Solder, the outside of cans and cooking utensils, are traditionally made of tin. While tin is still a very common metal in the United States, aluminum is generally used in place of tin because it is less expensive.
The most common use of tin is in the production of solder. Solder works as somewhat of a liquid metal and is able to hold joints, plates and other pieces of metal together. It is used in welding applications and is strong enough to hold most metals together. Due to the fact that tin is more expensive than metals such as aluminum, this is the main use for tin because many other uses can be replaced with aluminum.
Contrary to popular belief, tin cans are not truly made out of tin. They are made out of steel and covered with a thin sheet of tin. This type of tin is used to cover a variety of other metals to help prevent them from rusting and to help keep them sealed and protected. While steel is always used in the tin can process, tin plays a big role and allows the steel to stay in good condition.
Cooking utensils, such as cake pans and pie dishes, are commonly made out of tin. While they are being replaced by aluminum, it is not as strong of a metal as tin and will not be able to stand up to as high temperature conditions as tin.