Best Carbon Steel Wok Reviews in 2018
Cooking is exciting, but it takes time, effort and strength to prepare a tasty dish and clean up afterward. Sometimes if you remember the processes, the zeal dies, and you pick a canned food instead.
But you see!
If you use the right cooking utensils like the best carbon steel wok, your cooking and cleaning become more leisurely. This kitchen tool is versatile, help you to prepare delicious meals very fast and offers a comfortable cleaning option.
The best part!
You can use a carbon steel work for stewing, roasting nuts, stir-frying and many other things. However, you must get the best brand in the market to enjoy this utensil at full capacity.
There are many brands out there, and many people often wonder the best wok to use and how they can grab it. Don't just worry because there are ways to make the right choice without having to stress yourself out.
How you say!
Read this carbon steel wok reviews and get the right info on the features you must consider in any brand and also have exclusive access to eight exceptional brands available in the market.
What is a Carbon Steel Wok?
A wok is a cooking utensil that has either a round or flat bottom used to prepare many dishes. This utensil is versatile in such a way that you can use it for deep frying, boiling, stir frying, pan frying, braising, stewing, poaching, steaming and roasting of nuts. Whatever cooking technique you want to try out, the best carbon steel work can make the magic happen.
Wok first originated from China, and the first ones had rounded bottom due to the gas stoves they use. Nowadays, however, carbon steel woks come with a flat base so that you can use them on the electric cooker or cooking gas.
One good thing about a wok is that if you have one, you may not need to overload your kitchen space with so many utensils like cooking pots since you can use this one for everything. Also, the cleaning time becomes faster since it is just a wok and nothing else.
1. Joyce Chen 22-0060, Flat Bottom Wok
The Joyce Chen 14 inch flat bottom wok is standard and high-quality cookware that is used by professionals. Immediately they are seasoned, they will provide you with the best cooking service you can imagine.
It has the standard weight of 2.0 mm with the body construction of heavy-gauge carbon steel. The phenolic handle has an ergonomic design that enables the steel wok to remain cool during use. You can conveniently clean this carbon steel wok initially with hot water, soap and a scouring pad.
The size of this specific wok is 14 inches which makes it appropriate for anything you want to use. The dimensions of this product are 22.8 x 15.4 x 3.6 inches and the weight of 4.19 pounds respectively. The flatness of its bottom makes it ideal cookware to use on gas or electric ranges.
- It carries extra handle that helps its stability and makes the transporting simple.
- The phenolic handle has an ergonomic design to provide a tight fitting and remains cool to the touch.
- The body construction comes from heavy gauge carbon steel that has the standard weight of 2.0mm.
- Joyce Chen Wok bottom is flat making it compatible with gas or electric ranges.
- It even comes with a loop on the handle which you can use to hang the cookware during storage.
2. Joyce Chen 21-9978, Classic Series Carbon Steel Wok
This specific design comes in high-quality materials and weighs 1.5mm only. It will help you to enjoy home cooking comfortably and conveniently. With the help of this 14-inch steel wok, you can prepare healthy meals like vegetable stir-fry, Szechwan beef, tofu, or broccoli stir-fry.
The design comes in a package like a gift box which makes it the perfect birthday or housewarming present to give to your friends. The handles which come from birch-wood, long and the other a short corresponding helper bears the ergonomic design that makes it remain cool to the touch even during the cooking session. It also makes lifting of the pan easier.
Again, you don't need to use potholders to remove the pan from the stovetop. This feature provides the user with convenient and comfortable cooking experience.
Joyce Chen series has a curved interior which enhances the appropriate stir-frying since it extends the cooking surface and diffuses the proper heat especially for stirring and tossing. On the other hand, the narrow bottom with its full top enables frying with little oil, unlike the pans that are straight-sided.
This steel wok that comes from 1.5 carbon steel can heat up fast and carries even heat throughout the pan. However, the smooth interior surface that comes from natural carbon steel of this design necessitates seasoning before usage. With its vast depth, you can conveniently cook one complete fish inside if you so wish.
- The construction is from 1.5mm carbon steel which enables the pan to heat up fast and evenly.
