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Seasoning a cast iron pan is crucial to maintaining its non-stick surface and preventing rusting. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to season a cast iron pan:
Clean the Pan
Start by cleaning the cast iron pan thoroughly. Use hot water, mild soap, and a stiff brush or sponge to remove any food residue or rust. Rinse it well and dry it thoroughly with a towel.
Preheat the Oven
Preheat your oven to a temperature between 350-400°F (175-200°C). Make sure the oven is hot before moving on to the next step.
Use a clean cloth or paper towel to apply a thin, even layer of cooking oil (vegetable oil, canola oil, flaxseed oil, or other high-smoke-point oils) to the entire surface of the pan, including the handle and outer edges.
Remove Excess Oil
Wipe off any excess oil from the pan. The goal is to leave a skinny and even oil coating on the surface.
Place in the Oven
Place the oiled cast iron pan upside down in the preheated oven. Put a piece of aluminium foil or a baking sheet on the rack below to catch any dripping oil.
Bake the Pan
Let the pan bake in the oven for 1-2 hours. This process allows the oil to polymerize, creating a smooth, non-stick surface.
Excellent and Repeat if Necessary
Turn off the oven and let the pan cool inside. Once it’s cool enough to handle, inspect the seasoning. Repeat the oil application and baking process if the surface needs to be smooth and glossy.
Regularly seasoning your cast iron pan (after every few uses or as needed) will enhance its non-stick properties and longevity.
Remember, the more you use and season your cast iron pan, the better the seasoning will become, resulting in a superior non-stick surface over time.
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