It’s very confusing for some people to distinguish between a frying pan and sauté pan when purchasing pans. They look nearly the same and are often used interchangeably. They all have a flat and round bottom and can be used for frying or sauteing. But what are the differences? And which one is the recommended cookware?
Don’t worry! Let’s clue you in about the differences!

 

Frying Pan:

Sometimes also called as frying pan or frypan. It’s a shallow flat-bottom pan that has slanted and flared sides. It is shorter than sauté pan with a light body, which can easily flip and toss the ingredients; it’s commonly used in stir-fry/sauteing for a small amount of oil and fat.

It is measured in diameter (centimeter or inch), which makes it a “dry-cooking” pan. And it also comes with a long and sturdy handle but is not equipped with a lid (or some do)—ideal choosable size: 8/10 or 12 inches.

It’s also considered one of the most versatile cookware every family has. It makes cooking evenly and quickly.

 

 

Sauté Pan:

A pan of similar dimensions, but with less flared, more vertical sides and often with a lid, is called a saute pan. While a saute pan can be used as a frying pan, it is designed for lower heat cooking methods. It's also called a deep frypan and similar to a frying pan with a flat bottom, but it has vertical or slightly curved sidewalls deeper than a frying pan. The higher body makes the food won’t flip over the pan and is suitable for the deep-frying or braising without hot oil burning. A large volume can support cooking a large amount of food without overcrowding. A big size sauté pan is suitable for family use.

It is measured in volume (quarts or liters). With its large cooking surface and taller body allows it's capable of liquid cooking, such as deep-frying/braising/poaching/searing, etc.

 

 

 

Despite that these 2 pans have a lot in common, saute pan is more versatile than a frying pan.Well if I were you, I probably would buy them both for different needs, it's better to have two different size pans that could provide you basic cooking needs.

Now let’s review the differences, and we made a list to you for better understanding

 

 

    
 Type Appearance Measurements Cooking
Frying pan(skillet) Short sidewalls/slanted body/flat bottom diameter(inch or cm) frying,stewing,stir-fry,browning
Saute pan taller sidewalls/straight(or slightly curved) body/flat bottom/large capacity volume(quarts or liters) frying,deep frying,searing,braising,poaching,boiling