- The handles come from birch-wood and remain cool to the touch while on the stovetop.
- You have to season this carbon steel wok before use.
- This brand can sit safely on electric or gas cooktops.
- The natural carbon steel for the manufacturing promotes excellent distribution of heat and strength.
- You can wash this product quickly with your hand.
- The narrow bottom and the full top of this specific brand promote frying with a minor oil.
- This Steel Wok is 14 inches in diameter, and this makes it wide enough to allow you cook a whole fish inside.
3. Town Food Service 14 Inch Steel Peking Style Wok
For those people that do not want to use machine crafted Wok, this product is for you. It is hammered with hand yet retains its quality. The handle of this Wok does not have a rivet tightening which annoyingly gathers cruds around it and causes strenuous cleaning session.
Again, the handle of this Wok didn't come from wood like the other Woks available in the market. It comes with a metal handle that is durable. Even though the handle may get hot in about 10 minutes time, you can use a silicone grip which is always available on Amazon, or you can use a towel.
The material for the production of Town Food Service Steel Peking Style Wok is carbon steel which makes it durable, efficient and sturdy. It weighs 3.15 pounds, and the dimensions are 20 x 14 x 5.5 inches respectively.
The shape of this particular Wok has an extra deepness of 5 inches and 14 inches in diameter which enables the cook to maneuver meals easily as it cooked.
- The carbon steel for this Wok is cold forged to give it additional strength.
- With the 5-inch deepness and 14 inches diameter, the cook can maneuver meals easily.
- The materials for the construction of this Wok come from high-quality to ensure its durability and effectiveness.
- It is a must have and vital for those Asian cooking meals.
- The manufacturing is in China.
4. 14 Inches Carbon Steel Wok
The 14-inch gauge carbon steel heavy Wok is an exceptional kitchen accessory which a chef can have fun with while cooking due its convenience. The bottom of this Wok is flattened to enable it to relax directly on the stove and benefit from the heat. You can even use this particular Wok to cook on a gas or electric cooker efficiently since it is adaptable to high temperature.
This brand comes in two different shapes which is the round and flat bottom. With 14 inches Wok, you can cook for as many people as you want. The deepness alone is 4 inches, and you can prepare for 12, 6 or 5 people with the 16 inches, 14 inches or the 12 inches respectively.
Just remember that you need to season the Wok before use and you have secured for yourself one huge, durable and practical Wok at all times.
The weight alone is 7.5 pounds while the dimensions are 13 x 10.5 x 6 inches.
- It has a specific design that enables it to generate fast even heating also to cool fast.
- The carbon steel used for crafting this Wok is a heavy 14-inch gauge which is unseasoned.
- You can efficiently use this Wok on a gas, grill or electric stove due to the flat bottom that enables it to sit directly on the stove.
- It is easy to keep clean since all you have to do is hand washing and drying it instantly.
- It is a heavyweight of 7.5 pounds, and the dimensions are 13 x 10.5 x 6 inches.
5. Helen Chen's Asian Kitchen 14 Inch Carbon Steel Wok
This particular carbon steel Wok is a traditional masterpiece and the best kitchen accessory that will take your cooking performance to the next level. If you want to prepare authentic Asian recipes like Szechwan beef stir-fry and lemon rice with curried shrimps, this carbon steel Wok is for you.
The make is of heavy gauge carbon steel, and yet, it is light in weight to enable easy lifting during cooking. It is highly durable and can even last you for a lifetime if you care and handle it appropriately. For a fast heat recovery and consistent heating, there are concentric grooves in the steel wok.
The seasoning of its non-stick surface is a natural process to present an optimum surface for frying and searing. You can clean this Wok quickly with hot water and a soft sponge to protect the inside patina.
The 1.8mm heavyweight handles with its helper handle come from two-shade bamboo. These handles have a specific design that makes them resistant to heat so that you can lift your pan easily without needing potholders. Its body construction carries the heavyweight carbon steel design that promotes fast even heat and heat recovery which is vital for stir-fry.
This product is gigantic which means that you can conveniently use it to prepare for your whole family delicious Asian style dishes.
- The bottom is flat making it perfect to use on an induction stove, gas and electric cookers respectively.
