Cast iron skillets have been around for centuries. These heavy-bottomed pieces of cookware are great for a variety of meal preparations. However, they are not appropriate to use on just any type of stovetop surface.
Stovetops have evolved throughout the years and range from gas to electric and even feature different materials for their surfaces. A great example of this evolution is the invention of glass top electric stoves. Since the 1970s, these types of stoves have entered more and more households. But are cast iron skillets safe for this stovetop material?
Because cast iron skillets are made of molten iron and steel, they are not ideal to cook on a glass cooktop. The bottom of the pan can scratch up the glass on the stove. This is due to the sliding of the cast iron on glass top stove. While glass top stoves are an attractive electric stove option, it is extremely important to maintain their surfaces not only for appearance but also for functionality. Too many scratches can affect the stove’s ability to cook evenly.
While glass top stoves are a little sensitive to what materials are used on them, there are some ways to still enjoy using cast iron skillet on glass. Traditional cast iron pans are old-fashioned looking, heavy, and black in color. However, there are cast iron pans on the market that can be used on a glass cooktop! These pans have a special ceramic coating on the bottom that keeps surfaces safe from the cast iron. They are still heavy-bottomed though and should be placed on any surface with care. Moreover, these coatings can come in a variety of colors to match any kitchen theme!
What Types of Material Can Be Used On A Glass Top Stove?
While a ceramic coated cast iron skillet is the perfect way to enjoy cast iron cooking without surface damage, what are some other materials safe for glass tops? Ceramic is not the only safe coating! Below are the other materials that are able to be used on glass tops!
- Stainless Steel – Since its discovery in 1913, this has continued to be a popular choice for cooks everywhere. It matches everything and any decor and is a reliable cooking source. It is one of the best things to use on glass tops!
- Ceramic – Ceramic coatings can be on regular non-stick pans as well as cast iron. This diverse coating is another great choice for glass top owners who might not want a cast iron pan.
- Copper – While these pans are trendy off and on again, they can leave behind residue on the glass top, so cleaning after each and every use is recommended.
These are the top three materials that can be used on glass tops. Glass cooktops really do require a bit more care when cooking on them due to their delicate tops. No matter what type of pan is being used, it is important to remember to spot clean the glass with glass top safe cleaner when needed as well as placing cookware carefully on the stovetop. Cookware should never be slammed or slid across the surface as these actions can create cracks and scratches on the glass.
What Other Benefits Are There To Using Ceramic-Coated Cast Iron on A Glass Top Stoves?
Obviously, the biggest reason to use a ceramic-coated cast iron on glass tops is to prevent scratching. While scratches are a huge concern, there are other benefits to using ceramic-coated over the traditional cast iron skillet. One of those benefits includes the actual heating process. Traditional cast iron skillets retain heat extremely well. Considering they have been around for centuries and can be used on open flames, this heat retention can get pretty intense.
Glass top stoves, along with other newer models of stovetops, have safety measures installed to shut off if the heat becomes too high. Ceramic-coated cast iron pans do not retain as much heat. This isn’t to say they aren’t acceptable cookware, they still heat properly and thoroughly. However, using them will reduce the risk of a stovetop shutting off.
Another big perk to ceramic-bottom cast iron pans is that they do not require seasoning. Regular cast iron pans do require seasoning or the maintenance of its non-stick surface. This is typically done by thoroughly washing the pan first, drying, and then heating the pan up with shortening or vegetable oil. The shortening and vegetable oil creates a layer along the iron’s surface. This process is not necessary for ceramic-bottom pans as they generally come with their own coating on the iron. Because of this, it is not recommended that metal utensils be used in them (or regular cast iron pans) as they might chip the surface away.
Because the ceramic-coated cast iron pans do not require seasoning, they can be easier to maintain and clean. Some people prefer the work that is put into seasoning a regular cast iron skillet, however, for those with a glass cooktop, having an alternative way to cook with cast iron is wonderful!
Can You Repair Scratches On A Glass Top Stove?
Accidents happen and sometimes scratches do occur! This can be especially for those who might be planning using cast iron skillet on a glass top stove for cooking without realizing the potential for damage. Scratches made by using cast iron on glass top stove not only make their appearance less appealing, but they also can prevent proper heating needed for cooking. These scratches could potentially disrupt the heat distribution to pans. With this in mind, are scratches in glass top stoves able to be repaired? The simple answer is yes.
While it is possible to repair scratches in a glass top stove surface, it is important to realize if the scratch is too deep, the answer changes to “no”. Deep scratch gauges aren’t an easy fix and may require the need to replace the entire surface. To repair small scratches, a mixture of baking soda and water is all that is needed. Sure, this sounds too simple, however, this paste acts as a buffer to remove the blemished scratch. Only two teaspoons of baking soda are needed along with one teaspoon of water. Apply to a damp cloth and gently scrub the scratch to buffer out.
This will remove any light scratches and keep any glass top looking its best. Along those same lines, the best way to clean a glass top is with baking soda and a small amount of white vinegar. This mixture lightly bubbles up to eradicate any debris or grease. While it seems logical to use a glass cleaner on the glass top, this is a huge mistake! The harsh chemicals in the glass cleaner meant for traditional windows can cause damage to a top stove surface. There are products on the market that are targeted to glass tops for cleaning, but honestly white vinegar and baking soda will do the trick. Cleaning the top after every use will also keep it looking its best.
Cast iron skillets are a huge part of cooking’s history and are a beloved piece of cookware. While they are not suitable for a glass top stove, the good news is there are alternatives for still getting a cast iron cooked meal on a glass top stove! Moreover, it is a relief to know that if someone accidentally uses a regular cast iron skillet on a glass top stove, it can be buffed out with a little elbow grease, vinegar and, baking soda. All of this can give true peace of mind to a someone who uses cast iron on glass.