Everyone who has a cast iron pan, griddle or skillet knows the benefits of this type of cookware. They are exceptionally durable, virtually indestructible, naturally nonstick and excellent heat conductors. In addition, cast iron offers superior heat retention for even cooking and baking. Now, we come to the question how to clean your cast iron skillet properly.
Cast iron is known for being difficult to clean and quick to corrode and that is sort of true. When not properly maintained and seasoned, cast iron will rust. Taking care of your cast iron skillet is not difficult. Proper care is a guarantee that cast iron will last for generations to come. One of the ongoing debates is whether you should use soap and water or not. Some people prefer to only wipe the pan after use with a paper towel. The main thing is to choose the method that is right for your pan.
This question is asked by many housewives, for whom it is very important to maintain their cast iron cookware in perfect condition and use it for many years. We shall look at 5 simple methods to clean your cast iron skillet at home.
How to Clean Cast Iron Skillet with Salt
Pour ½ cup of salt into a warm skillet and scour the inside with a paper towel. After that discard the salt and rinse the skillet.
Raw Potato and Baking Soda Method
Potatoes contain oxalic acid which breaks down rust so this method for cleaning cast iron pans and skillets is quite popular. Baking soda is a universal home cleaning product and it can absorb remaining grease in the pan. You need to cut a potato in half lengthwise, dip it in baking soda and rub the pan with it. Keep in mind that if there are many bits of food stuck onto the bottom of the skillet, you may need to repeat the process or combine this method with another cleaning procedure.
How to Clean Cast Iron Skillet with Boiling Water
This is the perfect method to clean food bits that are stuck onto the bottom of the pan. You need to fill the pan with water and bring it to the boil over medium heat. Scrub the bottom with a wooden spoon. Optionally, you can add some baking soda for better result.
Cleaning Cast Iron with Dish Soap
As we already mentioned, there is an ongoing debate about using dish soap on cast iron cookware. One of the main arguments against this method is the fact that dish soap ruins the seasoning of pans and skillets which makes them more susceptible to rust. You need to add 1-2 drops of dish soap to the bottom of the pan and clean with hot water and a stiff bristled brush. However, if this is the preferred method to clean your cast iron skillet, make sure that you season your pan very well after cleaning.
How to Clean Cast Iron with Salt and Stiff Scrub Brush
Salt has abrasive properties and is great for scrubbing food remnants on the bottom of the skillet. First, wash the skillet with hot water and stiff brush and then scrub the bottom and sides with 2 tablespoons of salt. Rinse well with hot water.
You can choose any of the methods but it is very important to season your cast iron skillet after cleaning.