- This brand is a heavyweight wok with durable carbon steel of 1.8mm.
- It is significant of 14 inches in diameter and conducts heat quickly.
- The handles come from beautiful bamboo material and resistant to heat.
- You can wash it with hands, and the initial seasoning is simple
- It heats up fast and has a quick recovery
6. Professional Lightweight Carbon Steel Wok
The Professional Lightweight Carbon Steel Wok has an elegant and simple design. The interior has a non-stick coating which makes it easy to clean and dirt resistant. The body construction comes from 1.0mm lightweight carbon steel which creates an even heat conductor and to last for a very long time.
The bottom of this specific product is flattened so that you can use it on electric or gas cookers to prepare Asian style dishes.
It has a wooden handle which is resistant to heat, promotes easy handling and an additional assisting handle for better stability.
This Carbon Steel Wok only weighs 2.25 pounds with the dimensions of 22.5 x 3.8 x 13.8 inches. Although it is light in weight, the size is big to enable you to prepare family-sized Thai or Asian style dishes.
- The interior has a non-stick coating to make it easy to clean and resistant to dirt.
- The material for the make-up of this steel wok is heavy-duty carbon steel which makes it durable.
- The body construction is of 1.0mm carbon steel which is appropriate for heavy-duty usage.
- The flat bottom makes it balance well on a gas or electric cooker.
- The dimensions are 22.5 x 3.8 x 13.8 inches while the weight is 2.25 pounds.
7. M.V Trading 14-Inch Carbon Steel Wok
This model of carbon steel wok is a heavy-duty production of 14-gauge. It serves a dual purpose which means that you can use it at home or use it for commercial purposes. The design of the two handles come from the original steel wok.
Its bottom is flat to enable the Wok to relax adequately on your electric or gas cooker and to benefit from all the available heat which is vital for cooking in a Wok.
The depth of this particular steel wok is four inches, and you can even get a round bottom wok. You can get this steel wok in many different sizes like 16 inches, 12 inches and 14 inches for your home use.
However, if you want the Wok for commercial purposes other sizes like 30 inches, 26, inches, 28 inches, 18 inches, 22 inches and 20 inches are also available.
- The handle design comes from high-quality steel which ensures its durability.
- Its construction is of heavy-duty carbon steel of 14-gauge.
- This brands design bottom is flat to ensure that it relaxes directly on the grill or electric or gas stove and consume all the heat.
- The sizes are versatile to enable you to choose the size that is appropriate for either commercial or home use.
- It weighs 5.5 pounds only.
8. Calphalon Unison Nonstick 13-Inch Flatbottom Wok
Finally, you will get to use a carbon steel wok that will promote your cooking skills and allow you to produce delicious professional dishes. The design for the interior is non-stick for convenient cleaning. It is also textured especially to seal in flavor and to create the best browning of your vegetables, meats or fishes.
The lid design comes from glass and clear tempered so that you can see the cooking food and keep your meal warm until they are ready to be served. You can even use this product to simmer or steam your soup due to the domed cover. The bottom of this Calphalon Unison Wok is flat with a large cooking surface which is perfect for stir-frying on your electric or gas ranges.
The quadruple-riveted handles are quite long and remain cool during cooking even though they come from stainless steel. You can clean this particular product with the dishwasher. It comes with a warranty provision for a full lifetime.
- It comes with long stainless steel quadruple-riveted handles that remain cool on the gas or stovetop.
- This product comes with the Calphalon's full lifetime warranty provision.
- It has a wide cooking surface which makes it the perfect cooking pan for stir-frying on your electric or gas ranges.
- The flat bottom design comes from the customary round base steel wok.
- Its interior is non-stick with expert precision and dishwasher safe.
- The seat pans are textured especially to seal in flavor and to provide the perfect browning of your vegetables, meats, and fishes.
- Glass-lid is clear tempered so that you can see through it while cooking and safe to keep in your oven.
How to use a wok for the first time
The majority of steel wok comes with different materials like carbon steel, cast iron; it is important to season the wok before using it for the first time. If you use the wok without seasoning it, the metals used to craft the carbon steel wok will make it absorb water and rust eventually.
