Pot holders aren't just any kitchen accessory — they protect your skin from scalding hot items, and for that reason, quality is important. If you're on the prowl for the best pot holders, there are two main things you should look for.
The first and most important quality is heat resistance. Contrary to popular belief, most pot holders are heat resistant, not heatproof. That means different options offer different levels of protection. Generally speaking, the higher the temperature rating, the safer your hands will be. All of the picks on my list offer heat resistance up to at least 400 degrees (and one option goes as high as 500 degrees).
The other big thing to consider is the material. The most popular options are usually cotton, silicone, or a combination of the two. Silicone has a high heat resistance and also offers better grip. Additionally, it's waterproof, and the non-porous nature makes it less prone to picking up odors. Cotton, on the other hand, is only heat-resistant when combined with some type of protective coating, and it doesn't protect you when it's wet. The upside, however, is that it's soft and breathable, which is why it can be nice to have a pot holder that features both materials.
Other than that, think about what style you prefer. Flat pot holders are smaller and more space-saving, while pocketed holders provide greater protection. To help you make a decision, I've made a list of the best pot holders in a variety of sizes and styles.
1. The Most Heat Resistant
Heat resistance: Up to 500 degrees
Size: 9 by 8 inches
What makes them great: Capable of withstanding temperatures of up to 500 degrees, these Cuisinart quilted pot holders are extra tough and durable. One side is made of waterproof silicone, while the other features soft, quilted cotton. The holders have a ribbed, no-slip texture on the palm side to keep you from dropping dishware, as well as integrated pockets that allow you to use them as pot holders or mitts. They're the largest option on this list, making them perfect for hands of all sizes.
What fans say: "I love these mitts! I wish I had found these years ago. Now that I am older and tend to be a little more accident prone, these oven mitts are the perfect answer. I dropped and broke my 8"x8" glass baking dish a few months back because the oven gloves I had did not grip well. These mitts are perfect! They are easy and quick to put on and take off."
2. The Most Popular on Amazon
Heat resistance: Up to 400 degrees
Size: 7 by 7 inches
What makes them great: With more than 2,000 positive reviews, these wildly popular cotton pot holders have a veritable cult following on Amazon. Fans love how soft they are, yet they're also thick and durable. On one side, quilted cotton offers comfort and flexibility, and on the other side, "silverstone" lining provides heat resistance up to 400 degrees. It's a hard deal to beat, with three in a pack for just $7. On top of all this, they're available in more than 20 color choices.
What fans say: "These are the best pot holders I have found. I have washed and dried them multiple times. They hold up well. I love them so much, I purchased them for my son who recently moved out on his own. They carry a wide variety of colors to go with every decor. This was a great find!"
3. The Most Durable
Heat resistance: Up to 442 degrees
Size: 7 by 7 inches
What makes them great: Although other options on this list have silicone components, these high quality pot holders are the only ones that are 100-percent silicone, meaning they are incredibly nonporous, easy to clean, and won't absorb weird odors. Dishwasher-safe and heat-resistant up to 442 degrees, this set of two is available in 10 different colors. (Hot tip: These super grippy holders also make great jar openers).
What fans say: "I love these ... The build quality is great, they're thick enough that they feel like they should last a long time. I also really appreciate the different texture on each side. The absolute BEST thing about these pot holders though is the fact that I can use them in the freakin' dishwasher. Super rad.
4. The Best Complete Set
Heat resistance: Up to 450 degrees
Size: 11.5 by 7 inch gloves; pot holder not specified
What makes them great: If you're looking for everything in one set, this three-piece pot holder combination is the clear winner. With a silicone pot holder and two top-grade oven mitts, all of the pieces are waterproof and heat-resistant up to 450 degrees. The grippy gloves feature a polyester-cotton liner that's soft, breathable, and comfortable for your hands.
What fans say: "I absolutely love these oven mitts. They have a soft cotton lining and very durable. I use them over and over and they look like they just came out of the package."
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