Cast iron skillets are well known to be durable and incredibly versatile than any other kitchenware. They excel in both performance and resistance when it comes to various cooking styles. Also, these types of skillets are not only considered to be the safest pans to cook with but also known for their long lifespan if properly maintained. It's one of the most ideal and versatile skillet for steak. It excels in both heat retention and even heat distribution to cook and sear any type of steaks.
8 Reasons Why You Should Consider Using a Cast Iron Skillet To Cook Steaks
Cast iron skillets are an excellent choice to aim for in order to cook a perfectly seared steak. This material helps to retain the heat longer than any other type of materials while securing an even distribution to create a juicy browned steak. Also, this type of skillets are enhanced to provide high resistance against corrosion and rust thanks to the enameled surface which usually can be either ceramic or porcelain.
Cast iron skillets are versatile and can be used almost everywhere whether over firewood, grills or gas stoves, etc. Here are 8 reasons why you should start using cast iron skillets:
Safer than most cookware
Cast iron skillets come with a stick-resistance surface to give a natural nonstick quality that doesn’t react with food since there are no chemicals coating to begin with. The natural nonstick surface improves and becomes smoother as you use it often. However, re-seasoning every once a while is a must to maintain its qualities.
Cast iron skillets are built to withstand high heat cooking while offering high resistance to rust, acids, wear and corrosion.
High Heat cooking
Cast iron cookware are able to withstand high heat to offer nearly complete control over the temperature to ensure perfect cooking without burning the food.
Heat retention and even distribution
Thanks to the cast iron material, the skillets are able to retain heat longer than any other materials while ensuring an even heat distribution over the entire surface and side walls. Thereby, they are a great fit to cook food evenly.
One of the main reasons why you should get your own cast iron skillet. This type of cookware is compatible with most heat sources and can adapt to all cooking styles which makes it usable for various different recipes.
Easy to clean
Cleaning is like a breeze task when it comes to cast iron skillets. Although they are not dishwasher safe, they can be cleaned easily in warm soapy water ( see below on cleaning tips the full guide on how to clean any cast iron skillet)
Less oil cooking
Thanks to the natural pre-seasoning the skillet comes with, it offers a nonstick quality that will allow you to cook most of the food with less to no oil. Which mean you can enjoy healthy safe meals with cookware manufactured with this material.
It goes without saying, cast iron skillets are usually cheaper than any other types of cookware, considering the qualities and performance they are able to provide, their prices are very reasonable since they are built to last for a lifetime.
What To Look For When Buying a Cast Iron Skillet
Weight is one of the main factors you should be considering when you want to buy a cast iron skillet. Most if not “all” cast iron skillets are heavy, the reason being is the density of the metal the skillets have. The thicker the metal is, the better and longer the heat retention and distribution are. In other words, the heavier the skillet is the better and higher performance it will deliver. However, While that remains to be a fact, you should not aim for the heaviest cast iron skillet you find. But, rather get the one that you can carry and use easily to avoid risks and to cook comfortably.
Another important factor to consider when purchasing a new cast iron skillet. The handles need to be a bit long and easy to grip to distribute the weight while having some sort of protection from heat.
Most cast iron skillets nowadays come with a helper handle to assist with lifting and facilitate transport.
The length of the handle is very important as well. It helps with grip and secures an easy transport. Thus, always avoid very short handles and aim for the length suited for your hand.
The majority of cast iron skillets are around 10 inches, while some exceed 12 inches. The size matters the most when it comes to the space of cooking you desire. Do you like to cook steak one at a time? Or do you prefer cooking multiple steaks at once? Also, what’s the size of the steak you wish to cook? Personally, I prefer to cook a steak at a time so even an 8 inches skillet would do just great. However, the recommended skillets you’ll find below can fit most of the steak sizes on the market.
