For decades people have been using kitchen cookware which has been standard steel or even aluminum. However, scientists have invented a new product by combining traditional steel with a coating of aluminum incorporating the best of two metals in one single product. You get the strength of steel with the excellent heat conduction of aluminum. In this article, we will cover all the aspects of aluminized steel in greater detail, along with how it is used and how much it is used, and if it’s considered safe to use for cooking utensils or not.
What Is Aluminized Steel?
Aluminized steel is not a naturally occurring product. Instead, it is obtained by mixing steel with aluminum. The process includes clean steel being dipped into a container of molten aluminum, which is mixed with silicone. This dipping is done thrice, and then it’s left to dry in the air. This results in an iron core with three protective layers of aluminum on it.
The outer layer of aluminum is then oxidized to prevent the inner three layers from corrosion.
This type of steel is used for kitchenware and cooking utensils. Moreover, it is also used in furnaces, oven grills, etc.
There is a second type of aluminized steel available which has a different coating than the usual. This type of steel uses pure aluminum, unlike the previous one, mixed with silicone. This type of aluminized steel protects roofings, grain bins, housings of air-conditioners, etc. It has an advantage over others as this remains as strong as steel but with extra protection from corrosion and rust.
Is It Safe To Use Aluminized Steel?
Is it safe for cookware? There is a lot of debate about how secure it is to be used as cookware. This issue arises due to aluminum, as it is not considered safe. People are skeptical about its uses in kitchenware and cookware. In addition, there is a misconception that it can cause many sorts of health problems.
As this metal can be harmful to the human if it gets into the body, as research suggests the same, there is still some debate on how much it is deemed unhealthy.
Due to the properties of this material, the aluminized steel can resist high temperatures. It makes it one of the best choices for cookware and other housing products that are or subjected to high levels of heat. However, there is still one big issue with aluminized steel, i.e., what will happen if the oxidized protective layers deteriorate?
If the top layer of the aluminized steel is scratched or deteriorated, this can cause the inner layer of the steel to get bared to factors that can further lead to its rusting. This will, in turn, can contaminate the food or can cause damage to the protective layer as well.
Is Baking With Aluminized Steel Safe?
One of the discussions that are reiterated is whether aluminized steel bakeware is safe or not? However, there should be no issues with using this type of bakeware if certain things are not taken care of.
Another issue is whether aluminized steel cook/bakeware is safe for usage in the long term? There seems to have been common thought on this, that there should be no issues whatsoever with aluminized steel used as bakeware, but only if they are used in specific ways.
For instance, if you are using harsh cleaning agents on an aluminized steel utensil or other metals for cooking that can scratch the surface or damage the protective layer, it can cause serious issues to your health. Therefore, these should be avoided.
As a result of a broken or damaged layer, the small pieces of aluminum can seep into food, thus contaminating it and causing serious health issues.
Is It Safe To Use Aluminium Cookie Sheets?
Aluminum sheets are safe to cook with, but it is also essential that some safety measures should be taken to ensure that they remain the same throughout.
The first thing to note is, “never use any metal utensils on the cookie sheet,” as this can cause damage to the sheet. However, you can’t see the damage from naked eyes, but these minor scratches can cause the removal of the protection layer.
Also, please note that cookie sheets are not meant for cooking anything acidic. The acid can deteriorate the protective layer and can cause some severe health issues.
Furthermore, cleaning aluminized cookware in dishwasher machines is a “bad idea.” This is because the chemicals in the dishwasher can damage and remove the protective layer of the cookware.
It’s better to stop using the damaged cookware as it can lead to rusting the steel core. In addition, you may find a small amount of aluminum that can contaminate food, which is not suitable for cooking again.
Nevertheless, there is no problem in using aluminized steel cookware/bakeware, but they require care while using and cleaning them. Apart from this, it is suitable for many other uses which are not related to food.
Stainless Steel Vs. Aluminized Steel: What’s The Difference?
Are Aluminized steel and stainless steel different from each other? However, both can be used in the kitchen; most commercial premises use stainless steel for their surfaces and other parts.
Aluminized steel is less expensive than stainless steel due to its lower manufacturing costs. On the other hand, Stainless steel is used more in cooking because it lasts longer despite its higher price.
Stainless steel comes out on top as it has excellent anti-corrosion and anti-rust properties due to its composition. In addition, Aluminized steel is protected by an oxidized coating on the outside, easily damaged if not taken care of.
In this regard, aluminized steel has the edge over stainless steel, as it can spread and handle the heat effectively because it is considered the best metal for exhausts in vehicles.
Aluminized steel doesn’t have the same visual appeal as stainless steel cookware. It is preferred more as a better option in kitchenware. Basically, two types of aluminized steel are available: one is coated in silicone and used for cooking purposes. Another one is pure aluminum, used in the case where heat and corrosion resistance is required.
The austenitic grade is the highest quality stainless steel, making it ideal for use in kitchens. This is because it has the most substantial anti-corrosion properties and can be molded into tables and kitchen guards.
Surprising as it may seem, steel products coated with copper are also fairly common as they enable faster heat conduction and even heat distribution. This is better and faster than what traditional steel can provide. Food is sensitive to heat and it sits almost directly in contact with heat. So the cookware and its design have to be made to suit the recipe. Steel cookware used in baking can give a crispy and caramelized finish to the food as it retains heat for longer. Aluminum on the other hand conducts heat better than steel and so it will heat up and cool down faster.
This is why in baking Aluminum is used if you need browning. While there are several ways of manufacturing the Aluminized Steel cookware, always choose the one manufactured using a hard-anodized process. Hard-anodized is tougher, non-reactive to food, resistant to scratches, and will not leach metal into the cooking especially when cooking acidic based foods. Aluminum being very cheap makes the cookware extremely affordable without compromising on the quality. I hope the information has been useful. Happy cooking.