Roasting pans make a handy addition to any home or professional kitchen, especially if you enjoy the occasional Sunday roast. But regardless of whether you plan to roast a cut of beef, a turkey, or a chicken, a good quality roasting pan will give you a deliciously tender result time and time again. We've found the 10 best roasting pans for you to read about below, as well all the information you need to know when making your final decision.
The Cuisinart MCP117-16BR MultiClad Pro Roaster with Rack is a great option that is dishwasher-safe, induction compatible, and made of solid stainless steel for high durability and top performance.
Another excellent choice is the Circulon 47111 Nonstick Roasting Pan with Rack with heavy-duty construction and a capacity that can handle roasting turkeys, hams, chicken, and seafood.
Quick Comparison - Top 10 Best Roasting Pans
The Cuisinart MCP117-16BR is a fantastic piece of cookware for parties, family dinners, and holiday celebrations where roasted meat is on the menu. This model is created to be large enough to hold a turkey or a massive roast so plenty of food can be prepared at one time. It has stainless steel handles that are riveted on to make it easy to move the pan in and out of the oven.The solid stainless steel allows heat to circulate around the meat or poultry while it cooks. It has a tri-ply construction with a core of aluminum, and the exterior has a stylish brushed stainless steel finish that will fit in perfectly with most kitchen styles. The included lid is tightly fitted to lock in nutrients and moisture as it cooks.
The Circulon 47111 Nonstick Roasting Pan is a versatile option that can be used for anything from turkey for Thanksgiving dinner to an everyday rib roast for the family. It offers wide, riveted handles that will stay in place to provide security when you move the pan from the counter to the oven or table. It can be used in ovens at temperatures of up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit for low, slow cooking or quicker preparations.The metal rack that comes with this model keeps the meat away from the drippings and fat while it cooks. You can also remove the rack to use the pan in other ways, such as for baking a casserole or a lasagna. Both the interior and exterior are covered with a PFOA-free, nonstick coating, so foods won't stick and you can clean off any residue quickly and easily after use.
3. Farberware 57026 Nonstick Roasting Pan with Rack
The Farberware 57026 roasting pan is another great option that comes with a nonstick coating, so you can quickly cook roasts, ribs, chicken, or turkey without worrying about anything sticking. It also has a food release system for easy and quick cleanup after the meal is done and two riveted stainless steel carry handles that make it easy to take the pan from oven to table or visa versa.This item is designed to roast fish, meat, and vegetables, but can also crisp up bacon or heat sausages or chicken nuggets in your oven. The use of heavy-duty steel means that the foods will brown and cook evenly without any hot spots. Unfortunately, it does not come with a lid, so you'll need to purchase one separately if required.
4. Calphalon Contemporary Stainless Steel Roasting Pan with Rack
This Calphalon Contemporary roasting pan comes with a rack and is created with high-pressure, high-heat impact bonding for increased durability. The cooking surface is nonstick, so cleanup is a breeze, but you can still use it with any kind of utensils without worrying about damage. It has a stylish design that will look great in most kitchens, whether it's loaded with meat or sitting empty on a counter.You can take this pan from the oven to the stove or visa versa to finish meals and make gravies without using an additional pot. It is also dishwasher-safe, so you can clean it up quickly without worrying about handwashing. If you're looking for an aesthetically pleasing roasting pan that can get the job done, this is one to keep on your list.
5. Calphalon Classic Hard-Anodized Roasting Pan with Nonstick Rack
Another roasting pan from Calphalon is from the classic collection and offers plenty of room for a holiday ham or turkey, a chicken, or a roast and plenty of veggies. It has a nonstick rack that holds the food away from the bottom of the pan for browning and to allow fats and liquids to collect. It comes with two double-riveted stainless steel handles that you can rely on when moving meats from oven to table or stove.The interior of this roasting pan also has a nonstick coating so you can easily clean up after cooking, although hand washing is required. It is compatible with a wide variety of stoves, including gas, electric, halogen, and glass top. Since the rack is removable, it also can be used to make dishes like lasagna that need a deep pan.
