Caraway Cookware vs. The Always Pan from Our Place: Which Brand is Truly Green?

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Written by Leigh Matthews, BA Hons, H.Dip. NT


Leigh Matthews, BA Hons, H.Dip. NT

Sustainability Expert

Leigh Matthews is a sustainability expert and long time vegan. Her work on solar policy has been published in Canada's National Observer.


As part of our in-depth cookware review process, we put Caraway Home and the Always Pan head to head to determine which is best for a non-toxic, sustainable kitchen.

Cooking dinner with Caraway non-toxic cookware
Table of Contents
  1. Caraway Home vs. the Always Pan and Our Place cookware
  2. Head to head: Caraway Home vs. Always Pan and Our Place cookware
  3. What’s the same
  4. What’s different

Caraway Home vs. the Always Pan and Our Place cookware

On the surface, Caraway Home and the Always Pan and cookware collection from Our Place look quite similar. These non-stick, ceramic coated pots and pans are very pleasing to the eye and promise to be non-toxic and fun to cook with.

Caraway Home’s biggest selling point is its premium aesthetic and non-toxic, non-stick ceramic coating free of PTFE. Plus its smart, stackable storage system that saves cupboard space.

The biggest selling point of the Always Pan is that it can replace up to 12 other kitchen products. This means it could be a great fit, literally, for smaller apartment kitchens with limited cooking and storage space. It may also end up more budget friendly if you’re setting up a new kitchen or need to replace a lot of cookware items all at once.

Head to head: Caraway Home vs. Always Pan and Our Place cookware

Caraway HomeAlways Pan 2.0
MaterialsAluminum coated with ceramic, stainless steel handles and base for induction compatibilityAluminum coated with ceramic, stainless steel handle and base for induction compatibility
HandlesStainless steel, stay-coolStainless steel, stay-cool
Helper handlesYesYes
Non-stick coatingSol-gel process ceramic Sol-gel process ceramic 
LidsCoated aluminumCoated aluminum
Third-party testing availableYesNo
Free fromPFOA, PTFE, other PFAS, hard anodization (and potentially toxic manufacturing byproducts)‘Made without potentially toxic materials like PFAS (including PTFEs and PFOAs), lead and cadmium’
Leach testing resultsNo lead, cadmium, titanium, or other heavy metal leachingNot available
Made inChina – likely in BSCI / SMETA certified factoriesChina
Oven safeYes, to 550 FYes, to 230 C (446 F)
Induction compatibleYesYes
Dishwasher safeNoNo
Color options11 for  main cookware collection6 for cookware set
Price for c8-inch fry pan$90$120
Warranty and returns1-year warranty for major damage to the body, handles, lids or functional impairment 1-year for manufacturing defects but not normal wear and tear or minor scratches. Free returns within 100 days of shipping
PackagingSmart, sustainable, plastic-freeSmart, sustainable, plastic-free
Sustainability initiativesUses recycled materials and sustainable packaging, offers help finding recycling options100% recycled aluminum in all cookware, sustainable packaging, charitable donations, no PTFE products

Note that the Our Place Enameled Cast Iron Always Pan has a limited lifetime warranty, which makes it an even better choice than the aluminum, ceramic coated non-stick Always Pan.

What’s the same

Caraway Home and Our Place cookware (ceramic non-stick) are very similar in non-stick performance and material construction. The warranty periods and conditions are very similar, as are the use and care instructions, although Caraway cookware is oven safe to a far higher temperature.

Both are made in China, using PTFE-free, non-stick, (presumably) non-toxic ceramic coatings. The two companies package their products in smart, sustainable materials without single-use plastics.

Both Our Place and Caraway Home are smaller, relatively new cookware brands beloved of influencers. They offer a millennial friendly, minimalist look compared to standard stainless steel pots and pans or cast iron.

