There’s a new trend in the culinary world and it’s one that brings back a traditional cooking material. Terracotta pots are being used in kitchens throughout America and around the world.
Earthenware cooking has a rustic charm and the material is perfect for simmering, roasting, frying, baking, boiling, and even slow cooking.
If you’re interested in cooking with clay, you’ve probably asked the question: is terracotta safe for cooking? Let’s look at the facts and see what the answer is.
Terracotta is Non-Toxic
Terracotta is a natural material made from clay. It is shaped and fired in a kiln to make it hard, durable, and ready for use in the kitchen, or even over a fire at a campsite. Some clay products can contain lead, usually because of the paint that is used.
That’s why you shouldn’t buy just any terracotta pot that you see for sale. When considering any product, check that it is designed for cooking and that it is lead-free.
Most of your favorite recipes can be adapted to cooking with terracotta, so you’ll likely be excited to start working with this unique material.
You can have confidence knowing that terracotta is non-toxic and that there are no metals or animal products used in production. This makes terracotta ideal for vegans, vegetarians, and anyone who wants an environmentally-friendly cookware solution.
Are Glazed Terracotta Pots Safe for Cooking?
With many people interested in cooking with terracotta, most manufacturers now offer glazed pots. These are convenient because they are non-stick and easy to clean.
The glaze is safe and won’t contaminate food. It is flame and heatproof. The only thing you need to do differently with a glazed pot is to soak it in lukewarm water and then wash it with a mild detergent before using it for the first time.
This will remove any dust, debris, and manufacturing residues that could be on the pot.
You can easily test a glazed pot to see if it is safe for use. Simply squeeze some lemon juice onto a flat part of the glaze (usually at the bottom of the pot) and let it sit for a few minutes.
If the glaze starts to discolor and doesn’t return to normal after rinsing with water and then wiping, then the glaze isn’t food-safe. If the glaze remains consistent, then you’re good to go.
Buy Lead-Free Terracotta Pots
Some terracotta paint can contain lead which could leach at high temperatures. Rather than take a risk, avoid painted pots unless they are specifically labeled as being lead-free.
The Best Terracotta Pots to Try Today
To answer the question; is terracotta safe for cooking, we can easily say yes, while keeping the above information in mind. To make sure that you get a food-safe and durable terracotta pot, start by considering the following two options.
- Aurabeam Mexican Terracotta Cooking Pot is a great one to start with. Handmade and painted with lead-free paint, this pot is 100% food-safe for cooking at home.
- If you prefer a large and open design for casseroles and other recipes, you can consider this Belari 6” Terracotta Cazuelas Rustic Clay Pan. It’s a Spanish-style serving and cooking dish and is 100% food-safe with a simple glaze.
Cooking with terracotta is fun and unique. It will inspire you to try new recipes and cooking styles. There’s nothing to stop you when you know that terracotta is safe for cooking.