Alternatives to Teflon

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My husband decided TODAY to throw away our teflon pan and roasting rack, both of which had flecks of teflon missing. Duh, why hadn’t we done this before?  It’s amazing to me that I can be neurotic about buying organic apples and then let a deteriorating Teflon pan go by… month after month. Courtney from Baby Bodyguards has found an alternative to Teflon, and loves it!

The Green-Pan, A Solution to Safer Cooking and a Healthy Planet  by Baby Bodyguards

I received a full set of Teflon pots and pans when I got married a few years ago. We cook everyday and I started noticing pieces of the Teflon coating coming off. I immediately threw my pots and pans to the wind, because it doesn’t take a scientist to infer that eating Teflon is probably a bad idea.

Lauren Sucher, of the Environmental Working Group, a Washington, D. C., organization that compiles data on toxicology, recommends that people phase out the use of Teflon cookware in their home. Chemicals used in Teflon have been shown to be lethal to birds, and cause flu-like symptoms in humans. In 2005, the EPA said a chemical (PFOA) used to make Teflon is “likely a carcinogen” and in January 2006, DuPont, the only company that manufactures the chemical in the US, agreed to eliminate releases of the chemical from its manufacturing plants by 2015.

So, what are the alternatives?

Stainless steel is a great alternative, but I don’t have the time or elbow grease needed to be scrubbing those bad boys. Cast Iron is also a winner, but it requires some maintenance, (aka seasoning to last), and it is not dishwasher safe.  After a lot of research, I came across the Green-Pan and I had to try it.

Green-Pan is the first Teflon free non-stick pan. Using something called Thermolon technology, they’ve made a non-stick mineral coating that is food-safe, and won’t be damaged or emit nasty fumes, even at super high temperatures. It can resist heat up to 850 degrees, and you never need to use butter or oil to coat the pan, which is great for the waistline. I have used it several times and nothing sticks to it! It also doesn’t hurt that their cookware is attractive and affordable.

(This is Karen here: we have stainless steel and cast iron. First, to clean stainless steel, I use my pot scraper. I LOVE this thing- it makes cleaning everything a cinch. There is a new “green” bamboo pot scraper out there that you can buy. As far as cast iron, I swear food tastes better in it. Some people don’t like them as they are soooo heavy and you aren’t supposed to use soap to clean them and that grosses people out. I admit to using soap once in a while, but don’t tell Papa Tree. He depends on the seasoning of the cast iron to make his lamb taste good).

Related Articles

Most of you have heard about Baby Bodyguards by now. First, they came and did an excellent “spec” on babyproofing our place, then they wrote a popular post on our blog about window guards for NYC, now they have been raved about on Park Slope Parents. They are getting lots of mainstream press as well. They have done a few “unofficial” posts for us already, but now they have their own Expert Advice page. (As do all of our Experts). Baby Bodyguards was born out of our love and concern for children everywhere. The Baby Bodyguard family consists of hand picked Pediatricians, Nurses, Emergency Medical Technicians, Firemen, Contractors and Craftsmen, all of whom share the same passion for child safety

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  2. Hi Karen- I applaud the idea of creating a safer home, because there’s so much misinformation out there about the Teflon® brand. I’m a representative of DuPont though, and hope you’ll let me share some information with you and your readers so that everyone can make truly informed decisions.

    Regulatory agencies, consumer groups and health associations all have taken a close look at the Teflon® brand. This article highlights what they found — the bottom line is that you can use Teflon® non-stick without worry.

    I’d truly be glad to share additional information about it if you are interested, and appreciate your consideration of this comment. Cheers, Sara.

  3. It is sold on $79 for a 6 piece set and ships for free.

  4. Thanks Courtney! And can you tell us where you bought it and if it was part of a 6 piece set?

  5. As for residue, I have used the pan almost daily for the last 2 months, and have been putting it in the dishwasher, and still no residue. I’ll keep you guys posted.

  6. We stumbled upon the Swiss Diamond pan when our nonstick pan went kaput. They sell them locally at Cooks Companion on Atlantic near Court Street. We’ve had it about a year and it looks brand new, food doesn’t stick and practically falls off when you wash it. It does not have Teflon.

  7. Here are also a ton of reviews of the Green-Pan, many people seem to have the problem of residue. Granted, the comments are over a year ago, I think you should read this before you buy:

    Meanwhile, here is a link to buy the pans:

  8. Here is a woman’s post on her experience with the green-pan and the eventual buildup of residue (
    Meanwhile, it looks like she bought it at Target. Will find buying links shortly.

  9. I use soap on our cast iron pan which we use DAILY. The patina is fine so long as you dry it over a flame and re-oil it every so often.

    Great post!

  10. As usual you post about the very thing I’m thinking about! I was just looking at my chipped (but beloved) Calphalon teflon sauce pan and thinking: I’ve got to get a non teflon alternative. I also saw something similar from Cuisinart, but read bad reviews on-line and wonder if the Green Pans have the same problems of not really being non-stick… (Also, where do you buy these Green Pans? There’s no purchase link on their site?)

    Thanks as always…


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