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3 Bird Safe No Stick Cookware Alternatives
19086163 - happy daughter teenager with her mother peel and cut vegetables together in kitchen at home

3 Bird Safe No Stick Cookware Alternatives

Hi Mitch

I am long overdue getting appropriate bird safe cookware to use around my African Grey.

I’ve wanted the Calphalon set for years. Do you know anything about it being safe. I get a little confused. I know “Teflon” is not good, but just what is meant by non-stick?

Is all “non’stick” unsafe around birds?

Thank you for your time. KATHY

Hi Kathy

Calphalon nonstick surfaces do use a PTFE (non stick) coating.

Calphalon is Teflon free but that’s because they don’t use the Teflon brand for their coating so it’s really semantics.

Both are similar in that they use PTFE in their non-stick surfaces which is harmful to animals and humans alike to various degrees.

The fumes of an over heated PTFE pan can kill a bird in minutes 3 rooms away

That leaves 3 ways to achieve a kitchen full of bird safe cookware, the first being “ceramic” coated cookware.

From: Ceramic Coated Cookware Safety Secrets That No One Will Tell You! (by the Cookware Advisor)

Manufacturers and marketers of ceramic coated cookware claim they are ultra safe, with no chemicals or heavy metals and are very durable….. BUT ARE THEY?

 

 

We set out to find out.

Consider this your ultimate guide to the safety, ease of use and durability of non-stick ceramic coated cookware.

What is Ceramic coated cookware?

Ceramic technically means ‘clay that has been fire hardened’.  

So when we talk of ceramic coated cookware, we are talking about some sort of metal (usually hard anodized aluminum) that has been coated with a layer of ceramic.

Ceramic non-stick coatings are typically made from inorganic minerals, primarily silicon and oxygen.

Inorganic means not containing any carbon.

So does that mean it Is it PTFE and/or PFOA free?

Yes, none of these chemicals are used in the manufacture of Ceramic coated cookware. Read more

The article is quite long so here’s the skinny​:

Ceramic cookware is bird safe.

We have some ourselves.

The problem is it’s “useful life” Ceramic cookware pans last about 15% as long as Teflon cookware.

In other words for every 6 years you have a Teflon pan, your ceramic coated pan lasts 1 year.

 

Checkout Scanpan ceramic cookware

 

Leaving your second choice, the path we took – (retro) stainless (below).

A bit of a learning curve is required when cooking but stainless is bird safe (as long as your bird is not in the kitchen when you are cooking) and lasts forever.

The big issue with stainless steel is food can stick.

This is usually due to overheating the pans, learning to cook at lower temperatures makes all the difference.

You can season a stainless pan to make it non stick by seasoning it properly as seen in the video below.

 

How To Cook On & Season A Stainless Steel Pan To Create A Non Stick Surface

They also can be seasoned for cooking eggs, etc. Read up on the care of stainless steel cookware online and learn to enjoy cooking again. Ideally you want 18/0 Stainless.

We’ve seen new stainless cookware sets from $300 – $800 on the web

set of bird safe retro stainless cookware

 

Bird Teflon dangers you didn’t know & other household perils

 

Don’t rule out number 3 – cast iron.

A well seasoned cast iron pan is a no stick pan that is bird safe.

Food can get low levels of of inorganic iron if the pan is not well seasoned but that has nothing to do with issue of “fumes” that are toxic to birds.

Cast iron pans emit no toxic fumes

Cast iron pans will last a millennium.

They require your due diligence but cook quite nicely when dealt with properly as explained in the video below.

How To Cook With Cast Iron

 

written by mitch rezman
approved by catherine tobsing

your zygodactyl footnote

Argue With A Cockatoo

 

Mitch Rezman

He's handled a 1000 birds of numerous species when they visited monthly birdie brunches in the old Portage Park (Chicago, IL) facility. The one with the parrot playground. Mitch has written and published more than 1100 articles on captive bird care. He's met with the majority of  CEO's and business owners for most brands in the pet bird space and does so on a regular basis. He also constantly interacts with avian veterinarians and influencers globally.

This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. Thank you so much for this helpful article. Do you have any thoughts on copper, such as Copper Chef non-stick or any other copper lined pans???

      1. Thank you so much…. came here tonight specifically looking for the answer. I just bought 3 thinking they were safe…but all would have gone back had I not found out definitively….thank you both again!(&YAY!)

  2. Hello. Because I have a sweet little parrot, I won’t let my husband cook with nonstick pans. He just bought two All-Clad’s new HA1 nonstick pans, which state that they are environmentally safe and free from toxins. He’s convinced this will be safe. I’m dubious and can’t find any posts about this. Any info you can share? Thank you! — Andrea

    1. Hi Andrea

      I called All Clad

      Good news bad news. All-Clad’s new HA1 nonstick pans are POFA free but incorporate PTFE (Polytetrafluoroethylene) which is generic for “Teflon”

      That said, they can be used at low temps with the bird not in the room – you’ve been warned

      mitchr

      1. Thank you for this info. Doesn’t sound like it’s worth the risk. Appreciate your quick response!

        1. Believe me-and Mitch-ditch them. You just never know when you’re going to get distracted and burn something. I’ve done it a couple times in 14 years with my macaw but I have stainless steel cookware. I came back to a smokey kitchen which otherwise would have been a death sentence for her.

  3. Hello. Because I have a sweet little parrot, I won’t let my husband cook with nonstick pans. He just bought two All-Clad’s new HA1 nonstick pans, which state that they are environmentally safe and free from toxins. He’s convinced this will be safe. I’m dubious and can’t find any posts about this. Any info you can share? Thank you! — Andrea

    1. Hi Andrea

      I called All Clad

      Good news bad news. All-Clad’s new HA1 nonstick pans are POFA free but incorporate PTFE (Polytetrafluoroethylene) which is generic for “Teflon”

      That said, they can be used at low temps with the bird not in the room – you’ve been warned

      mitchr

      1. Thank you for this info. Doesn’t sound like it’s worth the risk. Appreciate your quick response!

  4. Please advise me. I have a 12-year-old dove I’ve had since he was 4 weeks old. I just purchased an electric fry pan that says that the interior is “die cast.” Is this safe for my dove?

  5. Good topic, thank you for the article and the discussuion! I agree about the thrift stores, I see Revere Ware stainless steel and Farberware pans frequently and they’re so good. I have one Calphalon pan and always wondered about it. Mitch, if you can revive or write anew about interior paints soon that would be great too! Contractors are always telling me we can use any of the new low-odor types but I can’t pull the trigger. I recently read about Romabio paint, and that sounds like the only true non-toxic type to me. Cheers.

  6. Hi, thanks for the info. Is Xylan safe? I’m looking for a safe Panini gril.

  7. Hello, which brands of pans can you recommend? Any links?

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