Care and use

Both the Caraway Home cookware and Always Pan need a bit of babying to stay in good shape. This means no:

  • Metal utensils
  • Dishwasher
  • Scouring pads or steel wool
  • Temperature shocks (don’t run cold water into a hot pan or move from fridge or freezer to oven or hot stovetop).

The Always Pan and Caraway cookware are both induction friendly, though this may depend on your cooktop, so check specifications before purchase. 

What’s different

Non-toxic & transparency

For me, the major difference between Caraway Home and Our Place is that Caraway is quite transparent about its test results for toxic chemicals. Our Place? Not so much.

Caraway Home doesn’t reveal exactly what’s in its non-stick ceramic coating, but it does provide third-party test reports for PTFE and other PFAS, lead, cadmium, and other possible toxic chemicals.

Caraway Home also does more than just basic leach testing. The company commissions (and passes) tests for the presence of PTFE, lead and cadmium in the actual surface coating of its cookware.

Our Place says it makes cookware without PFAS (including on PTFE), lead and cadmium, but it doesn’t offer test reports. 

When I asked the company for test reports on background, it balked, saying this would reveal proprietary information. This is pretty disappointing given that they could easily conceal super sensitive information and still confirm that the pots and pans pass toxicity tests.

As such, it’s not clear if Our Place cookware, including the Always Pan, really is non-toxic. While I doubt there’s any PTFE or other forever chemicals in these products, it would certainly be nice to see testing reports for lead, cadmium, and other heavy metals.

Non-stick surface

The Leaf Score team has used both the Caraway Home cookware and the Always Pan 2.0. Both offer impressive non-stick experiences.

With a little oil, the Caraway Home cookware lets you easily fry eggs, fish, steak, and other such foods. It’s not perfectly non-stick, though, and you’ll need to follow care and use instructions to keep the non-stick surface in great condition.

In my experience, the Always Pan 2.0 non-stick cooking surface is so non-stick that you barely need any oil. Even delicate foods like medium soft tofu and pancakes need very little oil and come away perfectly without losing fond or flavor.

The rub is that the Always Pan has a reputation for losing its non-stickiness fast. Mine hasn’t diminished at all over the first three months of use, but other folks report an increasingly sticky surface after a few weeks to months.

Oven temperature

All Caraway Home cookware is oven safe to 550 F. 

Our Place’s Always Pan is oven safe to 230 C or 446 F. 

If you like high heat oven cooking, Caraway Home is your better bet. 

And, frankly, the ability to withstand the higher temperatures may also mean Caraway Home cookware is more durable than the Always Pan on the stovetop. After all, it only takes a couple of minutes on high heat for a pan to reach 500 F on many stovetops. 


The ceramic coating on the Always Pan and Caraway Home cookware appears to be very similar. And, given the aluminum body of these pans, the stainless steel handles, and the lid design, we expect them to last around the same amount of time.

That said, the smart storage solutions that minimize cupboard dings and scratches may mean Caraway cookware stays in better condition for longer. And the ability to withstand higher cooking temperatures also suggests more robust overall construction.

Caraway Home vs. Always Pan – which is more versatile?

Caraway Home offers a wider range of products for the stovetop and oven. If you like to have the perfect tool for every kitchen task, Caraway Home is likely the best option for you. If you’re willing to compromise a little on functionality to save on space and have just one or two pots trying to do all the things, Our Place may be preferable.

Pan construction and size

Caraway Home cookware comprises ceramic coated aluminum with a steel base for induction compatibility.

Caraway Home cookware set

  • Fry pan 10.5-inch
  • Sauce pan 3 qt.
  • Sauté Pan 4.5 qt.
  • Dutch oven 6.5 qt.
  • Mini fry pan 8-inch
  • Mini sauce pan 1.75 qt.
  • Storage solutions.

Caraway Home also offers squareware (roasting pans etc.) and bakeware with the same non-stick ceramic coating as its cookware.

