China produced one of the earliest cast iron pans in the sixth century. Considering how durable it is, it may even still be around.
That last statement may be a bit of a stretch, but cast iron pans are incredibly durable. They are workhorses in the kitchen that many people pass on to family members. They aren’t fussy but must be treated appropriately (pun intended).
Besides treating or seasoning cast iron, using the proper utensils is essential. The wrong tools could melt, break, or make cooking difficult.
Want a list of the best utensils for cast iron? Let’s go to The Chalkboard.
Some of the links below are affiliate links. This means that, at zero cost to you, I will earn an affiliate commission if you click through the link and finalize a purchase. All opinions are my own. Read our full disclosure.
Jump Ahead To
What Materials To Use On Cast Iron
Cast iron can take abuse. It withstands incredibly high heat, and its surface doesn’t scratch easily. Most utensils will work, but a few will perform better.
The best utensils for cast iron are made from wood or stainless steel.
Stainless steel is durable and can take high heat. It’s easy to clean and dishwasher safe. The big downside is that handles can get hot if left in the pan.
On the other hand, wooden utensils never get too hot to handle. They can go in the dishwasher, although the high heat will eventually dry out the wood — handwashing is best.
Another major drawback to wooden utensils is their porous nature. This quality sometimes leads them to stain. It’s not a problem, as the discoloration is just cosmetic.
Since wood is porous, many have raised concerns about whether bacteria can seep into the wood. Martha Stewart interviewed a professor and food safety researcher who explained, “we don’t have any examples of wooden utensils or cutting boards leading to foodborne illnesses.”
In fact, over time, wood has developed microbial tendencies to help it ward off parasites and bacteria. The porous nature actually pushes out bacteria and doesn’t allow them to grow.
What Utensils To Use On Cast Iron
The best utensils for cast iron are stainless steel spatulas and wooden spoons. If you are cooking lots of delicate fish or chicken, you may want to invest in a fish-turner. They aren’t too expensive.
Stainless steel spatulas last for years. They are simple to clean and are strong enough to flip even your heftiest steak. The thin metal helps to get under the food and scrape up any leftover bits.
If you are making sauces, risotto, or doing any stirring, wooden spoons work well. There’s little chance of burning your hand since they don’t conduct heat; if you leave it in the pan.
For chicken breasts and fish fillets, use a fish-turner. With stainless steel spatulas, you risk slicing into the meat. Fish turners have a rounded edge that isn’t as sharp. We do not recommend one made of silicone since they tend to be too thick to get under things effectively.
The Best Wooden Utensils For Cast Iron
The best wooden utensils for cast iron are made of walnut, cherry, maple, or olive wood – hard materials that aren’t as porous and more stain-resistant. You also may want to consider a flat edge that allows you to scrape the pan. Here are a few that fit the bill.
We use this often when cooking with granite cookware; it’s excellent. The handle is hefty and the correct width, and it feels good in your hand. The flat edge makes scrapping a snap, and the rounded sides helps get into the corners of the pan.
Since it’s flat, it doesn’t hold any liquid, so it won’t work if you taste or move sauces. But, with such a low price point, you can buy more than one type for less than some of the others.
The corner spoon is the swiss army knife of wooden utensils. It indeed does it all. The curved edge helps get into the corners of any pan. It’s lightweight and feels good in your hand. The dark wood won’t stain as quickly, and the teak holds up to high heat.
Best Spatula For Cast Iron
These are technically called “turners,” which are types of spatulas. When purchasing a spatula for cast iron, you want one that’s strong enough to flip steaks. A flat edge helps to get under anything that happens to stick, and a rounded edge helps around pan corners.
Stainless steel fits that bill, plus it’s easy to clean in the dishwasher. Since wooden handles often dry out, we recommend solid stainless.
The All-Clad version is the priciest on the list, but with reason, it’s the best metal spatula for cast iron. It’s constructed from heavy stainless steel. There aren’t any rivets for food to collect around, making it very easy to clean and the only one you will buy for many years.
If you are concerned about metal getting too hot, this spatula has you covered with its silicone handle. It’s super strong, and the holes help drain off any grease or sauces.
The Best Utensils For Cast Iron — Fish Turners
While it’s not necessary, a fish-turner is an excellent kitchen tool. The flexible portion makes lifting fish and other delicate items a breeze, while the slotted portion stops grease from getting on you. It’s one of the best utensils for cast iron.
Mercer Culinary’s Large Fish Turner
This option is perfect for flipping delicate items like eggs, fish, and chicken. The metal edge helps to get under the meat, unlike silicone versions which are too thick. It’s dishwasher safe and works on the grill, too. They even have a lefty version!
What Kind Of Utensils To Use On Enameled Cast Iron
You should treat enameled cast iron differently from standard cast iron. While the core is made from durable metal, the outside is coated. When using this type of cookware, you want to be careful not to scratch the coating.
The best utensils for enameled cookware are a flat-edged wooden spoon or a silicone spatula.
Stay away from stainless steel, which can easily remove the enamel layer; instead, look for silicone and wood.
The Best Utensils For Enameled Cookware
We love the turner spoon listed above and an angled silicone spatula. Here is our favorite silicone spatula.
This spatula is durable and easy to clean, thanks to its unibody design. The handle feels good in your hand, too. The silicone is BPA free and heat-resistant up to 550 degrees.
What Do You Think?
What do you think are the best utensils for cast iron? Is there a specific material or type I’m missing? Let me know in the comments below; I’d love to read.
How To Organize Recipe Digitally
Pin This For Later
Leave a Reply