• February 7, 2024

How to Properly Season Cast Iron Cookware

Cast iron cookware is a kitchen essential that has been around for centuries. Not only is it durable and long-lasting, but it also provides excellent heat retention and distribution, making it perfect for cooking a wide variety of dishes. One of the key factors in maintaining and extending the life of your cast iron cookware is proper seasoning. In this article, we will discuss the importance of seasoning your cast iron cookware and provide a step-by-step guide on how to do it correctly.

Why Season Cast Iron Cookware?

Seasoning is the process of creating a layer of oil or fat on the surface of your cast iron cookware to prevent rust and create a non-stick surface. When done correctly, seasoning helps to protect your cookware from moisture and food particles, making it easier to clean and maintain. Additionally, a well-seasoned cast iron pan will develop a natural, non-stick patina over time, which enhances the flavor of your dishes and prevents food from sticking.

Step-by-Step Guide to Seasoning Cast Iron Cookware

1. Preheat your Oven

Before you begin the seasoning process, preheat your oven to 375-400 degrees Fahrenheit. Make sure your cast iron cookware is clean and dry before proceeding.

2. Apply Oil

Using a paper towel or cloth, apply a thin layer of high-smoke-point oil (such as vegetable oil, canola oil, or flaxseed oil) to the entire surface of your cast iron cookware, including the handle and edges. Be sure to use a minimal amount of oil to avoid a sticky residue.

3. Bake your Cookware

Place your oiled cast iron cookware upside down on the middle rack of your preheated oven. Place a baking sheet or aluminum foil on the rack below to catch any drips. Bake your cookware for 1-2 hours, depending on how well-seasoned you want it to be. The oil will polymerize and form a durable, non-stick coating on your cookware.

4. Cool and Repeat

Once your cookware has been baked, turn off the oven and allow it to cool completely before removing your cookware. If you are not satisfied with the initial seasoning, you can repeat the process by applying another thin layer of oil and baking it again.

5. Maintain your Seasoning

After seasoning your cast iron cookware, it is important to maintain the seasoning regularly to ensure its longevity and performance. To do this, avoid using harsh detergents or scrubbing pads, as they can strip away the seasoning. Instead, rinse your cookware with warm water and use a soft sponge to clean it. After washing, dry your cookware thoroughly and apply a thin layer of oil before storing it.


Properly seasoning your cast iron cookware is essential for maintaining its performance and increasing its lifespan. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can ensure that your cast iron cookware remains non-stick, rust-free, and ready to use for years to come. So next time you cook with your cast iron pan, remember to season it properly to enjoy the full benefits of this versatile kitchen essential.