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Cast Iron Care Guide | How To Clean, And Season Your Cast Iron Pans

Cast iron casserole dishes, pots, pans, and skillets are cookware powerhouses. Super versatile and even more durable, cast iron cookware is made to last a lifetime, giving you tasty meal after tasty meal. Whether you use yourself to make casseroles, pancakes, or to cook up a steak, knowing how to care for your cast iron, including how to properly clean it, is essential for avoiding rust and helping it last. For all the need-to-know information about cast iron care, take a look at our guide.

vonhaus cast iron casserole dishvonhaus cast iron casserole dish

#1 What is cast iron?

Cast iron has been around since the ancient times, once used in armor and architecture. If you’re after a scientific definition, cast iron is an iron-carbon alloy that has a carbon content of more than 2%. But if that went totally over your head like it did mine, what it means is that cast iron is incredibly strong, long-lasting and wear-resistant. It’s become a kitchen-staple because of its heat retention, ability to be used at super high temperatures and non-stick cooking when it’s properly seasoned.

#2 What to do when you first get your cast iron cookware?

For new cast iron pots and pans, the first wash is the one exception to the no soap rule. When you first unbox the pan or skillet, give it a thorough wash with warm water and a mild dish soap. This will help rid of any dust or factory residue so you’re left with a clean slate to get started.

#3 Are cast iron pans non-stick?

Yes! Cast iron skillets and pans are non-stick, but only once they’re properly seasoned.

Seasoning is the foundation of oil on your pan that will make it non-stick and rust-resistant. It’s essentially the result of all those tasty meals. Once you’ve got this base, your cast iron pan will be non-stick.

#4 How to season a cast iron pan?

Even though a lot of VonHaus pans come pre-seasoned, it's always best to create your own seasoning layers for thorough protection. While a good seasoning will come after proper use and many home-cooked meals, when you first get your cast iron skillet or griddle pan you might want to add your first layer.

  1. Give your pan its first wash with soap and warm water.
  2. Make sure the pan is fully and thoroughly dried.
  3. Add a thin layer of vegetable or cooking oil over the pan. You then need to thoroughly buff the oil into the pan until it no longer looks greasy. This will prevent any oil from pooling and going sticky.
  4. Preheat the oven to 230 degrees then place the plan in it upside down. Set it on a baking tray to catch any access oil and let it bake for 30 minutes.
  5. Once that's done, repeat the process of buffing in the oil then baking over again twice or three times more to form a solid seasoning layer.
  6. Let it sit in the oven to cool thoroughly then set it aside ready to be used.

#5 How to wash cast iron pans?

After their first thorough wash, try your best to avoid washing your pan or skillet with soap. We try to only use soap once every couple of weeks if we can help it. Instead, here’s how you should be washing your cast iron pan.

  • Don’t soak the pan – This will damage the seasoning and cause pre-mature rusting.
  • Try to wash it ASAP after cooking – This will make it easier to scrub away any leftovers or crumbs while the pan is still warm.
  • Use warm water and a good scrubbing brush – Scrub your cast iron pan with a brush in circular motions.
  • Use salt to get hard marks off – To get rid of tough burn marks or residue that won’t budge, reach for the salt instead of the soup. Chunky sea salt crystals or kosher salt will help scratch any marks away without stripping away your pan's seasoning.
  • Fully dry your pan – Once you’ve washed the pan, pat it dry with a cloth or towel until dry then leave it out before putting it away or hanging it up. To protect against rust, you want to make sure your cast iron is fully dry before putting it away.
cast iron skillet cookiecast iron skillet cookie

#6 Do cast iron pans work on induction hobs?

Yes! Another big plus of cast iron cookware is that they’re compatible with induction hobs as well as electric and in the oven, making them super multi-functional and easy to use in any kitchen.

However, with cast iron being heavy, watch out to not scratch the glass of your hob. To prevent this, make sure you lift your pans straight up off the hob rather than pulling it across the surface.

#7 How to stop cast iron rusting?

As long as you care for your cast iron, that pan should last you a lifetime! As a hardwearing and resistant material, cast iron is made to see you through even the trickiest recipes and hottest heats, so if you look after it you shouldn’t see any signs of rusting. But here are some must-follow rules to prevent cast iron rusting-

  • Make sure your pans are fully dry before storing them.
  • Use often to maintain the seasoning of the pan.
  • Avoid washing with soap or chemicals.
  • Don’t soak the pan.
  • Occasionally re-do the seasoning process to an extra top-up of pan protection.
Written by Lucy Harbron
2020-10-27 12:39:00 0 viewed