best stockpots
Credit: Amazon

The Best Stockpots and Why Every Home Cook Needs One

For hearty stews, homemade broth, delicious soups, and more, our top pick is the All-Clad D3.
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A sturdy, quality stockpot is an essential kitchen item for making batches of your favorite soup, a hearty stew, pasta for a large gathering, or canning summer harvests for year-round enjoyment. This kitchen workhorse does not only come in handy when making large portions for a family gathering or the week ahead, but it's a great tool to freeze batches, so you have just what you need to put a quick and healthy meal on the table.

With an abundance of stockpots on the market, we researched and asked Allrecipes Allstars — our trusted network of home cooks — for their favorites as well as what qualities make for a great stockpot. Allstar Amanda Scarlati explains, "Something that is durable, not thin, and will last on the stovetop if it needs to simmer all day." Other Allstars agree that size and capacity, a snug fit lid, easy-to-hold handles, and type of material are determining factors when choosing a stockpot. Below, we've curated a list of some of the best stockpots available, including our top pick, the All-Clad D3.

Our Favorites

Bonded Dishwasher Safe Stockpot
Credit: Amazon

Best Overall: All-Clad D3 Stainless Steel Stockpot

View at Amazon ($348)

Also available at Sur La Table.

Why It's Great 

  • Durable
  • Cooks evenly
  • Can go in the oven

Grain of Salt 

  • Higher price point

This All-Clad D3 stockpot is an initial investment with a higher price point, but this versatile stockpot can be used for an array of recipes, and you're likely to use it frequently. "I've had this exact stockpot for 3.5 years, and it is excellent!" says Allrecipes Allstar Kelsey Riley. "I have no complaints and love the way my dishes come out when I cook using it."

Designed with tri-ply construction with two layers of stainless steel, this offers uniform heat distribution, and it's also lightweight, so it's easy to put away in the cupboard after washing up.

This stockpot has a wide base, making it easy to saute ingredients before pouring in liquids. And thanks to its secure, tight-fitting lid, you won't have to worry about too much evaporation. What's more, this stockpot can withstand intense heat, giving it dual functionality. First, saute or brown meat on the stove, and place it in the oven to roast or continue cooking up to 600 degrees F.

The Details: Stainless steel; 8-quart capacity; 14.13 x 11.25 x 5.75 inches; lid included

Enameled-Steel-Stockpot
Credit: Surla Table

Best Enamel: Le Creuset Enameled 8-Quart Stockpot

View on Amazon ($130)

Also Available at Sur La Table

Why It's Great 

  • Even heat distribution 
  • Can go in the oven

Grain of Salt

  • Hand-wash only 

This beautiful, painted enameled stockpot comes in several colors, so you can choose which hue best suits your mood and kitchen. "This pot has an even heat distribution, a nice 8-quart capacity, is easy to clean, and it's PRETTY…," says Allstar Jane Wilcox. "I'm able to create soups that are tantalizing taste bud teasers AND incorporate lovely interesting texture!"  Made from heavy-gauge carbon steel with a double coat of enamel, you never need to worry about this pot absorbing flavors or odors from your creations.

Durable and versatile, this stockpot will likely be one of your most frequently used and favorite kitchen accessories, especially since it can also go in the oven and withstand temperatures up to 450 degrees F. And don't expect long waiting periods to heat water. "On the induction range, it comes to a rolling boil in no time," notes Wilcox.  This stockpot comes with a tight-fitting lid that minimizes evaporation and has easy to hold handles — an essential factor when moving and lifting a heavy-filled pot.

The Details: Heavy-gauge carbon steel with porcelain-enamel finish; 8-quart capacity; 10.0 x 12.5 x 9.8 inches; lid included

Stainless Steel Saucepot with Lid
Credit: Amazon

Best Budget: Cook N Home 12-Quart Stainless Steel Stockpot

View on Amazon ($43)

Also available at Cook N Home.

Why It's Great 

  • Affordable
  • Dishwasher-safe for easy cleanup
  • Transparent lid so can watch food cook

Grain of Salt 

  • Oven-safe, but only to 350 degrees F

The Cook N Home 12-quart stockpot has riveted handles that are easy to grip and hold, and they stay cool, so you don't need to grab mitts before transporting the pot. The tempered glass lid allows you to watch food cook without removing it, and the vent lets steam escape. The low price point makes it affordable for most budgets, whether you need to replace your current stockpot or are ready to have your first one. With a 12-quart capacity, the pot's size allows you to make good-sized batches of tomato sauce, a meat-based stock, or even brine a chicken or small-sized turkey for a special meal. Its size also makes it fantastic for canning and preserving food.

Compatible with all types of stovetops, including induction, you don't need to worry about which type you have at home. You can also place this one in the oven as long as temperatures don't exceed 350 degrees F. This model can go directly into the dishwasher, so cleanup is easy.

The Details: Stainless steel; 12-quart capacity; 14.37 x 14.37 x 10.23 inches; lid included

Related: A Complete List of the Best Pots and Pans We've Ever Tested

Stainless 12-Quart Stockpot
Credit: Amazon

Best Stainless Steel: Cuisinart MultiClad Pro Stainless Steel Stockpot

View on Amazon ($140)

Also available at Bed Bath & Beyond and Walmart.

