Why You Need Cast Iron Pans

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Most of us have a cast iron pan in our home, but not everyone knows what to do with them. If you’re considering a cast iron pan, I wanted to share some tips on why you need cast iron pans. Cast iron pans are amazing to have for cooking in your own kitchen. They last forever, which is awesome! Let’s talk about these pans and why you may just need to run out and buy one right now.

Cast Iron Will Last Forever

One of the first things that you’ll hear about cast iron cookware is that they last forever, and that’s true! It’s among the most durable materials and can also be repaired when it’s been damaged. But not to worry, cast iron is nearly indestructible. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t treat it with care, however. 

Even if you notice that your cast iron is starting to rust, that doesn’t mean that it’s reached the end of the road. Simply use a gentle scouring pad to remove the layer of rust from your cookware. 

Provides a Natural Non-stick Surface

Do you grow as tired as I do of food sticking to the bottom of your pans? With a cast iron pan or skillet you won’t have to worry about that ever again. Just be sure that your cast iron pans are well seasoned or have plenty of oil and fat to ensure that nothing sticks. Another incentive to using more oil and seasonings that you’ll notice your food will taste better.  

This is especially important to remember when you first purchase your cast iron cookware because it hasn’t had the chance to build up layers of seasonings. Preheating your pans and cast iron skillets before frying is also something that you should keep in mind. A lot of companies now sell them preseasoned, yay! Lodge Cast Iron Set

It’s Extremely Versatile

Why You Need Cast Iron Pans

Cooking with cast iron pans and skillets provides you with more heating methods. Not only can it be used on top of your stove, but also placed in the oven or on top of an open flame. That’s especially important to note if you enjoy a hot breakfast while you’re out on a weeklong camping trip.

These awesome cast iron pans also bring you versatility regarding what you can cook with it in the kitchen. You’ll be able to pan fry, sear, saute, roast, broil, braise, and bake with them. This includes cooking with them for every mealtime, whether it’s breakfast, dinner, or making sweet desserts. Have you ever tried a warm gooey skillet chocolate chip cookie before? Don’t forget a scoop or two of vanilla ice cream melting on top. Yum!     

Excellent Option for Deep Frying

So you don’t have a deep fryer? No problem. Cast iron does an excellent job of retaining heat, making it one of the best cookware options for all your deep frying needs. So, not only can you sear meat with it, but delicious crispy fried chicken as well.   

Easy to Clean Up

Make sure your cast iron pans and skillets are clean once you’re done in the kitchen. That’s always good to keep the pan in great shape. Just keep in mind that you shouldn’t reach for the soap when you do. All you need to do is rinse your cast iron in really hot water while using a stiff brush for scrubbing off any leftover food or debris. If you’re still having trouble getting food unstuck from your cast iron, go ahead and boil water over the stove with it and then repeat the process.  

Please remember you also don’t want to allow your cast iron pans to drip dry, so grab a clean towel and dry them immediately. This way you’re preventing any rust from forming. I usually pat them dry and put them back on the burner to dry completely for a minute or two.

Pass Them On

You need a cast iron pan because then you can pass them on to your kids and grandkids. Cast iron skillets will last for many generations to come. Plus, you can pass on your skill of cooking from scratch using them. 

Final Word 

Cast iron pans and skillets are one of the very few things in life that only get better with age. That’s not something that you can say about other cooking ware, and even ourselves for that matter.   

You can use your cast iron pans for almost every cooking need that you have, but keep in mind that you don’t want to cook acidic foods with it until after you’ve been cooking with your cookware for awhile. Check out these amazing cast iron recipes for more ideas on how you can get started on your cooking journey when using your brand new cast iron pans. May God bless this world, Linda

Copyright Images: Cast Iron Pans Deposit photos_104361386_s-2019, Cast Iron Pans on Wood Deposit photos_104362818_s-2019

14 thoughts on “Why You Need Cast Iron Pans

  • August 22, 2020 at 7:19 am
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    They also make an excellent self-defense weapon when the need arises.

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      • August 22, 2020 at 10:43 am
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        This is a great article. Thank you.
        There are some nice Cast Iron (CI) groups on Facebook that one can follow. Pinterest has some great ideas about Cast Iron display.
        I know some people that have glass top, electric ranges think that they can’t use cast iron. You can! I’ve had glass top range for over 7 years. I use cast iron regularly. Just be careful!
        Don’t slide it back and forth on the glass!
        Make sure that you are using a pan with a really FLAT bottom, so it can make good contact with the element.
        Hope this helps.

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        • August 22, 2020 at 3:59 pm
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          Hi Laura, thank you for your comment!! Yes, it can scratch the glass tops but just be careful and you can use it with the flat bottoms!! I will check out those groups and Pinterest! Love it! Linda

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    • August 22, 2020 at 2:40 pm
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      My husband gave me a 14 inch camp dutch oven years and years ago. I was probably 35 years younger than I am now! I told him not to make me mad when it was full cause I would swing that thing and clobber him with it! If I could lift it!!

