All-Clad Tri-Ply Stainless Steel vs. D5 Brushed Stainless Cookware

All-Clad D5 StainlessPeople frequently say, “variety is the spice of life” but there is more than spice to consider when cooking. Choosing the right stainless steel cookware for you is critical. Even when you have decided to go for the name brand and gold standard, All-Clad cookware, there are still others things to consider. All-Clad has been making fully-clad stainless steel cookware for more than 20 years. Now All-Clad has introduced a new line: All-Clad d5 stainless steel cookware. What’s the difference between these two All-Clad stainless steel cookware lines?

The original All-Clad Tri-Ply stainless steel cookware line from is a 3-ply design. It has 18/10 stainless steel for a cooking surface. This high quality stainless steel does not interact with food, even acidic foods such as tomatoes and citrus. Your recipes will always have a consistent flavor. All-Clad Tri-Ply stainless steel cookware has an aluminum core which ensures that your pan heats evenly across its cooking surface. Its third layer is made from 18/0 stainless steel, which is magnetic, so it can be used on an induction cooktop.

The new All-Clad d5 brushed stainless steel cookware line has 5 layers of metal and it’s heavier than the original All-Clad Tri-Ply stainless steel cookware. It has 18/10 stainless steel for a cooking surface, which is the same as Tri-Ply stainless. It also has an aluminum layer followed by another stainless steel layer. The fourth layer is aluminum to further promote even heating. The fifth and exterior layer is magnetic 18/0 stainless steel allowing it to be used on induction cook tops, same as original All-Clad Tri-Ply stainless steel. All-Clad d5 has 2 aluminum layers and 3 stainless steel layers. It features a more ergonomic handle and flared brims, similar to what you find in the All-Clad Copper Core line. It also features a larger second handle to make it easier to pick up and use pot holders/oven mitts.

The benefits of the d5 is a slightly easier to use handle and rims that make pouring a bit less messy. The extra stainless steel layer will make d5 less likely to warp and provide even heating. D5 stainless also weighs more than All-Clad’s original Tri-Ply stainless steel cookware so it’s slightly more difficult to lift. Additionally, All-Clad d5 stainless cookware is also about 15% more expensive.

The Tri-Ply stainless steel line, which is the benchmark for all stainless cookware, has been the standard for more than 20 years. It is still an outstanding line of pots and pans and has a lifetime warranty. While extra layers of metal in the d5 cookware make it less likely to warp, I cannot remember when an All-Clad cookware item was returned for warping. The Tri-Ply stainless steel line is lighter than d5 and I believe it heats faster. Stainless steel is used on the handles of every All-Clad pot and pan because this metal keeps the handles somewhat cool, as stainless does not conduct heat well. The handles are referred to as “stay cool” handles for that reason. The extra layer of stainless steel in the d5 works to make it less likely to warp and more even heating but it does not seem to heat or cool as quickly as the original stainless steel.

D5 cookware has a few improvements but the original Tri-Ply cookware from All-Clad is still extraordinary cookware. For my money, my pick is original stainless. The extra metal in the D5 adds to its cost, and for me, this isn’t enough to make the higher price worth it. You get to decide which line best meets your needs. Either line is sure to please, as All-Clad is still the undisputed champion of cookware!

  • amierbarrientos

    I love all clad cookwares…even if they are a bit pricey, there are durable and you are actually buying something that can literally last a lifetime.

  • Stu

    D5 may be slightly more expensive, but the D5 four quart Soup Pot used on a table-top single induction burner, compared to a similar All Clad original pot, was so much more efficient that it was extremely difficult to get it low enough to barely simmer when making stock!

  • Vicki Kohler

    Notes to remember about All Clad before purchase

  • Billy Bob

    Per the website, D5 appears to be dishwasher safe, which is an added bonus.

    • Bobby

      Yes, Billy Bob. All-Clad Stainless is also dishwasher safe (with the exception of non-stick items). All-Clad LTD2, which features d5 technology and slightly more expensive than Stainless, is also dishwasher safe. Currently, we’re having an All-Clad Stainless Sale where select pieces are on sale for 20% off.

  • All Clad Stainless

    I’ve been using stainless cookware pieces for quite sometime now, and have no regrets so far. I believe the key is to know what you really need and how much you can afford – then decide the best cookware deal you can go for. It’s always worth to invest in quality items, especially in kitchen products that you will have to use regularly.


  • Russ

    You’d have a fight on your hands if you tried to pry my D5 12 inch skillet away from me. I’ve been using All-Clad stainless for years, and I don’t plan to replace it all with D5, but this skillet is awesome and worth every penny, in my opinion.

  • James

    I have many Tri-ply and D5 pieces, and I’ve loved them all; but for heat response and dispersion they both paled in comparison to the Copper Core when I used them side-by-side; the Copper Core are absolutely worth the extra money. I’m upgrading all of my pots to the Copper Core line one at a time (except the non-stick fry pans and griddle, Copper Core non-stick are not available).

  • Jim

    I am looking for a Cop R Chef 2 Qt Windsor. I know this line has been discontinued but come on people there has to be one or two out there somewhere!!! Any ideas? Anybody? Hello?

    • admin

      Hi Jim:

      All-Clad has discontinued the Cop-R-Chef line, so we no longer have that windsor available. If you can find a All-Clad Cop-R-Chef piece, definitely grab it!

  • Dorothy Rothchild

    Thank you so much for leaving this post up! You just saved me a ton of money!

  • beelp

    We find that on occasion our 1.5 qt D5 may “stain” after use, but once or twice through the dishwasher (bottom rack) and it looks brand new. We are SO impressed with the quality. What great cookware, and worth every penny. Look around the internet and you will find various items discounted from time to time.

  • Meliorum

    I know I’m posting on a dated article – but I wanted to chime in about the D5 vs. the original tri-ply. I have a fairly large collection of All-Clad, including some D5. I have to say that I simply do not like the look of the D5. Yes, it is more layers and perhaps somewhat more ergonomic – but the little “bump-out” on the bottom of the handle, the wide helper-handles, and particularly the wide handles on the lids are unsightly compared to the simple lines of the original. I have also received several D5’s as gifts, but usually return them (for their equivalent model in tri-ply) due to this. To each his own of course – but I am sticking with the original.