When you season your steel wok before using it for the first time, any food you cook inside the wok will be flavorful. The seasoning will also make it easier for you to clean and cook with also prevents rust.
Things you will need for the Seasoning:
- Chopped scallions- one bunch
- Diced ginger- ½ cup of 25grams
- Oil- two tablespoons or 30ml.
Steps to Follow for the Seasoning:
Step one: Wash
First of all, you have to wash the Wok with a cloth or sponge and in soapy hot water. This action will enable you to clean out the grime, machine oil, dust or dirt that resides in the carbon steel wok. Use hot water to rinse the wok and then dry it with a dry towel.
Step two: Dry
Leave the wok out to air dry as you prepare for the cooking of your meal. Heat up the wok before usage by placing it on your stove or gas burner. Make sure to apply high heat when you are preheating the wok. Allow the wok to remain on the burner for about thirty seconds and then; proceed to drip little amounts of water inside.
Immediately the steel wok is ready for use, the water will disappear instantly on contact with the carbon steel wok. If your steel wok is the type that doesn't allow the water to evaporate, heat the wok again for about a minute.
Step three: Oil
Remove the wok from your stove and add oil to it. Hold the handles of the steel wok and then turn the carbon steel wok on swirls to circulate the oil evenly inside the wok's surface. The best oils to use are palm, canola, lard, grapeseed, and peanut.
Step four: Cook Veggies
Reduce the heat of your stove and cook your veggies at a lower temperature. You can turn the temperature down to medium and then and then put in scallions and ginger in your steel wok. Allow the vegetables to cook for about 15 to 20 minutes and then stir it continuously.
Apply the back of your spoon on the ginger and scallions as they steam to mash them on the carbon wok walls and bring out their flavor. If the vegetables begin to dry out while you are still cooking them, just add an extra 15ml or tablespoon of oil.
If the color of the steel wok changes to a light brown yellow as it heats up, remove it immediately. You may even see shades of black and blue but if your utensil did not change color at all while cooking, wait for twenty minutes and remove it from the heat source.
Step five: Rinse and Dry
Allow the wok to cool down and then proceed with the rinsing and drying process. You can trash the veggies or dump them in your soup or any of your savory dishes.
Repeat this process as many times as possible to establish the seasoning layer. Again if your carbon steel wok is not flavorful or non-stick as you may wish it to be, you can re-season it over and over until it builds a black patina which is an indication that the steel Wok has seasoned fully.
Usage of the Wok Properly:
After seasoning your carbon steel wok and conclude that it is ready to go, the next step will be to cook tasty meals with the device.
Steps to Follow:
- Arrange your ingredients and supplies
Since cooking a meal in your carbon steel utensil requires high-heat, you must do the cooking very fast. That is why; you should gather all the instruments and supplies that you will need to stir-fry with your Wok before starting. Such tools like;
- Proteins like tofu which you slice into pieces, meat, and seafood.
- Cooking oil like; grapeseed peanut or canola
- Vegetables which you slice into pieces
- Aromatics like; chilies, diced onions, and garlic
- Eating utensils, a spatula, bowls and serving plates
- Liquids and sauces like; coconut oil, wine, broth, rice wine vinegar or soy sauce.
- Garnishes like; nuts, green onions or toasted spices
- Heat your Wok Before Cooking
Increase the temperature of your stove or gas burner to high heat and place the dry wok on it and allow to heat for thirty seconds. Sprinkle a small amount of water inside the heated wok and watch until the water evaporates.
- Add your Aromatics and Oil
You can then proceed to pour in the oil inside the heated wok by drizzling. Then swirl the oil around the wok to circulate evenly. After that, it is time to put in onions and the minced garlic. Allow it to cook for thirty seconds or a full minute.
- You can now add the Proteins
Put in like one pound of meat, tofu or seafood inside the wok at the same time to ensure that the proteins will brown evenly.
- Add your Vegetables
Immediately add the vegetables to the cooking wok. Use your spatula to carry them up and tumble them on top of each other. This action will help to avoid burning of the vegetables as you are flipping them continuously.
