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Cast Iron Skillet

I bought my first cast iron skillet which is preseasoned how do I clean it??? Not in the dishwasher I know...can I use soapy water then hand dry?

asked by Lisa G about 5 years ago

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9 answers 1395 views
84e1393f 0d16 4291 80cf 2c42b5acf188  noz photo
added about 5 years ago

We have several posts about this! I hope these are helpful:

http://food52.com/blog...

http://food52.com/blog...

http://food52.com/blog...

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B0e51b35 a002 4fdd adc2 f06fa947184e  baci1
HalfPint

HalfPint is a trusted home cook.

added about 5 years ago

Most of the time, when you're just using it for frying, just wipe down with a paper towel and put away.

When you feel that you really need to wash it, use warm soapy water, rinse, dry, and then smear a light (as in not dripping from or pooling in the pan) coating of oil and put it away until the next use. Kind of like, washing your hands and applying a moisturizer afterward.

I don't completely buy into that whole "don't ever let it touch any soap". Sometimes, you really need to get it clean of food residue. It's not like it needs to be scoured clean, but certain foods leave a residue that a simple wipe down with a towel does not remove.

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245e202f 76a9 4ea1 a050 7663856d239d  2013 06 17 13.33.26
added about 5 years ago

I rarely use soap on my cast iron skillet. Although, I think ok occasionally. Instead of hand drying I place the skillet on a hot stove burner to dry. Any moisture (ie water) will cause rust. I always lightly oil after drying.

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23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added about 5 years ago

I use a dish wash brush and warm clear water, dry with paper towel

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120fa86a 7a24 4cc0 8ee1 a8d1ab14c725  me in munich with fish
added about 5 years ago

I agree with HalfPint. I rarely use soap on cast iron, but sometimes you really need to clean the living daylights out of it. The coating of oil is very important, though, especially if you live in a humid climate. We pulled out our cast iron pizza pan yesterday after not using it for a while, and it had begun to rust because of the intensely humid weather.

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23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added about 5 years ago

How you clean it depends on how well you've seasoned it. Poorly seasoned pans will lose their coating with a good scrub of soap. Properly seasoned cast iron is much more resilient. You can boil water in a pan on the stove top if you have really stuck on food. Never soak a cast iron pan in water as it will rust.
I don't baby mine at all and I've never had a problem. I have several pans that are more then 40 years old and they work perfectly.

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23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added about 5 years ago

Here's a good idea. I have one and it works great!
http://www.cooksillustrated...

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C0d1f1de 4134 43ba 9510 1d7a8caa31f3  scan0004
added about 5 years ago

My simple and inexpensive tool for stuck on crud is one of those generic curly metal balls sold in any kitchen cleanup spot -- supermarket, hardware store or specialty store. Most of the time I don't do anything to the pan, because there is no need, but this metal scrubber is always ready when needed. The chain mail looks impressive, and more gentle, but works in the same way.

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pierino

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added about 5 years ago

I'm firmly in the soapy water school of cleaning but with some advisos; hopefully you've been cooking some super greasy food in it like bacon, which is the best way to begin its seasoning. After cooking wipe it down with coarse salt. Wash in soapy water, rinse and then burn dry on the cook top. Cast iron improves over time. I have one skillet that is literally 100 years old and in fine condition.

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