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Affordable luxury meets kitchen essentials
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Misen Pan Review: Testing Misen's Nonstick and Carbon Steel Pans

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Misen's mission is to deliver better tools for better cooking.
The brand offers knives, cookware, and prep tools. We tested two of Misen's super popular nonstick pans.
By selling directly to customers online, Misen can offer incredible kitchen tools at honest prices.

Misen's mission is to deliver better tools for better cooking. The brand offers knives, cookware, and prep tools. We tested two of Misen's super popular nonstick pans.By selling directly to customers online, Misen can offer incredible kitchen tools at honest prices.

Its name, pronounced “Mee-Zen”, is an ode to the French phrase “mise en place,” which means “to put in place.”

And if you’ve ever seen a chef meticulously set up their workstation before getting started, you know that preparation is an important part of the cooking process. Misen believes that the right tools make any job easier and it wants to help home cooks feel prepared with quality tools to help you cook better.

The company was founded when Omar Rada lost his only quality pan over a decade ago. When trying to replace the missing pan, he ran into a common problem — he had to choose between cheap, low-quality kitchen tools and overpriced “premium” brands.

Rada didn’t want to sacrifice quality to stay on budget, so he built a company with the foundations of quality materials, thoughtful design, and importantly, honest prices.

What I Love About Misen

Okay, so before we get into the Misen pan review, I first want to take a moment to appreciate Misen's company culture — it's contagious, alluring, and makes me want to support them. After all, they have 18 office dogs (!!). What’s not to love about that?

Some of Misen's four-legged team members.

Today more and more people are making decisions based not just on product quality but company culture and values. We really want to support brands that have positive work environments, value mental health, and strive to connect with customers on a deeper level than simply what they sell and how much it costs. And though I’ve never spent time in the Misen office, hearing about its culture and love for four-legged friends makes me feel a connection to the brand.

But Misen's appeal isn't all about company culture. Its products are incredibly high-quality and designed for people who enjoy home cooking and care about making quality meals but aren’t looking to spend thousands of dollars on kitchenware along the way. Misen launched with a single Chef’s Knife and now has a full range of amazing knives, cookware, and prep tools that bring chef-like quality to home cooking.

Misen's appeal isn't all about company culture. Its products are incredibly high-quality and designed for people who enjoy home cooking and care about making quality meals but aren’t looking to spend thousands of dollars on kitchenware along the way.

What's more, its products look great as well as being functional — most wouldn't look out of place in a restaurant kitchen or a super stylish home kitchen.

The longevity of the pieces is also apparent after just a few uses. Misen's pans aren’t going to knick, break, or lose their coating after just a few uses. And both the Nonstick and Carbon Steel pans will have a place in my kitchen for years to come, based on size, performance, materials, and usability.

Pros

  • High-quality and longevity of products
  • Affordable price
  • Relatable company culture and brand values
  • Extensive testing and user-friendly features

Cons

  • The Carbon Steel Pan is still quite heavy
  • The seasoning process for the Carbon Steel Pan is fairly involved
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Test Drive: The 10” Nonstick Pan

Perfect for sautéing, the 10’’ Nonstick Pan has been my go-to every morning for cooking breakfast since the minute I unboxed it, and stays out through lunch and dinner as well, due to its versatility, usability, and straightforward high-quality design.

"The 10’’ Nonstick Pan has been my go-to every morning for cooking breakfast since the minute I unboxed it."

Over the years I've found that some nonstick skillets are just a bit too small and have sides that are too low or high causing spills, but not this one. It’s clear that Misen’s most highly-rated pan has 3,700 reviews for a reason. Available at a reasonable price of just $55, this pan competes with pans triple the price with the same quality and durability.

Misen says that most pans will lose over 50% of their nonstick coating within the first year, and after rigorous testing the Misen Nonstick Pan performed better than pans that cost a lot more (for comparison similar All-Clad pans cost upwards of $130 on Amazon).

Misen 10” Nonstick Pan key features:

  • 4.2MM thick aluminum base provides even and reliable heat distribution
  • Stainless steel handle that's comfortable to hold with a stay-cool silicone grip with a textured underside for comfort and control
  • PFOA-Free, 3-layer Dupont Platinum Coating for superior and long-lasting release
  • Misen Cookware is compatible with all induction cooktops, gas & electric stoves
  • Dishwasher safe and easy to clean up

Something I'm excited to share in my Misen nonstick pan review is that its claim of being a nonstick pan really holds true in a way that other pans I've used don't. This is due to the Misen Nonstick System, which the company says combines the highest quality (and safest) nonstick surface with a unique plasma primer that helps the nonstick perform better.

