Our Place Always Pan Review: We Tried the Famous Pan to See if It Lives up to the Hype

Updated: Jun. 03, 2024

Sure, the Our Place Always Pan is pretty. But is it useful? Our Test Kitchen and editors have been using this pan for over a year. Here's what we learned.

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You know those sponsored products that pop up on your social media feeds again and again, tempting your impulse purchase self-control? They’re always stylish, with excellent branding and thousands of likes and positive comments. For me, the trending kitchen item I kept wanting to investigate is the Our Place Always Pan.

Similar to Caraway ceramic cookware, the pan is more gorgeous than any essential kitchen tool has the right to be—but I had a suspicion that the strong aesthetics prove it’s more show than substance. When I was offered the opportunity to write an Our Place Always Pan review, I jumped at the chance to see if the viral gadget could perform in the kitchen and not just on Instagram.

What is the Our Place Always Pan?

Always Pan 2.0Annamarie Higley for Taste of Home

The Our Place Always Pan claims to replace eight pieces of cookware with just one pan. It functions as a frying pan, sauté pan, steamer, skillet, saucier, saucepan and nonstick pan. Plus, it includes a spatula and built-in spoon rest. It’s 10 inches in diameter, with a 2.7-inch depth and 2.6-quart capacity.

The pan’s aluminum body is lightweight for easy maneuvering. And its cooking surface features a nonstick ceramic coating for a smooth, slick design. A mesh strainer fits neatly inside for easy steaming, and a lid keeps items warm and steam locked in. The beechwood spatula stays put, thanks to a clever knob on the pan’s handle, so you can rest the spatula mess-free when you’re not using it. Finally, two spouts on the pan make for easy pouring with minimal mess.

Upon pulling it out of the box, I was immediately in awe by the pan’s appearance. It really looks as good in real life as it does in the ads. My small kitchen is basically out of functional storage space (especially for organizing pots and pans), so I was pleased that I can proudly display this pan on my stove full-time. It actually adds to my décor! The blue shade I chose is soothing and eye-catching, and the other shades are similarly on-trend.

Always Pan 2.0

The Always Pan 2.0 is a follow-up to Our Place’s ever-successful Always Pan 1.0. It has a recycled aluminum core and ceramic nonstick coating that’s free of toxins.

The kitchen workhorse is exceptionally multi-functional thanks to its masterful design. It’s fairly deep, with a 2.6-quart capacity and 2.8-inch sides. Additionally, it has a 10.5-inch diameter and weighs about 3 pounds.

Perhaps what has made the pan so popular, though, is its appearance and accessories. Like the 1.0 before it, the Always Pan 2.0 is an Instagram dream, with a matte exterior that comes in trendy colors with enticing names like Char, Spice or Steam. (See more social media products that are worth their salt!)

Moreover, the purchase doesn’t just get you the nonstick skillet. With the pretty pan comes add-ons, including a beechwood spatula, a domed lid and a steamer basket, making the three-figure purchase feel like a steal.

The 2.0 is touted as having 10 primary capabilities (compared to the 1.0’s eight). It fries, boils, roasts, strains, sautes, sears, braises, serves, bakes and roasts. The last two functions are the most noteworthy because the 1.0 cannot go in the oven.

In addition to being oven-safe up to 450 degrees, the Always Pan 2.0 is sustainably made. The aluminum core is now comprised of 100% certified post-consumer waste. (See more sustainable kitchen items.) Furthermore, the patented Thermakind nonstick ceramic coating is intended to last 50% longer than that of the 1.0. It’s made of toxin-free materials, including alcohol, water and a sand derivative.

The beloved details of the 1.0 that remained in this second version are the heatproof handle, built-in spoon rest, easy-to-use pour spout, steam-release lid, included beechwood spatula and steamer, and gorgeous colorways. As the saying goes, why fix what’s not broken?

How We Tested the Our Place Always Pan

Our Place Always PanMegan Mowery/Taste of Home

When creating my Our Place Always pan review, I wanted to use not only my own experience as an amateur home cook, but also the expertise of Taste of Home’s own Executive Culinary Director, Sarah Farmer. She’s been using the pan for over a year and has been seriously impressed by its performance in the kitchen.

Sarah’s Always Pan Review

“The Always Pan is completely display-worthy. It’s so much more than just a pretty pan. It’s got both style and substance; it is form and function,” Sarah says. “From eggs (which still don’t stick to the pan even after more than a year of use and cleaning) to pancakes, pork chops, ground beef, grilled cheeses and more, this pan truly is always in use at my house.”

After testing, Sarah’s a devotee. “Honestly, the Always Pan is a part of my kitchen now. In fact, I’m such a fan, I gave one to my parents last Christmas,” she says. “This Christmas, I’ve got one on order for my sister!”

