When it comes to timeless, versatile cookware, nothing compares to a well-seasoned cast iron skillet. For beginner and experienced cooks alike, cast iron cooking creates a delicious outcome for all kinds of recipes, whether it be perfectly searing a juicy pork chop or baking a flaky, buttery pie. Read on for our favorite cast iron skillet recipes here at Field Company HQ.
Table of Contents
- How to use a cast iron skillet
- What should not be cooked in a cast iron skillet?
- Best cast iron skillet recipes
How to use a cast iron skillet
When breaking in a Field Company cast iron skillet, there are many steps you can take to ensure the quality of your pan, as well as the desired outcome of what you’re cooking. Below are our suggested steps when cooking with cast iron skillet:
Be generous with cooking oil. As your seasoning develops, you can decrease the amount.
Try to stick to low to medium heat as you build up seasoning.
Preheat your pan for 5 minutes at medium temperature before cooking for even heat distribution. Cranking the heat to high immediately will just give you a hot spot in the middle of a cast iron pan.
Contrary to popular belief, most proteins (including bacon) may stick a bit in the early stages before your seasoning builds up.
What should not be cooked in a cast iron skillet?
While well-seasoned cast iron is some of the best multi-purpose cookware in the game, there are a few things to be avoided to ensure your pans quality. Here are some things to consider when cooking with your cast iron:
Try avoiding acidic foods which strip seasoning (tomatoes, wine, citrus, vinegar). While these ingredients are okay in small amounts, you may not want to cook a heavily-acidic based recipe in your cast iron.
Cast iron pans may take on flavor from recipes previously cooked in them. You may want to consider purchasing a separate cast iron pan for baking pies, for example, in order to avoid any lingering flavor from, say, last night’s seared salmon.
Best cast iron skillet recipes
You can cook almost anything in a cast-iron pan—from breakfast, to dinner, to dessert—with a guaranteed delicious outcome. Below are some of our favorite cast iron skillet recipes you can make to expand your home-cooking repertoire.
Potato hash browns are one of the most perfect hearty morning dishes, and cooking hash browns in cast iron yields a gorgeous crusty exterior that is difficult to achieve in a regular pan. This crispy, golden brown breakfast staple is perfect for breaking in your Field No.4 Skillet.
“Bread with tomato” is as simple as it sounds, a humble Catalonian staple that can be served as a light lunch (maybe topped with anchovies or a slice of jamón), as a summer dinner side or, if you want to break from tradition, topped with a fried egg for breakfast. Our version pulls in a cast iron skillet for toasting the bread, which gets the top of the bread crispy and well browned, but leaves the interior soft and tender.
Strata is the perfect breakfast or brunch dish for fans of baked eggs or savory french toast. While many classic strata recipes include an overnight soak in the fridge, this method isn’t ideal for your cast iron skillet - our recipe lightly toasts bread and gives it a short soak in custard to cut down on prep time while still delivering classic strata creaminess.
Bring the reverse sear outdoors and use it on this succulent, rustic pork chop recipe. By first cooking the meat over the cool side of a grill or fire, then searing it in a hot cast iron skillet, you’ll end up with a chop that’s evenly cooked throughout with a beautifully burnished crust.
There’s no doubt about it: a cast iron skillet is the best tool for making diner-style smash burgers at home. For a perfectly-cooked patty with a salty, crackly, well-browned crust, a hot skillet is the closest thing to a diner flat-top — and a well-seasoned pan will clean up just as easily.
In our how to cook bacon guide, we share methods for different camps of bacon enthusiasts: those who start out with a cold pan, and those that start out with a hot pan. Follow along for tips on how to yield perfectly cooked bacon in cast iron.
Cast iron cooking a whole chicken looks and, frankly, feels impressive. It’s a great skill for dinner guests, and it’s great for your pan. Our simple roasted chicken recipe is a great starting point; from there you can experiment with herb and roasted vegetable combinations, spice rubs and brines to discover your signature cast iron dish.
When it comes to cast iron recipes, chicken thighs are an ingredient that always comes out best in cast iron cookware, with a crispy, crackly skin, and a perfectly juicy interior. For this recipe, we went in a Mediterranean direction with garlic, olives, and rosemary, but you can easily globetrot to Asia (ginger, sesame, soy), Mexico (chiles, peppers, lime), France (white wine, tarragon, dijon), Italy (tomatoes, basil, black olives), or anywhere your pantry guides you.
