The T-fal A80789 Specialty Nonstick Jumbo Wok is our best wok which can be used for stir-frying, deep frying, sautéing, searing, braising and many other uses. For durability, the aluminum construction contributes to a more even heating for the food you are cooking. As a wok, it gives you healthy cooked food without much fat and oils. This wok can heat up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit even inside the oven. It also measures 14 inches in diameter so it is of a big capacity.
Our step-up pick is the Lodge Pro-Logic P14W3 Cast Iron Wok and it has been pre-seasoned because it is a cast iron wok so you can just go ahead and use it. The wok measures 14 inches across and it can be used in the oven and on any stovetop fuel type so it is a truly versatile wok. Moreover, for the design, the flat bottom can also allow you to use electric heaters to cook your food with this wok.
The budget pick is the Ecolution Hong Kong Chopstick House Wok and the nonstick material is made with Hydrolon for a greater finish and easier cleaning. In addition, the handle has been riveted for extra durability with silicone material while the nonstick material is also free from PFOA so it is totally safe for your food. In fact, you can even use this wok for induction cooking and electric stoves due to being designed with a flat base. This cooking wok is truly an authentic but modern style wok for any Chinese cuisine.
A Little Background
Before we venture into woks, let us take into consideration some facts and figures about woks.
Chinese cuisine is not complete without a wok. The Chinese have introduced the use of woks or stir-fry pans to the world. Back then, we only used regular pans for cooking, which is not really wide enough if we are considering stir-fry noodles or stir-fry rice bowls for Asian cuisine. For that, we need bigger cookware and this is where the wok came in. it is truly a one of a kind invention by the Chinese and the whole world today is using this unique cooking item to help them with stir-fry, steaming, simmering and the very like. You can range from a wide variety of dishes with this particular wok.
A wok is more than just a Chinese heritage but also great nonstick cookware that any kitchen must have. Like a nonstick pan, you can easily fry or stir-fry anything that requires oil and grease in it and the item will not stick to the wok. Simply put, a wok is just like a giant version of a nonstick frying pan, designed to cook larger batches of items, specifically for mass serving. Woks are often found in restaurants because of the bigger demands for meals and the many people that order at the same time. You will need a big bowl to cook a lot of food just once and that something is the wok, made for batch cooking.
Woks are great for stir-fry dishes, mixed rice, noodles and the like. You can easily stir-fry your favorite Japanese, Chinese, Korean or Asian noodles or rice bowl in a breeze with the use of the wok. Unlike other traditional cookware, woks are nonstick and do not leave behind a lot of sticking residue so that you can clean up the wok much easier than most cookware. This is very important if you need to keep up a schedule that is very tight and fast, especially if you are serving hundreds of customers in one day or so – woks are made for heavy duty cooking instances.
Woks are also usually put up as a demonstration tool for chefs around the world for displaying their marvelous skills of cooking. You know those Chinese restaurants where they open up the production kitchen with a glass cover and then show just how awesome the chef can cook his stir-fry meals and toss the stuff over the wok with a chopstick? That is a truly marvelous experience, and it is all thanks to the ever loving wok that the chef has been using all this time. This is why a wok not only displays durability and versatility – it also shows off the enhanced cooking skills of any chef or cook. It is a ground for both training and showmanship in the world of hotel and restaurant management.
Most restaurants keep a wok in their inventory of kitchenware and use it a lot. If you maintain an Asian restaurant then chances are you will definitely keep a wok in your kitchen. Maybe one or two or even five depending on your space and the average number of customers that come over, woks are definitely useful when they are needed and can take up a lot of heating power. In fact, some woks can be even used in a large oven at a certain limit of temperature so that you can use it for baked dishes as well and leave the frustration of transferring the content of the wok behind.
To be able to use a wok for home or business use, it should be very durable and reliable. Most woks are built from cast iron or carbon steel or even stainless steel depending on the wok that you purchase. Cast iron woks often need to be seasoned to avoid getting rust and cracking and also to give off a nice flavor to the food items that will be cooked inside the wok. A versatile and durable wok will not just be a great use in the kitchen of your restaurant but also in the comfort of your own home, where you can home-cook some great and amazing Asian dishes with little effort.
How We Picked
Woks are nearly everywhere in the Chinese culture but also in worldwide cuisine. Here are some of the most important things to consider when choosing the best wok:
Design – a wok can also be stylish and exquisite to meet the standards of your restaurant or home setting. Some woks have color coatings similar to a nonstick pan, especially the ones that have a modern design. In another case, most woks that you will see are the authentic, Chinese style woks that look very rustic but very durable when you put it up for kitchen battles. Woks are usually an expression of the flavor, taste and presentation of the food and the art and dedication of the chef who cooks the food.
