Best Tamale Steamers

What is a Tamale Steamer?

Tamales are a traditional Mexican dish. It was a type of food that was inherited by the ancient Indians of Mesoamerica. To cook or steam tamales you need a special type of pot, called Tamale Steamers or Tamale Cookers.

But if you’ve never prepared any tamales before, you won’t know what equipment is the best. Luckily our staff at Mexico Meal made a list of our top 10 favorite tamale steamers.

Buy the Best Tamale Steamers of 2020

Finding the best tamale steamer for your money isn’t always easy. Luckily our team has done all the research for you. Here”s an overview of the top 10 tamale steamers that will give you the best quality for making delicious Mexican tamales.

1. GasOne ST-32 Gas One Stainless Steel Stock 8 Gallon with lid

At first glance, you will notice that the GasOne Stainless Steel pot is one of a kind. And we say this since it has a sturdy stainless steel construction. It has useful and interesting design, being a tall steamer with a narrow body. It is a good choice for cooking several tamales at once, especially if you’re planning to have a party.

GasOne is known for its qualitative products, and this pot is no exception from it. Even though it was designed from commercial-grade materials, it features a smooth satin finish. Hence, it is an excellent addition to any kitchen, as it can add a lot of style due to its sleek appearance. This is a durable product featuring a steamer rack and a lid. We liked the ergonomic handles, which offer a better grip when compared to similar products.

The even levels of cooking offered by this tamale steamer help you make tasty dishes. Also, you can opt for fast boiling and cooking speeds. And the best part about it is that you can cook several other foods, including seafood, turkey and home brewing.

What we like:

  • Designed from high-quality stainless steel
  • It has a 1 mm thickness
  • Stylish design with a satin finish
  • Doesn’t stain or rust
  • Comes with distinct size choices to suit your needs

What we don’t like:

  • Doesn’t come with a perfectly flat bottom, meaning that you might find it challenging to use it on a flat electric cooktop
  • Its base may get easily damaged

2. Granite Ware Tamale Pot with Steamer

The Granite Ware Tamale Pot with Steamer Insert caught our attention due to its unique design. There are not many tamale steamers nowadays with an old-fashioned look. Also, this product is perfect for those looking forward to cooking a large number of tamales for the entire family.

This tamale steamer was designed from durable and chip-resistant materials. But what we liked the most about it is that it comes with a glass-like surface. This surface doesn’t react to food, so you won’t have to worry about the quality of the tamales when using it.

Keep in mind that the steamer rack is positioned extremely low. As such, even though you can cook several tamales at once, you might not end up cooking similar quantities as it is the case with competitors’ products. Anyway, you can remove the steamer insert and create additional space in the pot. It is a versatile cooking device, which can fit in any kitchen no matter its dimensions. You can cook tamales, legumes, turkey, seafood and even spaghetti.

What we like:

  • Interesting design with a fancy appearance
  • Doesn’t rust, stain or discolor with frequent use
  • Has adequate heat distribution
  • Can be cleaned with warm soapy water with little to no hassle

What we don’t like:

  • It doesn’t come with an impressive water boiling capacity, so it might be suitable only for smaller families
  • Its handles might get too hot while cooking

3. 24 Qt Tamale Steamer Vaporera Stock Pot Smart Cook

If you’re looking for a compact and efficient tamale steamer, we recommend you consider this product from Smart Cook. It is a 24-quart aluminum pot with steam rack and lid, perfect for cooking tamales and seafood. Mainly, you can cook up to 60 tamales at once, which is rather impressive considering its dimensions. And what we liked most about this tamale steamer is that its unique design keeps the food warm for several hours after cooking.

We recommend the pot from Smart Cook because it is versatile, and it comes with a multi-purpose steamer rack. This means that you can use the rack to prepare your tamales, vegetables, and seafood in the healthiest way. But, of course, you can always use the pot to make some stew, chili, or even soup.

This pot was designed from premium aluminum, durable, and safe to use. The coordinating lid is one of the most efficient on the market when it comes to keeping the nutrients and the heat in. Also, the lid handles and the riveted pot remain cool, which is why you won’t have to worry about hurting your hands when cooking or moving the device.

What we like:

  • Durable design thanks to the premium aluminum
  • Compact and simple to maintain
  • One of the few tamale steamers on the market with enhanced heat conduction

What we don’t like:

  • Might rust in time, as it is the case with all aluminum products

4. Bayou Classic 1136 36-Qt Stainless Stockpot With Basket

If you’re searching for a tamale steamer, but at the same time you’re concerned about the space in your kitchen, this product might suit your needs. The Bayou Classic is a versatile cooking device that comes with a compact design. Created from qualitative stainless steel, you will most likely use it for years to come.