- Join all the Ingredients together
Combine all the ingredients in the utensil and summarize the cooking process. Also, add the liquid to remove the flavors or any food that stuck-on the wok.
- You can now garnish the food and serve
When the veggies and proteins are cooked thoroughly, bring down the wok from the heat source immediately. Top the meal with your garnish and serve.
Clean the Wok for Storage- first of all, soak your wok and set aside to cool for some minutes. Scrub the wok with a wet sponge and rinse with hot water. Then dry the wok with a clean kitchen towel and apply oil before you store it to prevent rust.
Buying Carbon Steel Wok: Things You Need To Care!
It is not ok to pick a wok, but you need to get a brand of wok that will suit your needs by considering a few important factors. You may not think they are vital but, if you don't check them, that investment may be a waste. To buy the best brand, consider the following:
The material of the wok
There are two materials commonly used for a wok. Some come in carbon steel materials while others have a cast iron material. The other content available but not famous is the stainless steel work that has aluminum or non-stick cover.
Amongst these three materials, the best one is the carbon steel material. These brands of steel wok are always light and promote easy lifting. Also, the carbon steel material is an excellent heat conductor which make it easier for the wok to heat up as quickly as you want.
The second material being the cast iron is quite heavy, but it reduces food sticking to the pan. They are good too but has a slow response rate when you adjust the temperature. That means that if you don't remove your food when you are through with the cooking, it may overcook.
Therefore the best to take is the carbon steel wok for ease of use and good heat conductivity. This material is also durable and makes cooking very easy. So, check the material before you pick any brand.
Woks come in different shapes depending on the surface you will place them. There is flat bottom wok, and there are deep bottom woks. If you want the one that will hold tight on your stove, gas cooker or electric stove, you need to take your time to check the shape.
If you don't get the right fit, cooking and flipping your food may become a hassle. You need the right shape that will sit steady no matter the activities going on inside the steel wok. Therefore, look at the form and compare to your cooking tool.
The wok size
Carbon steel woks come in different sizes. It is always right to remember the number of people you usually cook for before you select any brand. If you pick a small proportion of steel wok but find out that you need to prepare for many people, what will you do? Therefore, always consider size as a prerequisite for getting the best carbon steel work to serve your needs.
There are three sizes of carbon steel wok in the market. There are the 12 inches that will serve five people satisfactorily. The 14 inches wok can prepare a meal for 6-12 people while the 16 inches can work for more than 12 persons.
So, which size do you need? Decide and get a wok that will suit your cooking requirements.
The wok handle
Don't forget the vital role a handle plays on any cooking utensil. The best carbon steel work must have two handles; the stick handles and the helper handle.
If you pick a modern carbon steel wok, you can expect these two handles, but for those traditional brands, they come with two hands to each side of the steel wok. The truth is that if you want to flip your food as many times as you want to without stress, get the modern steel wok with more extended handles to make cooking easy.
The Manufacturing process
Old woks followed a more solid manufacturing process than the modern ones. In fact, the old ones were handmade by hammering them to achieve the perfect shape. As a result of this process, they have the best quality that promotes durability and ease of use because of the dents from the hammering. These dents help to hold food from spilling.
On the other hand, new steel wok is made through molding of thin carbon steel sheets, and this process produces flat carbon steel wok with no dents. As a result, when you stir food in the wok, it is always spilling and makes cooking very tedious.
Therefore, if you want to get the best carbon steel wok, go for a hammered brand even though you will spend a little more on them.
If you consider the above factors, it will be easy for you to choose a carbon steel wok that will serve you for a long time. Bearing that in mind, check out these eight products and make a good choice without stress.
One carbon steel wok in your kitchen is like have six cooking pots in one single utensil. Yes! You can use this kitchen tool to practice as many cooking techniques as you need. You can stir-fry, roast, boil any food with a carbon steel wok and afterward, the cleaning aspect of cooking will be fast and easy.
No matter how urgent you need to get a wok, there are significant factors you have to consider as we have stated in this carbon steel wok reviews. Since you have taken your time to read through and checked out some of the best carbon steel wok out there, you can now make a good choice that will suit your needs with ease.