How to Use Nonstick Pans In the Oven Safely
Everything you need to know about using nonstick pans (both ceramic and Teflon) in the oven.
By Sarah Holden for Food Network Kitchen
One of the home cook’s best friends is a good nonstick pan: It reduces added fat, allows food to come off with ease, and, of course, makes cleanup a breeze. And many of these pans can go beyond the stovetop to be used in your oven, as well. Here's what you need to know before using a nonstick pan in your oven.
Are All Nonstick Pans Oven-Safe?
What’s most important to note is that a nonstick pan is only oven-safe if it is intended to be. A good rule of thumb is to check the manufacturer label or website to see what it recommends. There will often be a mark on the bottom of the pan indicating whether or not the pan can go in the oven, but with nonstick cookware it’s best to find the maximum oven temperature the pan can withstand. You can consult the instructions that came with the pan or look up the brand online and find the product description and user manual.
All parts of the pan should be heatproof – not just the bottom of the pan that comes into contact with the flame on a stovetop. The handle of the pan should ideally be made of metal, like stainless steel or aluminum, or be coated with silicone. Handles coated in plastic or wood have no business going into the oven. There also shouldn't be rubber or plastic gaskets and seals on the pan, particularly where the handle meets the pan. If you plan on covering your dish while it is baking, check that all parts of the lid are also oven-proof.
How High Can You Heat a Nonstick Pan in the Oven?
As for the nonstick coating, the two most common types are polytetrafluoroethylene (Teflon) and ceramic. Neither is intended to be used over high heat: Teflon can emit dangerous fumes when heated over 500 degrees F, and the nonstick properties of ceramic pans can begin to diminish when heated too high. Generally, most nonstick ceramic pans are safe for oven-use. Teflon pans made after 2013 are PFOA-free (PFOA is the compound of concern when it comes to the toxins associated with Teflon) and generally safe to use in the oven, but check the manufacturer’s recommendation. We recommend replacing any Teflon pan made prior to 2013. Most nonstick pans regardless of material, recommend either heating up to a max of 350 degrees F or 500 degrees F. Regardless of which type of nonstick pan you are using, never use it on the broiler setting.
Why Would I Use a Nonstick Pan in the Oven?
One of the biggest advantages of having a nonstick pan that is ovenproof is the ability to start a dish on the stovetop and finish it in the oven, or vice versa. Just be sure to not move the pan from hot to cold (for example, from fridge to oven), as it could damage the coating or warp the pan. And always make sure you use an oven mitt when removing the hot pan from the oven, even if it has a silicone handle.
What Can You Make with a Nonstick Pan in the Oven?
Once you’ve determined that your pan can go in the oven and how much heat it can handle, take advantage of it! Nonstick pans are especially helpful when cooking eggs, and a baked dish is no exception, such as these baked eggs with salsa verde. Moving from stovetop to oven is ideal when you want to keep a crispy skin on a protein while braising, like this braised chicken thighs with 40 cloves of garlic. And cut down on dishes by baking a cobbler in the same pan you cooked the filling, just like this blueberry-caramel skillet cobbler.