The Best Pan for Broiling Healthy and Delicious Meals
by HexClad Cookware
Broiling is a popular method for cooking food in the oven, but not everyone knows it often requires its own special cookware.
Here’s our guide on what pans to use for broiling.
What Kind of Pan Is Best for Broiling?
Different materials will hold up differently to the piping-hot nature of a broiler. Stainless steel and heavy-duty porcelain enamel are safe to use in a broiler without having to worry that they won’t be able to withstand it.
Materials like carbon steel and cast iron are so heavy-duty and able to hold up to high temperatures that they can even be used as outdoor grill pans. However, these materials might not always work best for everyday cooking needs.
For instance, neither carbon steel nor cast iron cookware or bakeware is dishwasher safe. Even though it can hold up to the high heat of a broiler, it can’t deal with the hot sanitizing water in a dishwasher.
Basically, what we’re trying to get at is that the best broiler pan would have the capabilities of all of the materials we have listed, but would also have the versatility of being able to go in the dishwasher.
If only there were a high-quality pan set like that. Oh wait, there is! We’ll talk more about that later, but spoiler: the solution is HexClad.
Can Non-Stick Pans Safely Go Under the Broiler?
It is very common for people to wonder whether or not they can put their trusty non-stick pan in the broiler. After all, they’re so convenient that it makes sense that you would want to use them whenever you can.
Unfortunately, many pans with non-stick coatings can only withstand temperatures up to about 350 degrees Fahrenheit. If these kinds of pans go any higher, then the integrity of their non-stick finish can be compromised.
The situation is slightly different for HexClad pans, thankfully — our pans can withstand up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit in the oven. This is great news for those who are fans of cooking something on the stovetop and then baking it directly in the oven. However, the situation becomes more complicated when it comes to broiling.
Some ovens have specialized broiling settings, so you have more control over the exact temperature that it reaches. If you have this option, you can set your broiler anywhere from about 400 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.*
*Disclaimer: Broilers generally reach between 500 and 550 degrees. Although some typical broilers may reach 550 degrees, HexClad pans are safe up to 500 degrees.
What Is the Best Material for a Broiler Pan?
All of HexClad’s Hybrid Pans can withstand high temperatures while also being dishwasher-safe. HexClad’s hybrid design is made up of both stainless steel and cast iron, so you can get the advantages of both without any of the drawbacks.
All of the impressive heat distribution of cast iron, coupled with the durability and shine of stainless steel, makes for a fantastic pan.
That isn’t everything that makes HexClad stand apart, though. Our cookware also comes complete with a unique hexagon pattern on its cooking surfaces. These raised steel hexagons paired with the indented valleys next to them help heat spread evenly and keep food from sticking.
Gone are the days of slaving away over a roaster to make countless servings of your favorite food, only to have to hand wash a large broiler pan or bake pan afterward.
Using HexClad, not only do you have a non-stick surface that will prevent food from sticking in the first place, but you can stick it right in the dishwasher after you’re done with your healthy cooking.
HexClad's Roasting Pan Set utilizes our cutting-edge patented technology, but also incorporates much of what you already know and love about nonstick broiler pans. This two-piece juggernaut includes a top and a bottom that can be used as a drip pan — and for so much more.
The inclusion of the drip tray ensures that you won’t end up with any liquid potentially dangerously falling to the bottom of your oven.
What Materials Should Be Avoided in a Broiler Pan?
This cooking method is dependent on being so scaldingly hot, and as a result, there are a few materials that should never go into a broiler. While a stainless steel broiler pan would typically be okay, this isn’t the case if it has most types of nonstick coatings.
You also won’t ever find a broiler pan set made out of glass since it simply can’t handle the heat.
Even if you are using a material that can handle it, like a porcelain broiler pan, that doesn’t mean you are out of the woods completely. You can still go wrong by using something like parchment paper to line the bottom pan. If you need to line the bottom tray to help with cleaning up, we highly recommend using aluminum foil instead.
What Is the Difference Between Broiling and Grilling?
Outdoor grilling and using an oven broiler are two similar ways to cook food, but they are far from the same thing. Grilling is done over an open flame that is fueled by either propane or coal, while broiling is done using direct heat from the oven.
You have a bit more control with broiling than you do with grilling since the oven will stop getting hotter once it reaches a certain temperature.
That being said, it’s also worth noting their similarities. They both can be used to quickly and effectively caramelize anything from cuts of meat to veggies, and they do this by exposing the food to higher heat than it would experience from baking alone. If you do not have access to a grill or can’t go outside, broiling food instead could be a good alternative.
What Size Should a Broiler Pan Be?
A quality broiler pan will come complete with both a perforated top pan and a bottom drip pan. Whether they are stainless steel, nonstick, or porcelain-coated, there are a few different size requirements that you should look out for.
First of all, you should, of course, never get a broiler that is larger than your oven can accommodate. Even if it’s a tight squeeze, the last thing you want is for the sharp edges of the broiler to rub up against the sides of the oven.
You want to make sure that whatever you’re broiling has plenty of room to breathe on the pan, and that nothing is overcrowded. If you overcrowd your broiler, the ingredients can end up mushy rather than crispy.
However, using a pan that’s too big has its own disadvantages, too.
Consider what you typically broil, and use that to guide the size pan you choose to get. If you’re broiling large pieces of meat or a lot at a time, think about getting a larger pan. If you’re broiling smaller pieces of veggies, it might be better to get a small one.
What Are the Benefits of Broiling?
We’ve established what materials can and can’t be used for broiling your next dinner, but you might not know why you’d even want to use this cooking technique in the first place. The good news is that broiling is as beneficial to the taste of the food as it is to your diet.
Helps Eliminate Fat
Much of cooking is reliant on you adding fat (oil, butter, etc.) to the mix, even if the ingredients already contain fat of their own. This contributes to unnecessary and unhealthy additives that we all could use less of. On the other hand, broiling helps cut down on fat in two ways.
For one thing, you don’t have to add any fat when you’re broiling. The process is so close to the heat that it doesn’t help. In addition, much of the fat will drip down from your ingredients into the drip pan below.
Provides the Perfect Crisp
Since broiling relies on such direct and dry heat, it naturally crisps up the surface of whatever it cooks. The inside of your ingredients can still stay moist, giving you a delicious contrast.
Finding the Perfect Pan With HexClad
We hope this guide has helped you on your broiling journey. Armed with this knowledge (and the right cookware), you’ll be making wonderful and healthy dishes before you know it.