When purchasing surgical stainless-steel cookware, buyers should look into the grade of the steel, cladding and the ply number. Other things to consider are good heft and balance and manufacturer's warranty.
The numbers 18/10 stamped at the bottom of quality stainless-steel cookware indicates that the material includes 18 percent chromium and 10 percent nickel, which improves durability and resistance to rust. The more pricey surgical grade kind also includes molybdenum or titanium for added protection against corrosion. Adding layers of other materials or cladding improves the performance of stainless-steel cookware. Aluminum and copper improve heat distribution but can leach into food, so these are used only on exteriors or inner cores. Multiple layers improve performance further, as it combines the strength of the different metals used in three-ply and five-ply stainless-steel cookware.