About Copper Chef King
Featuring a PTFE and PFOA-free Cerami-Tech nonstick coating, Copper Chef King is a jumbo size 12-inch frying pan with high sides and a square shape that delivers 50 percent more cooking space. So much space, in fact, that the manufacturer claims it provides a one-pan solution for your family dinners that can eliminate cooking in batches.
In addition, the pan is said to work in the oven up to 850°, as well as on all stovetops, whether electric, gas, ceramic, or induction. Its built-in induction plate also allows for rapid, even heating from corner to corner that gets rid of hot spots, and the high sides make it perfect for everything from lasagna and nachos to party dips.
When you’re finished cooking, Tristar tells us that Copper Chef King can be cleaned in seconds, and its heavy-duty riveted handles will provide sturdy functionality.
Granted, being able to bake, fry, boil, sauté, steam, and braise on a single large pan, as well as cook family meals in just one piece of cookware, sounds appealing. When it comes down to it, though, does Copper Chef King necessarily represent the most value for the money?
In our brief quest to help you find some actionable answers, that’s exactly where we’ll begin.
How Much Does Copper Chef King Cost?
One Copper Chef King pan is priced at $29.99 plus free S&H, although you’ll be able to purchase a second during checkout for an additional $9.99 fee. Each pan will include a recipe book.
All King pans come with a 60-day refund policy, less S&H, and the ceramic coating comes with a lifetime warranty. We called and spoke with three service representatives looking for more information about the warranty’s details, as well as the pan’s weight (for return shipping purposes), although none could assist.
In order to request a refund or process a warranty claim, customer support can be reached at 973-287-5176. Who will you be calling, exactly?
What Do We Know About the Company Behind Copper Chef King?
Copper Chef King is manufactured by Fairfield, NJ-based Tristar Products, who’s been in the industry since 1992 and who’s also created recent hits like Clear Dash HD and Perfect Smile Veneers, as well as the entire Copper Chef cookware lineup, including the Original Pan, Chef Wok, and Press & Flip Pan.
Since most of the models in the lineup also feature the same Cerami-Tech technology as the King frying pan, as well as extra tall sides, is there any relevant information we can take away from our own experience, based on our fairly intensive real-world testing on the original Copper Chef pan?
Initially, we found that it was enjoyable to use and cook with, and that the steel induction plate did a good job of heating the pan quickly and evenly.
With its five-layer construction consisting of mostly aluminum core, along with a ceramic, copper-infused nonstick coating, scrambled eggs cooked easy and left the pan virtually clear afterward. Steaks were easily seared on the stovetop and finished in the oven, turning out perfect with easy cleanup.
However, because of its high sides, we found that the original Copper Chef pan wasn’t exactly easy to use when it came to baking a pie. But—again—it was super easy to separate the pie from the pan.
After several weeks of testing, though, we found the nonstick coating had become quite scratched around the edge after regularly coming into contact with the lid, as well as from regular use on the stovetop. In fact, after many uses, eggs no longer slid off the pan easily, which seemed to lose its nonstick ability after just a few uses.
Bottom line: Based on our testing and personal experience, the original Copper Chef pan didn’t perform nearly as well after a few weeks of use as it did when new. We also found that it was susceptible to burn marks and discoloration, which also seemed to be a common complaint among many HighYa readers.
Given all of this, if you’re considering the newer Copper Chef King version, we’d strongly recommend treating it with the utmost care by completely avoiding the use of metal utensils, as well as being ultra-careful when stored with other pans.
In the next section, we’ll provide some insight into why this might be the case.
Are There Other 12” Square Nonstick Frying Pans Like Copper Chef King?
Even if this is your first time thinking about spending a little more on a higher quality pan, searching online for “12-inch nonstick frying pan” will reveal that there are dozens of potential competitors with Copper Chef King, many from household brands like Calphalon, All-Clad, Farberware, and T-fal.
Price-wise, many of these fell between $20 and $50 at the time of our research, putting the pan in question at the lower end of the spectrum. However, none of these models also combined its square shape, PFOA and PTFE-free ceramic nonstick coating, and its induction plate. Does this necessarily mean that the King pan is right for you, though?
In How to Buy the Best Non-Stick Cookware, we point out that the hybrid Sol-Gel ceramic material often found on these types of pans can help consumers avoid any potential dangers of PFOA and PTFE found in more traditional fluoropolymer gel coatings. Also, that it’s initially more slippery upon purchasing and can withstand much higher heat.
However, this coating also tends to degrade meaningfully faster than fluoropolymer and lose its nonstick abilities more quickly. On top of this, it’s typically much more fragile than traditional coatings, which might make sense based on what we learned from our internal testing of the original Copper Chef pan.
In the end, we found that “Whether you decide on a PTFE or sol-gel product, the quality of a non-stick coating is defined by three factors: the quality of the coating itself (the formula), the number of layers, and the thickness of each layer.”
Again, we called and spoke with several customer service representatives during our research, none of which were able to provide these details regarding Copper Chef King.
In the end, what does this mean for you?
Our Final Thoughts About Copper Chef King
On the upside, Copper Chef King seems to come with a competitive price—and by combining a ceramic nonstick coating with a square design, high sides, and a built-in induction plate, to feature a unique design you won’t currently find with any other brand.
On the other hand, while we didn’t test the King ourselves to provide firsthand feedback, we did test the original copper Chef Pan, which features the same high sides and Cerami-Tech nonstick coating—and very likely, the same five-layer construction.
But without additional details from customer support, we can’t verify this important information, which is key to making an empowered decision regarding any nonstick cookware.
Ultimately, we found that the original pan started off providing a wonderful cooking experience (except for pies, so be sure to keep this in mind), but after just a few normal uses, started scratching easily and quickly lost its nonstick ability.
Fortunately, if you experience any of the same with Copper Chef King within 60 days of your purchase, Tristar stands behind it with a money back guarantee. Just remember that you’ll lose any fees if you took advantage of the BOGO offer, as well as any costs associated with sending it back to the company.