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Aldi has long been in the business of imitating name-brand products and selling them for a fraction of the price. Whether it’s cereal or Hawaiian rolls or even larger items such as cookware, Aldi continually surprises us with its product dupes.
This past winter, Aldi grabbed attention when it sold a Crofton Awesome Pan, which was an affordable knockoff of an expensive name-brand Always Pan. The discount grocer is not done selling cheaper versions of pricey cookware. This spring, Aldi introduced some copycat attempts at expensive Caraway Pan: a saute pan with lid and a frying pan.
Here, we’re taking a closer look at one of those Caraway knockoffs: the Crofton 11 Inch Fry Pan.
The Crofton 11 Inch Fry Pan (Product Code: 706428) cost $14.99 at the time of publication. In contrast, a Caraway Fry Pan cost $95 at the time of publication, so the Aldi version is about 16% of the cost of a Caraway Fry Pan.
Here’s more information about the fry pan, according to Aldi:
- Available in Green or Ivory (I purchased a Green pan)
- 11″ fry pan
- Beautiful, modern body design
- Find matching Saucepan and Saute Pan to complete your set
- Made without PFOA
- Features a durable stainless steel handle
- Nonstick coating for easy release and cleanup
- Compatible with gas, electric, and glass ceramic cooktops
- Dishwasher safe
- Made in China
- Comes with a two-year warranty
The warranty for this fry pan is serviced by Protel, a common Aldi warranty provider. Protel has serviced other Aldi products such as the Crofton 4.5 Quart Saute Pan, the Belavi Wooden Potting Bench, and the Crofton 14″ Stir Fry Wok Pan.
The fry pan comes with a warranty card and a small user manual. The manual states this pan is suitable for all cooktops excluding induction. It’s heat resistant up to 356 degrees Fahrenheit. Use a stove burner that matches the size of the bottom of the pan, and use heat settings of medium or low for best results. Never preheat the pan on high heat. The bottom of the pan may scratch glass or ceramic stovetops over time, so ensure the pan is placed carefully onto the stovetop. Use heat-resistant silicone, nylon, or wooden utensils to avoid scratching the pan’s nonstick coating.
Before using the pan, hand wash it with warm water, dish soap, and a non-abrasive washcloth or sponge. Rinse and dry thoroughly. While this pan is safe for the dishwasher, washing by hand will extend the lifetime of the product.
This is a nice-looking pan, and it does look similar to the expensive Caraway Fry Pan. One thing I’m disappointed about is that the handle is not comfortable to hold. It has a concave shape, and the handles edges dig into my hand when I pick up the pan. Aldi has sold pans with much more comfortable handles, so this is unfortunate.
One key difference between this Crofton Fry Pan and the Caraway Fry Pan is the fact that the Aldi pan is only heat resistant up to 356 degrees, while the Caraway pan is oven safe up to 550 degrees.
Otherwise, it’s a pretty pan, and it appears to cook as well as other nonstick pans I’ve used. I’ll update this post as needed after I’ve had more time to put this fry pan through the paces.
The Crofton 11 Inch Fry Pan is an attractive-looking nonstick pan that comes in a couple of different colors and is an imitation of an expensive Caraway Fry Pan. It doesn’t have the most comfortable handle, and it’s not oven safe up to a high temperature like Caraway pans are. Otherwise, if you need a simple nonstick pan, this will do the job.