The Our Place cookware bundle

  • Always Pan 2.0 – 10.5-inch, 2.6 qt. with lid
    • Nesting beechwood spatula
    • Steamer basket and colander
  • Mini Always Pan 2.0 – 8.5-inch, 1.2 qt. with lid
    • Nesting beechwood spatula
  • Perfect Pot with lid – 10.5-inch, 5.5 qt.
    • Self-basting, steam-release lid with a pasta strainer
    • Beechwood spoon designed to nest two ways
  • Mini Perfect Pot 2.0 – 8.5-inch, 2.5 qt. with lid
    • Beechwood spoon designed to nest two ways
  • Oven Pan – ceramic non-stick and stovetop compatible (except induction)
  • Main Bake, Side Bake, and Loaf Pan stoneware
  • Oven Mat (silicone).

There’s also a Large option for the Always Pan 2.0, which you can purchase separately. This measures 12.5 inches in diameter.

Storage solutions

If you purchase the full Caraway Home cookware set, you also get the company’s smart storage solutions. This lets you stack your cookware and store the lids in a way that minimizes cupboard space and potential damage to the pots and pans. 

With the Always Pan form Our Place, you’ll have to figure out your own storage system. The nice thing with this pan, though, is that the design is meant to replace several cookware items. So, this could mean you need much less cupboard space overall. 

In reality, though, the Always Pan won’t be your only pan. You’ll likely still need at least one or two other pots and pans, and you’ll want to protect your Always Pan from getting knocked or scratched in storage..

Induction stovetop compatibility

The similar construction of the Always Pan and Caraway Home cookware means both should work with all stovetops, including induction. 

That said, you’ll need to carefully match the pots and pans to the right size burner for best results. Otherwise, your cooktop might not recognize the pans properly and fail to activate. 


Ceramic coated pans are harder to recycle and much less durable than cast iron, stainless steel, and carbon steel. This makes them inherently less sustainable.

Neither Caraway Home nor Our Place have robust sustainability credentials, unfortunately. 

Both types of cookware are made with recycled aluminum (like most aluminum cookware), although Our Place states its pans comprise 100% recycled aluminum, which appears to be more than Caraway Home.

Both cookware collections come in sustainable packaging made with recycled and recyclable materials and free from single-use plastics. 

The Always Pan and other cookware from Our Place is, however, designed to replace several other kitchen products. This could be more sustainable in the long-run, compared to buying and replacing all those other products time and again. 

Neither company uses PTFE or other forever chemicals when making their cookware, which does make them more eco-friendly than, say, Hexclad.

Final thoughts on Caraway vs. Always Pan (Our Place)

If you’re looking for non-stick, non-toxic ceramic coated cookware to replace more conventional cookware, Caraway Home is a top choice. 

If, however, you’re looking to shake things up in the kitchen and try a minimalist approach, or if you’re just really short on cupboard space, Our Place is a contender.

That said, I would love to see third-party testing for Our Place’s Always Pan and other cookware and bakeware items. Without that, I definitely recommend Caraway over Our Place.

Overall, neither Caraway Home nor Our Place earn top marks from me. I much prefer Alva’s more robust non-toxic, non-stick ceramic cookware which is still in good shape after almost a year of daily use.

Caraway Cookware

Leaf Score

Highlights: Non-toxic, non-stick, LeafScore tried and tested cookware. Works with induction, gas, and electric stovetops, is oven-safe, easy to clean, and very easy on the eyes – available in nearly a dozen color options!

Always pan our place

Our Place Always Pan 2.0 [Staff Tested]

Leaf Score

Highlights: Gorgeous ceramic coated non-stick pan with lid, steamer basket, and beechwood nesting spatula. PTFE-free and potentially non-toxic – no public test results though. Oven-safe, very non-stick (at least at first), and induction-friendly.

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  1. Why would you even reveiw any cookware with aluminium in it. It doesn’t matter that its the core, it still leaches aluminum when heated. Always Pans are just marketing BS. I amde the mistake of buying into them and then discovering I have aluminium toxicity. You should not be necourging your users to buy any pans with an aluminuim component.

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