My Always Pan Review

In my own humble home cook opinion, I’m just as impressed as Sarah is. The Our Place pan’s surface is so nonstick that I’m often tempted to sauté without oil, and it’s incredibly easy to clean. It heats quickly and evenly, and feels sturdy yet still lightweight in my hand. The built-in spatula holder is a genius detail that leaves my kitchen counters much cleaner than usual. The pan’s handle stays room temperature, so it’s easy to maneuver without feeling the heat.

And, of course, the Always Pan looks absolutely gorgeous in my kitchen. It stays on my stovetop full-time, and I’ve consistently received compliments on it. In fact, I’m strongly considering purchasing the matching Our Place Perfect Pot and the Our Place mini cookware, too.

Always Pan 2.0 Test

Bottom of the pansANNAMARIE HIGLEY FOR TASTE OF HOME

While I was impressed with the first iteration of the viral Always Pan, I couldn’t wait to test out the 2.0 version to see how they compare. I’ve been cooking with the Always Pan 2.0 for about a year because I wanted to get a real read on its performance in all capacities. I’ve used it to make breakfast, dinner and — yes — dessert.

Stovetop Test

Always Pan 2.0Annamarie Higley for Taste of Home

I most often use the pan to make scrambled eggs—it’s almost a daily occurrence. Although there’s a nonstick coating, the directions recommend using a liquid oil, so I always turn to my trusty Kosterina olive oil to ready the surface for eggs. I heat the pan for about 90 seconds and swirl around the oil until it’s hot before pouring in the liquid.

I cook my eggs by constantly running a spatula, sometimes the provided wooden one and sometimes a rubber one, along the bottom of the pan until they’re solid. In the first couple of months, I ran into very little trouble with sticking. Of course. there were some crispy bits left behind, but I wasn’t wrestling with the eggs when trying to stir or flip them.

Lately, though, I’ve noticed the nonstick surface has weakened in some spots, so more egg bits stick than they used to. That being said, it’s still my best pan for nonstick cooking, and a great way to ensure this remains true is by continuing to employ medium-low heat when cooking with it.

Cleaning Test

Always Pan 2.0Annamarie Higley for Taste of Home

When it comes to cleaning, I wait until the pan has had time to fully cool down. In the past, the mere water pressure of my faucet was enough to lift most of the egg residue, then I simply used my go-to green and yellow dish sponge to ensure all the oil and food particles were removed. Nowadays, I have to scrub considerably harder, especially with the green scouring pad, to get it sparkling. Then, I air-dry it.

(Note: While rinsing after my very first use, I noticed there was a chip in the paint on the rim of the pan where both the lid and spatula rest. What exactly contributed to this chip, I’m unsure.)

With other recipes, such as this broccoli-sausage orecchiette, or pasta sauces and taco meat, I’ve found great success. However, because ceramic cookware such as the Always Pan 2.0 needs to be heated slowly and can’t withstand ultra-high temperatures, it’s not the best for searing. When it comes to larger cuts of steak or chicken, look to your cast iron or HexClad.

Oven Test

Always Pan 2.0Annamarie Higley for Taste of Home

My all-time favorite performance by the pan, though, was the upside-down banana cake that I made for my sister’s birthday. For this Always Pan 2.0 review, I was set on exploring the pan’s oven safety, and given the event for which I was baking, the stakes were high! The Always Pan 2.0 delivered. I’d never even baked an upside-down cake, and the pan made the process simple.

I caramelized the bananas directly in the pan and then poured the batter over top. After the cake baked at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes, I let it cool for another 10 minutes before running a knife around the edge and inverting it onto parchment.

The cake came out without much coaxing, and only three banana slices stuck to the bottom of the pan. I was easily able to reattach them to the top of the cake.

The cake was rich and moist and baked to perfection, and though I’ll give myself some credit for that, the pan certainly deserves points, too.

And despite the fact that the whole bottom of the pan had once been coated with goopy, golden-brown deliciousness, cleaning was a breeze. My basic sponge did the job.

Ceramic Cookware Test

Our Product Testing Team has ample experience testing everything from the best toasters to the best food processors, so we enlisted their help to find the best cookware of every type. We re-tested Our Place’s ceramic cookware to see how it compares to competitors’ ceramic cookware, using a sliding egg test (with and without oil), a searing test with chicken tenderloin and a crepe test to determine how evenly it cooks. In the Product Testing Team’s evaluation, the pan performed very well in its nonstick and sear tests. It placed as the pan with the best ceramic cookware accessories for its steamer, which sets it apart from the other ceramic-coated cookware.

“If you’re looking for a versatile frying pan with a lid and a large capacity, the Our Place Pan includes great features, like a steamer basket, that can multi-task for almost any type of meal,” says primary tester Sheri Kaz.