Why It's Great 

  • Dishwasher safe
  • Handles don't heat up (on stovetop)
  • Oven safe up to 550 degrees F

Grain of Salt 

  • Higher price tag

Similar to the Cook N Home stockpot, the Cuisinart MultiClad Pro Stainless Steel Stockpot has riveted handles that don't heat up, so you won't have to worry about burning yourself or putting on kitchen mitts first. The handles are ergonomic and easy to hold ​​— a bonus when you're lifting a heavy stockpot filled with a stew or broth. If you want to brown meat before roasting it in the oven, there's no need to use another piece of cookware because this stockpot can handle temperatures up to 550 degrees F.

Thanks to a snug-fitting lid, you'll reduce the time and energy spent waiting for water to boil, and limited liquid will evaporate while simmering. When it comes time to pour your sauces into other containers or bowls, the rimmed lip makes it easy without spilling or splattering. And even better news: You can place this stockpot directly in the dishwasher for simple cleanup.

The Details: Stainless steel; 12-quart capacity; 13.58 x 12.8 x 8.66 inches; lid included

Tramontina Covered Stock Pot
Credit: Amazon

Best Large Batch: Tramontina 16-Quart Stainless Steel Covered Stockpot

View on Amazon ($100)

Also available on Walmart

Why It's Great 

  • Dishwasher safe for easy cleanup
  • Oven-safe
  • Sleek looking

Grain of Salt 

  • On the heavier side at 8 pounds

If you're in the market for a more oversized capacity stockpot, consider the Tramontina Gourmet Stainless Steel Stockpot to make large batches of stock and stew or boil a feast of lobsters or crabs. With a secure-fitting stainless steel lid, there will be little evaporation from your sauces. And when it comes time to transfer your contents, the riveted handles make it easy to lift and transport the pot.

This stockpot works on any type of stovetop, including induction. If you like to brown meat or saute vegetables on the stove before transferring them to roast in the oven, this stockpot allows up to 500 degrees F.

Cleanup is a cinch, too, thanks to its stainless steel and dishwasher-safe construction.

The Details: Stainless steel; 16-quart capacity; 16.5 x 14.63 x 11.38 inches; lid included

Related: The 6 Best Stainless Steel Cookware Sets for Home Cooks

Our Takeaway

Our best overall pick is the All-Clad D3, thanks to an Allstar recommendation for its versatility and durability. The Tramontina Gourmet 16-Quart Stainless Steel Stockpot is also a favorite if you want a bigger-sized stockpot for making large batches to feed a gathering or for freezing ready-to-go meals in a pinch.

 How to Pick the Right Stockpot 

Material

Stainless steel is a preferred material for its durability. Although there are aluminum stockpots, Allstar Christina Whaley advises against them because "they tend to crack and scorch soups easily." You'll also want to consider the weight of the pot because once you add liquids, it can get heavy and, therefore, harder to lift or move around. 

Capacity

Stockpots range in size, but a 12-quart size will typically suffice for a home cook, whether you're making chicken stock, a chili stew, or soup. "I need a pot large enough to make big batches of sauce, but also to brine a turkey," says Allstar Amanda Scarlati. "I wanna fit a whole turkey carcass for stock or stew, or use it to cook clusters of snow crab claws fully submerged with enough room for the potatoes, corn, and the rest of the crab boil fixins."  If you're short on cupboard space, you may prefer an 8-quart pot, but it all comes down to needs, preferences, and goals. 

Handles

The handles are a critical component of any stockpot because you need to be able to lift and transport it with relative ease, even when it's heavy. Allstar Uzo Orimalade considers the handles before deciding on a stockpot: "If I have to move the pot using kitchen gloves or a kitchen towel, the handles have to make that easy to do." 

Lid

While many stockpots come with lids, they are sometimes sold separately. According to Allstar Orimalade, a well-fitting top is essential in reducing evaporation. The ability to cover your stockpot will save you time and energy. Another advantage of a lid is avoiding splattering when cooking, which helps with a shorter cleanup time.  

Common Questions

What is a stockpot used for? 

A stockpot is typically used to simmer stock and broths and usually has the capacity to fit a whole chicken or even a turkey inside. You can make a variety of dishes, including a hearty stew, chili, or boiling lobsters.

What is the difference between a stockpot, a soup pot, and a saucepan? 

The differences between these three types of pots are the size, shape, and how they are used. A stockpot has tall or steep sides, two handles, and a lid. A saucepan has shorter sides than a stockpot, usually one handle, and is typically used for daily cooking, such as making a pot of rice, quinoa, beans, or smaller-sized sauces or soups. A soup pot is similar to a stockpot but with a  heavier base and may be wider than a stockpot.

Can I substitute a slow cooker or Dutch oven for a stockpot?

A Dutch oven and stockpot are often similar in size, but they aren't ideal to substitute one for the other because they are made from different materials. Dutch ovens are typically crafted with cast iron, while a quality stockpot is made of stainless steel. Another difference is dutch ovens usually can go into the oven, but not all stockpots are designed to withstand that amount of heat — and it also depends on the handles' material. 

Why Take Our Word For It? 

In order to round out our list, we consulted our Allrecipes Allstars, expert home cooks who provide insights, content, and preferred cookware. We then paired research with Allstar favorites to narrow down the best stockpots on the market.