Easy handling – like any kitchenware, woks can get hot under the pressure of the stove and so it must have a cool to touch handle. Handling a wok is very important because not all woks have a flat bottom, which means some of them cannot be used without a ring and cannot be used in an electric stove or induction heating. This is what you will often get if you have a traditional style wok that has a rounded bottom and you will need a gas ring to balance it and make sure that the wok will not tip over. To do that, you need and easy to access and easy to hold wok handle that has been riveted thoroughly for better durability while you work on the kitchen.
Nonstick quality – any wok should be nonstick of course, but the quality of nonstick it should have should be very convenient and mess-free. Not every wok has the same kind of nonstick power. Just like a regular nonstick pan, there can be wide variations depending on the layers of nonstick that the manufacturer has put inside the wok, especially in its cooking area. Some woks can be easily damaged but some will take a lot of beating and the nonstick coating will still be there. For best results, avoid using sharp utensils such as the ones that are made of metal, to avoid ruining the nonstick coating.
Durability – the wok should be usable for the many years to come and be very durable in its build. In the field of hotel and restaurant management, kitchenware often take a lot of beating and abuse because of the pressured deadlines given by head chefs due to the pressure of their high paying and VIP customers at hand. This is why kitchenware such as woks should be able to take up the challenge of helping the chefs cook up food really fast without compromising the quality of the food that it handles.
T-fal A80789 Specialty Nonstick Jumbo Wok
As for our best wok, we chose the T-fal A80789 Specialty Nonstick Jumbo Wok which can heat up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit even inside the oven. When it comes to the overall results of the wok’s cooked food, it gives you healthy cooked food without much fat and oils. As for maintenance, the wok is relatively very easy to clean because of the nonstick coating both inside and outside the wok. You don’t have to worry about size because of the fact that it has a very large capacity so it can fit a lot of cooked meals.
The T-fal Nonstick Jumbo Wok is also very safe to use for the dishwasher so cleaning is hassle-free. To prove this, the wok is pretty much free from PFOA so it is very safe for your food and quality of dishes. The wok has a wide variety of uses, much like any other wok, as it can be used for stir-frying, deep frying, sautéing, searing, braising and many other uses. For the exact size, the wok by T-fal measures 14 inches in diameter so it is of a big capacity.
When it comes down to durability and material quality, the aluminum construction contributes to a more even heating for the food you are cooking. And what’s more, the handle is ergonomic and stays cool even when you are cooking so you feel convenient while you are under pressure in cooking. Backed by a limited lifetime warranty, the T-fal Jumbo Wok is definitely a must-have in your kitchen, whether you are at home or managing an Asian restaurant.
Flaws but Not Dealbrakers
When it comes to cons, the T-fal A80789 Specialty Nonstick Jumbo Wok does not have a lot of faults, but there are a few drawbacks that are minor. For instance, some people claim the wok is not deep enough to be a wok so it acts like a deep pan instead, but that is just the opinion of some people – it depends on what you intend to cook or prepare for your wok.
Lodge Pro-Logic P14W3 Cast Iron Wok
For our step-up pick, we chose the Lodge Pro-Logic P14W3 Cast Iron Wok. As for the ease of use on the wok, the loop handles on either side are very large and assist in easier handling. When it comes to versatility and design, it can be used in the oven and on any stovetop fuel type so it is a truly versatile wok. This is because of the very fact that the base of the wok keeps it stable on any stovetop or cooking surface. For cleaning instruction, it is solely recommended to be hand washed only to keep it going strong for years of use.
The Lodge Cast Iron Wok it has been pre-seasoned because it is a cast iron wok so you can just go ahead and use it so it is eliminated from your hassling problems. This particular wok also measures 14 inches across, like our top pick. When it comes down to the design, the flat bottom can also allow you to use electric heaters to cook your food with this wok. In addition to its cleaning instructions, do not use soap or other harsh detergents and do not use cold water in cleaning to avoid cracking of the wok material.
Ecolution Hong Kong Chopstick House Wok
Our budget pick, for those who need to save money but want to have a wok around their kitchen, is the Ecolution Hong Kong Chopstick House Wok. Being very convenient, its handle has been riveted for extra durability with silicone material. As for the quality of its interior part, the nonstick material is made with Hydrolon for a greater finish and easier cleaning. And moreover, the nonstick material is also free from PFOA so it is totally safe for your food.
Durability is not compromised due to the fact that the carbon steel is of a heavy duty type so it will handle excessive cooking and heat well. As a matter of fact, you can even use this wok for induction cooking and electric stoves due to being designed with a flat base, so it is set above most woks that cannot be used for induction cooking.
The Ecolution House Wok measures 14 inches so it can carry a lot of cooking ingredients in it. All in all, it is an authentic but modern style wok for any Chinese cuisine which has been backed by a lifetime warranty. And moreover, do know that because it is meant for chopsticks and other wooden utensils, it is not recommended to use metal and silicone utensils for this wok or else the coating will get scratched. This is normal for just about any wok you see, however.
