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11/26/2018 12:40 pm  #1


How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

Hi Folks,

I'm looking for a new frying pan for my next adventure but I am having a tough time finding "the right one".  Depending on the day, I bounce between a $10 Walmart frying pan, $70 Non-Stick Titanium Keith and everything in between.  Ideally I am looking for 8-10", non-stick, folding handle and lightweight.  I plan to use the pan to cook pancakes, bacon, eggs, veggies, fish, etc over both a stove and an open fire.  Any suggestions?  What do you use?  Thanks in advance.

 

11/26/2018 2:37 pm  #2


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

I'm probably not the best one to weigh in on this, but I use a cheap Walmart variety like the link below.  However, in an effort to conserve space and weight, we rarely bring it along anymore.  Most of the foods you mentioned (pancakes, bacon, eggs, veggies) are relatively heavy so we've worked them out of our menu.  Instead of pancakes, we do oatmeal, bacon you could do on a stick or grill grate, eggs...maybe boiled, veggies and fish - can be done in or on aluminum foil.

If we weren't portaging much I'd bring it more...but even then I don't see too much of a need beyond the basic description you gave...8-10", non-stick, folding handle and lightweight.  Lots of them fit that bill and most of them under $20.  What does a $70 titanium give you that the others don't?

https://shop.bestreviews.com/products/ozark-trail-9-round-frying-pan-w?cid=1478216846&aid=56672288785&eid=&tid=pla-293946777986&ul=9003940&mt=&n=g&d=c&dm=&dt&sn&adid=282858957008&k=&p=&pc=&ap=1o3&gclid=CjwKCAiA0O7fBRASEiwAYI9QAuqxHKBP54lbd7RMM9T_oSN68Ti_a5vveRm_UvvloKWoOpBgV0u9-RoCu20QAvD_BwE

 

11/26/2018 7:42 pm  #3


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

I don't cook much that requires a pan, but if I do need one, I just flip the lid from my pot upside down. This is the one I have, it's a deep lid meant to double as a pan: https://www.mec.ca/en/product/5018-608/Alpine-2-Pot-Set

 

11/26/2018 8:23 pm  #4


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

I just picked up that Keith titanium non stick pan on Massdrop you mentioned. Didn’t pay $70. Just looked it up $33 US shipped. No tax or duty. So about $43 CAD.  Which is about the same price as my MSR Quick skillet and the Keith pan is lighter and bigger.

Havent used it yet but it looks like a quality item. And pretty light if that is a consideration for you. Just the right size too.

I’m sure it will come back on Massdrop again .

Last edited by ShawnD (11/27/2018 9:39 am)

 

11/26/2018 8:24 pm  #5


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

I've got a hard anodized frying pan, 10", with a foldable handle. No idea what brand it is, as it is around 10 years old, it's still going strong, nothing sticks in it and fries anything like a charm. I'd buy another one in a heartbeat.

 

11/27/2018 12:02 am  #6


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

If you can handle the extra weight, nothing beats cast iron.
https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4890/46019089282_3ea81a8e60_c.jpg
IMG_0567 by Rob Howes, on Flickr

https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4761/38556632870_f73334fea5_c.jpg
IMG_0438 by Rob Howes, on Flickr

 

11/27/2018 12:06 pm  #7


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

Don't overthink it.

I have a nice 3-pot stainless steel nesting set that I picked up at a MEC gear exchange (warranty /exchange) which I think I have only used car-camping. It's nice but too heavy. For hiking & canoeing I use an old 1.5 litre aluminum sauce pan with a pail handle, which I have removed. It was kicking around the garage when I was a teen and suspect it may have been part of a cook set my eldest sister used in Girl Guides. I have two small bowls/plates from those old Boy Scout kits which fit nicely inside the pot and work great as fry pans. My stove burner fits snugly inside as well. Lightweight and functional. Of course I usually trip solo or with one other so if it was a group scene, I would need something more.
The only other thing I bring along is my old 1 cup coffee percolator which is a least 106 years old. That's mainly for sentimental reasons but it also makes a nice cup of coffee.

Last edited by Algonquintripper (11/27/2018 12:08 pm)


Dave
 

11/27/2018 12:31 pm  #8


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

GSI makes a pretty nice frying pan with a folding handle.  There are a few models to choose from, sorry I can't recall what I bought off the top of my head, but you can find one that doesn't weigh much, and they run around $25-$35. 

 

11/28/2018 9:59 am  #9


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

We've had an MSR Skillet for nearly 8 years and it's stood up to my less-than-respectful handling. I've dropped it many times and it's still great. It has a dent in it from one particular hard drop (don't even know which one) but it still works great. It's fairly light weight and has decent non-stick. The handle is interchangeable with our pot set so we only bring one and just switch back and forth as needed. 

https://www.mec.ca/en/product/5052-352/Ceramic-Flex-Skillet

 

 

11/29/2018 12:33 pm  #10


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

   Rob! I'm right there with ya! Never leave home without my cast iron! Absolutely love it!
http://i66.tinypic.com/1432gt0.jpg


I'm just gone Fishin!
 

