Which roasting pan with a lid is best?

Whether it reminds you of Sunday dinner or grand holiday celebrations, there’s something so comforting about a delicious piece of meat roasted in the oven with vegetables surrounding it. If you want the most impressive-looking turkey or rack of lamb for your table, though, a roasting pan with a lid is a must-have. 

Roasting pans can withstand high temperatures to roast meats and veggies properly. It’s easy to create gravy from the drippings that collect in the bottom of the pan and having a lid helps ensure the meat stays as juicy as possible. If you’re looking for a versatile pan that cooks your meat quickly, the Viking 3-Ply Stainless Steel Oval Roaster With Metal Induction Lid is one of the best. 

What to know before you buy a roasting pan with a lid

Lids

Many roasting pans don’t come with a lid. You can successfully roast meat and vegetables without covering them, so it isn’t a necessity. However, a roasting pan with a lid has benefits that make cooking your favorite meals easier.

If your food is browning too quickly, you can put the lid on the pan to slow the cooking process and keep the exterior of your meat from burning. Roasting with the lid also helps trap moisture, so your meat stays juicy. The lid also helps keep food warm when you’re waiting to serve it.

Materials

Roasting pans are available in several materials. 

  • Stainless steel is typically the best material for roasting pans because it’s durable and warp-resistant even at high temperatures. It offers even heat distribution and is easy to clean, too.
  • Aluminum is another popular material because it’s affordable and conducts heat well. However, it isn’t as strong as stainless steel and can react with acidic foods. 
  • Tri-ply combines an aluminum core with a stainless-steel outer layer to give you the best of both worlds. These pans conduct heat well, are easy to clean and don’t warp.  They don’t react to acidic foods, either.  
  • Nonstick can be an effective material if you want a pan as easy to clean as possible. You can’t use metal utensils on these pans, though, because you can damage the nonstick coating.

Shapes

Roasting pans that come with lids are typically oval. The shape of the pan doesn’t affect its performance, but oval pans offer less cooking space than rectangular pans. Rectangular pans are often more versatile, as well, because you can use them to make lasagna and other layered casseroles. 

Sizes

A roasting pan should be large enough to fit the food you’ll prepare in it. That means it should hold a turkey or other large cuts of meat for holidays and special occasions.

A small 14-inch roasting pan can typically hold a 12-pound turkey, while a medium 16-inch pan can accommodate a 16-pound bird. Opt for a large 18-inch pan if you usually prepare 20-pound turkeys.

What to look for in a quality roasting pan with a lid

Handles

A roasting pan can get heavy when it contains a large piece of meat or other food. That’s why the pan should have solid, sturdy handles that make it easy to carry when it’s full of hot food.

Thick, upright handles made of stainless steel and riveted to the pan are usually the strongest. Thin handles can be difficult to grab with some potholders, and those that are screwed on can come loose easily. 

Racks

Most roasting pans include a rack that lets you elevate your meat above the bottom of the pan so that heat can circulate around it more easily. Some pans come with a V-shaped rack, but higher-end models have a flat rack.

Flat racks are typically larger, so they work well with big cuts of meat. They also provide more room at the bottom of the pan for other foods, such as herbs and veggies. 

Stovetop usage

Many people use the drippings from their roasting pans to make gravy or sauce for their meat. If you want to deglaze the pan, you’ll need to place it on your stovetop. You also need to place the pan on your stove if you’re going to sear your meat before roasting. 

Some pans don’t distribute heat evenly, so they can warp when exposed to direct heat. Heavier pans and those with a flat bottom tend to work better on the stove when preparing gravy and sauces. 

How much you can expect to spend on a roasting pan with a lid

Roasting pans with a lid usually cost $20-$250. Small pans made of nonstick materials or porcelain enamel typically go for $20-$50, while you’ll pay $50-$100 for a higher-quality stainless steel pan. Highly durable tri-ply pans cost $100-$200.

Roasting pan with a lid FAQ

How do I place meat and other food in a roasting pan?

A. Set the rack in the middle of the pan and center your food on it. There should be room on all sides for the heat to circulate freely around the meat. Place the lid on the pan before adding it to a preheated oven. 

What can I use a roasting pan for besides roasting meat?

A. Fish and vegetables also roast well in these pans. While roasting pans are designed for higher temperatures, you can also use them for baking at lower temperatures. Depending on the size and shape of your pan, you may also be able to make casseroles and other baked dishes in it. 

What’s the best roasting pan with a lid to buy?

Top roasting pan with a lid

Viking 3-Ply Stainless Steel Oval Roaster with Metal Induction Lid

Viking 3-Ply Stainless Steel Oval Roaster with Metal Induction Lid

What you need to know: This versatile roasting pan heats evenly to produce perfectly roasted meats and veggies and has a mirror-like finish that looks great on your table.

What you’ll love: In addition to a roasting pan, the lid allows it to serve as a stockpot or Dutch oven. The lid can also be used separately as a casserole or serving dish. It boasts three-ply stainless steel construction for even heat distribution. It can also be used on the stovetop for deglazing and making gravy. 

What you should consider: This pan is fairly thick, which can affect cooking times.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Macy’s

Top roasting pan with a lid for the money

Granite Ware 3-Pound Capacity Covered Round Roaster

Granite Ware 3-Pound Capacity Covered Round Roaster

What you need to know: This solid roasting pan works well for everyday meals and cooks meat evenly, though it may not be large enough for holiday gatherings.

What you’ll love: It can hold up to 3 pounds of meat with the lid on. The enamel surface is naturally nonstick and dishwasher-safe. It distributes heat evenly and allows for better browning.

What you should consider: The lid doesn’t fit perfectly, so there isn’t an airtight seal.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

All-Clad E7879664 Stainless Steel Covered Oval Roaster

All-Clad E7879664 Stainless Steel Covered Oval Roaster

What you need to know: This large capacity roasting pan combines form and function and works extremely well for large groups or holiday gatherings.

What you’ll love: It’s made of heavy-gauge polished stainless steel and can fit up to a 20-pound cut of meat. It can be used on all stovetops, including induction cooktops. It has large loop handles to make it easy to carry.

What you should consider: It’s a fairly heavy pan, so it may be difficult for some users to maneuver. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Jennifer Blair writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
 

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