      Reply
      • August 22, 2020 at 4:02 pm
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        Hi Leanne, oh my gosh, that is a HUGE Dutch Oven!! They get so heavy!! Best comment EVER!! I now have the giggles! Linda

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  • August 22, 2020 at 2:54 pm
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    A couple of tips: you can find great used cast iron at thrift shops BUT you need to know a few things about cast iron before you spend your money at the thrift store:

    1) KNOW what cast iron pans cost new. I have seen some in thrift stores labeled “antique” selling for WAY more than new pans sell. Because cast iron is nearly indestructible, antique or old cast iron are no better than new, generally and sometimes way more work than you bargain for.
    2) look over the pans very carefully. Look for deep pitting and/or cracks in the pan as well as the handle. If they are deeply pitted or have cracks, they are not worth the money that is being asked – even if someone is giving it to you. Deeply pitted pans are nearly impossible to restore to a non-stick seasoning. Cracks can be repaired but at a cost and generally not worth it.
    3) overlook rust. It can be cleaned and re-seasoned pretty easily as long as there is not deep pitting or cracks.

    I have found some really great buys on cast iron at thrift shops – one large skillet was priced at about 1/2 the cost new and it looked like it had never been used. It was a Lodge which, in my opinion, is the best on the market and looked like it was factory seasoned so quite new. I bought it and gave it to my daughter who has been using it for a few years now.

    I have used Lodge primarily but also some of the other brands out there on the market. I found by experience that some of the other brands are not as easily seasoned as Lodge. Now, if I purchase new cast iron, I always go for the Lodge factory seasoned pans.

    Love my cast iron. I have 3 camp dutch ovens (the ones with the 3 legs and flanged lid to hold charcoal) in 12 inch, 10 inch and 8 inch. I have 3 different sized skillets and 2 flat tortilla cookers (great for grilled cheese, pancakes for one as well as tortillas or anything that needs to be cooked flat).

    Another note: if something does stick to your cast iron – for example eggs, let it sit until cold and the egg will scrape off easily; or potatoes, fill the pan with water and bring to a boil. Let cool then use a plastic scraper and it should come off easily.

    Reply
    • August 22, 2020 at 4:04 pm
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      Hi Leanne, great tips on buying used cast iron! I totally agree with you! I only buy Lodge but that’s because they were kind enough to let me use their measurements (charcoal top and bottom) for cooking with Dutch Ovens. I need to go add that to this post, I forgot about it. Linda

      Reply
  • August 22, 2020 at 3:05 pm
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    I have a set of pots, and skillets that are cast iron. Several skillets. One is a treasure because it was my grandmothers. I have one dedicated for cornbread only. I even have a couple of casserole type dishes, and a griddle. I’ve been wanting my grandson to make me a Swedish candle to cook on. It’s a large piece of wood that has cross cuts on it, and filled with sawdust. You can sit a cooking pot, pan, or skillet on it and cook. Easy.

    Reply
    • August 22, 2020 at 4:07 pm
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      Hi Deborah, let me know when he makes that I want to see it. Linda

      Reply
  • August 22, 2020 at 4:54 pm
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    Hi LInda,
    Loved your article. I have used cast iron for many, many years and absolutely love all of my skillets & one dutch oven. I don’t use them as frequently as I used to, as my hands aren’t as strong as they used to be. However, my son gave me a Thing I call a “squeezy” (not the real name, that I use sometimes at night when I’m just sitting this helps to strengthen your fingers.
    Anyway, I’ve noticed several mentions of using water, even soaking your skillet in water to remove “stuck on stuff”. Water is the enemy of cast iron. I NEVER soak my cast iron in water. In fact, water rarely touches any of my cast iron cookware.
    Here’s a tip, I learned many years ago on how to properly clean your cast iron.
    1. Pour a little oil into the dirty skillet Or dutch oven.
    2. Sprinkle heavily with coarse salt.
    3. Using a brush dedicated to cast iron cleaning, simply brush the salt and oil around the skillet until it is clean. Then wipe away the salt and oil and your skillet is sparkling clean.
    I don’t remember where I learned this cleaning method, but it makes sense to me
    I’ve even used this method just using a couple of folded paper towels and it works great.
    I don’t know where I learned this cleaning method, but it makes sense and really works.
    Just wanted to throw out other options for people to try.

    Reply
    • August 22, 2020 at 8:17 pm
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      Hi Suzanne, oh, I love this tip on cleaning cast iron clean and seasoned. Those “squeezes” really do work! Great comment! Linda

      Reply
  • August 27, 2020 at 7:53 pm
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    I have cooked with cast iron for years. I have found that far and away, liquid coconut oil is the absolute best for seasoning and/or reseasoning cast iron.

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    • August 27, 2020 at 8:33 pm
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      Hi Kate, oh I LOVE hearing this, liquid coconut oil! Awesome! Thanks for the tip! Linda

      Reply

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