Stir Fry Pan vs Wok


If you are into Chinese cuisine, stir fry food might be already familiar to you. This type of cuisine is very popular across nations. The ingredients has many varieties and it taste very delicious. We can make stir fry from many kind of vegetable and meats or seafood. We also can add lots of different type of sauces. Stir fry food is commonly cooked with wok or stir-fry pan. These two cooking wares are compare to each other pretty frequent and some people may choose one type over the other. Here in this article we will give you information about stir fry pan and wok, also how are they different.

Stir Fry Pan

Stir fry pan is a type of cooking pan, which is intentionally made to do stir-frying. Stir-fry method is originated from China where the ingredients is all fried using small amount of oil while being stirred in a stir fry pan or wok. Today people from around the world use the method. Stir fry pan have a flat and deep straight sides with slightly rounded base or more commonly a flat base that slopes out and upward. It is made to cook many ingredients at once similar to sauteing. Stir fry pan comes in various sizes, which can be picked according to your need. Stir fry pan is made intentionally to allow heat to be distributed well across that base while the sloping sides make it easier to stir and turn ingredients as they cook so they will cook evenly. The pan which made of steel and have flat bottom-bases featured with a long handle is ideal to cook food in a high temperatures.

Stir fry pan is often used to prepare and quickly sear food that go well together including various type vegetables and many kind of meat with various sauces. When choosing a stir-fry pan there are several things that need to be considered, such as the grip, it have to be comfortable enough to be handle and made from material that will not conduct heat so it will stay cool when you use it to cook. The bottom must be flat so you can use it in a flat stovetop and have at least 6 inches in diameter. To ease the cleaning process chooses the one with a non-stick surface. The top diameter at least has to be 12 inches or more. And last is the sloped sides, it have to be 3 to 4 inches high to ease tossing the food when cooking. Read more about fry pan in here.


Wok is a type of cooking ware originated from China, which have a round bottom and a handle or two placed in the opposite direction. The use of wok itself is widespread in South China particularly in Guangdong Province. This cooking ware also can be found at East, South and Southeast Asia. Today wok is being used all around the world. Aside from stir frying, wok is also can be used to steaming, pan frying, deep frying, boiling, braising, searing, stewing, making soup, smoking, and roasting nuts. When cooking with wok it is common to use cooking utensils, such as spatula or ladle to avoid getting burned when stirring the food. In other region like Japan wok is called chuukanabe and in Indonesia wok is known as penggorengan or wajan.

The most common material to be made into wok is cast iron and carbon steel. In present days carbon steel is the most popular wok material, it is relatively light weight, can provide a quick heat conduction, and also having a reasonable durability. The light weight of carbon steel also allow it to easily lifted and can conduct heat quickly. However carbon steel wok is known to be harder to season than those made from cast iron. Seasoning is important to prevent the food from sticking when cooked and prevent metallic tastes and odors. The price of carbon steel wok may vary depends on ply and forming techniques. The lowest quality steel tend to be ply from a single ply or piece of stamped steel. While the better quality wok is often if not always made by hand or hand-made. The steel is being pounded or hand hammered from two or more sheets of carbon steel and shaped into final form using a ring-forming or hand forging process.

Stir Fry PanWok
- Have flat bottom- Have a round bottom
- Is commonly have non-stick surface- Commonly made from carbon steel and cast iron so it has to be seasoned first
- Weight lighter- Weight heavier


When choosing between stir fry pan and wok, there are many reason to choose stir fry pan rather than wok, one of them is because stir fry pan have a flat bottom unlike wok. Most of us have the flat stovetop instead the traditional Chinese stove, to work in a flat stove the flat bottom stir fry pan is the most suitable. The other is stir fry pan commonly have heavier weight compared to wok, so it will be easier to use and to clean. However if you prefer using wok instead of stir fry pan, you can pick whatever suit your taste better. But if you are still not familiar with cooking, many people will recommend you to choose stir-fry pan since it will be easier to deal and cooking with it.

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