Quick Poll: How do you feel about Teflon/Cooking Health Concern?


The nonstick coating is made from a chemical called PTFE, also known as Teflon, which makes cooking and washing up fast and easy. Health agencies have raised concerns about the compound PFOA, which was previously used to make Teflon. However, Teflon has been PFOA-free since 2013.

So if you have the older Telfon, maybe you should be more concerned. But generally the studies said PFOA were “safe”.

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Do you mean Teflon/PTFE stovetop cookware have been banned? I still see other appliances like Zojirushi rice cookers

Yeah, you can report them then. Either they have a version with a non PTFE non-stick coating. Or they are just illegal. I believe it’s more the first case.

I’m not at all concerned with the health consequences of cooking in Teflon-coated pans, as long as they aren’t heated above ~400°F, but I am greatly concerned about the costs (direct and indirect) and negative externalities associated with their manufacture. Even the successor to PFOA, GenX, is not deemed safe.

At this point I have enough cookware to last several lifetimes, so I do not anticipate buying anything else. It’s for these reasons I am particularly conscientious about caring for my nonstick cookware, as I don’t place to replace it.


The best egg pan I have ever used is a carbon steel crepe pan. Its only seasoning has been through regular use, never at high temperatures. I heat it on low with a wipe of peanut oil, and eggs release perfectly. I clean it, rather than just wiping it, after each use. The extremely low sides make flawless turning of eggs very easy, and it is a 24, making it easy to use a lid for a basted fried egg.


I picked safe to 500°F based on the “ok to fry egg” portion. But I’d prefer not to get close to that degradation temp, having given myself polymer fume fever on more than one occasion. So, yes to fry egg and call it < 450°F or so.

To the extent PFOAs are potentially a health hazard, I think that horse has already escaped the barn. We (and the entire planet) are bathed in perfluorinated compounds (note this is just a linkback to one of my earlier posts, not a news article) and they are very persistent in the environment (they don’t readily break down).

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Claus, not exactly on point but generally this indicates consuming overheated or repeatedly reheated oils can have health effects.

Huge difference, though, between eating something fried in the old broken down oils vs. the miniscule amount I would think gets into your food from the polymerised seasoning of the pan.

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Do these actually exist? I remember a long discussion at CH about the newer “ceramic” non-stick and that someone had done a deep dive found they still used polyfluorinated polymers, if a lot less than regular Teflon.

Hi Claus, I know we have different cleaning regimes for our carbon steel, but I would assume you still clean your pan with water and a scrub sponge?

If you’re really worried about building up of oil, why not remove the seasoning once in a while?

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yup. but not a lot of people use full face oxygen masks when cooking.

I wish this had been my reply.
Can only say I wholeheartedly agree.

I probably will continue using my 5 non stick pans weekly, but I can’t say I’m proud of buying new non stick pans since the production of the pans - in my view - is where the real danger lies for our population.

I hope my Demeyere Alu Pro non stick pans will last forever - it is called ‘forever chemicals’, right ?!? :wink: but I just know they won’t last forever as part of the cooking area in the bottom of my non stick pans.

I really take great care of my non stick pans and here 3-4 years later, I see very few indications of usage in my non stick pans - so I cross my fingers they’ll last a decade before needing to be replaced.

I might buy extra stock of Ballarini/Demeyere non stick pans and store it away, since I believe they might be totally banned in EU within the next 2-3 years.

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There are GenX and PFBS, health impacts have to be determined. But it seems there aren’t any better than PFOA and PFOS.

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I think that you’ll find that there was a consent decree in 2013, wherein the US industry was ordered to stop using PFOA in PTFE production. But they didn’t, at least not right away–there was more than one years-long extension granted.

I also think that PFOA is a bit of a red herring when it comes to cookware. Its true evil is environmental pollution attendant to the production of PTFE. Taking PFOA out of the process doesn’t make PTFE safe–it’s still the same chemical compound.


Hi Damiano,

As always you’re right on the money with your replies.

I could strip my carbon steel pans every time I use them or at least once in a while to get rid of the old carbonised oil build up in the pans.

I just accept I won’t strip them before they really need to be stripped, since I’m a sucker for the look of my well seasoned carbon steel pans……sorry but that’s my lame shallow excuse.

If I really felt my carbon steel pans could outperform my non stick pans for certain delicate type egg, potato and fish dishes, I would have thrown my non stick pans out immediately after realising it. But unfortunately they don’t.

I’m still quite proud of my current 5 carbon steel pans in my collection (2 x De Buyer Mineral B Pro, 2 x Darto and 1 Matfer Bourgeat) and still love to cook in them several times weekly, but they still can’t quite make a frittatta/egg cake and omelette the way my non stick pans can. But my technique is still improving day by day, so one day I might say my CS pans can now 100% replace my non stick pans. I wish that day would be near.

But for that day to come, I probably can’t strip my CS pans completely too often, since the seasoning has a thing or two to do with the non stick abilities of carbon steel pans. I agree that a totally stripped just once seasoned CS pan can still be non stick right away, but the depth of the seasoning layers do in my view add a bit to the non stick ability of a CS pan.

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If anyone hasn’t seen it yet, here is the movie I referenced earlier (based on real events). You’ll also see the environmental damage being done during the production stages.


Same - when I make eggs/omelette/frittata I will only use my nonstick pan.

But for the rest I hardly use it anymore.

For fish I will use my De Buyer carbon steel (washed with soap after use) or my Mauviel stainless steel lined copper pan. Most fish recipes work fine, e.g. fillet of fish fried, or whole flat fish fried in butter. Where it doesn’t work as well, e.g. frying of rehydrated salt cod, I’ll just accept that I’ll lose some of the fish because of sticking. But usually this is less than 10%.

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Hi Damiano,

I actually made salted cod for 5 people some weeks ago and I used my Darto CS N25 and a Demeyere Alu Pro 24 cm non stick - just to experiment with heat level, fat level and to see the difference in performance between the CS & non stick pan.

Like in your experience I got a bit of sticking in my Darto pan (not much though, I felt I really had the temperature control dialled in) but as always my Demeyere Alu Pro pan gave me the perfectly cooked salted cod.

The Darto performed very well, but if I worked in a professional restaurant I know very well what pan I would choose to cook salted cod in :wink:

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With all due respect, we ALL do.

But we come here to forget that shit for a while and talk food, don’t we.

If you don’t want to play - don’t.

No reason to be a curmudgeon.

Meant to add:

Mstly this:


195 views - Only 20 anonymous votes so far. What’s up with that. It’s a simple Q. You couldn’t possibly be on that many ignore lists.:slightly_smiling_face:


Response-to-view ratio usually runs between 10% (newer threads) to less than a half percent (older, more established threads).

Totally unscientific; just my geek brain noticing stuff.

(Another Discourse-using forum I frequent has a front page that lists all topics with numbers of replies, views, and users. HO doesn’t do that but I spot checked 10 or so older and newer, and it’s similar.)