Best Stainless Steel Wok
Cuisinart 726-38H Chef’s-Classic Stainless Stir-Fry Pan
When it comes down to durability, the Cuisinart 726-38H Chef’s-Classic Stainless Stir-Fry Pan has been made from high quality 18/10 stainless steel so it is set above most woks when it comes to material quality. Moreover, it also has an aluminum core so it is safe for food.
As for the size, the wok measures 14 inches across. When it comes to the durability of the item, this wok can take heating temperatures in the oven up to 550 degrees F. in addition to its convenient features, the loop handles are very handy and easy to carry the wok with. To give you convenience while cooking, both the riveted handle and the loop handle stay cool to touch for a convenient cooking experience and to ensure that your food stays in place.
Cleaning is a breeze with the Cuisinart Stainless Stir-Fry Pan it can be cleaned up easily on any dishwasher. In addition to that, the rim is also made from stainless steel and the wok also has a unique glass handle so it is ideal for soups and simmering dishes. Moreover, the unique design of this wok with a loop handle and a riveted handle makes it stand above most woks out there.
You will definitely enjoy healthy cooking with small amounts of oil and fats with the Cuisinart Chef’s-Classic Pan. In addition to that, it is also not required to be seasoned unlike cast iron cooking woks. However, the only downside is that it does not work with induction stoves. The wok however, is backed by a limited lifetime warranty.
Ideal Wok for Induction Cooking
Cook-N-Home 12-Inch Stir Fry Wok Pan
The Cook-N-Home 12-Inch Stir Fry Wok Pan is quite smaller than most woks, measuring 12 inches in diameter, so it is ideal for compact cooking. When it comes to durability, it has been made from thick gauge material so it can stand up to high temperature. Moreover, it is totally safe because of the fact that it is free from lead and cadmium on its coating.
To ease the hassle of maintenance, the coating is nonstick so it is very easy to clean. Moreover, convenience is at hand because the handle is so cool to touch so you will feel convenient when cooking. Durability is also maintained because the bottom construction is built well for any stove, even induction stoves. In addition to that, two strong rivets attach the handles. The Cook-N-Home Wok Pan has a height of 3.5 inches and it is totally an ideal wok for induction cooking, if you often cook this way.
Best Stylish Wok
Rachael Ray Cucina Nonstick Stir-Fry Pan
The fabulous and luxurious looking Rachael Ray Cucina Nonstick Stir-Fry Pan has been made from hard anodized aluminum which makes it highly durable. For durability and safety, the nonstick is free from PFOA and has a brilliant color and design. It is also relatively easy to clean due to being nonstick and it can be safe for any oven up to 400 degrees F.
This brilliantly designed wok can be used on most stovetops with the exception of induction cooking. When it comes to durability, the handle is made from stainless steel which is also double riveted to enhance durability and comfort. Adding style and functionality to the wok, the glass lid has a shatter-resistant quality which makes it stand up to high temperatures.
What’s more, the stainless steel rim of the glass lid keeps it together so your wok can be used for simmering soups, stews and the like. There is little to worry about the Rachael Ray Cucina Pan because it is safe to use on the dishwasher, making it convenient to clean. This wok pan has a capacity of 12 cups and it also spans at a length of 11 inches. Like any other wok or stir-fry pan, it can be used for stir frying or steaming. This product by Rachel Ray is backed by a limited lifetime warranty.
Best Anodized Aluminum Wok
Calphalon Contemporary Hard-Anodized Aluminum Nonstick Cookware
The Calphalon Contemporary Hard-Anodized Aluminum Nonstick Cookware is generally safe to use in the dishwasher so it is relatively easy to clean and maintain. As for the material used, the hard anodized structure of this aluminum wok makes it very durable due to the heavy gauge aluminum material. And in addition to that, hassle in maintenance will not be a problem because of the very fact that the nonstick surface of the wok will stand for many dishes and many years with proper cleanup and maintenance, giving you less fat on your food.
In addition to its durability features, the nonstick coating is in three layers so the coating will be safe even when you use harsh kitchen utensils. And what’s more, the handle is made from brushed stainless steel which also stays cool when cooking. Like most woks, the pan is also safe to use in the oven. The Calphalon Aluminum Nonstick Cookware can be used on electric stoves due to the wide and flat cooking surface at the bottom. It is moreover a great stir-fry buddy for any kitchen, be it home-based or a commercial kitchen which also includes a domed cover for simmering and steaming food.
This particular wok measures 10 inches across so it is great for small to medium dishes. In fact, the wok can take up to 450 degrees F in the oven and is also ideal for omelet cooking. The nonstick coating is free from PFOA so it stands safe for your food. And what’s more, the contemporary design makes it versatile and handy for any kitchen setting. The wok is backed by a lifetime warranty.
