steel and cast iron, making it durable and lighter than cast iron, but one that is also easy to rust without good care. Do not set the oven temperature beyond 500 degrees F if using one.
e) Aluminum pots
If you need to find inexpensive yet durable non-stick pans and pots, you can also use those made with aluminum. However, the material needs to be treated and seasoned regularly to prevent burning food. Aluminum pots can withstand very high temperatures.
f) Copper pots
Copper pots are very good in the oven, but you will need to regulate the heat to prevent burning food. As a very reactive metal, it can get too hot to mess up your whole recipe, so it may be better to bake in copper pots lined up with other metals. A good copper pot will bake at 500 degrees F.
g) Non-stick pots
When looking for good pots to use in the oven, you can always get it right with any non-stick pot designed to bake at 500 degrees F. These usually have good heat resistance and rarely burn your food. However, it is best to avoid Teflon for a non-stick coating material as it is not safe for cooking.
How to Bake Safely With Pots
As you look for a pot to bake with, consider the following safety precautions;
- Do not put plastic, wooden, or rubber handles in the oven. When a pot is not rated oven-safe, it is best to use one with removable handles. In addition, while you can use one with metallic handles, ensure you use oven mitts to avoid burning yourself.
- Read the bottom of each pan to ensure it does not have the Not Oven-Safe warning. If you find this warning, avoid putting the pot in the oven.
- Read the manufacturer's oven-safe temperature recommendations to set your baking temperatures correctly.
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