Nothing gives a kitchen a more professional and finished look than a ceramic stovetop. The burners are neatly hidden underneath a ceramic panel, so cleaning up spills and drips from the flat, smooth surface is a breeze. However, ceramic stovetops, as well as glass ones, can easily be scratched by certain types of cookware. Anodized cookware is safe for ceramic stovetops and has other advantages as well.
Anodized Aluminum Safety Features
The smooth, even bottoms of anodized aluminum cookware ensure it won't scratch ceramic stovetops. Even after repeated washing either by hand or dishwasher, the bottoms won't pit or corrode. Although the smooth exterior of the cookware will not scratch the stovetop surface, the pan bottoms occasionally leave unattractive metal marks on the stovetop. These marks may appear to be scratches, but are easily erased with a mild glass or kitchen appliance cleaning solution and a soft cloth or sponge.
Before using anodized aluminum cookware for the first time on ceramic cooktops, run your hand across the bottom of the cookware to make sure they are perfectly smooth and free of slight factory imperfections. These miniscule nicks or bumps can usually be buffed out with fine sandpaper, pure steel wool used for plumbing or sanding, an emery board, or a diamond nail file. Cookware with manufacturer or brand names stamped on the bottom should be avoided as these impressions can scratch ceramic stovetops.
Besides being safe to use on ceramic surfaces, anodized cookware conducts heat efficiently and evenly. Older types of aluminum cookware were good heat conductors, but they often warped and became unwieldy, cooking food unevenly because the surface did not sit flush with the heat source. Anodized cookware is nearly as heavy as cast-iron cookware, so its connection with ceramic stovetops is direct and unwavering, which makes food cook evenly, without pesky hot spots that can make food stick or scorch.
Safe Cookware Alternatives
If you have other kinds of cookware besides anodized aluminum, many are also safe for ceramic stovetops. You can use clad stainless steel or pans with layers of stainless steel and copper on the bottom, both of which have smooth bottoms and are heavy enough to make good contact with the heat sources. Enameled cast iron or regular cast iron is safe, as long as they have no embossings or patterns on the bottom. Glass cookware is safe to use but is an inferior heat conductor.
A Good Investment
Anodized aluminum cookware is considered by many chefs and culinary professional to be one of the most significant breakthroughs in years. It's virtually indestructible, can be used on stovetops as well as in conventional and convection ovens, and complements all kitchen decors. You can use it with confidence and pride on any stovetop and pass it on to generations to come.