When thinking of how to cook with cast iron, chicken wings may not be the first recipe that comes to mind. But, as fried chicken recipes go, this is as simple as it gets. Seasoned with salt and black pepper (toasted first in a cast-iron skillet for an extra-pungent kick), it’s a quick starter and snack that also seasons your No.8 Dutch Oven
There are those who advise against cooking fish in a cast-iron skillet, but here at Field Company we know that cast iron is the best vessel for cooking whole fish. You can cook this flavor-packed recipe indoors, or outdoors over a fire during grilling season. Capers and lemon provide brininess and brightness to the delicate fish.
Steamed mussels are a 10-minute dish that can serve as a starter, snack, or main course, depending on your mood. Our version mimics moules marinières, a traditional preparation from Normandy, home to France’s finest bivalves. Our No.8 Skillet and Lid set is the perfect cast-iron cookware to create this dish.
Roasting this extremely versatile vegetable whole has to be the most satisfying way to cook a cauliflower. Because whole-roasted cauliflower reminds us of a hunk of roasted meat, we took inspiration from shawarma and rubbed our cauliflower with a blend of tahini, lemon juice and baharat (an aromatic spice blend often used to flavor shawarma) then finish the oven-burnished vegetable with an drizzle of creamy tahini sauce.
Kale is a versatile green that can be slow cooked like collards and provide a flavorful, nutritious result. Braising kale with pancetta adds delicious fat and smokiness that provides a mouthfeel that feels like it’s been cooked for hours. Replacing the traditional bacon with pancetta brings our braised kale recipe up a notch, and the addition of a little brown sugar complements the savory stock.
Fried green tomatoes are a Southern classic that turn stubbornly unripe tomatoes into a crispy, juicy meal that’s perfect for summer. Our recipe works for any color of nearly-ripe tomatoes.
The seared-and-steamed sprouts are then finished with something sweet—a tangy honey-butter glaze—and something extra crunchy: a generous sprinkling of dukkah, an Egyptian nut and spice blend. Our dukkah recipe leaves you with plenty extra for using as a crust for roasted meats, mixed with yogurt or olive oil for a dip, or sprinkling over anything that benefits from some spiced crunch, from salads and grain bowls to pretty much any vegetable side dish.
In times of squash surplus, we make cast iron zucchini fritters. You can make a batch with any member of the summer squash family—or a mix of different varieties—and serve them as a summery starter (perhaps with some yogurty dip) or top them with dressed salad greens for a light lunch or supper.
Our cast iron cooking method for rice pilaf yields a foolproof recipe, every time. Following a method that mimics risotto, you start by sweating a base of aromatics (usually onion), then adding rice and toasting it until it’s translucent. This important step both helps lock in the rice’s starch and add a slightly nutty flavor. Then it’s up to chicken stock (or your cooking liquid of choice) to do work.
This indulgent baked pasta was inspired by a recipe in the L.A. chef Suzanne Goin’s excellent A.O.C. Cookbook. We revisit the dish often because it’s essentially a silky mac ‘n’ cheese with endless options for variation—and elevation. And it’s the perfect size for assembling and serving in our 4.5-quart Dutch Oven.
Your Field Skillet is the best vessel for cooking Persian rice. “Tahdig” (tah-DEEG) is Persian for “bottom of the pot,” and a catchall for the extra-crispy layer atop a mound of fluffy rice, the centerpiece of Persian cuisine. The tahdig itself needn’t be made from rice; flatbread and sliced potatoes are also commonly used.
For an alternative to pumpkin pie, try roasted butternut squash custard with an all-butter crust. Pies are one of the best performing desserts in cast iron cooking. This pie is reminiscent of Fall and perfect for the holiday season, but is a delicious dessert year-round.
Our heirloom cornbread follows the stipulations of the classic Southern staple: no flour or sugar, and using pork fat (bacon fat or lard) instead of butter. While some people still prefer their cornbread served up the old-fashioned way—dunked in buttermilk—we prefer ours with a smear of honey-sweetened butter.
Single-serving dutch baby’s are a fun way to spruce up your weekend breakfast and the perfect way to utilize our Field No.6 Skillet. The Dutch baby is a simple recipe that can skew sweet or savory, and is easy to scale up or down, depending on the size of your skillet—and brood. You can also prepare the batter the night before, so the only prep you have to do in the morning is turn on the oven.