Glass vs. Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls: Pros & Cons
by HexClad Cookware
Mixing bowls are a classic, a staple, a can’t-make-a-meal-without-it kind of kitchen companion — so it’s no surprise you need a solid one when getting your kitchen in order.
Whether you’re stirring or whisking ingredients, tossing a salad, soaking beans, marinating meat, or storing leftovers, your trusty mixing bowl has got you covered. But which kind of mixing bowl takes the cake (pun intended)?
When it comes to a good mixing bowl, you don’t need anything flashy or over the top. In fact, the ideal mixing bowl should be one that doesn’t make a big fuss. Think easy to work with, durable, and sturdy.
While ceramic bowls may be nice to look at, they’re too bulky and heavy to pour from and carry with ease — and the last thing you want is to drop your bowl mid-whisk.
Having a plastic lid can make storage easy, but a fully plastic bowl is an easy no. Their porous surface can absorb oil and grease, dirtying easily and hanging on to odors.
So, that leaves us with the choice of the century: glass vs. stainless steel mixing bowls. While both options have their pros and cons, stainless steel is the clear winner for ease of use and safety.
But don’t worry; we’ll break it down further so you can see for yourself.
What Are the Pros of Glass Mixing Bowls?
Glass mixing bowls have their own set of benefits and drawbacks, but let’s start with what they get right. You could say we’re seeing the glass (mixing bowl) half full.
One of the main selling points of glass mixing bowls is that they are microwavable safe, allowing you to conveniently warm any ingredients up without needing to dirty a second bowl.
While glass bowls are more fragile than stainless steel, they aren’t quite as breakable as your glass wine glasses or other drinkware.
Glass mixing bowls are usually made of tempered glass, meaning the material has been mechanically strengthened to better withstand impact or high heat. However, this added strength also adds to the bowl’s weight, making them harder to carry and pour.
It’s what’s on the inside that counts: Many bakers enjoy the see-through nature of glass bowls, especially if there are measurement lines included on the inside. This can help users more clearly see the number of ingredients used and how well-mixed they are.
Glass bowls are nonreactive cookware, so you won’t have to worry about any type of chemical reaction messing with the color or taste of your food, as can sometimes happen with certain metal cookware like aluminum or copper.
Some prefer glass bowls for their appearance, as they can be used as decorative bowls on the counter or even for serving. However, if you are using mixing bowls for their intended purpose (AKA, mixing), we find that glass bowls leave a little something to be desired.
What Are the Cons of Glass Mixing Bowls?
While glass mixing bowls have some advantages, there are also a few serious drawbacks to keep in mind.
While considerably less fragile than non-tempered glass, glass mixing bowls are still more delicate than their stainless steel counterparts. If you drop a glass mixing bowl, odds are it will break. Even a chipped glass bowl can pose a safety risk and become unusable.
Speaking of the risks of dropping glass, these bowls are heavy as heck. As anyone who spends time in the kitchen knows, transferring and pouring ingredients to and from mixing bowls is a must — especially in baking. And if you’ve tried holding a glass bowl in one hand and scraping ingredients out with the other, you know how unpleasant an experience that can be.
The weight and slipperiness of glass bowls make holding and pouring from them awkward, and your risk of dropping your bowl becomes much greater when you can’t get a good grip on it.
Getting heavier bowls in and out of storage can also be a pain. Why make these relatively easy parts of kitchen prep harder for yourself?
What Are the Pros of Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls?
Like glass mixing bowls, stainless steel bowls have their benefits and drawbacks — but one clearly outweighs the other. Take a look at how stainless steel mixing bowls can give chefs an edge in kitchens near and far.
Unlike glass bowls, you don’t need to worry about dropping a stainless steel mixing bowl. These bowls are made to be extremely strong and durable. They can handle storing heavy items or even gnarly falls without cracking or breaking.
While tempered glass bowls must be heavy to become strong, the even-stronger stainless steel is a lightweight and user-friendly material.
Holding, pouring from, and cleaning stainless steel bowls are a breeze.Even the largest mixing bowls that would be a struggle to hold in glass form are light and easy to maneuver when made of stainless steel.
Easy to Grip
Not only are stainless steel mixing bowls lighter than their glass counterparts, but some also come with a non-slip base. This silicone addition helps your bowl stay put no matter the task (or the angle), taking a stainless steel bowl from a good idea to a must-have.
Like glass bowls, stainless steel is a non-reactive material, so you don’t need to worry about it affecting the taste, aroma, or texture of any ingredients you mix in it.
Stainless steel bowls are versatile cookware that can be used for much more than mixing, since their lightweight and durable nature makes them great to store or freeze leftovers.
Bowls like HexClad’s seal stainless steel mixing and storage bowls come with a patented vacuum-seal lid, making it even easier to keep your food fresh for up to three times longer. Plus, they’ve got a date-saving dial, so you know exactly how long your leftovers have been hanging out in your fridge.
Best Bowls for Whisking
Ask any chef: stainless steel bowls will beat glass bowls any day when it comes to whipping egg whites or milk cream.
Why? Glass bowls are too smooth and slick, causing the egg whites or milk to slide down the sides of the bowl rather than clinging to them. The texture of stainless steel bowls is ideal for egg whites to cling to their sides, which is necessary to create the desired foamy consistency.
Stainless steel bowls like HexClad’s come in sets that are easy to nest together for clutter-free storage. Not to mention, their lightweight makes taking the bowls in and out of storage a quick and convenient task.
What Are the Cons of Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls?
The pros far outweigh the cons when it comes to stainless steel mixing bowls, but there is one potential drawback to keep in mind. Stainless steel bowls are not microwave-safe, so heating up ingredients may require an extra dish or two. Luckily, transferring ingredients out of these lightweight bowls is easy as can be.
The Winner: Stainless Steel
We are confident that you won’t find better than stainless steel mixing bowls. These bowls are lightweight, durable, and elegant, making them the perfect fit for every step of your cooking repertoire, from food prep to storage.
When it comes to choosing the best stainless steel mixing bowls, you can’t go wrong with HexClad’s updated take on a kitchen must-have. Our sturdy signature mixing bowl set is like nothing else.
This set comes with three stainless steel bowls that provide a range of sizes for all of your cooking needs and nest together for easy storage. Each bowl features a non-slip silicone base and a patented vacuum-seal lid. Plus, these bowls are dishwasher safe. From food prep to post-leftover cleanup, it doesn’t get more convenient than this.
Ready to upgrade your kitchen? You can check out all of HexClad’s forward-thinking cookware — and find out why Gordon Ramsay calls us “the Rolls Royce of pans” — at our online store today!