Seasoning a Cast Iron Skillet

(Athena) #1

My cast iron skillet is looking like it needs to be seasoned again. I’ve always used Crisco, which I just looked up. It’s made from hydrogenated vegetable oil, stuff we aren’t supposed to use. Does anyone know the best way to re-season my cast iron skillet?

(Jeremy Storie) #2

Use Bacon fat! :grin::grin::grin:

(Crippie) #3

They say Flaxseed oil is the best as it will dry the hardest and give the best seal. However it can be very pricey and hard to fine. Other than that, good ol Canola oil works pretty well.

(James storie) #4

I’ll tell you what I do, when one of my cast iron pans needs some love, I limit it to bacon. In other words I cook a lot of bacon! I do not wash the pan, it only gets a stiff brush to loosen any stuck on bits, then wiped clean with a hand towel. This works wonders! I have many cast iron pans that I treat this way, some generations old.

(Kevin Takahashi) #5

Here’s a few links that discuss the same method using flax seed oil …

disclaimer : I haven’t tried this myself yet, however the next time I get a cast iron something, I will try this method.

  1. the original post, by Sheryl Canter

  2. a post from Cook’s Illustrated, where they tried Canter’s method … personally, I rather like Cook’s Illustrated as they tend to get nerdy :slight_smile:

  3. a post from the kitchn, wherein the author tried Canter’s method based on Cook’s Illustrated’s approval

Hope this helps!


I agree with Jamestorie, bacon frying is the best way to keep a cast iron skillet in good shape.

I would think that flaxseed oil is too delicate to use for seasoning a pan. I’m not a huge fan of that oil anyway.

(Athena) #7

Thanks everyone! I’ve been saving up bacon grease so I think I’ll use that.

(Athena) #8

I did re-season my skillet with bacon. One of the reasons I wanted to re-season it was that my adult son was complaining that the skillet has a discolored ring around the inside of it. He insists it’s rust. I say it’s not rust because it’s not the right color for rust. It’s color is grey, though it actually showed up a little rusty looking in the picture. Re-seasoning didn’t do a thing to change the discoloration. Do any of you have this “problem” (is it a problem?), or know what it is?

(James storie) #9

It’s not really a problem, you just have two different levels of seasoning. When I wipe out my skillets, I spread the fat all over the surface, including the bottom. This will keep it even. It’s kind of like greasing a casserole dish, you have to get every nook and crannie!

(Sophie) #10

You need to check out this guy…

He seriously knows his cast iron shit!

(Ernest) #11

Coconut oil, real lard, beef tallow etc.
There’s no magic to seasoning cast iron. Use it.
If it’s sticking, you probably didn’t preheat it enough…

(Ernest) #12

Do you wipe your skillets with fat after every use? That helps to keep the seasoning.
Clean, dry, low heat. Once it’s nice and hot, wipe it with a thin layer of fat.

(Ernest) #13

It’s not an issue at all. Cast iron skillets change color depending on what you cook in it.
Acid foods tend to strip some of the seasoning. Making your skillet look dull.
Fatty cooking makes them nice and shiny with a darker color.

(Athena) #14

Yes, we wipe with olive oil after use. I cook a couple of dishes with tomato sauce and I think that is the “problem.” I’ve decided to get a different big pan for cooking those dishes.

(Ernest) #15

Yeah tomatoes tend to dull cast iron. Unless you have a really really well seasoned skillet.
Tomatoes Best cooked in enameled cast iron.