The 7 Best Non-Toxic Woks for Your Green Kitchen

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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.


Not all woks are created equal. Some are safer and much more sustainable than others. They’re also more fun to use! Here are our top picks for worry free, non-toxic woks that are free of PTFE, PFOA, and PFAS.

Table of Contents
  1. The best non-toxic woks
  2. Sustainable wok FAQ

I didn’t grow up cooking with a wok, but after first using one in my twenties, I was a convert. Back then, I had a Teflon-coated wok that I used regularly, even on a gas stove at pretty high heat. Thank goodness there were no birds in my house!

See also: The best non-toxic non-stick pans

These days, you can choose between several excellent Teflon-free woks that won’t off-gas nasty chemicals into your home and risk your family coming down with polymer fume fever or ‘Teflon flu’. Here are our picks for the best non-toxic woks, including those tried and tested by the Leaf Score team.

The best non-toxic woks

1Staff Tested

Alva Cookware Forest Collection

Highlights: Absolutely beautiful blue carbon steel wok with acacia wood handle. Perfectly balanced, pre-seasoned, and non-stick (with the right care). Made with recycled materials by a sustainable company.

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The Forest Wok is one of my favorite pieces of cookware from Alva. It looks fantastic, feels great, and is fun to use and lightweight too. It’s also easy to keep clean and provides a non-toxic non-stick surface if treated well.

The pre-seasoned blue carbon steel means you can give it a quick wipe and get cooking right away. And the seasoning held up for weeks before I had to reseason the pan.

The wok is well made with steep sides but a flat base, so it won’t wobble on flat cooktops like mine. It is also well balanced, so the acacia wood handle (which is antibacterial and sustainably sourced) doesn’t tip over the wok and make a giant mess of dinner.

Alva is one of my favorite cookware companies and is transparent about testing. Check out the full review here.

We tested the Alva Forest Wok

We’ve been using the Alva Forest Wok for many months and still love it. This wok looks stunning, is fun to cook with, and is a breeze to clean and maintain. It’s a lot lighter than I expected but hasn’t warped at all even with high heat.

The wok conducts heat evenly and fast. It is totally free of PFAS and other toxic chemicals and feels very natural and intuitive. It can be used on all cooktops, including induction.

The pre-seasoning lasted for many weeks and it was easy to re-season when necessary. Prior to that, it was pretty much non-stick even without much oil!

The one downside to this wok is that the wooden handle means it’s not oven-safe and is likely to be less durable than a wok with a metal handle.


Mammafong Authentic & Traditional 14-Inch Carbon Steel Wok 

Highlights: Traditionally made, hand-hammered, 16-gauge carbon steel wok with a helper handle and double riveted long wooden handle. Affordable, balanced, durable, and perfect for stir-frying, simmering soups and stews, steaming, braising, and more. Matching wok lid available for steaming!

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The Mammafong wok is a 14-inch traditionally made, hammered carbon steel wok with a long wood handle and helper handle. It is made with premium carbon steel sheets that are hand-hammered and double riveted to the handle.

Here are some specs:

  • Length: 23 inches across (with the handle)
  • Height: just under 6 inches
  • Weight: just under 3.4 lbs.

There are no toxic coatings on this wok. Instead, the seasoning helps to make it non-stick. The Mammafong wok comes with a protective foundational seasoning, but most chefs strip this down and season the wok themselves.

The Mammafong is a great choice for affordability, performance, and durability. You can get it in a flat or round bottom design, so be sure to choose the flat bottom if you have an electric or induction stovetop.

This wok has thin, steep walls for superior stir-frying. Because it is hand-hammered instead of machine-pressed, the Mammafong wok doesn’t warp on high heat. The 16-gauge carbon steel is also lightweight while being durable.

Wok lid available!

You can also purchase a Mammafong Wok Cover that works as a lid for the 14-inch wok and other 14-inch woks (view on Amazon).

