Seasoning Cast Iron with Olive Oil Step-by Step (Updated 2023)
Want to learn how to season cast iron with olive oil? Stick around as we will explain how you can do it from home.
A well-seasoned cast-iron pan will last for a long time, even through generations. When it comes to durable cookware, cast iron stands above all with its convenient upkeep and durable build.
It’s dependable for stovetop and oven cooking and has been used by professional cooks for centuries. The best thing about cast iron cookware is, you can easily season it to prevent rusting.
Seasoning Cast Iron with Olive Oil
Seasoning a cast iron pan helps to extend its lifespan and to avoid damage and rust.
The most common method is seasoning cast iron with olive oil. Don’t worry, it’s easy.
Follow these steps to season your cookware in the oven.
- Gently scrub the pan with dish soap and water. Rinse carefully and pat it until it dries completely.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with foil. Place this on the lower rack of the oven.
- Use a paper towel to pat dry the pan evenly.
- Add a small amount of vegetable oil to the pan, ensuring all the surfaces are covered.
- Place the cast iron pan upside down on the top rack of the oven. Bake for about one hour and leave until completely cool.
- Repeat as desired, this time using a small amount of olive oil to polish out the finish.
- As a seasoning bonus, you can use the pan to fry thick pork slices or bacon allowing the fats to improve the overall finish of the pan.
Note: It’s crucial to use oils with higher smoke points.
The secret of good seasoning is the oil’s capacity to form a stronger bond with the iron. To put it simply, smoking points are the temperature at which oils begin to emit smoke, indicating the release of fatty acids.
The reason you don’t want to use olive oil at the initial seasoning is because of its low smoke point. The problem is, when you use olive oil first, the seasoning doesn’t stick to the surface.
Seasoning then begins to degrade and the cast iron pan becomes sticky. You don’t want this, so better use vegetable or canola oil first.
Grapeseed oil is also a good starter because it has a high smoke point and low saturated fat content. Flaxseed oil is also ideal before you drizzle olive oil on the pan.
The olive oil provides a good finish, just don’t leave it too long inside the oven.
Best Qualities of Cast Iron
As mentioned, cast iron is impressive for its durability and functionality. It helps make delicious meals, whether frying, baking, or making stews.
The material also distributes heat evenly, so the meat comes out perfectly tender. By far, the best quality of this cookware is safe food handling.
Non-stick pans are incredibly convenient and healthy, as you don’t need to use more cooking oil. However, scratching the surface releases toxic chemicals that can leech into your food.
The truth is, even heating a dry, non-stick pan can release toxic fumes into the air. Cast iron saves you from this. Also, it withstands incredible heat; you can even use it over a wood fire.
You can also use it in the oven, over a gas stove, or on an electric stovetop.
When it comes to maintenance and cleaning, know that cast iron doesn’t require soap. You should just wash it with water and pat dry it with a clean towel.
Using kosher salt with a bit of oil will remove any debris, keeping the surface clean and odor-free. It’s also a bonus that cast iron pans add a bit of iron to everything you cook.
This mineral maintains energy levels in the body and boosts your immune system. Moreover, cast iron cookware is remarkably inexpensive too.
Plus, you can use it as a grill, pop it inside the oven, and heat it on the stovetop—it’s totally worth it.
Seasoning cast iron with olive oil is crucial to maintain the integrity of the material and keeping it of good quality.
Olive oil is a good seasoning agent, but remember it’s not ideal for the initial seasoning. Just start with flax seed, grape seed, or vegetable oil before finishing with olive oil.
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