The best woks you can buy
- The best woks are nonstick, provide even and consistent heat distribution, are easy to clean, and are built to last a lifetime.
- This description fits the Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Wok to a T, plus, it's oven-safe and made in the USA.
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A stir fry is a healthy meal alternative that even the pickiest of vegetable eaters can warm up to. This simple and tasty dish is best made in a wok because of the cookware's quick frying abilities and the fabulous flavors it produces.
But, stir-fries are not all that woks are good for. Used in China for roughly two millennia, these cooking utensils - originally made of clay - date back to the Han Dynasty, and are ideal for a broad array of cuisines that requires high heat searing. Today's woks are versatile enough to replace your standard frying pans as you cook fried potatoes, eggs, burgers, steamed vegetables, and even popcorn. And, if you are interested in using your wok for deep frying or smoking, there are woks that come with lids.
Woks are made from a wide range of materials and each has strengths and weaknesses. Though originally cast Carbon steel is traditionally a favorite material for woks because it reacts quickly to heat adjustments and has a natural nonstick finish.
Cast iron woks also have a nonstick finish thanks to their cooking oil seasoning. But cast iron is a heavy material, and it does not cool quickly, so it can be quite a workout when it comes to stir-frying. Some users may find the cleaning, drying, and oil seasoning process tedious.
Stainless steel woks have grown in popularity in recent years because of the buyer demand for nonstick (without a need for seasoning), dishwasher-safe alternatives. Stainless steel is also durable and not prone to rust. Aluminum is also used to make woks because of how lightweight and heat conductive it is, but it dents and wears out more quickly. Many models use stainless steel with an aluminum core to take advantage of the positives of both of these materials.
We thoroughly researched the expert and consumer experiences with dozens of wok styles and models before picking the best woks. In order for a wok to be included in our guide, it needed a strong history of durability, even heat transfer, and ease of use and maintenance.
Here are the best woks you can buy:
- Best overall: Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Wok
- Best stainless steel wok: Cooks Standard 13-Inch Multi-Ply Clad Stainless Steel Wok
- Best affordable wok: T-Fal Specialty Nonstick Jumbo Wok
- Best Teflon wok: TeChef - Art Pan Wok
- Best small wok: Calphalon Hard-Anodized Aluminum Nonstick Flat-Bottom Wok
- Best high-end wok: All-Clad Stainless 14-inch Open Stir Fry Pan
- Best traditional-style wok: Helen Chen's Flat Bottom Woks
Updated on 10/24/19 by Connie Chen: Updated prices and links.
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