Paula Deen Cookware Reviews

Paula Deen Cookware Review – Top 4 Picks to Purchase 2021

Good cookware is an investment in your food and your home. So why are most of us stuck using mismatched, ragtag sets of pots and pans with ill-fitting lids and hand-me-down dents?

It’s time for a change…

Choosing the right cookware depends on your cooking style, the type of stovetop you use, the types of things you like to cook, and the number of mouths you have to feed, too. To help, we’re reviewing different brands to help you find the right match. In this review, we look at pots and pans from a Southern cooking queen – Paula Deen cookware.

Paula Deen Cookware Review – The Brand

Paula Deen Cookware Review

If you don’t know who Paula Deen is by now, you’ve either been living in an off the grid cabin in the woods for a few decades or just don’t get out much. Paula Deen has built herself into a cooking legend, starting from a catering and restaurant business to TV cooking shows, magazines, and more.

Now she has her own line of cookware and kitchen appliances to increase her reach into American kitchens.

While Paula’s Southern home-style cooking is known for being rich and decadent, her cookware is inexpensive and made for the regular home cook. The cookware is all coated in a non-stick coating that allows you to use less fat and oil in cooking, unlike most of Paula’s recipes. Of course, that’s with the exception of deep frying – it’s hard to do that without oil!

So what’s this cookware all about?

In general, Paula Deen pots and pans are lightweight, aluminum core pieces of cookware covered on the outside with bright, durable enamel paint. Aluminum cookware has the benefits of being lightweight and strong, and also being very responsive to changes in temperature. It heats up and cools down fast, allowing you to control your cooking easily. It can warp, though.

The insides, though, are where the cooking magic happens. All of her cookware has cooking surfaces coated with a non-stick coating very similar to the brand name Teflon products. This coating is tough and durable, scratch-resistant, and non-stick – at least to a point.

What we appreciate about this coating is that it’s free of PFOA (perfluorooctanoic acid). This is a chemical that was often found in non-stick coatings until recently. It’s linked to all sorts of health concerns, like cancer, infertility, and thyroid conditions, and is also known to be a persistent environmental pollutant.

Thanks, Paula.

Paula Deen Cookware Reviews

Paula Deen Cookware Reviews – Top 4 Best Products in 2021

Next, we look at some of the most popular Paula Deen products to help you choose the best pieces for your kitchen.

  1. Riverbend Nonstick Frying Pan Set – Best Paula Deen Frying Pan Set
  2. Riverbend Deep Nonstick Frying Pan – Best Paula Deen Frying Pan
  3. Riverbend 12-Piece Nonstick Cookware Pots and Pans Set – Best Paula Deen Riverbend Cookware Set
  4. Signature 11-Piece Nonstick Cookware Pots and Pans Set – Best Paula Deen Riverbend Cookware Set with Measuring Spoons

1 Riverbend Nonstick Frying Pan Set – Best Paula Deen Frying Pan Set

Let’s start out with something simple. Paula Deen’s set of two frying pans gives a very good introduction to the brand. With this set, you get a 9 ¼ inch frying pan and an 11 ½ inch pan. While 12 and 10 inch sizes are a bit more standard, we can still consider these medium and large sized pans.

Great color selection…

The enamel painted exteriors come in three speckled colors: Red Speckle, Gulf Blue Speckle (aka turquoise), and Lavender Speckle (aka purple). While these colors might not match your other cookware, they at least look bright and cheerful in any kitchen to help enhance your cooking experience. The exterior enamel paint is tough and easy to keep clean.

The pans have handles made from heat resistant plastic. These are attached using a stainless steel tang which seems to be welded on rather than riveted. We appreciated this, as it means that there are no rivets on the inside of the pans that could catch food or interfere with stirring and flipping.

These handles don’t get hot on the stovetop, making them comfortable to use and grip. They can also handle temperatures up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, which means you can pull a pan off the stove and pop it right into the oven for baking.

That’s convenient!

However, what might not be convenient for some is the fact that these pans have no steel in their bodies, which means they can’t be used on induction stovetops. Also, because the aluminum bottoms aren’t very thick or steel-reinforced, they could warp over time. If they do, they won’t sit well on glass or ceramic cooktops either.

But in general, these pans distribute heat well, release food well, and make frying a snap!

Riverbend Nonstick Frying Pan Set
Our rating:4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

Pros

  • Lightweight, durable, and affordable.
  • Good food release.

Cons

  • Not for induction stovetops.
  • Could warp over time.

2 Riverbend Deep Nonstick Frying Pan – Best Paula Deen Frying Pan

Next up, we have Paula Deen’s Riverbend Series deep frying pan, deep frying pan, or deep skillet – whatever you want to call it! This is a BIG pan, measuring in at 12 ½ inches across and about 2 ½ inches deep. It’s designed for Paula Deen style deep frying, so if you want to imagine fitting a whole chicken in there, you’re right on the money!

This pan comes in three colors – Red Speckle, Deep Sea Blue Speckle, and Lavender Speckle – and looks great in the kitchen. Once again, this paint is durable and stands up to a decent scrubbing.

PFOA Free…

Once again, we’ve got the Paula Deen non-stick coating on the cooking surface. As we’ve already mentioned, this coating is free of PFOA (cadmium and lead, too!). It has very good release of food. Fried eggs come off with just a slight nudge from a spatula, while most everything else just slides right out of this pan.

Speaking of spatulas, it is recommended to use only nylon plastic, silicone, or wooden utensils with this fry pan. Likewise, these pans shouldn’t go into the dishwasher. But because the non-stick coating really does the trick, cleanup is simple with just a soft sponge and soapy water.

