Spanish potato omelette tortilla with bacon served in cast-iron pan with sauce and ingredients above over wooden background Top view, space. (Photo by: Natasha Breen/REDA&CO/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
Why It's So Important To Keep Your Cast Iron Clean
By Nick Johnson
Cast iron pans are able to withstand a lifetime of wear, and their naturally nonstick surface is perfect for cooking up dinner without losing part of your meal to unwanted adhesion. However, keeping your cast iron clean is essential because it can quickly transform from a handy tool to a hunk of junk.
Carbon buildup from bits of burnt food can adhere to your pan, making the coating uneven and interfering with the cooking process, so it’s essential to keep it clean. While you might have been told that using soap on your cast iron pan is a definite no, it’s okay to use a moderate amount of soap along with some warm water and a soft scrubber that won’t scratch its seasoning.
However, you can forgo the soap and clean the pan with water and a scrubber, as the heat introduced during reseasoning will kill any bacteria, or scrub it with a bit of salt in a still-warm pan to act as an abrasive and dislodge any buildup. Avoid sticking your pan in the dishwasher, leaving it to soak in water, or immediately introducing a hot skillet to cold water, as these actions can rust and warp the cast iron.