My cast iron skillet is one of my favorite cooking vessels. They get very hot and retain heat well, which makes them perfect for cooking dishes like my Crispy and Cheesy Skillet Hash Browns and Skirt Steak Fajitas. However, like a brand new pair of shoes, new cast iron needs to broken in so that a shiny, non-stick black patina develops on the surface.
My skillet has gotten rusty lately, so I thought I’d show you my foolproof method for seasoning cast iron skillet, which can be done in 4 easy steps: wash, dry, oil, and bake!
Step 1: Wash the skillet thoroughly with a sponge or scouring pad to remove rust.
Step 2: Dry it with a paper towel (don’t use a kitchen towel because it will just turn it black).
Step 3: Pour about a tablespoon of vegetable oil into the skillet, and using a dry paper towel, wipe it thoroughly to coat the entire skillet.
Step 4: Place the skillet face down on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil for easy cleanup, and bake at 350F for one hour. Turn the oven off and let it cool in the oven thoroughly.
At this point, the skillet is ready for use. The more you cook with it, the better that seasoning will become.
By the way, this seasoning method applies to all types of cast iron cookware, such as cast iron waffle pans and grill pans. Actually the wok I use for stir-frying is made of cast iron too.
After each use, just rinse off with soapy water (no heavy duty scrubbing unless there’s food stuck to it, then you might have to start all over again), and wipe it dry. If your skillet starts to lose its sheen or appears rusted, it’s time for a re-season!