No lid…

One criticism we have to make here is the lack of a lid. Paula knows as well as we do that frying can cause a spattering mess, so we’d love to see a clear glass lid included with this pan to help keep heat and moisture locked in while always letting you see the progress of your cooking.

On the other hand, this does have a helper handle for when it’s full and heavy. That’s a nice touch.

Riverbend Deep Nonstick Frying Pan
Our rating:4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Pros

  • Big but still lightweight and strong, with a helper handle.
  • Oven safe to 350 degrees.

Cons

  • No lid included.
  • Can’t be used with induction stoves.

3 Riverbend 12-Piece Nonstick Cookware Pots and Pans Set – Best Paula Deen Riverbend Cookware Set

Next up, we look at one of the bigger sets of cookware that Paula Deen has on offer. Her latest product is the Riverbend Series, and this set comes with a total of 12 pieces of cookware plus utensils.
Here’s what you get…

  • a 1.5 quart saucepan with glass lid
  • a 2 quart saucepan with glass lid
  • a 3 quart sauté pan with glass lid
  • a 6 quart stockpot with glass lid
  • an 8 inch frying pan
  • a 10 inch frying pan
  • a nylon slotted spoon and slotted spatula

So you’ve basically got a set of four pots and two pans with lids and utensils on the side. These are available in Red Speckle, Lavender Speckle, Gulf Blue Speckle, or Deep Sea Blue Speckle, with the same durable enamel paint as the pans we’ve already reviewed.

In fact, we’ve already seen the construction of these pots and pans – they’ve got the same aluminum core and non-stick coating as the pans we’ve seen above. They all have heat-resistant handles, again oven safe up to 150 degrees.

Just what you need…

What’s new here are the tempered glass and stainless steel lids on the three pots and the sauté pan. We found these pots to be exactly the right sizes for most kitchens. A big 6 quart pot is great for soup or stew, while the smaller saucepans work for most sauce making and boiling functions.

The 3 quart sauté pan is a great addition here. It’s smaller than the deep frying pan we looked at but still wide and deep enough to handle a lot of frying if necessary. And it comes with a lid.

Riverbend 12-Piece Nonstick Cookware Pots and Pans Set
Our rating:4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Pros

  • Very affordable and comprehensive non-stick set.
  • Lids included for most pieces.

Cons

  • Not for induction stovetops.
  • Lids don’t fit well for double duty on the frying pans.

4 Signature 11-Piece Nonstick Cookware Pots and Pans Set – Best Paula Deen Riverbend Cookware Set with Measuring Spoons

Our last product is Paula Deen’s Signature Series cookware set. This set includes:

  • a 1 quart saucepan with glass lid
  • a 2 quart saucepan with glass lid
  • a 2 ¾ quart sauté pan with glass lid
  • a 6 quart stockpot with glass lid
  • an 8 inch frying pan
  • a 10 inch frying pan
  • a set of 5 measuring spoons

In case that seems identical, note that there are some differences. The small saucepot is smaller here (1 versus 1 ½ quarts), and so is the sauté pan (by just ¼ of a quart). Of course, the two cooking utensils are replaced here by a set of measuring spoons. We would have preferred the utensils, to be honest.

But essentially, these are the same price for the same number of pots and pans as what we’ve seen with the Riverbend Series.

So what’s different?

First and most obviously, these pans come in different and even brighter colors of enamel: Red Speckle, Lavender Speckle, Aqua Speckle (turquoise), Blueberry Speckle, Butter Speckle (yellow), and Coral Speckle (orange).

Next, the handles are different here. This series has handles that are riveted to the pots and pans, meaning that there are rivets on the insides of the pieces.

Built to last…

These seem very strong but might interfere with stirring and flipping food and also create little joints that can be hard to clean. They do, though, have convenient rings on the ends in case you like to hang your cookware. The handles and the pots are still oven safe up to 350 degrees.

Other than that, the non-stick seems identical and works just as well.

Signature 11-Piece Nonstick Cookware Pots and Pans Set
Our rating:4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Pros

  • Strong and comprehensive set.
  • Rings on the handles for hanging.

Cons

  • Small saucepot is a bit too small.
  • Still not for use with induction.

Looking for more high quality cookware?

Then check out our Gotham Steel Stackmaster Review, our T Fal Initiatives Ceramic Cookware Set Review, our Calphalon Classic Cookware Review, our Rachael Ray Cucina Nonstick Cookware Pots and Pans Review, or our Starfrit the Rock Cookware Set Review.

Or, if you’re after something for a particular cooktop style, take a look at our reviews of the Best Cookware for Gas Stoves or the Best Induction Cookware Sets you can buy in 2021!

You may also be wondering our Is Ceramic Titanium Cookware Safe?, Is Hard Anodized Cookware Safe?, Ceramic vs Teflon Which One is Best?, or Is Gotham Cookware Safe?

OK, back to today’s review…

Paula Deen Cookware Review – The Best

Most of this cookware is built in the same way and performs similarly as well. So if we have to pick a favorite product, it simply comes down to the deal.

With slightly larger pieces and the more convenient addition of utensils, we’ll take the…

Riverbend 12-Piece Nonstick Cookware Pots and Pans Set

You’re getting six pots and pans, most with lids, for a steal of a price!

While this cookware isn’t for use on induction stoves, it will work well on gas and electric ranges and can go in the oven, too. It’s non-toxic, lightweight, and looks great too. What could be better?

Until next time, have fun in the kitchen.

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