Types of Cast Iron Cookware

Cast Iron has been around for hundreds of years, and over that time the process of creating cast iron pans and skillets has been perfected, allowing cast iron manufacturers to create a wide array of cast iron cookware suitable for a variety of uses. Along with the many styles of cast iron cookware available, consumers also have the option of choosing to have their cast iron cookware unseasoned, pre-seasoned or with an enameled porcelain coating.

  • Unseasoned Cast Iron Cookware - Many people choose to purchase unseasoned cast iron cookware because it allows them to use their own steps to season the cast iron exactly the way they want it. Most unseasoned cast iron cookware will come with a coating or film that will need to be removed before the cast iron can be seasoned.

  • Seasoned Cast Iron Cookware - Pre-seasoned cast iron is seasoned in a way similar to home seasoning but on a much larger scale. Most companies use a spray oil to coat the cast iron and then bake it at an extremely high temperature, which allows the seasoned cast iron to take on the dark black finish that is common among seasoned cast iron cookware. Pre-seasoned cast iron may lose its seasoning over time, however, and need to be re-seasoned.

  • Enamel Coated Cast Iron - Though enamel coated cast iron has lost much of the popularity it had gained from the late 1800's to the mid 1900's, enamel coated cast iron is still a popular choice by many for cast iron dutch ovens. Enamel coated cast iron is highly rust resistant, has a non-stick surface and allows the owner to clean their cast iron cookware more thoroughly.

There are many different styles of cast iron cookware that you can choose from that allow for a wide array of cooking styles. Whether you are planning on cooking a stew over an open camp fire or baking your favorite casserole in your oven, cast iron cookware is always a great choice.

  • Dutch Ovens - Cast iron dutch ovens are an ideal choice for making stews and soup over a camp fire or slow cooking a roast in your oven. Cast iron dutch ovens can also be used for baking over a camp fire, which makes it one of the most versatile styles of cast iron cookware.

  • Barebones Living 4-Quart Cast Iron Dutch Oven Classic - CKW-307
  • Skillets - Cast iron skillets or frying pans are the best way to fry, saute or even cook an omelet. In fact, many people use their seasoned cast iron skillets for everything from warming butter to frying steaks on their stove top.

  • Ooni Cast Iron Skillet Pan
  • Woks - Perfect for creating delicious stir fried meals as well as for deep frying, steaming, stewing and making a variety of soups, it's easy to see why cast iron woks and other specialty cookware have increased in popularity in recent years. Woks are distinguished by their unique, round-bottomed shape.

  • Food in a cast iron wok
  • Griddles - Cast iron griddles provide a flat and even heated cooking surface; great for cooking a wide variety of foods on your stove top, including pancakes, eggs, hamburgers and much more.

  • Ooni Cast Iron Grizzler Pan
  • Bakeware - Whether you are looking to bake muffins, cornbread or biscuits, cast iron bakeware provides endless possibilities for baking. Cast iron is the perfect material for bakeware because it heats evenly. This reduces the chance that your baked goods will turn out burnt on the outside and gooey in the middle.

  • Food in a cast iron baking dish
  • Camp Pots - Similar to dutch ovens, cast iron camp pots are also a versatile way to cook. Camp pots come in several varieties, including the three-legged styles similar to the original cast iron cookware from china.

  • Cast Iron Camp Pot next to an open flame
  • Fryers - Because of their seasoned nature, cast iron is the perfect choice for deep frying everything from poultry to fish. Cast Iron fryers use the oils to further season the cast iron and are easy to clean after use.

  • Fries in a cast iron deep fryer

Choosing the cast iron cookware for your kitchen requires the buyer to determine what their cooking needs are. While many people are comfortable with the standard, skillet, griddle and dutch oven, more and more people are realizing the complete versatility they create by adding other varieties of cast iron cookware.

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