How To Clean Rust Off Cast Iron? 8 Simple Steps

There are several types of skillets in the present market, and each type of skillet is greatly used in everyday kitchens for doing multiple cooking-related tasks. But among all of them, worldwide, people mostly use three types of skillets: cast iron skillets, stainless steel skillets, and nonstick skillets. 

How to clean rust off cast iron or how to restore a rusty cast iron skillet? Both are frequently asked questions from many users of cast-iron skillets.

However, cleaning a rust-off cast iron skillet or restoring a rusty cast iron skillet is very easy. You have to know the right process for it. Follow our simple tips below to clean the rust off the cast iron skillet or restore a rusty cast iron skillet.

What You Need

  • A steel Wool
  • Dish soap/ dishwashing detergent
  • A scrubbing Brush
  • Vegetable Oil/ Cooking oil
  • A sheet of Aluminum Foil
  • Oven
  • A clean and dry cloth or paper towel

Rust off cast iron cleaning process:

1. Soak Your Cast Iron Skillet In Water

Take your cast iron skillet and soak it fully in cold water for 5-10 minutes. The water will soften the rust of the cast iron skillet. As a result, the rust will easily remove from the skillet when you rub the cast iron skillet with stainless steel wool.

2. Take Steel Wool & Remove All The Rust

Now take your cast iron skillet from the water and start rubbing its rust-affected areas with the pre-selected stainless steel wool. Continue the rubbing process until the whole cast iron skillet becomes completely rust-free. 

3. Wash The Cast Iron Skillet Thoroughly

You have removed all the rust from your cast iron skillet by rubbing the rust with stainless steel wool in the above step.

Now wash your cast iron skillet using a sufficient amount of warm water and dish soap or dishwashing detergent.

You can scrub the skillet with a scrub brush or sponge while washing the skillet with hot water and dish soap or detergent if you feel the necessity.

4. Dry The Cast Iron Skillet Thoroughly

Your cast iron skillet is now rust-free and neat, and clean.

Now dry the cast iron thoroughly by wiping it with a clean and dry cloth or paper towel.

5. Cover The Cast Iron Skillet With Oil

Now take vegetable oil or cooking oil in your hand and oil the whole cast iron skillet, including its bottom and handle.

6. Place your Cast Iron Skillet In The Oven

Now place your cast iron skillet upside down on the top rack of your oven and place a sheet of aluminum foil on the bottom rack to catch all oil drops. Then, start heating your cast iron skillet for 60 minutes at 350 Degree Fahrenheit temperature.

7. Cool The Cast Iron Skillet

After heating your cast iron skillet for one hour, now turn off the heating your cast iron skillet and let it cool.

8. Start Use

If you can follow the above tips step by step, now your cast iron skillet is ready for use. Start using your favorite cast iron cookware!

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How To Prevent Rust On Cast Iron?

To find the best service from a cast-iron skillet, it is a must to keep it free from rusty. Follow the below tips on how to prevent rust on cast iron.

Way Of Cast Iron Rust Prevention:

  • As the cast iron skillet pan is made from iron, you should not soak your cast iron in water as much as possible because iron is not fully waterproof.
  • The water reacts chemically with iron to form rust on iron. Thus, water helps the iron to get rusty and damages the iron. If you have to soak your cast iron in the water, dry it well after every time you soak and store it in a dry place.
  • Use a dry cloth or paper towel to dry your cast iron pan. Don’t air dry it as much as possible because the water vapor in the air will react with cast iron’s iron to form a rusty coating on it.
  • For more security, lightly oil your entire cast iron before storing it for the next time you use. Keep in mind; Oiling is the best way of cast Iron rust prevention.
  • Use and clean regularly your cast iron skillet that will protect your cast iron from rust. Don’t leave your cast iron without using it for a long time.
  • Always store it in a dry place. It would be better if you can store it in an airless place.
  • Always try to avoid cooking acidic food ingredients in your cast iron because acidic substance reacts with the iron and helps to grow rust in the iron. 

Why Does My Cast Iron Skillet Get Rusty? OR What Causes Rust On Cast Iron?

There are many reasons for getting your cast iron skillet rusty. Below we have enlisted a few reasons that are directly responsible for getting your cast iron skillet rusty.

Reasons of rust on a cast-iron skillet:

  1. Not using and cleaning it for a long time.
  2. Storing it without drying thoroughly (storing it with liquids)
  3. Long-term and careless use of it.
  4. Deterioration of the quality of its components.
  5. Not cleaning it properly after every use.
  6. Storing it in a moist and damp place for a long time.
  7. Damaging its surface color.
  8. Cooking acidic food ingredients in it.
  9. Not oiling it lightly while storing it for the next time use.
  10. Keeping it in the open air for a long time.
  11. Not using it regularly.

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Final Verdict

A Cast iron skillet is very sturdy, durable, and long-lasting because it is made of iron. However, the true fact is that it can get rusty.

Why does cast iron skillet rust? How to prevent rust on cast iron skillet? We have answered both of these two questions in the article.

Therefore, by following the above tips step by step, clean your rusty off-cast iron and prevent it from getting rust. Leave a comment if you have any questions about cast iron care, and share the article if you think the article was helpful for you.

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