I have to admit that I am a sucker for stainless steel. I love the material for a lot of different applications. I am especially fond of it in the kitchen. I know that is trendy, but I was a fan of stainless long before it became the hottest thing in the real estate market. I have been a fan since the 1980s.

My first job as a teen was washing dishes in a NY pizzeria. I got acquainted with the stainless steel sink right from the first day on the job. From there, I moved up to food prep. That introduced me to stainless steel prep tables, a variety of stainless steel utensils, and even a commercial mixer and mixer combo that was made of, you guessed it, stainless steel.

I was finally promoted to the main kitchen. Guess what the exterior panels of the pizza ovens were fabricated from. It was stainless steel. The shiny, silvery material was everywhere. I worked with it for years until I eventually left food service. But it left an indelible mark on my psyche. So much so that I still love it in the kitchen, particularly for these three reasons:

  • 1. It’s Incredibly Durable

I worked with a lot of different materials during my food service career. There were wooden cutting boards and plastic dough trays. I used aluminum pizza pans and glass pitchers. With so many materials at my disposal, I can tell you this: none of the others were as durable a stainless steel.

I haven’t been in food service for more than 35 years. But the pizzeria that gave me my first job is still there. The owner is still using the same ovens and prep tables. The same stainless steel sink accommodates dish washing while the prep crew still uses the same stainless steel mixing bowl to make dough. I would wager that a lot of the plastic and glass I worked with as a teenager has been replaced many times over during the last three decades.

  • 2. It Is Easy to Clean

Cleanliness is a big part of running a safe kitchen. Even if kitchen staff are not especially careful in their own homes, they cannot afford to be slobs in a commercial environment. Everything needs to be kept clean at all times. The beauty of stainless steel is that it is super easy to clean.

Stainless steel does not absorb stains, hence its name. It does not absorb grease and oil. It does not even harbor bacteria. All you need to keep it clean is some warm water and sanitizing solution. Speaking of sanitizing, the ease at which you can do it with stainless steel explains why it’s such a popular material for all sorts of food service needs.

Consider a food-grade stainless steel tank from Houston-based CedarStone Industry. The company says stainless steel is a preferred material for food-grade tanks, brewing tanks, and other receptacles because it is easily sanitized. That is important in a kitchen.

  • 3. It Looks Fantastic

Last but not least, I love stainless steel in the kitchen because it looks fantastic. I love the industrial look. I love the look of a commercial kitchen. So even at home, stainless steel does it for me. The more, the better.

Stainless steel is one of the most common materials in commercial kitchens. It is not bad for the home, either. No wonder it’s a trend. Long after the trend dies – and it will – I will still be a big fan. I suppose I wouldn’t mind being buried in a stainless steel coffin.