So do you need to splash out on the best frying pan to get quality results in the kitchen? It depends.
Consumer advocacy group CHOICE tested 35 frying pans from leading brands, and the results might surprise you.
"All of the frying pans we tested in our labs performed quite well across the board, despite what they cost," says CHOICE kitchen expert Chantelle Dart.
"The aspects that separated the best and worst models mostly came down to their durability and things like how easy they are to clean, the ergonomics of the handles and how well-balanced the pan is."
Kmart's $18 frypan
While multiple 'budget' pans failed, one little gem from Kmart impressed the experts: The $18 Kmart Anko stainless-steel non-stick 24cm frying pan.
"It was our low-cost standout, scoring higher on performance, ease of use and durability than brands such as Scanpan, Jamie Oliver, Tefal and Swiss Diamond," says CHOICE in an article.
How the $18 pan from Kmart performed
CHOICE says the pan distributes heat evenly, which is a big pro when cooking. It also passed for durablility (having a mechanical scourer go over the same spot 10,000 times).
The frying pan can be put in the oven and used on any cooktop.
The non-stick wasn't quite up to scratch and the base is thin.
"While it did receive a high CHOICE Expert Rating, this pan has a thin base, so it will continue to heat as you cook," says Chantelle. "This means you must adjust your heat settings as you cook to prevent burning or sticking."
The grip isn't non-slip, and "exposed rivets inside the pan and the stainless-steel exterior and base can discolour and require extra cleaning attention," says CHOICE.
To find out more, read CHOICE's full frypan review.
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