Pros

  • Impressive nonstick surface for easy cleaning
  • Heats evenly for consistent cooking
  • Clever built-in spatula holder
  • Comes with a mesh strainer and spatula
  • Works on all types of stovetops (including induction)
  • Space-saving nesting design
  • Available in 11 stylish colors—it’s pretty!

Cons

  • No temperature control on the side handle
  • More expensive than some nonstick pans on the market
  • Bottom has become discolored after one year
  • Paint chips around the rim
  • Wooden spatula needs priming with oil to stay fresh

FAQ

Always Pan 2.0 Annamarie HigleyAnnamarie Higley for Taste of Home

What is special about Our Place pans?

The fact that it replaces eight pieces of cookware means cluttered kitchen cabinets can finally be a thing of the past. The one thing it doesn’t quite replace, however, is whipping up soups and stews in our favorite Dutch ovens. For that, you’ll need the Our Place Perfect Pot! In addition, we love the toxic-free nonstick ceramic coating that helps food slide off the surface without scraping and scrubbing.

Where is Our Place cookware made?

According to the Our Place website, Our Place cookware is made in a factory in China. The location was chosen after visiting 15 different factories. It was chosen for its top-notch quality production, women-run facilities and employee benefits according to the website.

Is Caraway better than Our Place?

Both Caraway and Our Place offer excellent quality nonstick, ceramic-coated cookware in dozens of gorgeous colors. That said, Our Place’s cookware sets and individual pans ring up at a higher price point than Caraway’s cookware sets, making Caraway a bit more cost-effective. However, we found that the Always Pan’s lack of rivets made it easier to clean overall. The tradeoff is the heaviness and square handle, which makes it more difficult to hold.

What Other Reviewers Had to Say

More than 32,000 customers have chimed in with their thoughts on the Always Pan, and much like ours, their reviews are overwhelmingly positive.

Nancy W. gave the multi-purpose pan a perfect five stars and said, “I have never used a pan as smooth as this one. I am in my sixties, too, so that’s saying something! I only wish I would have bought it sooner. It also has an even cooking surface. No more overdone sections while other sections are underdone!”

Admittedly, Our Place promises a lot with this product, and customer Julie J. believes the company keeps all of them: “It’s everything they say. Beautiful, functional and lightweight. I’m waiting to save for the pot and mini pans.”

Cheryl R. shared a relatable anecdote about a kitchen whoopsie that would’ve proven much worse with a lesser pan. She wrote, “Once I got distracted and burnt cheesy tuna in it. Everything cleaned up with a quick swish with a cloth under running water. NOTHING sticks. It is the MVP tool in my kitchen.”

Product Comparison

With several internet-famous ceramic and nonstick cookware brands out there today, how does the Our Place Always Pan stack up? For starters, it’s a frying pan, sauté pan, steamer, skillet, saucier, saucepan and nonstick pan all in one. It boils pasta, sears meat, sautés veggies and so. much. more. It’s nonstick qualities rival the Green Pan‘s (both are ideal for fuss-free clean up), and the included steaming basket and lid make it the only piece of cookware you need. Plus, it’s much lighter than a cast-iron skillet.

The Final Verdict

Since cooking with my Our Place Always Pan for more than one year, and talking to Sarah about her professional experience, I still wholeheartedly recommend purchasing the Our Place Always Pan. It won over both me as an amateur home cook and Taste of Home’s Executive Culinary Director—no easy feat!

It makes a great gift for foodies, gift for cooks or an upgrade to your worn-out cookware. Though it might be pricey at $150, it’s worth the cost for its high-quality, thoughtful design and its ability to replace multiple pieces of cookware.

One Year Update

After a year of use, I still reach for the Always Pan on occasion. While I’ve found other types of cookware work better for searing, I still enjoy the accouterments that come with the pan, like the steamer basket. Aside from steaming vegetables, I’m most inclined to use the Always Pan for sautéing vegetables, making panini/toasted sandwiches and making liquid-y sauces since it’s not quite as nonstick as when I purchased it. That said, I still recommend this as a good option for folks without space for multiple pans. It works well as a one-pot option because it all nestles together neatly. 

Where to Buy the Our Place Always Pan

Spring Essentuals Countertop ImageTMB Studio

The Our Place Always Pan is currently only available for purchase online through Our Place’s website. We recommend grabbing your favorite color quickly, though, because they tend to sell out frequently. While you’re waiting for the pan to arrive, start daydreaming about all of the delicious dinners you’re going to cook!

We Tried It

Our Place Always Pan

The Always Pan 2.0 is the gold standard for versatility, doing the job of ten pieces of traditional cookware.