It’s easy to love cast-iron skillets—for their brawn, their beautiful browning ability, and their seemingly endless lives. Although these sturdy cooking instruments aren’t quite invincible, a little TLC can help them truly last forever. Here’s how to store cast-iron to ensure your favorite kitchen tool will keep serving you for years.
Pro Tip: Seasoning your skillet is key to keeping it in tip-top shape. Learn how with tips from Taste of Home‘s Test Kitchen.
How to store cast-iron
Stash in a dry cabinet: A typical kitchen cabinet is the optimal storage space for cast-iron. But make sure it’s dry! Excess moisture turns to rust in a hurry on highly reactive cast-iron. Make drying your skillets thoroughly after rinsing them part of your cast-iron cleaning routine.
Keep on the stovetop: You may keep your cast-iron out on the countertop or stovetop, as long as it’s moisture-free—far removed from the kitchen sink area.
Stow in the oven: Ovens make a great storage space for cast-iron—but only if your pans are free of wooden parts. Remember, though, to carefully remove the skillet before heating up the oven.
Hang ’em up: You can hang your cast-iron skillets and pans on the wall—just be sure your hooks are securely mounted to studs. These bad boys are heavy! Hanging makes them both decorative and functional, so you can show off your awesome collection. Bonus: The free air flow will help prevent rust, and your cookware will be readily available.
Place paper towels between pans: No matter where you keep them, prevent scratching and rusting by stacking your cast-iron pieces—including lids—between paper towel sheets.
Always, always, always focus on dryness—and your pans will last a lot longer than they would if you stack them in a humid area, freshly rinsed and wet. Know the absolute best thing you can do for your cast-iron skillet.
The best cast-iron to keep in your kitchen
On the hunt for a great cast-iron skillet? Here are some of our favorite brands to have in your cookware collection:
- Modern classic cookware brand Le Creuset creates beautiful culinary tools coveted by home chefs and restaurateurs alike. Its enameled cast-iron skillets are a little lower-maintenance than raw cast-iron and come in a rainbow of colors.
- Lodge‘s best-selling—and affordable!—cast-iron stands the test of time. You can use it for all of your usual cast-iron cooking, or, try out a cast-iron pie!
- Iconic ironware brand Smithey offers gorgeous, ergonomic, easy-to-hang skillets that you’ll want to use every day. If you aren’t loving any of these options, take a closer look at our top 12 picks for the most reliable cast-iron skillets you can buy.
Now that you know the proper way to store your beloved cast-iron, here are the foods you should always be cooking in it.
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