How to clean a cast iron skillet

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early than the baleful mandolin slicer, about no other kitchen raw material comes with as many rules and regulations as does a cast-iron pan. There are seasoning rules, use rules and the biggest rule of them all — the Do not Use Soap rule.

But rules are meant to be broken, and not lone are we going to break the cardinal govern of washing a cast-iron pan, with the avail of two season cast cast-iron experts, we ’ re actually going to go ahead and throw that rule right out the window .

How to clean a cast-iron pan

Daniel Gritzer is, in my opinion, the most learn man to seek out on the national of cast cast-iron worry, and sol I did. Gritzer ’ s seminal work on the national for unplayful Eats, where he is the culinary film director, changed the direction I think and write about hurl cast-iron care .
According to Gritzer, the best direction to clean a cast-iron pan after cooking in it is to wash it by hired hand with saponaceous water system and a scrub sponge .

  • Palmolive Liquid Dish Soap ($7.40; amazon.com)

Palmolive Liquid Dish Soap
Amazon
Palmolive Liquid Dish Soap

  • Scotch-Brite Non-Scratch Scrub Sponges ($5.01, originally $9.65; amazon.com)

Scotch-Brite Non-Scratch Scrub Sponge
Amazon
Scotch-Brite Non-Scratch Scrub Sponge
If that sounds like a group deviation from the erstwhile wisdom that said one must never use soap on a cast-iron pan so as not to disturb the pan ’ mho seasoning, Gritzer explains the skill behind his advice to break with custom. “ Seasoning is not spirit, ” he says. “ It ’ s a coat of fat that has been polymerized ( that ’ south geek-speak for transformed into a plastic-like coat ). It ’ s not greasy, it ’ s not gunky, it ’ s not thick with burned-on food debris. good season is fluent, clean, non-sticky and dry to the touch. ”

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In his article on cleaning a cast iron, Gritzer notes that, “ As those layers [ of seasoning ] build up, the pan becomes increasingly protected against corrode ( which, in its stripped-bare state, it will quickly do equitable by sitting in the open air ) while besides developing the nonstick characteristics that make cast iron so useful. ”
Buried in there is a word that should replace “ soap ” in your vocabulary of Things to Avoid When Cleaning Cast Iron, and that son is “ rust ” ( but don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate worry if your pan does go rust, we ’ ve got serve for that besides below ). While soap will not hurt your cast-iron pan, water will, because it will cause the metal to rust, and so that is the thing you should not use on a cast-iron pan. immediately, that doesn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate mean you should not use any water at all, but it does mean you should not do the adopt things when washing a cast-iron pan :

  1. Put the pan in the dishwasher
  2. Soak the pan in body of water
  3. Leave the pan to drip dry after washing

To the last point, dry your cast-iron pan immediately after washing, either with a dark-colored dish rag ( dry a cast-iron pan one meter with a white dishrag and you will quickly learn why a dark one is a better option for the job ! ) or by placing it on a gloomy flame to dry. If you opt for flame-drying, go ahead and hit the pan with a little amount of oil, which will add another thin layer to your pan ’ randomness protective coat of flavorer .

  • DII Cotton Terry Dishcloths, 6-Pack ($8.99; amazon.com)

DII Cotton Terry Dishcloths, 6-Pack
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DII Cotton Terry Dishcloths, 6-Pack
For a second public opinion, I turned to Adam Feltman, an companion brand coach for Lodge Cast Iron, who echoed Gritzer ’ randomness advice to use soap and urine to wash a cast-iron pan. ( If you ’ re in the market for a new cast-iron pan, Lodge is our peck for the best overall cast-iron frying pan. )
“ Wash your cast-iron cooking utensil by hand, and feel complimentary to use a little soap if you like, ” Feltman says. “ For stuck-on food, our pan scrapers and cancel brushes are a big aid. ”

  • Lodge Polycarbonate Pan Scraper, 4-Pack ($8; amazon.com)

Lodge Polycarbonate Pan Scraper, 4-Pack
Amazon
Lodge Polycarbonate Pan Scraper, 4-Pack