Ideal Wok Set for Chinese Cuisine
Joyce Chen 22-9938 Pro-Chef Wok Set
If you are starting up a Chinese or Asian food cart or restaurant then you might want to have the Joyce Chen 22-9938 Pro-Chef Wok Set. This wok set contains 10 items to complete your Chinese cuisine. Let’s go down to the pieces of the set. The wok is made from carbon steel of heavy gauge, with a thickness of 2 mm and it can be used safely even with metal kitchen utensils. Moreover, the nonstick surface is of premium quality. When it comes down to size, the wok measures 14 inches in its diameter and it is ideal for all kinds of Asian dishes and the like.
The set also comes with bamboo cooking chopsticks and a bamboo spatula as well and it also includes a lid for the wok. Moreover, the wok also has handles made from maple wood while the included the bamboo tongs included measures 12 inches. To add to its authenticity, there are also 6 pairs of table chopsticks made of bamboo as well. The set also comes with a tempura rack for all of your tempura dishes and it includes a bamboo rice paddle as well. Moreover, a steaming rack is also included in the set. Likewise, a recipe and instruction booklet comes with the set for all of your cooking knowledge needs. This whole woke set is backed by a warranty of 25 years.
Best Cantonese Style Wok
Town Food Service Cantonese Style Wok
With the rugged style of the Town Food Service Cantonese Style Wok, the handles have been riveted for extra durability and strength. Durability is unmatched because the steel material has been cold forged for an authentic look and a strong build.
A unique Cantonese style wok for all of your Chinese and Asian cuisine needs, the Town Cantonese Style Wok measures extra wide at 16 inches so it is great for big dishes and big restaurants. Like a traditional wok, however, it needs a ring due to its unique style and design.
Ideal Wok with Teflon Coating
TeChef Art 12″ Stir-Fry Wok Pan
When it comes to Teflon, you can never go wrong with the TeChef Art 12″ Stir-Fry Wok Pan. Its nonstick coating does not contain PFOA for safety and is made from certified Teflon nonstick coating. This wok measures 12 inches across and it also does not contain lead or cadmium so it is safe to use.
Likewise, the wok has been coated five times so it is extra durable even for the toughest silverware. The forging technology makes use of a thin wall and a heavy gauge aluminum material for its base. The design and shade of the wok’s exterior is also stylish. It also eliminates excess fatty cooking and it also has two additional nonstick coating layers for better durability and food safety.
The TeChef Art Wok Pan comes with an oil spilling guide at the center so you can know how much oil is recommended for cooking. The coating comprises of the top coating, PAD, another top coating, a mild coating and a primer coating. The wok weighs only two pounds and is backed by a limited lifetime warranty.
It is tough choosing from a variety of competition when it comes to choosing the best wok. This is because there are many imitations out there that claim to have nonstick qualities but are not very sturdy enough to be used for high temperatures. We only included those with superior quality and generally positive feedback.
Other Frequently Asked Questions
If you have something to ask about woks in general, you may check out these frequently asked questions to help you out.
Q: What are some of the benefits of using woks in cooking?
A: According to Eat Well 101 , woks are very healthy to cook with due to their nonstick coating. Woks also often require you to only use wooden utensils so your food stays safe and authentic. They either come in cast iron or carbon steel. Woks are ideal for stir-fry foods such as rice, noodles and the like. Some woks can also be used for steaming dumplings or simmering soups and the like.
Q: What are some of the tips and techniques you can do in cooking with a wok?
A: According to Fine Cooking , steaming in a wok takes a few tips to work, such as using the right utensils such as tongs . A newly-seasoned cast iron wok may need to be re-seasoned when used for steaming. You can also perform smoking in a wok. However, do not smoke it for too long to avoid getting a bitter taste of your food.
Deep-frying is also an ideal way to cook with a wok but do not use too much oil for the deep-fry dish. You can also use wooden chopsticks for cooking. Last but not the least you can easily stir-fry in a wok. However, do not put a lot of ingredients in the wok so that the temperature will stay still. If you must, use a metal wok spatula instead of a wooden one for mixing.
Wrapping It Up
Generally, the T-fal A80789 Specialty Nonstick Jumbo Wok is our best wok whether you are a chef at a local Chinese or Asian restaurant or would like to prepare a bunch of Asian dishes at home.
Jen Miller is a former electrical engineer and product specialist with more than 20 years of product design and testing experience. She has designed more than 200 products for Fortune 500 companies, in fields ranging from home appliances to sports gear and outdoor equipment. She founded Jen Reviews to share her knowledge and critical eye for what makes consumers tick, and adopts a strict no-BS approach to help the reader filter through the maze of products and marketing hype out there. She writes regularly and has been featured on Forbes, Fast Company, The Muse, The Huffington Post, Tiny Buddha and MindBodyGreen.