Ask the Experts: What Is a Saucier Pan?
Q: What is a saucier pan? Is it the same as a saucepan? Do I really need one?
A: We’re not going to tell you that you really need a saucier pan (or any other piece of cookware, bakeware or cutlery). It’s your kitchen — you decide how to stock it.
However, we will tell you a saucier pan can make some cooking tasks faster and easier, with less waste and quicker cleanup. Read on to learn more about why this piece of cookware could be a smart addition to your kitchen.
Saucier Pan vs. Saucepan
A saucepan has high, straight sides, while the sides of a saucier pan gently slope to a rounded bottom. Compare the All-Clad saucier and saucepan below:
Advantages of a Saucier Pan Over a Saucepan
The sloping sides give a saucier a wider opening than a saucepan that holds the same volume. The wider opening means a faster evaporation rate, so liquids reduce more quickly. When making oatmeal or risotto, or simmering sauces that take time to thicken, a saucier pan moves the process along more efficiently.
The rounded bottom makes it easier to stir and whisk without any food getting stuck between the bottom and sides of the pan. We’ve all struggled with this issue, no matter how carefully we monitored our stirring. Plus, since no food gets stuck, cleaning a saucier can be much easier than cleaning a saucepan.
What to Look For When Buying a Saucier Pan
This article from Cook’s Illustrated, along with the accompanying video from America’s Test Kitchen, covers the features of various saucier pans. They compared eight different pans and note which ones performed best and were easiest to handle and clean.
The top features to keep in mind include the cooking surface area, the slope of the sides, the angle of the handle, and the weight of the pan. The size of the cooking surface can mean ingredients steam or scorch instead of softening. Sloped sides are a key difference between sauciers and saucepans; without that rounding, you might as well use a saucepan. Handle angle and pan weight are a matter of personal preference, but make sure you choose a saucier that’s comfortable for you.
Check out our selection of saucier pans. From stainless steel to nonstick and enameled cast iron, we’re confident you’ll find a pan you love.