I love the helper handle on the Mammafong wok (this is sorely missing on the De Buyer wok). The handle helps balance the wok and means it’s easier to use for:

  • Simmering soups and stews
  • Steaming
  • Braising
  • Deep-frying foods.

The helper handles also makes it far easier to keep food on the move and then transfer it to plates or serving dishes once cooked.

The double-riveted wooden handle is very securely attached and doesn’t conduct heat, making it much simpler to use than a wok with a metal handle.

3Staff Tested

Xtrema Versa Wok

Highlights: A pure ceramic wok with steep sloping walls, a very short handle, and a flat base. No leachable metals, PTFE, PFOA, just even heating and perfect stir-frying potential. Made by hand by a sustainably minded company.

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Xtrema is one of our top picks for non-toxic cookware and bakeware and makes a fantastic pure ceramic wok. Ideal if you’re not a fan of carbon steel, stainless steel, or aluminum, this traditional very short-handled wok has a good amount of heft but is easy to use and easy to clean – it’s even dishwasher safe!

Free of leachable metals, with Xtrema’s proprietary smooth ceramic surface and pure ceramic all the way through, this wok contains no PFOA, PFAS, or PTFE, nor any other chemicals of concern.

Xtrema tests every shipment for extractable heavy metals and contaminants. Xtrema cookware is also California Prop 65 compliant and FDA approved.

Here are some specs for the Xtrema Versa Wok:

  • Width: 11 inches
  • Height: 6 inches
  • Handle length: Less than 4 inches
  • Weight: 7.7 lbs.

This wok doesn’t have a long handle. Instead, the short handle is more like the helper handle seen on long-handled woks. The Versa Wok is very heavy, making it hard to casually toss around veggies.

The pure ceramic wok retains heat super well but doesn’t heat all that fast. If you preheat it, though, you can cook food faster. Where it excels is in simmering soups and stews.

Because the Versa Wok is pure ceramic, it’s scratch resistant and durable. It’s also made to be chip-resistant and stain-proof, and it’s a great option for cooking more acidic foods that wouldn’t fare so well in a metal wok.

You can use the Versa Wok:

  • On a barbecue grill
  • Over a fire
  • In the microwave
  • In the oven
  • On a regular stove.

This wok won’t work on induction.

The Versa Wok is safe for the freezer and dishwasher, making clean-up a breeze.

Xtrema offers a 40-day trial and a 10-year warranty.

We tested the xtrema versa wok

We’ve tested the Xtrema Versa Wok in our home kitchen, and although we love the peace of mind that comes with knowing the product is truly non-toxic, we did find some issues with function and heat distribution. The lack of handles is inconvenient, and it has also been difficult to stir fry larger meals in this wok, which is on the small side.

We recommend the Versa wok for singles and small families who like the look of ceramic cookware, and have a truly PFAS, PTFE, and PFOA free product as the top priority.

Xtrema non-toxic cookware
Sautéing vegetbales in the Xtrema Versa Wok.


Craft Wok Traditional Hand Hammered Carbon Steel Pow Wok

Highlights: Well-balanced carbon steel wok with helper handle and a round bottom. Hand-hammered and available in 12-inch and 14-inch options. Not pre-seasoned.

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The Craft Wok is a traditional hand-hammered wok made of 1.8 mm carbon steel with a wooden with Wooden and steel long handle and a steel helper handle. It is available in a 12-inch and 14-inch diameter and has a round bottom.

Craft Wok 12-inchCraft Wok 14-inchMammafong Wok 14-inchDe Buyer Wok 11-inch
Weight3.5 lb.4.6 lb.3.4 lb.2.7 lb.

The Craft Woks are a tad heavier than the Mammafong woks and the 11-inch De Buyer Carbon Steel Wok, though much lighter than the Xtrema Versa Wok.

The Craft Wok isn’t suitable for a flat electric or induction stove thanks to the rounded bottom. The steel helper handle doesn’t get too hot when cooking and is securely riveted and handy for hanging the wok to store.

