How to Season a Cast Iron Skillet

How to Season a Cast Iron Skillet

A cast iron skillet is a must have kitchen tool.

In order to keep your cast iron skillet from rusting, to ensure you get at least 100 years of use from it and to help make sure that your food tastes great, and gives you full robust flavors, you need to season your cast iron skillet.

What is seasoning?

Seasoning is a term used to describe the process when you take a cast iron skillet and provide it with a fabulous, chemical free nonstick surface that protects your skillet from rust and will be the foundation for all of your great meals.

Cast iron skillet seasoning instructions are easy to follow and when you properly season your skillet you are giving your cooking skill a boost that will take the flavors of the food you cook through the roof and to the stars. Who knows, you may end up on the Food Network, become the next Top Chef or run your own restaurant.

It is possible, because many professional chefs avoid non-stick pans and choose to use cast iron cookware.

Instructions to season a new cast iron skillet

Step 1.Preheat the oven

Set the temperature between 375 and 425 degree. Oven heat and cook differently, but this is range of temperatures that covers all bases. You want to get the pores of your cast iron skillet open to easily accept the oil, but you do not want to have the oven hot to the point of excessive smoke filling your kitchen.

Step 2. Prepare your skillet.

If you have a new cast iron skillet, you first want to completely remove all paper, packaging, plastic and stickers from it. Next, with a soft sponge or wash cloth and warm, slightly soapy water wash off any surface dirt that you find. After that, dry the cast iron with paper towels. You can also use a clean kitchen towel. If you feel moisture allow the skillet to air dry for a few minutes.

Now that you have a clean and dry skillet, apply oil or grease to both the inside and the outside of the skillet. You also include oil on the outside because the skillet seasoning process as stated before helps to prevent rust. A thin coat outside is okay, but make sure the inside cooking surface is nice and shiny.

Step 3. Place in the oven.

Place a cookie sheet, baking tray or aluminum foil on one of the lower racks in the oven. You do this to keep the grease or oil that you used to coat the skillet with from spilling out of the skillet and into the oven. Now that your cast iron cookware is clean, dry and oiled, place your cast iron skillet upside down on an upper rack in the preheated oven.

It takes just about an hour to season a cast iron skillet. Occasionally during this time you may smell or see smoke. After an hour, turn off the oven and allow the cast iron skillet to cool down for about 30 minutes inside of the oven. Some people like to take the fiery cast iron skillet out and risk a major burn; I suggest leaving it in the oven. It is much safer.

You are now ready to conquer the kitchen with your freshly seasoned cast iron skillet.