11/29/2018 7:44 pm  #11


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

Here is a pic of my favourite fry pan which I bought from Campmor back around 2007. I love it. Its non stick, ~7.75" and 155 grams. It's perfect for pancakes. I use it as a plate/bowl too. There is no handle. I think its aluminium but I'm not sure because I don't notice any branding and I forgot exactly what I bought. I tried to find a replica so for a spare or for the wife to eat her pancake while I cook another. However, I had no luck. I'm sure I bought it for a pittance but I haven't been able to find anything reasonably priced that is similar. Should have bought 2 or 3 back in the day.
http://i66.tinypic.com/oqas10.jpg

 

11/30/2018 10:50 am  #12


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

Confession: I have a frying pan obsession. Actually, it's a frying obsession. Nevertheless, my thoughts overall:

Qualities of a good frying pan (in no particular order):
1) Generally non-stick
2) Nesting, or stackable in some way 
3) Light-ish (cast iron is a no-go for me)
4) Durable-ish (I've had 
5) Has a lip that can facilitate flipping of bannock. 

I've had at least a dozen, but here are some more recent non-stick ones in the picture below, from largest to smallest.

a) GSI Bugaboo (30 cm)
b) Trangia (large one)
c) MSR
d) Primus (now discontinued, I believe)
e) Trangia (smaller one)

http://i66.tinypic.com/2nu7ukz.jpg



http://i68.tinypic.com/34dq1rq.jpg


I've also have the Fry-Bake, Trangia non-stick and stainless steel from MSR. I'm not a huge fan of the ones that aren't non-stick, eventually (even with lots of oil) you'll get something that sticks really badly. 

I don't like the MSR and Primus ones - the lip is too high and too steep. They're almost pots. It's hard to get a spatula under a thin piece of bannock or worse yet a pancake. I cut a thin kitchen cutting board to size, in order to protect the bottom (and to use as a pasta strainer/cutting board). 
http://i65.tinypic.com/29e4xau.jpg


The Trangia ones are a bit better, the lip is thinner. Also, there's a cutting board that nests with them. But I still dislike the 90-degree lip. The other issue with these pans is that you need to use a pot gripper - this will scratch the non-stick coating on the lip (see below). Not a huge deal, doesn't really affect the performance, but a bit of a peeve. 
http://i63.tinypic.com/2d1aidu.jpg


My hands-down favourite is the GSI bugaboo. I use the 20-cm for 1-2 people, and the 30-cm for 3+ people. There are plates that nest perfectly into the pot,  Plates are out there for both sizes, harder to find plates that fit for the 20-cm pan. The regular plate fits perfectly for the 30-cm frying pan. The lip is nicely shaped for flipping. Quite durable. Reasonably light-weight - any lighter, I think you'd have serious hot-spots in the bottom (there are some now, but not bad). 

http://i63.tinypic.com/28vswag.jpg


https://www.mec.ca/en/product/5035-557/Bugaboo-30cm-Frypan
https://www.mec.ca/en/product/4007-020/Cascadian-Plate

Cheers
Marko

 

 

11/30/2018 12:40 pm  #13


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

For solo trips I use a $5.00 (on sale) 10"  tfal frying pan from Canadian Tire. I removed the handle (1 screw), then tack welded a nut in the existing bracket and made a handle from a broom stick. I used a fastener on the handle with one end like a screw and the other end is like a machine screw, so the handle is removable. I use my msr titanium plate as a lid and it fits perfectly. It works great for everything I like to cook,  such as pancakes, fish, rice, steak, bannock ect. I know its on the cheap (that's the whole point) and will likely not last the test of time, but for $5.00 and a little tinkering,It is not ultra light or anything but light enough, its  the way to go for me because I'm cheap. Hope this helps.
I'll share some pics when I figure out how to get them on here !!

Last edited by Phil.K (11/30/2018 1:06 pm)

 

11/30/2018 1:26 pm  #14


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

http://i66.tinypic.com/wkl8h4.jpg

 

12/05/2018 10:33 pm  #15


Re: How can choosing a frying pan be so difficult?

dontgroandaddy wrote:

GSI makes a pretty nice frying pan with a folding handle.  There are a few models to choose from, sorry I can't recall what I bought off the top of my head, but you can find one that doesn't weigh much, and they run around $25-$35. 

This. I've had the gsi frying pan with folding handle for at least 8 years and it's still going strong.

Purely opinion, I can't believe people still lug cast iron into the back country. Are you still paddling cedar canvas boats and sporting tump lines? Geez. Kidding aside, I've never successfully flipped an egg on one of those without first having to grease the sh#$ out of it first. Different strokes I guess...

Gah!

 

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