Top 8 Best Cast Iron Skillets For Steak
Le Creuset Enameled Cast-Iron Skillet
Le Creuset has produced a lot of high quality cast iron cookware over the years, and this skillet is no exception. It is ideal for cooking and searing steaks.
This enameled cast iron skillet is capable of distributing the heat evenly and slowly over the entire skillet’s surface while providing superior heat retention. Which makes it ideal for not only cooking steaks but also for all forms of cooking styles, whether it’s slow-cooking, roasting, searing, baking or even stir-frying.
This skillet can work and perform great on both low and high heats thanks to its heat control quality, that makes it usable on any heat source.
This skillet is coated from the inside out with enamel. The interior is coated with satin black finish protection, to provide a nonstick quality to the skillet’s surface that prevents food from sticking even during high temperatures cooking. Also, it helps building high resistance to avoid any sort of damage and wear.
The exterior colorful coating serves to build a greater resistant against rust, corrosion, chipping and cracking.
This skillet comes with 2 handles: a primary one, and an opposite helper handle. The reason being is to add extra stability and to facilitate transport. The handles provide a steady grip during use and transfer while ensuring a distribution of the skillet weight to make it feel light and comfortable for everyone.
It’s recommended to hand wash this skillet as it’s not dishwasher safe. However, thanks to the black enamel finish coating, cleaning becomes an easy task to do, since it resists stains and prevents food from sticking. All you’ll need to clean the skillet is soapy water and a scrub brush.
This Le Creuset skillet is compatible with all heat sources and cooking styles. The natural patina it develops add an extra flavor which makes it ideal for cooking and searing juicy steaks.
Lodge Cast Iron Skillet
Another great choice for cooking steaks. Lodge have earned a great reputation and love for their brand over the years. They have produced a lot of high quality cookware that exceeded the expectation of the consumers at very reasonable prices. This cast iron skillet lives up to its standards, you will surely come to enjoy it as you use it often.
This skillet can distribute heats evenly from the bottom through the sidewalls while providing superior heat retention even at higher temperatures. Which makes it ideal for cooking and searing steaks.
This lodge skillet is considered to be multi-functional cookware, it can be used for many different cooking styles whether it’s indoor or outdoor cooking. Also, it is compatible with all heat sources.
The natural seasoning used on this skillet gives it nearly that nonstick quality to prevent food from sticking on the surface and withstanding even the highest acids that can be found in some vegetables. While enhancing its resistant against rust and corrosion.
This skillet comes with a primary handle that length around 4.81 inches and an extra helper handle to support the weight and to assist the heavy lifting to ensure it’s easier to transfer the skillet around.
Like most of the cast iron skillets, this one is not dishwasher safe. It is highly recommended to hand wash it after every use with soap and warm water.
It is true this lodge skillet offers high resistance, performance and can withstand higher temperature. However, if it not maintained properly, its qualities and lifetime will be reduced slowly over time.
This cast iron skillet works well on all heat sources and delivers greater performance than what you can expect from its price. It is not only ideal for cooking steaks but for cooking various recipes.
Cuisinel Cast Iron Skillet
This is one of the unheard brands that produce great cookware. Cuisinel has dedicated everything to producing nothing but high quality cast iron skillets. They are a climbing brand in the industry, however, their products stand equal to the most famous brands in the market.
These skillets offers incredibly precise heat distribution, it is capable of distributing heat evenly thanks to its smooth finish that improves cooking and frying which not only makes it great cookware for gas stoves but also for induction cooktops.
They come with a tempered glass lid which helps to redirect the vapor back to the steak to enjoy a well tenderized juicy steak. Also, it prevents splashes and spills while cooking your favorite dishes
These Cuisinel skillets are pre-seasoned naturally which results in a nonstick surface that prevents food from sticking while providing high resistant to heats, acids, rust and corrosion.
They also come with a non-slip silicone hand holder that is heat resistant to ensure safe cooking during the transition between stove, oven, grill or open fire. This feature makes it easy to hold the handle while cooking or serving food.