What we like most about the Bayou Classic Stainless Stockpot is that it can help you cook distinct types of food. So, you can fry or steam your favorite food, no matter if you plan to cook legumes, seafood, or chicken. And you should know that the durable steel pot can be used for cooking soup or similar dishes.

This cooking pot was created from the best stainless steel on the market. But if you aim to expand its lifetime, it might be a good idea to take extra care when cleaning it. Overall, it comes with heavy-duty riveted handles and a well-designed vented lid. The perforated basket allows you to easily lift food from boiling water for the best cooking experience.

What we like:

  • Made from commercial-grade stainless steel
  • Compelling design in the form of a basket
  • Durable and can face a lot of wear and tear
  • Excellent for frying
  • Can cook a large batch of tamales

What we don’t like:

  • It might be prone to rust if not maintained adequately

5. Oster Sangerfield Stainless Steel Cookware

If you love cooking, but you’re always in a rush, you might find this steamer set to be your ally. It is compact and user-friendly, and we recommend it for any kitchen, especially for the smaller ones. It is a dual-purpose product, similar to a Dutch oven with glass lid. Overall, it is a smaller tamale steamer than the traditional ones, but we can say from our experience that the dish you cook will have an outstanding taste.

This steamer from Oster was designed from stainless steel and a glass lid. As such, it is rather durable and stylish. We do like that it is a great space-saving solution for cooking tamales. And the best part about it is that it has this tempered glass lid which allows you to observe your food without removing it. Also, you won’t have to keep a close eye on the water, as there is enough space at the bottom of this pot to avoid frequent refills. Although, this pot is not dishwasher friendly and it can’t be used with induction tops.

What we like:

  • Compact, lightweight and user-friendly
  • Designed from qualitative and durable stainless steel
  • Features a tempered glass lid
  • Stylish and can fit in any kitchen

What we don’t like:

  • Can’t be cleaned with a dishwasher
  • Handles might get too hot
  • Lacks a non-stick surface

6. IMUSA USA MEXICANA-420 Steamer with Glass Lid

IMUSA is a well-established brand in the cookware niche. And we recommend their products for those that aim to cook large quantities of tamales in one cooking session. This Mexicana 420 Steamer with Glass Lid is a top choice on the market due to its capacity, durability, and outstanding design.

This tamale steamer was designed from durable aluminum, and it has one of the best heat distribution features on the market. The tempered glass lid preserves the taste and flavor of your food, while the included steam helps you cook the best tamales. What we like most is the removable steamer insert. This insert can keep your food outside the hot liquid. Still, the best part about this professional steamer is that it comes with cool-touch handles and knob to avoid cooking accidents.

Mainly, you can cook up to 40 tamales at once. But you can always cook lobster, mussels, corn and several other dishes.

What we like:

  • Created from heavy-duty aluminum
  • Removable steamer insert, which facilitates cleaning and cooking
  • Can be used to steam a wide array of dishes
  • Shatterproof glass lid
  • Best heat distributions when compared with competitors’ products

What we don’t like:

  • Rather thin pot, which prevents you from using it as a stockpot
  • Might get stained over time

7. Jaybrake Stainless Steel 4 Piece Cookware Set with Encapsulated Base

Cooking is an art, which is why if you’re passionate about it, you most likely will look forward to purchasing a complete tamale steamer set. We recommend you consider this stainless steel four-piece cookware set from Jaybrake. It stands out due to the encapsulated base, which offers impressive cooking results for your recipes.

Its sleek design is thanks to the durable aluminum used. But what makes it one of the best tamale steamers on the market is the encapsulated base. This base boosts even heat distribution, cooking your tamales as chefs do! And the best part about it is that it is both versatile and compact, being easy to store in any kitchen.

This cookware set features a pot, a steamer basket, a pasta basket, and a vented tempered glass lid. Thus, you can cook tamales, pasta or you can make some soup. All the items in this set are simple to maintain and clean.

What we like:

  • Complete tamale steamer set
  • Created to withstand a lot of wear and tear
  • Rust-resistant
  • Features a useful tempered glass lid
  • One of the best heat distribution systems on the market

What we don’t like:

  • Its steaming pot walls might end up being too thin to face frequent usage
  • Not dishwasher-safe

8. M.D.S. Cuisine Stainless Steel Steamer Pot for Tamales

Did you know that you can cook up to 150 tamales at once? Well, to do so, you will need a tall and sturdy pot. And the professional tamale steamer sold by M.D.S. Cuisine offers precisely that! This steamer for tamales is one of the tallest on the market with which you can cook around 150 tamales in only one cooking session. Besides, you can use it for chili, crab, lobster, soup, canning, or even brewing beer.
It was designed from commercial-grade materials, which is why it is so durable. It comes with a steamer insert rack and a lid, both created from sustainable materials. The riveted handles offer additional strength and won’t get damaged because of the heat. And the best part about it is that you can use it as a stockpot for outdoor cooking!

