You asked: What do the numbers mean on cast iron skillets?

The size number is typically found on either the bottom of a piece or incised in the top of the handle. The assumption is often made that this number is an indicator of the item’s diameter in inches. A simple measurement of both the top and bottom rims of a pan, however, proves that assumption incorrect.

How can you tell how old a cast iron skillet is?

Telling the Age by the Pan

  1. Texture. Older pans have a smoother and less pebbled surface than newer ones. …
  2. Weight. Apart from the texture, the weight of the pans also differs based on their age. …
  3. Gate Mark. Another type of mark that cast iron skillets can have is a gate mark. …
  4. Made in the USA. …
  5. Manufacturer Logo.

What is the best size for cast iron skillet?

We would recommend a 12-inch skillet if you’ve got a lot of food to cook for your family. If you’re cooking a full meal for two or more people, 12 inches is a perfect size. Otherwise, a 10 inches pan will work best if you are just cooking solo. An 8 inches pan can be too small, in many cases.

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What size is a #3 cast iron skillet?

No. Top Diameter in inches Bottom Diameter in inches
3 6 1/2 5 1/4
4 7 5 3/4
5 8 6 3/4
6 9 1/8 7 1/2

How can you tell if a cast iron skillet is good?

Examine the surface inside of the pan. If the surface has a shiny, silver Teflon-like or non-stick coating, it isn’t cast iron. Real cast iron has either an imperfect surface that’s dark silver, dull and slightly rough, or a layer of slick, black seasoning.

What is the rarest cast iron skillet?

If your pan was made before 1957, it’s considered vintage cast iron.

With antique cast iron, there are certain numbers that are very common and some that are very rare.

  • Numbers #3, 6, and 8 are not considered collectible. …
  • The most desirable pan is #1 – they’re super rare and worth $1,000 each, despite their small size.

What is the most valuable cast iron skillet?

Griswold cast iron skillets are highly regarded and sought after because of their smooth cooking surfaces and lighter weight. Keep an eye out for the first series “Erie” and “Erie Spider” skillets. These two skillets stand out as the most sought after by collectors.

Can you put butter in a cast iron skillet?

Do not use olive oil or butter to season your cast-iron pan — they’re great to cook with, just not for initial seasoning. … For a seasoning bonus, cook bacon, thick pork chops or a steak in the pan for its first go-round. The natural fats in these meats will work wonders on its finish.

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Is a 12 inch skillet too big?

The 12 inch skillet is big enough to roast a chicken, sauté pork chops, sear steaks, brown a pound of sausage, or make a big round of cornbread.

How much should you spend on a cast iron skillet?

The price of the skillets we tested ranged from about $20 to $275. Since cast-iron skillets are generally inexpensive, we were curious to see if the extra expense of some pans translated into better performance.

How do I identify a Griswold cast iron skillet?

Turn the skillet over and look for the Griswold mark on the bottom. Griswold placed their mark on the bottom of their cast-iron skillets.

What is the smallest cast iron skillet?

The Lodge 3.5-Inch Mini Cast Iron Skillet is the smallest of the iconic manufacturer’s line, billed as being perfect for solo meals, frying an egg, or showcasing trendy restaurant-style individual desserts. It shares the classic features of cast iron skillets.

Is a cast iron skillet worth it?

Cast iron cookware is worth using in the form of pans, griddles, skillets, Dutch ovens, and other shapes of cookware. The iron holds the heat and spreads it evenly for various types of cooking. A cast-iron pan is an unbeatable kitchen equipment piece due to its functionality, durability, and versatility.

What is the best oil to season a cast iron skillet?

The best oil to use to season your cast iron is either flaxseed oil or grapeseed oil. Corn oil, sunflower oil, or olive oil and all great alternatives that will give you just as good results.

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How often should you season cast iron?

It can be beneficial to season your cast iron in the oven a few times a year. We recommend oven-seasoning when restoring a rusty cast iron pan. Follow our easy steps to season cast iron in the oven and download our Seasoning Guide to add a quick go-to reference to your cookbook.

Can you ruin a cast iron pan?

Famously durable, these pans are often passed down through generations. With proper reseasoning care, years of frequent use can actually improve the pan’s “seasoning”—its natural nonstick coating. But sadly, cast iron skillets can indeed break.