Thursday, December 20, 2012

Cleaning Cast Iron Skillet

Cleaning a cast iron skillet can seem quite difficult but it is actually quite easy and if you take good care of it, it will last you many life times.

I received my first cast iron skillet as a wedding gift. I thought it would be great because it was not seasoned and I was so excited to season it myself. I followed the instructions and and failed miserably. For some reason it came out sticky and stayed sticky. No matter what I did I couldn't get the sticky substance off. I got fed up and gave it away and stayed away from those pans for a very long time.

About 8 years later I went to the Martha Stewart Show and they allowed the audience to ask questions. I asked what I did wrong with seasoning my cast iron skillet and she said why would you ever buy one not seasoned. That wasn't exactly the answer I expected but I realized then I need to go and get a seasoned one immediately.

I received one as a gift last year and absolutely love it. It makes the best burgers and steaks. If you don't have one you should get one. They are inexpensive and perfect pan for heavy duty cooking.

Here are my tips on cleaving them. I watched an episode on Martha Stewart of a man showing how to clean them and now I am no longer afraid. I used to clean it with kosher salt because I was afraid soap would ruin it.  Well he used soap on his and he makes these pans for a living so I figured he must know.
Step 1. After you soaked the pan with super hot water take a brush and a little soap and scrub off all the bits stuck on the pan and rinse with hot water. 

Don't be shy it is a very sturdy pan and can handle quite a bit. 

Step 2. Rinse all the soap and bits off with very hot water.

Step 3. Dry it immediately and thoroughly. Water will rust your skillet so it is essential to dry it.

Step 4. Add a little vegetable oil in the pan to season it. It is important to season it after every wash so it stays nice for you for years to come.

Step 5. Use your paper towel and rub the oil into the pan thoroughly. It seems strange and once rub in all the way it is not sticky and ready to use for your next use.



  1. Thanks for this! I had been wondering about using soap with my cast iron pans

  2. Andrea, thank you for following Carole's Chatter Blog Tips. You might also be interested in my main blog Carole's Chatter. I have followed you right back. Have a super week.

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  3. This was really helpful! Thanks and happy cast iron cooking! :)

  4. One thing I always try to do is make a pan sauce with whatever I'm cooking. The deglazing pulls up whatever crustys are in the pan that tend to be the hardest to remove once cooled. If I'm not making a sauce, I'll splash some distilled vinegar in there while it's still hot and work everything up with a silicone spatula. Then I'll finish with hot water and kosher salt.

    It's also a good idea to re-season once a year. That's actually my New Years Day tradition....getting all of my cast iron together and seasoning in a fresh coat of shortening.

  5. I JUST posted about my cast iron cry for help today. Thanks for your perfect timing!

  6. I love this tutorial. I'm definitely going to give it a try. Love your blog!

  7. I love this tutorial. I'm definitely going to give it a try. Love your blog!

  8. I'm glad you liked it. Let me know how it works out for you. I just cleaned mine after grilling up a few burgers.

  9. Replies
    1. If you feel soap is not good you should not use it. I watched the guy who makes Lodge cast iron pans use mild soap with extra hot water and I feel it works for me. I figure he makes the pans so he must know a thing or two. I used to not use it and felt it just didn't get it clean enough. I alway washed wiped off a brown substance. Mine seems to be doing much better now.