This wok doesn’t come pre-seasoned, so you’ll need to wash and season it upon arrival before first use.


Cooks Standard 12 and 13-Inch Stainless Steel Multi-Ply Wok

Highlights: Stainless steel wok with aluminum core, available in 12-inch and 13-inch designs with a stainless steel domed lid. Oven safe, dishwasher safe, and suitable for use on gas, electric, and induction stovetops!

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The Cooks Standard Stainless Steel Multi-Ply Wok is a fantastic, affordable, durable non-toxic wok free of any PFOA, PTFE, and other chemical coatings. It comprises a brushed stainless steel exterior that is scratch resistant, keeping the wok looking great even if you bang it around quite a bit.

The inner cooking surface and the exterior are 18-10 premium grade stainless steel and the core is aluminum, which makes for consistent, even heat distribution and fast heating. This is exactly what you need in a wok intended for quick stir-frying.

Wok design!

Pure stainless steel woks aren’t great for conducting heat evenly, so always look for one with an aluminum core.

This wok has a solid stainless steel long handle riveted to the body of the wok and an airflow design to help it stay cool as you cook. And because the whole thing is made of metal, with no coatings, it is oven safe up to 500 Fahrenheit and dishwasher safe for easy clean-up. The flat bottom also means you can use this wok on electric and induction stovetops as well as gas.

Both the 12-inch and 13-inch woks come with a tight-fitting domed lid made of stainless steel.

The Cooks Standard wok comes with a limited lifetime warranty and is made by a well-respected, long-established brand with good customer support.


Zwilling Stainless Steel Wok

Highlights: Impressive 5-ply stainless steel wok with a long handle, no rivets, and well-fitting lid. Oven safe to 500 F (without lid), induction compatible and dishwasher safe. Also very affordable!

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Zwilling’s pure stainless steel long-handle wok has a 5-ply design with layers of aluminum fully encased in 18/10 stainless steel for rust-resistance. The result is fast, even heating, superb handling, and easy cleaning.

The hygienic, rivet-free, welded design is safe for metal utensils and the dishwasher.

This wok is also oven-safe to 500 F (without the lid) and compatible with all stovetops, including induction.

The wok measures:

  • Almost 12-inches in diameter (at the top)
  • Just shy of 4 inches high without the lid
  • A little over 6 inches high with the lid.

It has a tempered glass lid that makes it easy to monitor food and keep steam and heat in, though this does mean the lid isn’t oven-safe (unlike the Cooks Standard wok above.

The Zwilling wok has a dripless rim that makes it easy to pour out sauces with less mess. And the overall design features thin, steep, curved sides and a thick, flat bottom ideal for steaming and stir-frying.


De Buyer Carbon Steel Mineral B Wok

Highlights: Flat bottom carbon steel wok from a great company. Will work on induction and electric stovetops, but no helper handle or lid.

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De Buyer’s Carbon Steel Wok is a work of art, made by artisans in France at a factory that’s been running since 1830. This 11-inch Mineral B Wok retains heat incredibly well, making it a great choice for:

  • Stir-fries
  • Fried rice
  • Chow mein
  • Deep frying.

The wok is lighter than cast iron and ceramic and comprises 99% iron and 1% carbon, with an epoxy coated steel handle that is riveted to the body. The 2 mm thick carbon steel conducts heat better than stainless steel, is naturally non-stick once seasoned, and doesn’t leach chemicals into food or destroy the flavor of food. Instead, flavors get better and better the more you use the wok!

The wok arrives with a beeswax coating for protection. You’ll need to clean this off and then season the pan yourself. Over time, a properly seasoned carbon steel wok will look more black than gray. As with any seasoned pan, this wok needs to be washed without harsh soaps or scourers.

Here are the specs for the De Buyer Mineral B Wok:

  • Width: 3.5-inches at the base
  • Overall width: 20 inches (including the 9-inch handle)
  • Weight: 2.7 lbs.

