Gotham Steel Reviews: Is Steel Cookware Safer?

Gotham Steel Reviews: Is Steel Cookware Safer?

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Gotham Steel is a cookware brand that’s heavily advertised on TV. Their products are highly affordable, and the brand claims their pans are “PTFE/PFOA/PFOS FREE.”

But is Gotham Steel a safer option than traditional non-stick pans? What does PTFE-free even mean, and is PTFE dangerous? Does Gotham Steel cookware even contain steel? And how do real users rate and describe the experience cooking with Gotham Steel?

In this article we’ll answer all of these questions and more, as we analyze clinical studies to give our take on whether traditional non-stick cookware is a health risk, and whether Gotham Steel is a safer option because it’s PTFE-free.

We’ll share our thoughts on the materials used in Gotham Steel cookware, feature customer reviews of the brand, and provide a cost comparison to show which retailer sells Gotham Steel for the best price.

Is Traditional Non-Stick Unsafe?

Gotham Steel, like many non-stick cookware brands, makes claims that their products are free of the chemical compounds “PTFE,” “PFOA” and “PFOS.”

There’s a good reason that Gotham Steel makes these representations. These chemicals are clinically shown to be harmful to human health.

A 2017 medical review found that non-stick cookware coated with polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) “releases various gases and chemicals that present mild to severe toxicity.”

The study authors also described perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) as a “well-known toxic environmental pollutant.”

So it’s a good thing that Gotham Steel products are free of these harmful compounds. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean that their products are safer.

As we documented in our GreenPan review article, some clinical studies have shown that non-stick alternatives to PTFE are no safer, and in some cases may be more toxic.

Because Gotham Steel fails to clearly publish the specific chemicals used to create the non-stick coating, or data on the toxicity of this coating, we have no reason to believe that the brand is a safer option than traditional non-stick.

A well-researched and interesting video with over 600,000 views, from YouTube cooking influencer Adam Ragusea, explains in more detail some of the safety concerns regarding non-stick cookware, and includes interviews with experts:

Gotham Steel Material Analysis

Surprisingly, Gotham Steel is not primarily made of steel. Only the handle is.

Gotham Steel pans are made using titanium as a base and a ceramic non-stick coating as a finish.

We consider titanium to be an excellent choice for the base.

A medical review published in the Journal of Food Science and Technology found that titanium cookware caused the best retention of micronutrients in cooked food, compared with all other cookware materials.

Ceramic is a more questionable choice in our opinion.

A 2016 medical review described a significant risk of lead toxicity from glazed ceramic cookware, especially ceramics sourced from Mexico, China and some European countries. Gotham Steel does not appear to publish which country they source ceramic from on their website.

Gotham Steel does not appear to publish any testing data on the potential for lead leaching due to use of their pans, but no ceramic cookware brands we’ve reviewed to date on Illuminate Health have done so either.

As we discussed in our article on is Caraway Cookware safe, the lack of clarity on toxicity and standards in the non-stick cookware industry as a whole is concerning to us.

We hope that more companies publish information on the non-stick coating chemicals used and their materials sourcing.

Overall, we consider Gotham Steel’s materials to be average for a non-stick cookware brand, but we don't currently recommend the brand due to our concerns about the glazed ceramic coating and the non-stick chemicals used.

Real People Try Gotham Steel

A YouTube creator named “Reviews_and_more” has a review of Gotham Steel’s pan after one year of use:

A TikTok creator named “MamaWaffler69” found the non-stick feature of the Gotham Steel pan to be surprisingly effective:


Gotham Steel pot does not stick!!!

♬ original sound - MamaWaffler69

Our Clean Cookware Pick

Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet is our top cookware pick.

It's free of any questionable chemical coatings. The only material is cast iron.

We consider cast iron pans to be the safest and healthiest cookware option. Cast iron has been used for thousands of years and is non-toxic. 

Cast iron pans are made primarily from iron and steel, and are somewhat naturally non-stick because of the effects of fat heated on the cooking surface over time.

We recommend purchasing some Lodge Pan Scrapers along with the pan.

They're only $4.90, and cast iron pans can be challenging to clean for the first few uses without scrapers, before the pan becomes seasoned.

Customers Rate Gotham Steel

Amazon is a better resource for honest customer reviews than a brand’s website in our opinion.

Gotham Steel's most-reviewed product on Amazon is currently their frying pan, which has been reviewed over 21,000 times and has an average review rating of 4.2 out of 5 stars.

A top positive review from a verified purchaser comes from a user named “P. Kim” who gave the product a 5/5 rating:

“As seen on TV, I can drop an egg and use a folk to scramble without a scratch, I can throw bunch of cheese and it will not stick. This is a palm sized and just enough for an egg.”

A top negative review from a verified purchaser is written by a user named “Customer X” who gave the product a 1/5 rating

“6 months after purchase - in spite of this occasional use - food started to stick to the pan.”

There are a few more customer complaints about Gotham Steel on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website, and the business has not responded to the customers to try to resolve those complaints which we consider a red flag about the brand.

Where to Get the Best Price

Gotham Steel is sold at a variety of online retailers.

Here’s a price breakdown for their 9.5 inch frying pan at the time of updating this article:

Amazon: $21.49 (free shipping, link)

Brand website: $19.99 (free shipping, link)

Walmart: $19.77 (free shipping, third-party seller, link)

Walmart currently has the best price on Gotham Steel's pan. 

However, the Walmart listing is from a third-party seller. For less than 30 cents more, it makes sense to purchase directly from the brand.

Gotham Steel Pros and Cons

Here are the pros and cons of Gotham Steel in our opinion:


  • Affordable
  • Titanium base
  • PTFE-free
  • PFOA-free
  • PFOS-free
  • Mostly positive Amazon reviews
  • Free shipping from brand's website


  • Unclear which non-stick chemicals are used
  • Failure to publish safety studies
  • Failure to publish lead/toxicity studies
  • Some customer complaints on BBB site
Stay up-to-date on our research reviews


Gotham Steel is one of the best-priced non-stick cookware options.

We do not currently recommend the brand due to our concerns over the toxicity of their non-stick coating, as well as their ceramic sourcing.

That being said, we consider Gotham Steel to be equivalent from an efficacy and safety perspective to more expensive options like Caraway Cookware.

We hope that in the future, more non-stick cookware companies transparently publish information about their chemical coating materials and ingredient sourcing. This is important for consumer safety.

We consider cast iron to be a much better choice for consumer health and for the environment than non-stick cookware. It’s also much more durable, and can last decades with proper maintenance.

For consumers intent on purchasing Gotham Steel cookware, Walmart currently has the best price on a frying pan, but the Walmart listing is from a third-party seller, so we recommend purchasing directly from the brand.