"Its claim of being a nonstick pan really holds true in a way that other pans I've used don't."

With the Misen Nonstick Pan, I don’t have to get the cooking spray out of the cabinet nearly as often as with other pans I've used, and most foods cooked easily without sticking to the bottom or sides, including eggs, which was a pleasant surprise.

This piece was developed for a full 18-months and tested on more than 5,000 eggs to ensure quality (so no wonder my eggs cooked perfectly without sticking). The pan has PFOA-free coating, which means it should last a bit longer than a normal ceramic pan. The lack of chemicals in the pan's coating also makes me feel good about the food I'm cooking and feeding to my children.

Finally, the handle — a true highlight of my Misen experience! This is the first time I've experienced an ergonomic handle on a piece of cookware, and its removable silicone grip virtually eliminates ever needing an oven mitt for the handle.

Misen's Nonstick Pan is an essential pan for every home cook and it comes in a variety of sizes: 8 inch Skillet, 10” Skillet, and 12” Skillet. The pan is also oven safe to a high heat (up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit) and induction compatible.

Misen Nonstick Pan
The essential pan for every home, featuring a long-lasting nonstick surface.
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Test Drive: The 10” Carbon Steel Pan

The Carbon Steel Pan, which comes in multiple size options, claims to be easier to use than cast iron, and develops a nonstick surface through a seasoning process.

Carbon steel cookware is a favorite in professional kitchens, and now home cooks are also learning the benefits of working with this type of pan. Carbon steel combines the best qualities of stainless steel cookware, cast iron, and nonstick. It's also a versatile piece of cookware that will sear, saute, bake, and deep fry, at any cooking temperature.

Carbon steel combines the best qualities of stainless steel cookware, cast iron, and nonstick. It's also a versatile piece of cookware that will sear, saute, bake, and deep fry, at any cooking temperature.

Misen 10" Carbon Steel Pan key features:

  • A “seasoned” carbon steel pan retains microscopic layers of polymerized oil which creates a naturally nonstick patina — without extra chemicals
  • Its carbon steel body has the ideal 99:1 iron to carbon ratio — the right proportion for greater strength and lighter weight than cast iron
  • Use it with gas, electric, or induction stovetops, or in the oven.
  • 42% lighter than a cast iron pan
  • Dishwasher safe

The Misen Carbon Steel Pan also comes with a lifetime guarantee, so if anything ever happens to your pan, Misen will replace it for the rest of your life.

One thing to note from my experience is that while the pan is 42% lighter than a cast iron pan, it is still extremely heavy, and not necessarily going to be your go-to option for making a quick scrambled egg, like its nonstick counterpart above. Building the seasoning coating also takes some time, though eventually, it will have the same barrier to prevent food from sticking as your dad’s oldest cast-iron skillet.

Misen says that carbon steel is "a secret favorite in professional kitchens," and this is due to the flexibility of the material. To unlock the pan's potential, you first need to season the pan — when seasoning, the layers of fat and oil, along with heat, create what’s called a “patina,” which develops over time and even changes the color and appearance of the pan (a bit darker the longer you have it).

Misen says that carbon steel is "a secret favorite in professional kitchens," and this is due to the flexibility of the material.

First, you take off the coating by washing the pan, ridding it of shipping wax covering, and then you season the pan on a baking sheet after applying oil or seasoning wax. Creating this thin coating is a bit of an art form--you don’t want areas with too much wax or oil. You leave the pan in the oven on 400 degrees for 40 minutes, and then leave to rest for 20 minutes. While you can cook on it right away, repeating the process again periodically can help. Over time, you will need less and less oil or fat when you are cooking, as the pan becomes nonstick through the patina. If you find your pan is too sticky, it can help to start over by washing the pan and trying again. (Misen doesn’t recommend olive oil or butter for the seasoning process, but rather soybean, corn, vegetable, or similar oils.)

But once the seasoning is complete, you can see why Misen says carbon steel is a professional chefs secret weapon. As one reviewer simply wrote: "Where have these pans been my whole life?" Learning to love a steel pan is a bit like a long-term relationship--it needs some serious attention in the beginning, but over time becomes your old favorite with less effort and fuss.

Misen's Carbon Steel Pan is available in three sizes: 8", 10", and 12".