These skillets can last for years while performing as great as new if they are properly maintained. It is recommended to re-season them before first use and every once a while to maintain their natural nonstick quality. Also, it is important to hand wash them using warm water and a non-abrasive brush. Never! Attempt using the dishwasher as they are not compatible with it and it will only shorten their qualities and lifetime.
These are a great cast iron skillets for steaks, especially for beginners. They are versatile and safe to use which makes cooking an enjoyable hobby to do.
Finex Cast Iron Skillet
One of the most versatile skillets I have come across. The quality behind this Finex skillet is outstanding. It’s ideal for hearty steaks, it has outperformed most of the skillets I have tried so far.
This skillet is produced with heavy-gauge cast iron to ensure the highest heat retention possible while securing an incredibly even heat distribution to deliver the perfect searing for your steak. Also, it is not only compatible with all heat sources but also provides a greater heat control which results in perfectly cooked meals.
This Finex skillet is designed to have eight rounded corners, while that gives it a unique appearance, the corners act as pour spouts that seal up tight or serve as evenly spaced steam vents with the matching lid.
The lid is built in with dual rings on the underside to collect steams that boil off and drip it evenly back onto the steak while the inner lip serves to lock the heat and add the moister and flavor to the steak.
Both of the Finex skillet and lid come pre-seasoned with complete flaxseed oil to give the surface that nonstick quality while enhancing its resistant against rust and corrosion. The surface doesn’t react with the food and can withstand even the highest acids that can be found in some vegetables and alcohol.
This skillet comes with a comfortable stainless steel spring handle which stays cool for a long time and serves to distribute the heat quickly. This speed-cool handle designed to withstand even the high temperatures to secure an ergonomic and comfortable hold.
The skillet also comes with an additional lip underside to assist with the grip for serving or transferring the skillet around.
Last but not least, the Lid has a brass knob that allows for a secure grip and control over the lid.
The skillet comes pre-seasoned and well coated with the organic flaxseed oil to strengthen its durability and to make the surface stick-resistant. But, before first use, It is important to rinse the skillet with warm water and then dry it completely to remove any sediment that may have settled in your Felix skillet.
You can only hand wash this skillet using warm water, scrubber and a dab of soap if necessary
This is by far the greatest skillet I have tested so far. Everything about it built with precise details to enhance its performance to the maximum possible. It excels in every aspect. Despite the fact that it’s pricey, it can last for a lifetime and keep on performing as if it’s brand new.
Lodge 13.25” Cast Iron Skillet
One of the greatest skillets produced by Lodge. This cast iron skillet was one of the reasons lodge has grown to be popular. It excels in many aspects and delivers high performance to meet consumers expectations.
This Lodge skillet offers great heat retention with a superb precise even distribution. It has outperformed most of the lodge skillets I’ve tried, thanks to the smooth finish on the surface that improves cooking, searing and frying. Also, it allows the skillet to be used on any heat sources. Which makes it ideal to cook a perfectly seared steak.
This skillet is pre-seasoned naturally like all Lodge cookware with soy-based vegetable oil and no synthetic chemicals. Which gives the surface a nonstick quality to resist sticks while securing a completely healthy safe cooking for our meals. The resistance increases slowly after every use, which makes the skillet even better over time.
This skillet comes with a primary and an assist handles to distribute the weight around to move it freely for serving. It also has a lid that serves as self-blasting tips on the underside to allow juices to continually baste the steak as it cooks. Which results in a completely brown juicy steak.
This cast iron skillet is not dishwasher safe. It is highly recommended to hand wash it after every use in soapy water to preserve the skillet’s seasoned finish.
Most of Lodge’s skillets offer high resistances, great performances and can withstand higher temperatures for years if properly maintained.
This is by far the best skillet produced by Lodge for steaks I have ever tried. It is versatile and compatible with most heat sources and cooktops. It can deliver high performance to cook a perfectly seared steak whether it’s indoor or outdoor.