6. All-Clad E752C264 Stainless Steel Roaster with Nonstick Rack
You can take your home cooking up a notch with the All-Clad E752C264 stainless steel roasting pan and its included rack. It's made of stainless steel and has a classic design to fit the style of any kitchen. It also features an ergonomic design and durable construction to ensure it will last through years of cooking.The pan has sides of 2 ¾ inches, which will reduce splatters and ensure you have room for drippings and liquid to collect away from the meat. It offers an interior core of aluminum to keep heat distributed throughout your turkey or chicken so you can be sure it's fully cooked. Between the polished exterior, three-ply construction, and extra features, this is a high-quality roasting pan you can count on.
7. Viking Culinary 4013-5016 Stainless Steel Roasting Pan with Nonstick Rack
The additional features and clad construction of the Viking Culinary pan really set it apart from the rest. It's easy to maneuver into tight spots yet has enough space for a 25-pound turkey or an even larger roast. The interior is made from 18/10 stainless steel that won't react with food, retaining all your favorite flavors if you want to make gravy from the drippings.For those worried about the health of their families, you’ll be happy to hear that this rack has a PFOA- and PFOE-free design for safe and tasty meals. It also has a three-ply design to ensure optimal heat distribution as well as plenty of durability. Unlike some of the other pans on this list, this one is dishwasher-safe for straightforward cleanup after a meal.
8. Tramontina 80203/005DS Gourmet Prima Roasting Pan with Basting Grill
When you choose the Tramontina 80203/005DS roasting pan, you can be sure you're getting a gorgeous pan with optimal performance. Its base is impact-bonded in three layers with an aluminum center for conductivity. It also has a magnetic bottom layer for quick and even heat distribution that can be used with induction cooktops.
Each roasting pan has a mirror-polished exterior that looks great and ensures easy cleanup. It also comes with cast stainless steel handles that are riveted on to the pan to offer support and stability when transferring foods from one place to another. While it does come with a rack, it doesn't include a lid, so you'll have to buy one separately if needed.
9. KitchenAid KC1T16RP Stainless Steel Roaster with Rack
The KitchenAid KC1T16RP has a design that offers stability, even heat distribution, and the perfect conditions to make delicious meals. It has a capacity of 16 x 13 x 3 inches, so you can easily roast a turkey for Thanksgiving or make a roast for a family dinner. It has a gorgeous polished exterior finish that looks great on any table or countertop.The included rack keeps all the juices and liquids from your meat in the bottom of the pan so you can make gravies after the meat is cooked. The pan has a solid tri-ply construction that can be used in ovens at temperatures of up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. It's also made to avoid flaking, scratching, and removal of the nonstick coating.
10. Anolon 30834 Tri-Ply Clad Stainless Steel Roaster with Rack
This Anolon stainless steel roaster is durable and offers excellent performance through layers of stainless steel and aluminum. It can be used on stovetops for easy preparation and finishing of dishes and can even be used on induction cooktops. It includes comfortable stainless steel handles that will make it easy to move meals from pan to table or plate.
The dimensions of this roasting pan are 17 x 12.5 inches – enough space for a sizble turkey. The rack is also removable, so you can make different kinds of dishes like layered pasta or casseroles. It offers all the expected qualities of an Anolon product and will prove an excellent fit for most kitchens.
What to Know When Choosing the Best Roasting Pans
One of the first questions people have when it comes to roasting pans is why it's so important to have one in the first place. It's a good question, as is the question that usually follows about what size pan will be best for your needs. In this section, we’ll be sharing what you can expect from a roasting pan, how it will help with your cooking, and what features to watch for when you want to buy one.
Reasons to Use a Roasting Pan
Roasting pans are designed so that the heat inside flows around the meat, so it cooks evenly throughout. When you are roasting a large piece of meat, it's vital to have air circulating around the entire slab of meat so you don't end up with areas that are undercooked while others are overcooked.
Most of the roasting pans you’ll see on the market will have an inner frame that is built-in to offer extra convenience. Some people prefer that, while others prefer a model that has a removable frame so proper air circulation and heat distribution are assured at all times.
