When it comes to deciding what cookware to get for shallow-frying purposes, it is easy to get torn between a skillet and a sauté pan. This is because most buyers find it hard to tell a skillet apart from a sauté pan. However, knowing the differences that exist between the two will enable you to make a more informed decision.
The main difference between a sauté pan and a skillet is their shape. For instance, while skillet spots flared sides, a sauté pan features a flat bottom and straight sides. Given these characteristics, it is easy to see that a sauté pan will have more surface area for cooking. So instead of ten, you end up getting an 8-inch cooking surface area from a 10-inch skillet because of the flared sides. On the other hand, a 10-inch sauté pan offers a 10-inch surface area.
The large surface area makes a sauté pan perfect for cooking tasks that involve cooking more items in one go. Another difference between a skillet and a sauté pan is the purpose for which they are designed. A sauté pan is perfect for sautéing, while the skillet’s slanted sides make it ideal for stir-frying.
This is not to say that you cannot use a skillet for sautéing food or the sauté pan for stir-frying. Both gadgets are adept at nearly all pan-related cooking tasks. For instance, you can use a skillet for sautéing if you are looking to prepare small- to medium-sized pieces of food. Its size makes it perfect for tossing. It is also worth bearing in mind that the sauté pan is a bit heavier than the skillet.
If you are trying to decide which pan to get between a skillet and a sauté pan, you might want to consider the 11-inch ceramic sauté pan or the ceramic fry pan by Vie Belles.