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Cleaning cast iron

For those of you with cast iron, how do you clean it? I was raised with using hot water and soap, and then drying it quickly on the stove so it won't rust. Since becoming an adult I've heard that you should never use soap on cast iron, that it ruins the skillet by removing the seasoning. But in my experience this has never been true. The cast iron skillets I have are from the 50s-60s, and are still in great shape.


Asked by Ginger0104 at 12:01 PM on Feb. 7, 2013 in Home & Garden

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This question is closed.
Answers (13)
  • If your seasoning is that established, a little soap and heat dry won't hurt 'em. I rub mine with coarse salt if I need to scrub them, but other than that, I hand wash (with a tiny bit of soap) and dry on top of a heated burner. A spritz of PAM now and again is good, too.

    Answer by tessiedawg at 1:25 PM on Feb. 13, 2013

  • I was told not to use soap because it can soak into the cast iron and then transfer to the food when cooked. I simply let them cool and wipe really well with a paper towel or two and then rinse. Never had a problem. Our cast iron sits on top of the stove and gets used almost every night.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:11 PM on Feb. 7, 2013

  • I alternate between using salt (when it's just a bit of grease) and soap and water and drying on the stove when it's really a mess. I haven't had any problems with losing the seasoning.

    Answer by SWasson at 12:36 PM on Feb. 7, 2013

  • I use soap and water. Dry on the stove. When dry I spray it with cooking spray.

    Answer by booklover545 at 6:18 PM on Feb. 7, 2013

  • I wash mine normally.
    Just wiping it made it smell funny.

    Answer by butterflyblue19 at 12:04 PM on Feb. 7, 2013

  • My mama taught me to wipe it with a towel. Never use soap.
    I had a boyfriend a long time ago, and I'll never forget his dad. Dad was a millionaire and knew everything (sarcasm). He had a cast iron skillet that had never been touched by soap OR water. He just wiped it. Eeek.

    Answer by PandaGwen at 12:24 PM on Feb. 7, 2013

  • they come unseasoned. you season them by putting a thin coat of grease on them and baking them in the oven at 200 degrees
    cleaning is easy by boiling water in them and then scraping off all the grime and then reseason.

    Answer by feralxat at 1:03 PM on Feb. 7, 2013

  • I am like you. I wash mine with water and dish soap. Dry it. and I put oil on it stops it from rusting further. I have had one cast iron skillet for 33 years. Have always cleaned it that way. It still cooks good.


    Answer by louise2 at 2:13 PM on Feb. 7, 2013

  • Hot water and a scraper - like you do with Pampered Chef stones. Paper towels to dry immediately. I have my grandma's old old cast iron skillet and that's how she cared for it from the day she got it, and it's in better shape than my newer cast iron.

    Answer by idareyou at 3:55 PM on Feb. 7, 2013

  • I do wash it with soap and water and then dry it out - I drizzle olive oil and wipe the excess out with a paper towel to return it to seasoned

    Answer by tasches at 4:41 PM on Feb. 7, 2013