Traditional roasting pans have raised, high sides and can be used for cooking everything from turkeys to pot roasts and even make it easy to pour out gravy at the end of the cooking process. For those who want to cook turkeys and larger meats, it's essential to choose a large roasting pan.
What Roasting Pans Are Used For
You probably already know that you can cook a turkey or other meats in any stainless steel or ceramic pot, so you might be wondering why a roasting pan is the better option. However, these pans aren't just designed to beautifully present your turkey on Thanksgiving. The high edge on these pans is explicitly made to cook foods slowly, which makes it the ideal choice for roasting meats.
These pans have excellent heat circulation and make sure your meat is cooked evenly, which can't be said for other pots and pans. If you're someone who loves to roast meat like turkey or pork for your family and friends, a roasting pan is an essential piece of cookware for your home.
Essential Things to Look For in Your Roasting Pan
While there are many great roasting pans in the list above, you might want to know more about their features. This can also help you to choose between various roasting pans on the list if you aren't sure which is the right one for your household. Everything from size to materials and shape are all important to think about when buying a roasting pan.
Size and Capacity
Size matters! A small roasting pan may not be capable of roasting an entire turkey, and a pan that is too large might take up excess space in the kitchen for no good reason.
The ideal pan will have a capacity that is large enough for the biggest cuts of meat you plan to cook and enough extra space that the meat doesn't touch the sides. It's also essential that your roasting pan has a high level of air circulation for browning and roasting on all sides, including the bottom.
A pan that is too large can leave the bottom overly exposed, which may lead to the burning of meat juices that could otherwise be used for gravy.
Those who can buy several pans of different sizes may choose to do so for the sake of versatility. However, those who cannot buy more than one pan can use some tips for cooking smaller meats in larger pans. For example, adding chunked up herbs and vegetables to the bottom of the pan will stop juices from burning and give you a nice side dish to work with.
It's also a good idea to be aware that pan measurements sometimes include handles and sometimes do not. Making sure to check on the interior measurements will give you a better idea of what the pan will hold.
As far as size requirements go, you can go by the information below:
- Small roasters of about 14 x 10 x 3 inches work well for turkeys and other meats up to 12 pounds.
- Medium roasters of around 16 x 12 x 3 inches will accommodate turkeys of about 16 pounds in size.
- Large roasting pans of around 18 x 13 x 4 inches can handle a turkey or other meat that weighs up to 20 pounds.
You'll also want to be sure the side walls have adequate depth, as low walls can cause splashing liquid when you are using a water bath or braising a cut of meat.
When walls are too high, on the other hand, it makes it more challenging to move around larger cuts. The walls encourage heat to rise, which can cause issues where the bottom of the meat comes out undercooked.
Most people agree that a depth of around three to four inches is best for efficient roasting and great tasting meat.
The Shape of Roasting Pans
In most cases, you will find that roasting pans come in either an oval or a rectangular shape. An oval roasting pan will have sleek lines and work excellently when roasting chicken, ham, turkey, prime rib, and more. These are designed so whisking a sauce or gravy is easy with no corners to get in your way.
The main disadvantage of an oval pan is that they have less surface area, so they may not be appropriate for making multiple items, such as game hens or chickens.
You'll experience more versatility with a rectangular roasting pan, especially when cooking multiple ingredients or slabs of meat. However, there are also downfalls, such as being difficult to clean and awkward for making sauces.
If you want the best design, many would argue that a rectangular pan that has rounded corners offers the best of both worlds.
Weight of Roasting Pans
You might think that the top roasting pan is going to be the heaviest one, but that isn't always true. It also isn't necessarily true that the lightest will be your top option. What you want is a roasting pan that feels solid when you handle it but that isn't so heavy that it makes it difficult to lift when meat is inside of it.
One of the reasons that weight is essential to consider is because the pan should be able to handle the heat and the weight of your roast without twisting, popping out of shape, or warping. Also, solid construction helps with evenly distributing heat. This also assists in avoiding burning the drippings you might use in sauces, gravies and reductions.
