Cast Iron

Seasoning Your Cast Iron Pan Is Easier Than You Think

July 16, 2015

Inspired by conversations on the Food52 Hotline, we're sharing tips and tricks that make navigating all of our kitchens easier and more fun.

Today: KatieQ shows us just how easy seasoning a cast iron pan can be. 


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Some of the best summer foods—crumbles, cornbreads, seared fish, just about anything cooked over a campfire—come down to the cast iron pan. If you don't have one yet, summer's just as good a time to find one as it is to use one: They're all over flea markets and tag sales. My dad found one on the side of the road, seasoned it, and gifted it to me. What's that? Seasoning? It's arguably the most important part of cast iron pan husbandry. Here, KatieQ shows us how to do it. All you'll need is an hour, an oven, and a slick of oil.

Any advice for seasoning a cast iron pan? Share away!

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Writing and cooking in Brooklyn.


Michelle S. August 22, 2016
They always say, don't add soap to cast iron..always lived, no.pun intended.
Michelle S. August 22, 2016
Check out the Closed Caption..too funny
Michael F. July 24, 2015
What about tomato products and acidic foods and/or seasonings? Won't that hurt your seasoned pan?
Bill C. July 23, 2015
I agree with Dirk. Also, if you want to do a video about seasoning a new pan, you should probably use one. Yours looked like it had been around quite a while.
m July 23, 2015
An hour at that temperature is not seasoning.
Roxie Y. July 18, 2015
The easiest way to keep your pan seasoned is to use it. Cook hamburger, chicken, anything greasy for the first few times. Don't use tomato sauce or anything acidic. My pans are seasoned nicely by just using them. Put hot water in the pan to loosen any burned bits and wipe out. I have washed them in soapy water quickly and dried thoroughly.
Dirk N. July 16, 2015
I understand that there is a lot of (too much) information about cast ironing seasoning that mostly conflicts itself and the aim of this video is to make it simple without reading a chemistry white paper; but this is NOT seasoning. Setting the oven temp below the smoke point (vegetable shortening is 360 degrees and her oven was set at 350) of an oil will leave it very sticky and tacky where the oil was applied. Also, almost all new seasoners will apply way too much oil and she fails to mention that you should definitely wipe down your pan to remove most of the oil otherwise, again, it will leave you with a sticky grimy feeling pan.
Caroline L. July 16, 2015
good advice, dirk. would you share your technique for seasoning?
Dirk N. July 16, 2015
oof, this website has 4 separate articles about this topic alone. I'd hate to pretend to speak definitively about a different method. Instead, if you are doing it this way, I'd just suggest drying out your pan thoroughly after washing with a couple of minutes over a burner or in a low oven. Vegetable oil is fine if you wipe most of it off. I'd suggest bumping up the temp to 425-450 and let the pan hang out in the oven for an hour at the target temp for an hour, turn off oven, let it cool with oven. Repeat a few times (one time probably won't be enough).
Also, if you buy anything from a store, it will never get glass smooth, so thinking its not done right or jealous of other people on the internet bragging about their finish is pointless. You'd have to get something that was made a minimum of 50 years ago.
Nicolas C. July 16, 2015
How should you wash it after use ?
Caroline L. July 16, 2015
hi nicolas! here are some tips for washing and storing: