How to Care for Cast Iron Frying Pans

by Kimbry Parker

Items you will need

  • Vegetable oil
  • Paper towels
  • Oven
  • Coarse salt
  • Nonmetal scrub brush
  • Dish towels
  • Steel wool pad

A cast iron frying pan is beneficial to any kitchen. Not only is it durable and withstands a lot of wear and tear, the way that it evenly distributes heat ensures your food is cooked uniformly. To use iron skillets effectively, you must properly maintain them. Cleaning and seasoning iron skillets, along with other routine maintenance, will ensure that they last for many years to come.

Step 1

Season your cast iron skillet by rubbing a light coating of vegetable oil onto the interior and exterior of the skillet with a paper towel. Put the frying pan upside down in the oven at 300 degrees for about an hour. Let it cool completely for a few hours before taking it out of the oven.

Step 2

Rinse food from the frying pan with hot water promptly after use. Sprinkle coarse salt inside of the pan and scrub with a nonmetal scrub brush to remove caked-on food. Rinse and dry well before storing.

Step 3

Store cast iron frying pans without the lids and in a dry place. Lay a couple of paper towels on the inside of the frying pan to soak up any moisture that may seep in and help to prevent rust.

Step 4

Remove rust from your cast iron skillet with a damp steel wool pad. Scrub the frying pan lightly until the rust is gone. Wash the skillet with hot, soapy water and re-season it.


  • Avoid boiling water in your cast iron frying pan as this may cause it to rust. Do not wash cast iron frying pans in the dishwasher.

    When food starts sticking to the inside of the pan, it is time to re-season it.

    Wash the pan in hot, soapy water and dry it thoroughly before re-seasoning. Do not put cold water or liquids into a hot cast iron skillet. This can cause the iron to crack.

    Avoid washing cast iron frying pans in soapy water unless you are planning to immediately re-season it. The soap will remove the oils from the frying pan.

About the Author

Kimbry Parker has been writing since 1998 and has published content on various websites. Parker has experience writing on a variety of topics such as health, parenting, home improvement and decorating. She is a graduate of Purdue University with a Bachelor of Arts in organizational communication.