Misen Carbon Steel Pan
Easier to use than cast iron, and develops a nonstick surface through seasoning.
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How a Missing Pan Inspired a Home Cooking Revolution

Misen’s brand story is unique, but oh so common. It evolved from a founder wanting to solve a real problem they experienced. The story of the missing pan, and the sticker shock involved in replacing it, is something we can all relate to — I can't tell you how many times have I told my partner that we need a second wedding registry a decade after marriage to replace the amazing stuff we were gifted originally, then couldn’t believe the price when we went to replace it.

Kitchenware seems to be categorized into the basic, low-quality items that we know will break in just a few months, or won’t hold up in the kitchen, and then the overpriced items that seem to be just for the cooking elite--Misen is bridging the gap for us regular joes with Guy Fieri spirits.

Misen is bridging the gap for us regular Joes with Guy Fieri spirits.

And when founder Omar Rada lost his only quality pan and saw a $200 sticker price to replace it, he knew ther was an opportunity to build a brand that offered incredible cookware at honest prices. Misen is able to deliver on Rada's vision by cutting out retail middlemen and selling directly to customers online.

"I deeply believe that people should have access to quality tools at affordable prices because no matter your skill level, quality kitchen tools will help you cook better," says Rada.

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A Brand that Doesn’t Make us Choose Between Quality and Price

Misen's three core brand tenets are quality materials that deliver optimum perfomance, thoughtful design that make using its products a breeze and honest prices so it can sell its products to consumers without retail markups.

Another way the brand differentiates itself is through its well-communicated and extensive testing process. And from my experience with Misen, its feels like they’ve thought through the little things with each of its products, such as where the cooling handle cover should be placed, exactly how high to make the sides of the pans, and the consistency of the cooking surface across the whole pan. I love that the brand use both professionals and home cooks to help shape their products, ensure each piece of Misen cookware works perfectly for newbies and pros alike.

Rada founded Misen in 2015 and first got the brand off the ground through a hugely successful Kickstarter campaign raising over $1 million to fund the brand's first product, its incredibly popular Chef's Knife, which now now has more than 7,700 reviews.

The brand has now expanded from that single Chef’s Knife to a full range of Misen knives, cookware and prep tools for home chefs. Alongside the nonstick pans we tested out for this review, Misen also makes Stainless Steel Skillets, Sauciers, Flat-Bottomed Pans, Spatulas, Cutting Boards, Knife Sets and more. You can also buy many of Misen's products as a set or individual piece.  

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I Can't Wait to Try More Misen Cookware

It's safe to say, I'm a Misen chef now! The Misen experience left a great impression on me — and as I mentioned the 10" Nonstick Pan has already become my go-to skillet for stovetop cooking. Maybe I should pick up a complete cookware set next?

My utensils draw feels like its due an upgrade and I can’t wait to try Misen’s kitchen knives next, as home cooks face the same dilemma with knives and they do pans and skillets — choosing quality or budget-friendly options.

Misen's accesories are also clealry thought through and I'm eyeing the Universal Lids, — starting at just $10 — which enable you to cover multiple pans and dishes with just one item. That versatility is valuable and saves space in our overcrowded cabinets by replacing many lids that don’t seem to match any of my pans with just a single one. We are also inspired to reorganize and store our pans more properly with the Pan Protector, making sure our nonstick cookware lasts longer.

Misen's mission to help home cooks be better prepared with the right tools without breaking the bank is one I feel I'll be supporting for years to come.

Misen's full cookware range includes:

  • Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven: Four separately-fired layers of premium enamel sprayed onto a cast iron core.
  • 3QT Stainless Steel Saute Pan: A wide, flat-bottomed pan with greater depth and surface area perfect for braising, poaching, frying and searing. (All Misen's stainless steel pans are made of 5-ply steel and aluminum, built to last a lifetime.)
  • 8QT Stainless Steel Stockpot: Excellent for simmering, boiling, and steaming in bigger quantities.
  • Chef's Knife: Misen's original product, features of both Western- and Japanese-style blades — making it excel at any cutting task or technique.
  • Paring Knife: This knife excels all of the precision cuts and fine-detail work in your kitchen.
  • Roasting Pan: Perfect for baking, searing, roasting, and more.
  • Cutting board: Not only perfect for everyday prep, but also a beautiful addition to any kitchen.

Misen Labs is also developing a range of high-quality ceramic and metal utensils, to deliver just what you need for everyday cooking, and nothing you don’t.

Shop now at misen.com.

Written by
Alexandra Frost is a Cincinnati-based journalist. Her work has appeared in Apartment Therapy, Glamour, Women's Health, Reader's Digest, and other publications.
Disclosure: If you buy a product from a link in one of our reviews, we may get a small share of the revenue from the sale. We sometimes receive products free of charge from brands to test and review. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended.
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