Utopia Cast Iron Skillet
One of the excellent choices for people who are on a budget. Utopia cast iron skillet delivers good performance and qualities to cook steaks and meats on any heat source. Although it falls slightly below Lodge it can still be used in both indoor and outdoor cooking.
This skillet offers good heat retention to keep the food warm as long as possible while the smooth finish on the surface ensures an even heat distribution. Which makes it compatible with most heat sources except glass stove tops as it tends to slide slightly that can cause some scratches on the surface. See "Best cookware for glass top stoves" if you are looking for a cookware designed specifically for glass top stoves.
You can even cook and sear a rib eye steak on this skillet thanks to the space it provides.
This Utopia skillet comes pre-seasoned naturally with soy-based oil to give the skillet a nearly nonstick quality that can be enhanced with more cooking and re-seasoning.
The surface is resistant to stick, rust, corrosion and can withstand higher temperatures cooking and even highest acids in vegetables and alcohol. Which makes cooking with this skillet completely safe and healthy since it will never react with the food.
This Utopia skillet is built with 2 handles, a primary one and a helper handle to assist with lifting and transport, also to ensure an easy serving. However, It is recommended to buy a silicone cover for the main handle to make it completely safe when holding it during high heat cooking.
The layer created on the surface from pre-seasoning equal to 10-15 rounds of normal home seasoning. But, if it not properly maintained, the skillet will lose that nonstick quality and its performance will be decreased by time. Thus, always avoid dishwasher and hand wash it after every use and make sure to dry it immediately afterward before storing it. Moreover, re-season the skillet every once a while to maintain its qualities.
This is a good skillet to cook large steaks with or even multi steaks at once. It has a 12.5 inches space which can fit even ribeye steaks. It is compatible with most heat sources so it can cook a perfectly seared steak on stoves, grills or even on campfires.
Creuset Signature Iron Handle Skillet
Le Creuset has been around since 1925 producing various types of cookware, cast iron, stainless steel, nonstick, stoneware, etc. Their products have always fulfilled the consumers' daily needs, and this skillet is a great proof for that. It allows you to cook your steak on top of any stove including inductions and halogen stovetops.
This Le Creuset skillet is capable of distributing the heat evenly and slowly over the entire surface while providing superior heat retention thanks to its enameled cast iron. Which makes it ideal for various cooking styles. Also, the surface is built specially to endure high temperatures cooking, while the enamel develops a patina over time as a result of the natural oils and fats from foods that make it ideal for searing steaks.
This skillet provides a great heat control that allows it to perform great on both low and high heats which makes it usable on any heat source.
This skillet is coated completely with enamel. The interior is coated with satin black finish protection to improve its nonstick quality and its resistant to staining, dulling, wear and tear even during high temperatures cooking.
The exterior colorful coating serves to build a greater resistance when it comes to rust, corrosion, chipping and cracking.
This Le Creuset cast iron skillet comes with a large helper handle to provide a better grip while assisting with lifting and moving around. The handles serve to distribute the weight and add extra stability while facilitating transport so that it can be comfortable for everyone.
This particular skillet is dishwasher safe. However, It is still recommended to hand wash it every once a while to maintain its lifetime and performance for the long run. The black enamel finish coating builds a stick-resistance around the surface, which makes cleaning by hand an easy task to do since all it requires is soapy water and a brush.
This Le Creuset skillet is compatible with all heat sources and cooking styles whether it’s slow-cooking, roasting, searing, stir-frying or even baking. The natural patina it develops add an extra flavor that set it to be ideal for cooking juicy brown steaks.
Calphalon Cast Iron Skillet
Calphalon has earned its reputation and fame through the high quality heavy-gauge aluminum cookware they’ve produced. However, the brand doesn’t stick to just one type of cooking surface. It has produced a series of cookware sets made from various materials. It has always aimed to produce safe cookware that can cook food very quickly. Their products are well known for their great temperature control. Which was the main reason why I had to give this skillet a try.
