How to Clean Cast Iron Cookware (Pans/Skillets)

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Cast iron cookware is one of the most durable, offers natural non-stick feature and also provides great heat conductivities. However, this kind of cookware has a few disadvantages also. Unlike other usual non-stick cookware, cast iron cookware is prone to rust. This cookware is also required extra attention and care to prevent rust. Moreover, you can prevent the rust easily if you follow the proper way while cleaning. In this post, you will get some most effective ways on How to Clean Cast Iron Cookware. All of these methods will help you to keep your cast iron cookware free from rust as well as looks like new.

Effective Methods on How to Clean Cast Iron Cookware

There are some most useful processes to clean the cast iron cookware. Hopefully, these processes will help you to clean your cookware effortlessly.How to Clean Cast Iron Cookware

Traditional Way to Clean your Cast Iron Cookware

Wash your cast iron pot or skillet with hot water after finishing your cook. If the pan is still hot this is the best time to clean it. Pour hot water directly in the hot pan (this process is only recommended for cast iron cookware not applicable to other metal cookware). Rinse the pan once to remove large pieces of cooked-on food. After that fill the pan again with water. Pour enough water so that water fills the cooked-on area.

Check: How to Clean Ceramic Cookware

If your pan still needs cleaning and it is cold, bring it to heat up again. Place the skillet on the burner and heat the water up until it begins boiling. Scrape the bottom and the sight of the pan lightly with a wide spatula to dislodge any remaining food. Drain the dirty water in the sink and turn of the burner. Wipe the pan with a couple of paper towel. Use vegetable oil or shortening to make a thin coating on the surface of the pan.

Apply Baking Soda to Clean Rust of the Cookware

To remove thin and light rust from the cast iron cookware you can use baking soda. This effective ingredient you probably already have in your kitchen. Sprinkle a small amount of baking soda onto the surface of the pan. You can add some water to the baking soda in order to make a rough paste. Use a sponge to scrub the paste into the affected area of the pan. Let the paste to sit for a few minutes. Wash it off with tap water. If it is needed you can repeat the process to remove different abrasive.

Clean Rusty Cast Iron Skillet with Vinegar Solution

Vinegar is the most effective ingredients to remove rust from the cookware. Make a combination of an equal portion of water and white vinegar. Use enough amount of vinegar and water so you can fully immerse the pan. Mix the solution where you want to soak the cookware, like the bucket or the sink. Place the pan into the bucket or sink and let it soak until all the rust is removed. Check the pan after every half hour and so on. Remove the pan once the rust has melted. After removing the pan from the vinegar solution, wash it right away. Use a mild detergent and soapy water to remove any vinegar residue. You can use a sponge or brush for a gentle scrub. Wipe with a paper towel thoroughly to dry the pan. Place the pan in a warm oven for about half an hour to remove any excess water.

Use Salt to Clean the Rust of the Cast iron Cookware

You can use salt to remove difficult rust from cast iron skillet or pot. Sprinkle salt on the surface area of the pan. The firmly fixed amount of salt you need differs depending on the size of your skillet. For example, about half a cup of salt would be enough for a 12 inch cast iron pan. Use a paper towel to scrub the bottom of the pan with salt. Scrub the edge as well as the center of the pan gently. Once you’ve clean off the rust thoroughly rinse the pan under the tap. Rinse out any pieces of salt from the pan. Wipe the pan with paper towel immediately and place it on the burner over low heat. Water can cause rust of your cast iron pan so that it’s very important to dry your pan immediately.

Clean the Outside of the Cookware with Baking Soda

Cleaning the outside of cast iron pot or pan is not as much difficult as you think. You can use baking soda to clean the outside of your cast iron skillet. Flip the pan over and sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda with little water on the affected area. Allow the baking soda for few minutes to sit properly. Use a non-abrasive scouring pad to make a scrub. Rub the rusted area gently. Once the rust is cleaned away, using a couple of paper towel to remove any pieces of paste. Baking soda will do a great job to clean any stain from the outside of the pan.

Also Check: How to Clean Stainless Steel Cookware

Tips to Maintain your Cast Iron Cookware Properly

If you take proper care of your cast iron cookware you can use it after years. There are some useful tips for you so that you can maintain your cast iron cookware easily.

  • Avoid the using of detergent and soap when you clean cast iron skillet. Although detergents and soaps are great as cleaner still they should be avoided when it comes to cast iron cookware. The sulfides in most of the detergents crib to the oils in the pan and strip them.
  • Never put the cast iron pan on the dishwasher. The Dishwasher can damage the non-stick coating of the cast iron pan. On the other side, it can promote rust easily on the skillet.
  • Avoid the using of steel wool to clean cast iron skillet. It can damage the coating and can reduce seasoning of the pan.
  • In order to have a rust-free cast iron skillet, it is important to clean it correctly and regularly. Clean the pan immediately after every single use.
  • Allow the pan to dry completely. Water can promote rust on the pan easily so that make it sure that you dry your pan perfectly.
  • Store your cast iron pan in a safe place that is away from water. To keep the pan safe from dust place a paper towel in the pan when you store it.

Last Thought

Cast iron cookware would be a great choice for your household kitchen. However, if you are careless about your cast iron cookware it could even destroy within a short time. You should maintain a regular cleaning routine to increase the lifespan of your loveable cookware. One more thing for you, you can check manufacturer’s instruction to know How to Clean Cast Iron Cookware perfectly. So that you can take care of your cookware properly.