The Ultimate Guide to Choosing and Using the Best Pots for Deep Frying

The best pots for frying – and how to use them

Cast Iron Pots

Cast iron cookware is highly regarded for its ability to distribute heat evenly and retain heat for long periods of time. When it comes to frying, maintaining a consistent temperature throughout the cooking process is critical to achieving perfect fried results. Cast iron cookware excels in this regard.

Lodge 6 Classic Red Enamel Dutch Oven

This is by far my favorite pot for frying, and if you try it, you’ll quickly see why. Coating a cast iron pot with porcelain enamel makes it nonporous, so you don’t have to temper or season it. You still get all the benefits of a heavy-duty pot with great heat transfer and retention, and as an added bonus, it’s incredibly easy to clean.
Key features:

  • This Dutch oven is incredibly versatile, great for use on most stovetops or in the oven.
  • The lid locks in moisture and keeps your oil from splattering all over your kitchen and your delicate arms.

Lodge 5 quart pre-seasoned pot with lid and dual loop handle

Cast iron is one of the few things in the world that gets better the more you use it. Frying is just the tip of the iceberg with this kitchen essential. You can also roast, bake, simmer and sauté. It’s the kitchen equivalent of a one-man band.
Key features:

  • One of the biggest drawbacks to cast iron is that it needs to be seasoned before you can use it – this one is pre-seasoned and ready to go!
  • This pot can even be used on your grill or campfire.

Metal Pots

Metal pots are another excellent option for frying. They are known for their durability, even heat distribution and easy maintenance. Stainless steel pans in particular are a popular choice for frying due to their corrosion resistance and ability to keep oil fresh for longer periods of time.

Cook N Home Stainless Steel Casserole with Lid

Stainless steel isn’t as good at retaining heat as cast iron, but it’s still great for frying. This stainless steel saucepot comes with a lid, which is convenient for trapping heat and minimizing oil splatter.
Key features:

  • The aluminum core at the bottom improves heat distribution.
  • The tempered glass lid makes it easy to monitor the cooking process.


Woks are traditional Asian cooking vessels widely used for stir-frying. However, their unique shape and design also make them ideal for deep frying. Woks typically have sloped sides that reduce splattering and allow for efficient use of oil. In addition, their high heat conductivity ensures fast and even cooking.

Craft Wok Traditional hand-hammered carbon steel pow wok

This round-bottomed wok is perfect for gas stoves. Its hand-hammered construction and professional quality make it highly durable and efficient for frying. The wooden handle provides a secure grip for frying and tossing.

Helen Chen’s Asian Kitchen Flat Bottom Wok, Carbon Steel with Lid

For those who use ceramic or electric stoves, this flat-bottom wok is an excellent choice. Its flat bottom allows for stability on these types of stoves, and the bamboo handle and handle aid provide heat resistance and ease of use. The included lid helps keep the oil hot and prevents splattering.

Additional tools for frying success

In addition to choosing the right pan, there are a few essential tools that can enhance your frying experience. A high-heat fryer or candy thermometer is essential for accurately monitoring oil temperature. Look for a thermometer that is specifically designed for frying, as it can withstand the high temperatures involved.
A stainless steel skimmer basket or spider is another valuable frying tool. It allows you to safely remove food from the hot oil, preventing overcooking and ensuring even frying. Look for a skimmer basket with a long handle for ease of use and safety.

Bottom Line

Choosing the right skillet for frying is essential for optimal results. Cast iron pots, metal pots and woks are all excellent options, each with its own advantages. Cast iron pans excel in heat distribution and retention, while metal pans, especially stainless steel, offer durability and easy maintenance. Woks offer efficient use of oil and fast, even cooking.
When frying, it is important to consider factors such as pot depth, heat retention and ease of oil transfer. By choosing the right pot and using the right tools, you can enjoy perfectly fried foods with a delicious crispy texture and rich flavor.
Remember to always use caution and follow safety guidelines when working with hot oil. With the right pan and tools, you can master the art of frying and create delicious fried foods in the comfort of your own kitchen.


What are the advantages of using cast iron pans for frying?

Cast iron cookware excels in heat distribution and retention, ensuring consistent frying temperatures and perfect frying results. They are also known for their durability and ability to withstand high heat.

Why are metal pans, especially stainless steel, a popular choice for frying?

Metal cookware, especially stainless steel, offers durability, even heat distribution and easy maintenance. Stainless steel resists corrosion and helps keep oil fresh for longer.

Are woks suitable for frying?

Yes, woks are great for frying. Their unique shape and design, with sloped sides, reduces splattering and allows for efficient use of oil. Woks also have high heat conductivity, which ensures fast and even cooking.

What additional tools are essential for successful frying?

Two essential tools for frying are a high-heat fryer or candy thermometer for accurate temperature monitoring, and a stainless steel skimmer basket or spider for safely removing food from the hot oil.

Can I use cast iron cookware on any type of stove?

Yes, cast iron cookware can be used on a variety of stoves, including gas, electric, ceramic, and even grills and campfires. However, it is important to check the manufacturer’s recommendations for specific usage instructions.

How do I clean and maintain my skillet?

To clean a fry pan, allow the oil to cool completely, then remove and dispose of it properly. Use mild dish soap and warm water to clean the pot, and avoid using abrasive cleaners or metal utensils that could damage the surface. Dry the pot thoroughly before storing to prevent rusting.