This Calphalon skillet is designed to distribute heat evenly and steadily while providing high heat retention to keep the food warm for as long as possible. It is compatible with all heat sources and can be used anywhere to cook a delicious steak.
The surface is around 12 Inches which fit for even largest steaks to be cooked in this skillet
The surface of this skillet is pre-seasoned to keep food from sticking during cooking while offering an addition resistant against rust and corrosion. However, the quality of its nonstick ability falls short after time compared to the previous skillets.
This skillet comes with oversized handle to secure a better grip during lifting and moving it around. However, to use the helper handle, you may need to use kitchen mittens when cooking with high temperatures.
This skillet is actually not dishwasher safe. It is recommended to hand wash this skillet in soapy water to preserve the pre-seasoned layer for as long as possible. The natural coating requires re-seasoning from time to time to maintain its qualities and performance.
This Calphalon cast iron skill is versatile and can be used on gas, electric and even induction stovetops to cook a perfectly seared steak. It is a good choice for people who are on a budget. See more of my calphalon cookware reviews.
Comparison of The Best Cast Iron Skillets For Steak
Compatible with all cooktops
Compatible with all except glass stove tops
How To Season Cast Iron Skillet
Most of cast iron skillets come pre-seasoned naturally with soy-based vegetable oil or flaxseed etc. The initial seasoning the skillet comes with equal to 10-15 rounds of home seasoning (depends on the quality of oil used for seasoning) to ensure a strong layer that can resists sticks, rust and corrosion. However, it is important to re-season your cast iron skillet every once a while to maintain and enhance its performance for the long run. So, how do you re-season your cast iron skillet? Well, the answer is very simple, just follow the next steps:
- Wash and clean your skillet with water and a scrub brush (you can use soap if necessary)
- Dry it right away using a towel
- Pour a bit of vegetable oil or canola oil on the surface (Note: Avoid using olive oil or butter)
- Rub the whole skillet from the inside out including the handles with a piece of cloth.
- Put the skillet upside down in the oven and set it at 400°F for one hour (Note: during this step, don’t forget to line the bottom of the oven with foil to catch excess oil.)
- Finally, let the pan to cool (don’t take it out of the oven, but rather let it cool inside)
Cleaning and Cooking Tips For Cast Iron Skillets
- Most if not “all” cast iron skillets come pre-seasoned and ready for use. However, always give your skillet a quick rinse and an immediate hand dry before first use.
- You can use any utensils whether it’s wooden, silicone or even metal to cook your meals. The coating in cast iron skillets are 100% natural therefore, there will be no chemical reactions.
- The more you use your cast iron skillet, the better it gets.
- Avoid using the dishwasher and wash your skillet with hand using soapy warm water and a scrub brush. (Note: Soap isn’t always necessary to clean your cast iron skillets)
- Always dry your skillet immediately before storing it.
- Cast iron skillets can be placed in the freezer for food storage.
- Always double check if your cast iron skillet has protective handles that are resistant to heat. If not, make sure to use kitchen mittens for safety.
- Before you attempt cooking steak on your cast iron skillet or any other pans built for cooking steaks, you need to be very cautious about 5 things. You can learn more about them in this guide on how to cook a steak in a cast iron skillet
The Final Verdict
Cast iron skillets are definitely a hype worth looking into. With it being considered as the most versatile and safest material to cook with. Cast iron skillets are a must have in every kitchen and restaurants. Now, that I’ve given you the considerations and the benefits of getting a cast iron skillet for your steaks. I highly recommend Finex Cast Iron Skillet as my top pick. This skillet is versatile and excels in every aspect to deliver the highest performance possible in order to cook a perfectly seared steak. Despite its price, this skillet is a beast when it comes to cooking with quality.
I hope my comprehensive list has guided you to choose the best cast iron skillet for steak that would match your needs. In case you have further questions, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll answer them for you.