Aldi's Awesome Pan Vs. The Always Pan. Which Is Better?

If you spend even a fraction of time on social media, if you read major publications like The New York Times or Vogue, or if you just exist in the world, you've seen the Our Place Always Pan advertised. Per Our Place's website, the Always Pan replaces eight pieces of cookware, making it the only pan you need at home.

The Always Pan is having a moment, and seemingly everyone is buying one to streamline their cookware collection and make delicious Instagram-worthy meals. Seeing the attention the Always Pan has been getting, discount grocer Aldi released its own version of the multi-use pan, the Crofton Awesome Pan (via Aldi).

The two pans are remarkably similar, but should fans of the Always Pan ditch their beloved kitchen tool for Aldi's version? We compared the two point by point to determine which is better so you don't have to. Let's get into it.


Size is one of the first things you notice about an item when analyzing it. In a pan, size is extremely important, especially when it claims to be able to replace so many pieces of cookware.

The Always Pan is 10 inches in diameter and 2.7 inches deep, weighs 3 pounds, and can hold 2.6 quarts of liquid (via Our Place). It's large enough to make soup and boil long noodles. The Awesome Pan is a little wider at 10.25 inches in diameter, according to Aldi. Aside from that, the dimensions look about the same as the name-brand version, but they're not listed on the Aldi site so it's hard to know for sure.

Since the two pans are so close in size, we prefer the Awesome Pan for size as it's just a bit wider. Having a wider pan, even by .25-inch in diameter, can make a huge difference when cooking. The extra room is a major bonus, especially when making one-pot meals.

Uses and accessories

Both the Always Pan and the Awesome Pan are marketed as multipurpose pans. Having a pan with so many uses is especially helpful if you have a small kitchen with little storage space. But which one is better?

According to its website, the Always Pan can be used as a "fry pan, saute pan, steamer, skillet, saucier, saucepan, nonstick pan, spatula, and spoon rest." It also comes with a modular lid that traps and releases steam, a beechwood spatula, and a nesting steamer basket & colander. These accessories make the Always Pan incredibly versatile, allowing you to make many kinds of dishes. It's thoughtfully designed, with built-in pour spouts and a slot for resting a spatula. However, the Always Pan is not oven-safe, which is a major drawback.

The Aldi website isn't as detailed, but the Awesome Pan is also very versatile. Aldi's version can also be used as a fry pan, saute pan, skillet, saucier, saucepan, and nonstick pan, but it doesn't come with all the accessories the Always Pan has. The Aldi Reviewer, after reading the user's manual, noted that the Awesome Pan is oven safe up to 300 degrees Fahrenheit, which renders it virtually useless in the oven, as very few foods are cooked at such low oven temperatures.

The Always Pan and Awesome Pan are very similar in usage, and can both be used on any cooktop. But because it has more accessories, we find the Always Pan to be more useful.

Durability and Materials

Most of us aren't buying new cookware every year. Many of us aren't buying it every decade. There are countless people who've been using the same pots and pans they were given at their wedding thirdy years ago. All this is to say that cookware is meant to last. However, not all cookware lasts as long as it's intended to. So which is going to last longer — the Always Pan or the Awesome Pan?

The Always Pan claims to be very durable, and its website details the care instructions, noting that avoiding using metal utensils and washing it by hand will keep it intact longer. Wirecutter noted that some customers have complained about the nonstick coating wearing away after just a few months of use and that the color has chipped, which is a common problem with nonstick pans in general. Proper care should extend the pan's life.

The Awesome Pan hasn't been out long enough for people to note its durability, but since it's also made of aluminum and is not dishwasher safe, it likely will fare the same, potentially even a little worse given its price. Its website mentions that the Awesome Pan, like the Always Pan, is PFOA- and PTFE-free, which is nice for people who are concerned about those chemicals' health effects (via the American Cancer Society).

We give the Always Pan the upper hand in durability since it's had time to prove itself, but it could change over time.


No, it's not necessary to buy a piece of cookware just because it's pretty, but it certainly helps. One of the main selling points of the Always Pan has been its looks, and it's undeniably beautiful. Food Network noted that they love the look of their Always Pan, and scrolling through the Our Place Instagram account is an aesthetic dream. It also comes in a variety of colors, so you can choose what best suits you and your kitchen.

The Awesome Pan is beautiful, too, and it actually has a little bit of a cleaner look since it lacks the pour spouts and knob to keep the spatula in place. It comes in a matte finish, just like the Always Pan, but it's only available in three colors.

When it comes to looks, it's about a draw. The pans look about identical, and unless you've done your research, you probably wouldn't know which is which. Since it comes in more colors, we're giving looks to the Always Pan.


Every aspect of a piece of cookware is important to consider when buying, but the decision often comes down to one factor: price. Even if one option may be slightly less good, if it's significantly less expensive, it might be a better buy.

These two pans are wildly different in price — the Awesome Pan, priced at $24.99 is far cheaper than the Always Pan, which retails for $145. When looking at just those two numbers, it's a clear choice, but durability, uses, accessories, and even looks all need to be considered in tandem with price.

As mentioned, the Always Pan comes with lots of accessories, is multi-functional and durable, and looks nice. The Awesome Pan doesn't have accessories, but it's still functional and beautiful, and if you already have some of those accessories in your kitchen, you can still use it just the same as its pricier competitor. It was clear initially and is clear after consideration: The Awesome Pan wins on price.


All the aforementioned factors are important to consider, but what do any of them matter if the items aren't available to purchase? The Always Pan is a highly coveted item, and there are currently many colors that are out of stock. However, it's a staple of Our Place's inventory, so they're always producing more, and the Always Pan can be purchased through other retailers like Nordstrom.

The Awesome Pan is only available in Aldi stores. It can be looked at online, but not purchased. And, as the Aldi Reviewer pointed out, the Awesome Pan is an Aldi Find, so once it's out of stock, it will no longer be available to purchase. If you want to buy an Awesome Pan, you'll need to do it fast, which might not be possible if you don't live near an Aldi.

When it comes to availability, the Always Pan wins. It's available now, and it will be available later.


Both pans are great pieces of cookware any home chef would be happy to have in their kitchen, and both make cooking a little easier. Instead of banging all your pots and pans together in search of the one item you need, you can grab your Always Pan or your Awesome Pan without worrying whether you've chosen the correct piece of cookware for your dish, which makes them both awesome.

The Always Pan is beautiful and durable, and comes with lots of neat accessories you might not have at home. The Awesome Pan's price can't be beat, and it's very functional. You can't go wrong buying either one.

Both pans are good, but one pan is better, and that is the Always Pan. Yes, it's expensive, but it'll last. You can cook nearly anything in this pan, and it'll quickly become your go-to cookware. Whether it's sitting on your stovetop or tucked away in a cupboard, you'll be glad you chose the Always Pan.