If you have ever wondered the way to clean and season your cast iron skillet this very simple tutorial has the answers to your own questions! An easy, step-by-step tutorial with photographs.
Last month I acquired some fantastic pieces of cast iron cookware. I exchanged the old yellowish-green cooker that came in the home for the two bigger pieces and my uncle gave me both smaller pieces while I was in Indiana for Grandpa’s funeral (both pieces were Grandpa’s!). I have one other dutch oven that I got at a thrift store for $15 and I’ve been on the hunt for much more for a couple of years. It was crazy that in just a couple of weeks I had just about all of the cast iron I could desire (I dream of 2 more particular pieces). All four bits were old and needed some maintenance so that I thought I would share how to wash and season cast iron with you.
First off, let us begin with my two-cents on why cast iron is something everybody should own. It’s wonderful!
I blogged about my hatred of Teflon a few years ago. The stuff is nasty and has no business being close to your meals.
The Teflon on the bulb, even when heated via a flipped on a light bulb, really murdered multiple hens for lots of different people! Teflon releases crazy chemicals when warmed that kill birds! If you can’t tell, this really is an entire soapbox for me, but knowledge is power in my view. If it kills cows, it can not be useful for you to cook with…
So now that you don’t want Teflon or”nonstick” pans, you don’t have a lot of options left when it comes to cooking and baking.
Cast iron is amazing because it is nonstick by nature, is very durable, and holds heat evenly and super nicely. It’s a great option for skillet since it keeps the oil warmed equally and consistently (if you’re going to fry something, I would make these donuts). I also love that you can start on the stove-top and transfer it in the oven. I like to find the cast iron skillet quite hot, sear my chicken legs on all sides, and then add whatever (BBQ, lemon…) and have them finish cooking in the oven. Cast iron cookware has existed for centuries and is making a major comeback! Get on the trendy wagon and find some of your own.
Chances are good you will purchase old or used bits, dig some out of your grandma’s shed, or find some cast iron decoration at a lawn sale. You definitely should know how to clean and reseason iron before use.
Get your hands on several Gorgeous cast iron bits:
Wash them in warm soapy water. If they are rusty or rough use an aluminum or untreated steel wool pad to actually scrub them. You are able to scrub inside and out. The target is to eliminate any old oil, sticky spots, or overall”crud”. Don’t worry about the scrub, since reseseasoningt iron is next. Rinse very well and then dry with paper towels.
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees and place the pan upside down in the hot oven. You can line the bottom of the oven with foil to catch any oil stinks if you prefer. Allow the pan bake for one hour. Expect it to be pretty smoky. After one hour, turn off the oven and then let the pan remain in the warm oven until it has cooled (that will take a couple of hours).
Your cast iron is now clean, seasoned, and ready to use.
You do this very long procedure if you’re really deep cleaning your pans. You want to do this if you are in the market for old pans or if you haven’t used your pan in a couple of years. The leftover oil from the pores goes rancid after a while and will make your food taste horrible, even if it isn’t rusty looking. If it smells bad then you should try this.
For overall cleaning, I love to use hot water and a scraper (I have a tiny plastic scraper that came with my pizza stone and I use it all the time on my cast iron) or a copper scrubber or untreated steel wool pad. I understand folks will say to NEVER use soap on your cast iron, but I certainly do. While I have used the pan to fry or had very oily chicken legs cooking inside it, I will use a drop of dish soap to reduce the grease and it works great. Just make sure you rinse well. I towel my pans and also will rub them with a bit of oil if they’re starting to seem dull in color (maybe once a month/every 3 months). They are really low maintenance as soon as you do your first deep clean.
Info/method out of Woman’s Day
There you have it! My love of cast iron, why Teflon is awful, and also the way to clean and reseason iron. I’m planning my upcoming kitchen so that I can hang and show showcases of my cast iron bits as they are so pretty!
Check out these yummy recipes using a Cast Iron skillet:
- 3 Soups Cooked in Cast Iron
- How to Cook Bacon in a Cast Iron Skillet
- The Best Cornbread Recipe