2. Cookware sets can't fulfill everyone's needs, but they're a wonderful way to get set up. Once you've cooked with them a while, consider adding specific pans that match your individual recipes.
3. If you're not fussy about pots and pans, or if you live in a house full of teenagers or chimpanzees, choose a stainless steel cookware set because it's much less fragile. Anodized non-stick cookware and ceramic pots require kinder handling, but definitely make a difference if you take care of them.
4. Consider your favorite foods before choosing a cookware set. Italian? Get a set with a big stock pot and a deep-sided skillet. French? Get at least three sizes of sauce pans. Greek? Get all the pieces you can afford, because the whole family's coming.
5. Copper is luxurious and beautiful, but it needs extra care to shine. Chefs often get full cookware sets of aluminum or anodized metal, then add a few favorite copper pans.
6. Got room? A huge cookware set is a luxury, but those pots and pans take up space. Make room by ditching the old scratched-up pots you'll never use again.
7. You don't have to choose sides: many cookware sets include both standard and non-stick pans because each has its benefits.
8. Match your utensils to your cookware set. If it's an all-metal set, use metal spatulas, spoons, and whisks. If your pots and pans have a synthetic or anodized non-stick coating, only use synthetic tools to protect the finish.
9. Glass lids are strong and shatter-proof, a great choice for cooking sets. Lifting the lid too often can spoil some recipes by releasing pressure and moisture. Glass lets you keep a lid on things without worrying.
10. Those famous brand names are famous for a reason. Cooking sets by Le Creuset, Calphalon, BonJour, and Demeyere cost more and are completely worth it. You'll agree when you finally flip that perfect omelet.