  • Lodge Care Scrub Brush ($7.90, originally $9.49; amazon.com)

Lodge Care Scrub Brush
Amazon
Lodge Care Scrub Brush
He besides emphasizes the importance of drying form iron thoroughly after washing, saying, “ Promptly dry the frying pan by hand with a lint-free fabric or paper towel. ”

If you placid feel that avoiding soap on mold iron is the right choice for you, that ’ s ticket — the scrub brush and scraper Feltman recommends can be used to clean a cast-iron pan without the function of soap. Those medieval-looking chain mail scrubbers are besides an option for people who choose to go soap-free, or for those who like to add a bit of Renaissance Faire flair to their dish-doing .
“ I ’ ve used the chain mail scrubbers and they work well for removing burnt-on crud, but I don ’ thymine think they ’ re in truth necessity, ” Gritzer says. “ A good salt scrubbing on the heat can get that filth out besides. ”

  • Hulless Chain Mail Scrubber ($9.99; amazon.com)

Hulless Chain Mail Scrubber
Amazon
Hulless Chain Mail Scrubber
Feltman besides likes the chain mail scrubbers. “ They can be super helpful for removing stuck-on food. Lodge has one of our very own that is perfective for heavy-duty clean, ” he says .

  • Lodge Scrubbing Pad ($19.90, originally $24.99; amazon.com)

Lodge Scrubbing Pad
Amazon
Lodge Scrubbing Pad
Cast iron experts like Gritzer say that the best way to care for a cast-iron pan, fair as with grills, is simply to use it .

How to season a cast-iron pan

When it comes to seasoning a cast-iron pan, there are about as many confusing rules as there are for washing one. Gritzer, who has besides written extensively about how to season form iron, prefers vegetable, canola oil or corn vegetable oil for the job. Using the pan often will besides bolster its season, particularly because, as he points out, “ each clock you cook in it with some type of fat, you ’ ll be laying down more season. ”

  • Crisco Pure Vegetable Oil, 2-Pack ($13.88; amazon.com)

Crisco Pure Vegetable Oil, 2-Pack
Amazon
Crisco Pure Vegetable Oil, 2-Pack
If you ’ re new to seasoning frame iron, Feltman recommends Lodge ’ s Seasoning Care Kit, which he says “ contains everything you need to get the speculate done. ”

  • Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Care Kit ($19.90, originally $26; amazon.com)

Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Care Kit
Amazon
Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Care Kit

How to restore and remove rust from a cast-iron pan

immediately that we ’ ve established that urine, not soap, is the true enemy of mold iron, what can be done if a assemble of cast-iron cooking utensil has gone rusty ? Well, beginning, don ’ t panic .
“ Cast iron can take a beat, so preceptor ’ metric ton be timid around it. Yes, there ’ s some gamble you can mess up the seasoning, but that can be fixed. The pan itself will survive a draw of pervert, so go ahead and use it — no need to handle it like fine chinaware, ” Gritzer says .
Feltman concurs, saying, “ It ’ s fabulously easy to clean and care for cast iron. It ’ s impossible to ruin your pan. ” This is true even if the awful rust makes an appearance : “ We have rust erasers that can bring it back to life in the consequence water soak in it, ” Feltman says .

  • Lodge Rust Eraser ($10; amazon.com)

Lodge Rust Eraser
Amazon
Lodge Rust Eraser
Lodge offers a dim-witted three-step march to restore a rusted cast-iron pan :

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  1. Scrub: Scour the out of practice pan with quick, buttery water and steel wool. Rinse and hand dry thoroughly.

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  2. Oil: Apply a very flimsy, even layer of cooking oil to the cooking utensil .
  3. Bake: Place the cooking utensil in the oven upside down on the top rack. Bake at 450 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour .
  • Scotch-Brite Stainless Steel Scrubbers, 3-Pack ($2.29; amazon.com)

Scotch-Brite Stainless Steel Scrubbers, 3-Pack
Amazon
Scotch-Brite Stainless Steel Scrubbers, 3-Pack

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