Difference Between Fry Pan and Saute Pan (With Table)

It might be tough to distinguish between different types of pans for a newbie cook when purchasing kitchenware. A well-stocked kitchen includes a wide range of high-quality utensils that may be used for a variety of purposes. We’re talking about the distinctions between a frypan and a sauté pan, however, there are many different types of pots and pans. Because of their flexibility and style, these two pans are important in any professional kitchen.

This article highlights the features of both types of pans and compares them head-on to make the readers understand the functions and purposes both the pans serve.

Fry Pan vs Saute Pan

The difference between a fry pan and saute pan is that a fry pan is great for quickly frying various foods while uniformly cooking them without much humidity, whereas a sauté pan is utilized by tossing things back and forth in the air while cooking on medium to high temperature with oil or butter. As the name suggests, a fry pan is essentially used for ‘frying’ the contents and the saute pan is ideal for tossing and heating the ingredients with moisture and slurry-ness.

A compact pan with sloping sides is known as a fry pan. Stir-frying or hot-frying is a way of cooking in which items are fried quickly in a little quantity of oil or fat, generally at a considerably large heat source. The sloped sides make stirring, flipping, and rotating items in the pan simpler, ensuring that everything cooks fast and evenly.
It usually has a diameter of 20 to 30 cm (8 to 12 in), short edges that flare outwards, a long grip, and no cover. On the other side of certain bigger fry pans, there may be a short grab handle.

Saute pans on the other hand combine the functions of a saucepan with a fry pan. It’s a great addition to any kitchen because it can be used for the preparation of a wide range of foods and cooking styles.

A sauté pan is similar in structure and size to a fry pan with some minor differences. A saute pan’s edge flares less and it may have a covering lid to trap the moisture and for simmering purposes. It is almost always non-stick and coated with Teflon.

Comparison Table Between Fry Pan and Saute Pan

Parameters of ComparisonFry PanSaute Pan
DetailsA frying pan is a widely used kitchen utensil with varied purposes. It consists of a smooth surface that is used for frying, sizzling, and browning food.A sauté pan is a closed-lid pan with a shallow bottom and a deep neck. The ingredients are tossed and simmered in it.
Purpose and UsageFor frying and sauteing.For sauteing and light tossing of veggies and other ingredients.
Structure and AppearanceWith a handlebar and no cover, it has a flat base and somewhat low sides that flare outwards.The bottom is flat, while the sides are quite low and do not flare. A lid is frequently included. Suitable for storing all of the food in one layer.
Also known asFrying pan and skilletSauteing pan and toss plate.
Heat CapacityCan resist high heat sources and conduction is good.Cannot resist high temperatures due to Teflon coating.

What is Fry Pan?

A fry pan is a pan with a smooth surface that is used to fry, roast, and tan meals. It has a diameter of 8 to 12 inches, with low sides that curve outwards, a long grip, and no cover. On the other side of certain bigger pans, there may be a tiny grab handle. The bottom is flat, while the sides are quite low and do not flare. A lid is commonly not included. Suitable for storing all of the food in one layer.

The sloping edges of a fry pan allow it to execute a “bounce” movement during cooking. This approach is great for quickly frying a variety of items while ensuring that they cook properly. Fry pans are seldom used without a cover to allow for simple addition and stirring of contents.

For various characteristics and features, fry pans were originally fashioned of ductile iron, carbon steel, or brass coated with tin. Copper pans have a strong heat conductivity, which makes them ideal for evenly frying and even sauteing.

However, because copper cookware is extremely reactive with most meals, they are now offered a tin liner that can be changed as it wears out. Carbon steel pans are utilized because, while not uniformly conducting heat, they retain it effectively, making them ideal for searing meats, veggies and fishes too.

What is Saute Pan?

The saute pan gets its name from the Old French terminology “Sauter,” which means “to leap.” This pan is made to prepare a bigger amount of food without cluttering it. A sauté pan is used at medium to high temperature with oil and butter, throwing items back and forth around the air. Food should be golden with a good crust and not mushy when cooked in this pan. To keep heat and spatter at bay, this pan is usually used with a cover.

A saute pan consists of a modest depth, square or rounded edges, a strong handle, and a lid. It is usually constructed of metal with a thick ground foundation that permits fast temperature swings when the quantity of heat applied to it is raised or diminished.

A standard sauté pan has a capacity of 5 quarts, however, different sizes are also accessible. Higher, direct pans enable for simpler light frying of larger quantities of food with less oil, and also easy flipping and searing of the contents.

A sauté pan is similar in appearance and size to a fry pan, but its edges curve less and it is equipped with a glass and iron-framed lid for simmering. It is usually coated with Teflon or a ‘non-stick’ coating to prevent food from adhering to its surface and to make sauteing and tossing easier.

Main Differences Between Fry Pan and Saute Pan

  1. A Fry pan is essentially used for frying whereas saute pan is used for sauteing and simmering the ingredients.
  2. A Fry pan is made up of either carbon iron or copper-coated tin and it doesn’t have a Teflon coating whereas sauteing pan always is equipped with non-stick coating.
  3. A Fry pan is essentially heavier than a saute pan.
  4. A Fry pan does not come with a lid but saute pans require a glass lid for its purpose.
  5. Fry pans can resist high temperatures and conduct heat quickly and evenly whereas saute pans only operate in medium to high temperatures. Exposing it to a higher temperature can result in peeling off of the Teflon coating.


The best method to comprehend the distinctions between the two types of pans is to glance at the edges of the pan. The pan is a fry pan if the edges are tilted. It’s a sauté pan if the sides are flat.

Both pans are essential in the skill of preparing a delectable dinner. A Fry Pan is designed specifically for frying, whereas a Sauté Pan is designed for sautéing. Because of their comparable structures, a fry pan may also be used as a beginner sautéing pan. These pans may be used in any kitchen and will allow you to prepare great dishes for your visitors. Sauté and fry pans may be used to prepare a range of dishes due to their distinctive design and structure.


  1. https://www.recipetips.com/glossary-term/t–34640/saute-pan.asp
  2. https://www.yuppiechef.com/spatula/a-guide-to-frying-pans-choosing-cleaning-care/
2D vs 3D