How to Clean and Maintain Enameled Cast Iron Cookware

A quality piece of cookware like an enameled cast iron baker or Dutch oven is an investment that’s meant to last a lifetime in your kitchen. Good care and cleaning help keep these pieces looking great and ready to pass down to the next generation. Here are answers to a few common questions you might have when caring for your enameled cast iron cookware.

Tablescape Featuring Enameled Cast Iron

How Do I Clean Enameled Cast Iron?

  1. Let your cookware cool.
  2. Hand wash your enameled cast iron with warm soapy water and a nylon scrub brush.
  3. If the food is extra sticky, soak the pan in soapy water and use a nylon scraper to remove the residue.
  4. Dry it with a towel right away because the rim around the edge isn’t enameled and could rust if it’s left to air dry.

How Do I Maintain Enameled Cast Iron?

  • Use it on any kitchen stovetops including induction. It’s also oven-safe to 500°F (260°C).
  • Lift to move your enameled cast iron cookware. To prevent scratching ceramic or glass cooktops, or damaging your cookware bottoms, never slide enameled cast iron around.
  • Preheat with a little butter, oil, or water each time you cook for easier cleanup later. Skip the nonstick cooking sprays. It can damage the coating and it’s difficult to clean.
  • Use on low to medium heat. Cast iron has excellent heat retention and performs best when heated and cooled gradually. It rarely requires a high heat.

How to Handle Stains

Stains won’t affect your cookware’s performance, but you can reduce the look of light stains and marks with an enameled cast iron cleaner. Just follow the cleaner’s instructions. For tougher stains, wipe it down with a little warm vinegar.

Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Enameled Cast Iron Q & A

No need to season! The enamel finish lets you get cooking right away.

Use silicone and wooden utensils. Skip the metal utensils, handheld mixers, and metal beaters. They leave scratches and marks.

Enameled cast iron is dishwasher safe for easy cleanup. Even when you use the dishwasher, hand-dry it after the wash cycle to prevent the outer rim from rusting. Then store your pan in a dry place.

Regular dishwashing can dull the enamel finish over time, but the fading isn’t harmful, and your cookware will still work great.

If the exposed cast iron rim develops some rust, lightly scour the affected area with steel wool. Then rinse, dry, and rub with vegetable oil.

11 Responses to How to Clean and Maintain Enameled Cast Iron Cookware

  1. Karen March 8, 2021 at 3:00 pm #

    Is the bottom smooth and flat for my electric glass top range

    • Kim March 24, 2021 at 7:56 am #

      Yes, Karen! I use my casserole on my glass cook top all the time.

  2. Denise March 25, 2021 at 2:45 pm #

    Can Enameled Cast iron be used in the deluxe air fryer?

  3. Gloria May 12, 2021 at 4:45 pm #

    Can your no enamel cast iron pans be used on glass top stove ?

  4. Joe Byer February 11, 2022 at 9:00 am #

    Can you clean them with oven cleaner? I tried BKF and a paste of dawn, baking soda and a vinegar spray, neither worked.

  5. Milica February 11, 2022 at 9:16 am #

    Are these Hi! Free of both lead and cadmium?

  6. Jimmy November 23, 2022 at 10:18 pm #

    Can you put the lid in the oven?

    • Angelina Carter November 27, 2023 at 5:07 am #

      Yes the lids can go in the oven

    • Angelina Carter November 27, 2023 at 5:18 am #

      Yes the lids can go in the oven

  7. Marge Galicia-Young July 17, 2023 at 10:21 am #

    I follow all of your care & maintenance instructions but it still keeps producing rust grains if the rim of the pot & cover are left un-oiled, or it ends up with streaks of rust if it is stored in a dry kitchen cabinet, whether it is oiled & wiped.
    Why didn’t PC cover those areas with enamel coating?
    Can PC offer its customers a way to keep this problem from constantly happening?
    As a person going through cancer treatments, it is very physically taxing to wash the 6-qt. Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven before & after using it all the time. I’m only bringing this up to your attention because I love using the product but maintaining it is becoming quite ridiculous to me now. It’s also making me fear buying more Enameled Cast Iron [ECI] products from PC.
    I don’t experience this with my other, more expensive non-PC ECI products. Why can’t PC make it the way the other brands are able to keep their ECI products from rusting?

  8. Angelina Carter November 27, 2023 at 5:14 am #

    Hi Marge,

    I don’t know if any enameled cast iron brand that has the rim covered with enamel. Generally those areas are the most banged or knocked areas and if they were covered with enamel they’d chip and damage more than just the edge rendering your enameled cast iron more damaged and able to rust more easily or even breaking. When you wash your enameled cast iron you should always towel dry it to prevent the edge from rusting. To remove the rust you can use a green Scotch Brite pad and gently rub the edges then use oil, bacon grease, or shortening to put a coating around the edge.

Leave a Reply