What we like:

  • Durable stainless steel construction despite its large capacity.
  • One of the few products on the market that can cook up to 150 tamales at once
  • Can be transformed into a large stockpot with ease if you remove the tray
  • Can be used for cooking a wide array of dishes

What we don’t like:

  • Bottom might be too thin, but we believe that it won’t impact the quality of your dish, no matter if you boil or steam it.
  • Might be prone to rust if not cleaned adequately
  • The handles might get too hot while cooking

9. Houston Seafood Company Aluminum Tamale / Steamer Set

Houston Seafood Company specializes in cookware for special dishes. And this tamale steamer set offers you all you need for cooking both traditional and out of a kind recipe. You can cook up to fix a dozen tamales in the large pot and four dozen in the smaller one.

This set was designed from professional grade aluminum, resembling the construction of restaurant pots. We like the riveted handles of this pot, as they offer additional strength and durability. Purchasing this product will get you two pots with steamer inserts and lids.

We recommend this professional tamale steamer set is great for making tamales at home, but you can cook other seafood, lobsters, crabs, mussels, and clams. This versatile and all-purpose pot is excellent for steaming, boiling, and frying your favorite dishes in little to no time.

What we like:

  • Complete tamale steamer set, which you can use according to your cooking needs. Both pots offer outstanding taste and food quality.
  • Steamer inserts and lids created from durable materials that can be used daily
  • Great for both cooking tamales and steaming seafood
  • Inspired by commercial restaurant cookware, meaning that you will have a professional product in your kitchen

What we don’t like:

  • Rather expensive tamale steamer set
  • Requires extra space for storing
  • Might need additional care to prevent rust

10. Cuisinart 77-412 Chef’s Classic

Cuisinart has a wide array of professional cooking devices you can find useful in the kitchen. And this steamer set can turn out to be an excellent addition in your kitchen if you’re planning to cook the best tamales at home. It comes with a durable stockpot, a pasta insert, a steamer basket, and lid.

This tamales steamer set has an encapsulated aluminum pot for even heating and cooking. Also, the mirror finish makes this set rather stylish. What we like about this tamale steamer are its stainless-steel handles. These handles remain cool on the stovetop and are riveted for additional strength. Besides, the lid is designed to fit in tightly, so that the taste and nutrients of your dish are sealed inside. An interesting fact about this product is that you can use this steamer in the oven, too, if you don’t exceed 550 degrees F.

What we like:

  • Stylish design and qualitative materials
  • Versatility as you can cook more than tamales, including pasta
  • Dishwasher-friendly product
  • Limited lifetime warranty
  • Features an additional helper handle to pour contents, along with a tight-fitting lid
  • Cooking surface remains the same no matter how many times you heat it, making it great for daily usage
  • Can be used in the oven
  • Professional grade product, similar to the ones you can find in restaurants

What we don’t like:

  • Rather expensive when compared to similar sets
  • Requires additional storing space, so it might not be suitable for a smaller kitchen

Frequently Asked Questions about Tamale Steamers

How many tamales fit in a steamer?

A lot of tamales can fit in a steamer. A tamale steamers can probably hold between 40 and 50 tamales. We wouldn’t recommend it however. It’s advisable not to steam more than 2 layers of tamales at the same time. This will make it difficult for the steam to reach the middle layers.

How long should tamales be steamed?

It depends. As a rule, you can steam the tamales for 90 minutes. If you end up under cooking the food, it’s not a disaster and you shouldn’t worry about it.

The reasons why you shouldn’t worry about it is because most of the ingredients in a tamale will already be cooked. There is very little risk if you end up with under cooked tamales, and it’s not dangerous at all.

Why are my tamales mushy?

Either you are not steaming them long enough or you are making the dough too wet (the wetter the dough, the longer the tamales will need to steam). The tamale should easily peel away from the husk. If this is not the case, you should steam them a bit more.

Final Thoughts

We hope this article about the best tamale steamers will help you with making the right choice. Of course, people have different preferences but we are sure you’ll find one that you love in this extensive article.

Most people looking for quality tamale steamers will need to find one that is very durable. Other requirements are the ease of use and versatility to prepare different dishes. Larger families also need steamers with a larger capacity.

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