Use & Care Get to know your new Lodge cookware Cast iron cooking is so much more than the type of cookware you use; it’s an experience and a relationship that will last beyond your lifetime. Once you get started, your Lodge cast iron cookware will be what you grab from the cupboard for every culinary idea that moves you. Are you ready to try new things and make beloved recipes? Your cookware is! Getting Started Let's cook! We season our iron in the foundry, making it easy to care for and ready to use. Cook with any heat source, including gas, electric, glass-top, and induction stoves, in the oven, over a fire, or on the grill. If you have a Camp Dutch Oven, you should only use it with coals or over a fire. Durable cast iron can handle any type of utensil—even metal. While your piece is new, be careful with alkaline and acidic foods and feel free to drizzle a little extra oil in your pan the first few uses before adding food. This will boost your pan’s seasoning for all your cooking adventures. Seasoning Building your nonstick coating Cast iron pans get better with every use, thanks to the natural seasoning that coats the iron and makes the pan nonstick. With a new pan, there are certain foods that will help you build your seasoning: cook bacon, bake a pie, sauté hamburger, and oven-roast your favorite veggies to build up the seasoning and keep it strong for years. Do I need to season my new cookware? Cast iron seasoning is simply oil baked onto the iron. At Lodge, we start the process for you, by adding a layer of soy-based vegetable oil to the cookware and baking it on at a high temperature. That means Lodge Cast Iron cookware is ready to use right out of the box for a natural, easy-release finish that gets better over time. Sometimes a small bubble will form on the edge of your skillet during the seasoning process. This spot will disappear with regular care and use. Learn more about our seasoning process Cleaning Caring for your iron After each meal, hand wash your cookware, dry promptly with a lint-free cloth or paper towel, and apply a thin layer of cooking oil to the entire surface. Voila! In three steps you’ve cared for your cookware so it’s ready for your next meal. One rule of thumb? Do not put cast iron in the dishwasher—it's a recipe for rust! Cast iron cleaning & care Top cleaning questions, answered Cleaning cast iron doesn't have to be complicated. Avoid a few pitfalls and your cast iron will be looking and cooking like a pro for generations. Can I soak my cast iron cookware? Soaking cast iron in water is a recipe for rust. If you need to remove sticky or stubborn stuck-on food, use a scrub brush or a pan scraper and rinse under warm water. Be sure to thoroughly dry and oil your pan. Note: If you do accidentally leave your pan in water for too long and it develops rust, don’t panic! With a little extra care, you can remove the rust and continue using your cast iron cookware. Can I put my cast iron cookware in the dishwasher? No, our cast iron cookware should be washed by hand. A dishwasher will remove the seasoning and likely cause rust. How do I remove rust from my cookware? For a small amount of spot rust: Wash your cookware with warm soapy water and a scrub brush, dry promptly with a lint-free cloth or paper towel, and rub with oil. If that doesn’t work, use the Lodge Rust Eraser first, followed by the above cleaning steps. For a large amount of rust: Scour the surface with warm, soapy water and a metal scouring pad. It's okay to use the scouring pad and soap since you are preparing to re-season the cookware. Rinse and hand dry thoroughly. Use the Lodge Rust Eraser at this time to easily remove surface rust on cast iron cookware. Next, thoroughly remove all residual material, and continue with the restoration process detailed below. Apply a very thin, even layer of cooking oil to the cookware (inside and out). Keep in mind if you use too much oil, your cookware may become sticky. Use & Care Good to know Did you purchase a grill pan? Our grill pan scrapers have “teeth” designed to fit any modern Lodge grill pan. They can get into the grill ridges to help with cleanup duty. Did you purchase a double burner griddle? Make sure to heat both ends gradually and evenly. Use the cooktop griddle function or a bridge burner if available, or lay the griddle across one large and one small burner to heat evenly. This will avoid thermal shock or warping. Did you purchase bakeware? Each time you bake, make sure to coat your cast iron with regular nonstick spray or with flour, like Baker's Joy. Did you purchase a Pie Pan or Baker's Skillet? Pies and quiches can be stored (uncut) in the refrigerator. Typically, however, we don't recommend storing baked goods in cast iron, especially ones that are moist, as this can cause rust. Did you purchase Heat-Treated Tableware? Nice! This special cookware undergoes a patented process that heats the iron at high temperature, changing its molecular structure to protect it from rust. This provides durable protection for use in commercial dishwashers! However, we do not recommend washing these items in your home dishwasher. Did you purchase a cast iron lid for your cookware? All iron lids should be cared for the same as cast iron cookware. To store: Place a paper towel between the lids and cookware to prevent moisture build-up. Did you purchase a glass lid for your cookware? Lodge glass lids are oven safe up to 400˚ F. They can go in the dishwasher, but not the microwave. Camp cooks, cookout pros, and on-the-go chefs, unite! Savor the Outdoors pieces are specifically designed to bring great cooking outside. You can care for these pieces just like you’d care for a skillet after cooking something in your kitchen—simply wash, dry, and rub with oil. Want more tips and tricks for cooking under the stars? Read our full guide to outdoor cooking and cleaning. Happy cooking, happy campers! Read the guide Myths Cast iron myths, busted Though cast iron cookware has been around for centuries, the materials and finished product have greatly improved thanks to advancements in science and technology. Despite these advancements, some tall tales about use, appearance, and care remain. We’re here to bust those myths about Lodge Cast Iron cookware. MYTH: Don’t use soap! Seasoning is fairly resilient. It can withstand a little soap and water and a good scrub with a brush. MYTH: My skillet is too rough! That’s a good thing! The textured finish of the skillet is a result of the casting process. It also helps the cast iron maintain its seasoning over time. MYTH: My new cookware still needs to be seasoned. Great news—we already did that for you! We spray a thin layer of vegetable oil onto the surface and bake it at a high temperature in a large oven to season the cookware before it leaves the foundry. It comes to you ready to use! However, it’s still important to continue to care for your cookware after each use. Wash with hot water, dry promptly with a lint-free cloth or paper towel, and rub with oil—that’s it! MYTH: My cast iron cookware is unbreakable. Cast iron is incredibly durable, but it’s not indestructible. Keep in mind cast iron will break before it bends and should still be treated with care like any other piece of cookware. MYTH: If a pan is black, it must have a coating. Unlike other companies that use paint for a black sheen, Lodge seasoning is 100% natural. The oil is baked on during the manufacturing process and the black patina that remains is a carbon deposit left by the oil on the skillet.