Types of Materials Used in Roasting Pans
Roasting pans come in a wide variety of materials, from enameled carbon steel, which has been around for ages, to stainless steel, nonstick, aluminum, clad stainless steel, copper and cast iron. All have their advantages and disadvantages, so you'll want to consider these during the buying process.
When it comes to even heating and conductivity, copper is one of the top options. It can also be transported from stove to oven and visa versa without any issues. The main problems with copper are that it tends to be expensive, and it will likely not work with induction cooktops. While this material is fantastic, it's probably not worth it if you will only use your roasting pan on an occasional basis.
Multi-Ply Stainless Steel with Copper or Aluminum
Tri-ply or multi-ply cladding refers to having a core of copper or aluminum in between the stainless steel. It offers excellent performance in terms of providing even heating without creating hot spots and has the high durability of stainless steel. However, these can sometimes be expensive models if they feature full cladding, so watch out for that.
Encapsulated Bottoms of Aluminum or Copper
Rather than having a core made of aluminum or copper, some roasting pans have a bottom that includes these materials. This kind of pan will be lightweight, durable, and easy to clean like stainless steel. It will also have better heat conductivity thanks to the disk layer on the bottom.
A pan made solely of stainless steel has plenty of positives and is a favorite for many different reasons. It's lightweight, durable under high heat, easy to clean and also has a beautiful appearance. However, without the inclusion of aluminum or copper, it can make heating a bit uneven, which can lead to burning or hot spots.
Carbon Steel with an Enamel Coating
While this is an older kind of material, there are still some roasting pans made with carbon steel and an enamel coating. This offers an excellent heat conduction level and is quick and easy to clean. They are also very lightweight and tend to be relatively inexpensive compared to other materials.
The only issue is that enamel can be prone to chipping. Also, you want to be sure the steel is of a thick gauge since thin steel is prone to warping or buckling on the stove or in the oven.
Aluminum roasting pans are very lightweight and have excellent heat conductivity. However, it isn't always the best choice for roasting since acidic ingredients can leach into the pan. It also stains easily and is a soft metal that can dent or warp upon small impacts.
With anodized aluminum, you don't have to worry about leaching, but the dark color of the roasting pans can make it hard to see inside. It also may be challenging to determine how the meat is cooking on the bottom. This material is nonstick but not always to the level of a nonstick coating. It works well for those who want nonstick durable roasting pans at a low price.
Cast iron pans can be heavy and provide slightly uneven heating, so turning it in quarter rotations is recommended for optimal heat distribution. If it's seasoned properly, it will create its own nonstick coating, but it does require maintenance to stay in the best shape. If left on high, direct heat, these roasting pans can sometimes crack.
Glassware is not safe to use on the stove and should be kept away from any hot burners. It can also be pretty heavy so moving it around is challenging. On top of that, since the material is glass, it can crack, chip, and break with use.
Additional Things to Consider
There are a few other things to think about when choosing the right roasting pan. For instance, having durable handles is essential, as you'll be lifting large pieces of meat out of the oven. Large loop handles tend to be the most stable and easy to use, especially when they are riveted to the pan.
You may also want to decide whether you want saucepans that can be used on the stove. In many cases, after cooking a turkey or roast, you'll want to transfer it to the stove so you can make gravies, sauces, or reductions. Some roasting pans work fine on the stovetop, while others shouldn't be used in this way.
Another thing to consider is whether the pan comes with racks or not. Racks will hold your meat off the bottom of the pan so air can circulate properly. They also let drippings collect on the bottom so you can make side dishes to go with your meal.
However, racks also collect drippings and can increase the chance of meat sticking, so they can be bothersome to clean. If you want to use a rack, look for one with robust handles so you can easily lift it and ensure there's room under it to allow for optimal airflow.
Lastly, think about how large your oven is before you buy a roasting pan. Measuring the inside of your oven will ensure it can use the pan that you choose to get. Remember to include the length of the handles when you take this into account.