This wok is 5 lbs. lighter than the Xtrema Versa Wok! It’s a bit thicker than the Mammafong and Craft Wok options though.

Because it has a flat bottom, the Mineral B wok is suitable for gas, induction, and electric stoves. You can even use this in the oven, but only for up to 10 minutes at 400 Fahrenheit, making it easy to keep food warm as needed. The wok is not dishwasher safe or microwave safe though.

While the De Buyer wok is a beautiful piece of cookware, some users find its sides too steep, meaning you have to really toss the food around to keep it from pooling at the bottom and getting mushy instead of browning. This is definitely a better fit for an active cook who likes to keep everything moving. To double down on that, some users report it being a bit unbalanced on flat surfaces, requiring a more hands-on approach than with more balanced short-handle woks or woks with a helper handle.

De Buyer offers free ground shipping on U.S. orders over $99 and usually ships within 24 hours.

Sustainable wok FAQ

What is a non-toxic wok?

A non-toxic wok is one made without Teflon or similar coatings that can off-gas toxic fumes. This means a wok free of PFOA, PTFE, and PFAS, and free of extractable heavy metals like cadmium and lead. A non-toxic wok will usually be made of a single material or an amalgam of two materials that are not reactive with each other. Ideally, a non-toxic wok would have no chemical coatings and instead be naturally non-stick or able to be seasoned with oil.

Will a carbon steel or stainless steel wok react with acidic foods?

Yes! But that’s not necessarily a problem if you’re using a wok for traditional stir-fries or other fast cooking methods. As long as you quickly transfer food to the plate or serving dish after cooking, a carbon steel or stainless steel wok is actually a great choice! Hard anodized aluminum is also a good choice for a non-toxic wok. If you’re still concerned about reactivity with acidic foods like tomato, or you plan to use your wok for longer cooking periods, a ceramic wok like the Xtrema Versa Wok is a better choice.

Why does my carbon steel wok contain 1% carbon?

Carbon steel woks are mostly made of iron, with just 1% of the wok made of carbon. The amount of carbon makes a big difference to the strength and durability of the wok. Premium carbon steel contains something in the region of 1% carbon, up to 1.5% in some cases. If a carbon steel wok has less than 0.6% carbon, or the manufacturer doesn’t list the carbon content, look elsewhere as this wok probably isn’t a good investment.

Will a stainless steel wok leach heavy metals into food?

Stainless steel is a good choice for a wok because most wok cooking happens fast, meaning little time for the metal to release any nickel or chromium. If you’re sensitive to nickel, a ceramic or carbon steel wok may be a better idea, especially if you plan to cook acidic foods in your wok. For everyone else, good choices include stainless steel woks made with a 304 surgical grade stainless steel, or 18/8, or 18/10 stainless steel where the risk of releasing nickel or chromium is tiny.

Would an aluminum wok ruin the taste of food?

Aluminum is highly reactive to acidic foods and would both leach aluminum into food and ruin its taste. The good news is that quality aluminum woks and other aluminum cookware is made with hard anodized aluminum. This kind of aluminum is created using an electrochemical process that seals the metal to make the surface safe and non-reactive. It also makes the surface resistant to corrosion and increases the durability of the cookware. And because aluminum conducts heat really well, it’s a great choice for stir-frying, where even heat distribution is key.

Is pure stainless steel a good choice for a wok?

Not really. Pure stainless steel isn’t great for conducting heat, meaning uneven heat distribution and slower responsiveness during cooking. That’s why better quality woks made with stainless steel have a 3-ply design that comprises a cooking surface and exterior made of stainless steel and an inner core of aluminum to support fast heating and even heat distribution.

What’s the best oil to season a wok and use for cooking with a wok?

The general idea when cooking with a wok is to go for high heat and short cooking times. This means you’ll need a cooking oil with a high smoke point. Good options include grapeseed oil and avocado oil. These are also good choices for seasoning a wok.

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