In 2015, “The Pioneer Woman” Ree Drummond decided to throw her cap into the ring to compete with the established big-name culinary accessory brands by launching her own line of affordable, high-quality cookware.
The resulting Pioneer Woman Collection is designed to give home cooks the same satisfying experience she enjoys whipping up grub at home on the Drummond Ranch in Pawhuska, Oklahoma.
But how well does the stuff actually perform in the kitchen? I took a closer look so that you don’t have to.
What Does The Collection Include?
As of 2020, The Pioneer Woman line of cookware has expanded significantly to feature several different sets. However, the heart and soul of the collection are its two bread-and-butter combo packs: the basic 10-piece set and a more extensive 24-piece set.
The entire collection is available through Walmart and other select retailers, but you can also find certain pieces separately on Amazon.
Features & Benefits
What’s so great about Pioneer Woman cookware? I’m glad you asked.
All of the cookware, with the exception of the cast iron skillet and ceramic baking dish, is fashioned from porcelain-enameled aluminum and features a non-stick cooking surface. This means it’s lightweight, heats quickly and evenly, and prevents pesky clinging.
The genuine cast iron skillet comes pre-seasoned for immediate use right out of the box. It did an excellent job of browning a cornbread test batch with no mysterious smells or sticking issues.
As a rule, the pieces in these sets are big enough to handle most of your favorite dishes but not so big that you’ll struggle to find storage space for them after cleanup.
The pots and pans are all nest-able, as are the skillets and the measuring bowls and cups if you opt for the more elaborate set.
All in all, they provide a good compromise between capacity and compactness.
As far as non-stick cookware goes, I was quite pleased by how well the core pieces worked. The combination of the heat-distributing construction and durable non-stick coating promoted effortless browning—but not burning—and released food without a fight.
You may have a little more trouble dislodging dishes from the cast iron skillet or ceramic baking dish, depending on what you’re making, but no more than you would with any other comparable type of cookware.
I was curious about what other users think of The Pioneer Woman Collection, so I went on a mission to see what they’re saying. Here are a few reviews that echo my general sentiments:
Looking for something different? Check out these alternatives to Pioneer Woman Cookware.
- SET INCLUDES: 1-quart and 3-quart saucepans with lids, 6-quart stockpot with lid, 8.5-inch and 10-inch frying pans, 3-quart sauté pan with lid, slotted turner and spoon
- DURABLE DESIGN: Nonstick pots and pans from Rachael Ray are crafted with durable aluminum and sturdy hard enamel porcelain exteriors to stand up to busy kitchens
- ENHANCED PFOA-FREE NONSTICK: Cookware set features espresso-colored, PFOA-free nonstick for effortless food release and easy cleanup
- CONVENIENCE AND CONTROL: The 12-piece nonstick cookware set boasts dual-riveted rubberized stainless steel handles and shatter-resistant glass lids; includes slotted turner and spoon
- OVEN SAFE: Oven safe to 400 degrees F, these versatile pots and pans are suitable for all stovetops except induction
Celebrity chef Rachel Ray’s collection of essentials is similar in size, style, price, and quality to The Pioneer Woman’s 10-piece set, but with a more modern aesthetic and two additional handy slotted utensils.
- Durable aluminum cookware set: Heavy-duty aluminum construction means the cookware set heats quickly and evenly
- Top quality nonstick cookware: Interiors feature premium, top-quality nonstick for great food release and easy cleanup
- Easy to clean, stain resistant cookware: Porcelain enamel exteriors add a dash of color to the kitchen and are stain resistant and easy to clean
- Cookware lids lock in heat and flavor: Shatter-resistant glass lids lock in heat and flavor, and a convenient slotted spoon and turner set is included
- Oven safe handles: Dual riveted cookware handles are Oven safe to 350 degrees F
Another top-rated cookware collection endorsed by a beloved TV personality, Paula Deen’s 12-piece Riverbend set is practically identical to Rachel Ray’s, only a few dollars cheaper, y’all.
- The Gotham Steel 10 piece pots and pans set include everything you need for your kitchen, including a complete suite of nonstick and lightweight fry pans, stock pots, sauce pans, steamers.
- Award winning Ti-Cerama coating ensures the ultimate release - everything just slides right off the pan, No need for oil or butter
- Ultra-durable, scratch-proof & metal utensil safe ceramic coating ensures years of consistent and reliable use
- Solid aluminum composition ensures even heat distribution all around
- Lightweight design makes for a comfortable cooking experience
While belonging to the same general category as the other two alternatives, Gotham Steel’s cookware has the distinction of being finished with a mixture of titanium and ceramic for effortless releasing every time.
The Pioneer Woman Cookware Collection offers an impressive assortment of kitchen mainstays for a surprisingly low price. As such, it’s a solid choice for both the novice that’s just beginning their education in the culinary arts or the experienced cook seeking relatively high-performance kitchen tools at a low cost.
While there are definitely superior cookware collections on the market, you’re unlikely to find any that promise a better bargain.