Typically when I cook steak, I salt/pepper it and then leave it out for a while to warm up. Next, I preheat my non-stick pan, put in olive oil, and add the steak.

However, I recently bought a set of All Clad stainless steel pans. I’ve never cooked with stainless steel before and am worried about pitting.

Will adding a pre-salted steak to a preheated stainless steel pan (coated in olive oil) result in pitting? If so, how/when should I salt to avoid pitting?

  • 1
    Pepper can turn bitter when exposed to high temperatures, I suggest peppering just after you take the steak off the heat and rest it.
    – GdD
    Jan 29, 2018 at 19:48

2 Answers 2


I don't think so. The contact time is so short. These pans are meant to take a beating. They are very high quality SS. If it bothers you, get a cheap cast iron pan for this type of thing, it's what I do. You can read more here

Pitting corrosion - The passive layer on stainless steel can be attacked by certain chemical species. The chloride ion Cl- is the most common of these and is found in everyday materials such as salt and bleach. Pitting corrosion is avoided by making sure that stainless steel does not come into prolonged contact with harmful chemicals or by choosing a grade of steel which is more resistant to attack. The pitting corrosion resistance can be assessed using the Pitting Resistance Equivalent Number calculated from the alloy content.


It depends on the exact SS alloy. If you could find out what, EXACTLY, it is it would make a huge difference in answering the question more clearly. Most likely, for cooking, this has been considered, but no guarantees. Really high quality items are likely more expensive. Some less good, but still highly serviceable items can be found in some areas.


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