Care and Feeding of Cast Iron Pans


I have the basic Lodge 10" fry pan and use it daily.

I also have a bacon press that is a wonderful device for …wait for it… bacon. But also for burgers, sausage patties, and crisping up carnitas. Warms up right in the pan - perfect. Figuring out where to put it while turning or seasoning food is another story.

How do you clean yours? I have been thinking about one of these?

Anyone have one of these and can comment?

I am using a blue scrubby and sometimes a brush. I do not soap it directly but some some may be left on the scrubby. I mainly use mine for meats and veggies. I often use my stainless for eggs, mainly out of habit and the need to be cooking two things at the same time. I could remedy that with another cast iron pan of course - but trying to keep stuff simple and to a minimum.

After washing and thoroughly drying I apply a thin layer of peanut oil. I cook with olive oil and butter typically. Is there a better type of oil to use?

Any other tips on the care and feeding of cast iron pans would be much appreciated.


I need words of wisdom!
(Danielle) #2

The cast iron cleaner (chain mail thing) is AWESOME. Got one for christmas and I love it. Should have gotten one sooner.


All you need to clean a cast iron pan is paper towels and a few teaspoons of salt. A chef of a high-end restaurant in Toronto taught me that.

(Guardian of the bacon) #4

What I do…right wrong or indifferent.

As soon as I remove the food and the pan is still hot, I add a cup or so of water. The pan almost instantly deglazes. A few swipes with a normal scrubby, towel dry (with paper towel after getting bitched out a few times by my wife for using her hand knitted kitchen towels) and then a quick smear of butter while the pan is still warm.

If for some reason the pan was allowed to cool with food in it (I was hungry ok?) Turn the burner on, pour in to cover the bottom and bring it up to heat. It will soon boil and sizzle…repeat above process.

(Chris Bair) #5

I have the chain mail thing along with these:

I get most of the food out with the scrapers, then clean it completely with the metal chain thing.


Those scrapers look like the ones I got with various Pampered Chef purchases, and I agree that they work well on cast iron.

(jketoscribe) #7

My husband likes to cook sticky things in “my” CI skillet (it started out his, but it’s MINE NOW!!!). But I’ve got a fairly good seasoning on it, so most of the time a nylon scrub brush does the job. Occasionally I put a little bit of oil in and scrub it with some coarse salt.

When I cook with it, things don’t stick much (try to bring proteins to room temperatures, heat the pan first, use plenty of fat). I always rinse the pan well in hot water and put it on a medium flame to dry and then reseason with about 1 tsp of avocado oil (can’t have lard in my house or I’d use that).

I have a bad habit of leaving this skillet on the stove (because it’s usually warm after reseasoning)–my mother would be scandalized! But my husband sometimes takes a lid from another pot with condensation inside and rests it on my CI skillet–GRRR! water spots!


I always rub a little coconut oil into the pan after cleaning it just to keep there from being any problem with rusting.

(Cathie Condon) #9

I watched a few YouTube videos on seasoning my new Lodge pans - yes they state they are preseason but definitely needed it. About 6-7 months in and they are great now. I use the metal chain mail to clean and there is a oil cream from Amazon. My mom found hers in a resale shop 30 years ago and they are amazing. I like that by using them I’m adding iron to my body.

(Karen Parrott) #10

I’ve been using Nom-Nom Paleo’s cast iron skillet care and feeing post with great success.

(Patty W) #11

Ditto…I LOVE my chain mail scrubber. I don’t always clean my cast iron right after cooking, & it helps to make up for that personal character flaw :slight_smile:


Thanks to all - I picked up a chain mail scrubby at Bed Bath and Beyond with my 20% off coupon (love those) Hope it works out.

What oil is everyone using to season their pans?


Thanks - I will give this a try!

(Guardian of the bacon) #14

My initial seasoning was with coconut oil if I remember right. Now I just wipe with whatever is handy after cleaning. Butter, Bacon nectar, Coconut oil, Avocado oil…The higher the smoke point the better.

(Karen Parrott) #15

I use coconut oil & lard

(softail925) #16

I just purchased my first cast iron skillet - so ty for all these wonderful tips! (Absolutely loving steaks cooked indoors now - Wow!)

(Tim ) #17

Using your wife’s towel. LMAO! That is something I can relate to. Lol.

(I want abs... olutely all the bacon) #18

I would :blue_heart::green_heart:luv​:purple_heart::yellow_heart: @Brenda take on cast iron care with her many videos and pics of cast iron cooking delights.


I find that, as long as I have used enough fat/oil, the pan cleans up perfectly just with water and a washing up brush. The easiest way is to wash it straight away while it is still hot I find.

(jketoscribe) #20

Be careful that you use hot water if the pan is still hot. I’ve heard that the sudden shock of cold water in a hot CI pan can cause warping.