Bob Vila Radio: The Quick Way to Clean a Cast Iron Pan

Cast-iron pans last a lifetime or longer—but only with proper maintenance!

It’s no wonder cast-iron cookware is popular: They are non-toxic, evenly heated, and durable enough to last for generations! Here’s how to properly maintain these skillets for you—and your great-grandchildren@

How To Clean A Cast Iron Pan



Listen to BOB VILA ON CLEANING A CAST IRON PAN or read below:

Even if the label says “pre-seasoned” or “nonstick,” take time to season your pan before you use it.

First, wrap aluminum foil over your oven’s bottom rack to catch drips, then preheat to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. To the inside and outside of the cast iron pan, apply a thin coating of vegetable oil. Finally, place the pan upside down on your oven’s middle rack. Bake for an hour, then turn off and let the pan cool completely. Once it’s seasoned, you’re ready to cook.

When cleaning a cast-iron pan, be sure to do so as soon as you’ve finished cooking, while the pan is still warm. Scrape away any food with plastic, not metal. That prevents scratches. If you have to, you can add vegetable oil or sea salt to dislodge stuck-on food, but don’t use dish soap. Lastly, wipe the pan dry to prevent rust and preserve the nonstick coating.

Bob Vila Radio is a 60-second home improvement radio tip of the day carried on more than 186 stations in 75 markets around the country. Click here to subscribe, so you can automatically receive each new episode as it arrives—absolutely free!