Best carbon steel frying pan

This article will help you find the best carbon steel frying pan for your needs.

What to Look For When Shopping for Carbon Metal Cookware

By Bernadette Machard de Gramont

The Spruce Eats / Donna Currie


Carbon metal and forged iron are sometimes in contrast as a result of they’ve a mess of similarities when it comes to sturdiness and flexibility. Each comprised of alloys that comprise iron, however the differentiating issue is the quantity of carbon within the alloy: forged iron comprises anyplace from 2 to three.5 %, the place carbon metal comprises simply 2 %. This makes carbon metal pretty malleable so it may be molded, hammered, and stretched (in contrast, forged iron is pretty brittle and extra inclined to breakage.) Carbon metal’s iron content material signifies that it’s appropriate with induction cooktops, and its clean floor will finally construct a patina that makes it naturally nonstick. This materials most accurately fits silhouettes which might be flat with flared sides—assume saute pans, skillets, crepe pans, paella pans, and woks—so in case you’re out there for any of those pans, carbon metal is a incredible choice.

Reading: Best carbon steel frying pan


Carbon metal pans weigh significantly lower than their forged iron counterparts—a 12-inch Lodge forged iron skillet weighs about eight kilos, whereas a equally sized Lodge carbon metal pan weighs lower than 5 kilos. If lugging heavy forged iron cookware out and in of storage could be an issue, then it is a nice different. A superb carbon metal pan nonetheless has sufficient heft to it to maintain it from shifting round on the burner however continues to be mild sufficient to be very conscious of adjustments in warmth.


Carbon metal cookware usually begins out as a sheet of metallic that’s then heated, pressed, and formed into the specified silhouette. Pans sometimes are available 2mm or 3mm thickness, with the latter being heavier and nearer to a forged iron pan. In contrast to forged iron’s single-piece development, handles are sometimes solid individually and hooked up with rivets (ppt for this kind of development versus spot-welded handles which might be extra more likely to loosen or detach over time). You’ll need to ensure that your handles are simple to seize and aren’t too brief—they’ll get too scorching on the range—or too lengthy to place into the oven or retailer away.

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Heating Capability

Like forged iron, carbon metal has a really excessive warmth tolerance and can be utilized with quite a lot of cooktops, together with induction and open flame. Most carbon metal pans can face up to as much as 800 levels, whereas some manufacturers can face up to temperatures as much as 1200 levels. Whereas that is greater than sufficient for regular family use on the range and within the oven, sure strategies (like wok cooking) require that one’s pans can stand as much as even probably the most highly effective of cooking fires. Carbon metal can be prized for being very conscious of adjustments in warmth, turning into hotter sooner and cooling down rapidly when the warmth is lowered or eliminated.


Carbon metal is nice for all-purpose cooking, nevertheless it actually shines with high-heat, dry-cooking strategies like stir-frying, sauteing, and searing. Carbon metal items are oven-safe, permitting you to bake within the pan or end a dish beneath the broiler if wanted. When you can actually use carbon metal for braises and making sauces, cooking acidic meals may trigger a response that discolors the floor or could begin to deteriorate the pan’s seasoning. (The excellent news is, you may simply construct the seasoning again up and even out the patina.)

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Carbon metal could be discovered at a wide variety of value factors. Whereas it’s sometimes priced greater than forged iron, it’s nonetheless usually extra inexpensive than high-end chrome steel and copper choices. For instance, a 12-inch carbon metal skillet can run from about $20 to over $200, relying on the dimensions and model.


Many main producers provide a restricted lifetime assure on their carbon metal cookware so long as they’re bought from a licensed supplier. These ensures sometimes defend in opposition to defects in materials, development, or workmanship however could exclude injury arising from improper use, thermal shocks, drops, or regular put on and tear. Before you purchase, you should definitely examine on the producer’s phrases and guarantee protection to verify it’s what you want.

The Spruce Eats / Donna Currie



Because the oldest and longest-running forged iron producer within the U.S., Lodge has constructed a strong fame on its intensive line of inexpensive, forged iron cookware. Lodge additionally has a small assortment of carbon metal items, together with a skillet and paella pan that can be utilized each inside on a stovetop and outside on a grill or campfire. Just like the model’s forged iron skillets and grills, the carbon metal items are all manufactured within the USA.

De Purchaser

For almost 200 years, De Purchaser has been a number one producer of cookware and cooks instruments in France. From the favored ‘Mineral B’ carbon metal fry pan to Prima Matera induction-friendly copper cookware, it celebrates France’s gastronomic traditions by making revolutionary, heritage-quality items that are supposed to final.

Made In

This Austin-based model was launched in September 2018 with a line of professional-grade chrome steel cookware meant for residence use. Its assortment now consists of copper, carbon metal, and nonstick choices. These high-quality items will also be discovered within the well-known Michelin-starred kitchens of Grant Achtaz’s Alinea and Eric Ripert’s Le Bernardin. Its carbon metal line is manufactured in France and is oven-safe as much as 1200 levels.


Based in 1830, this historic producer primarily based in Normandy, France, is finest recognized for its premium copper cookware and specialty copper bakeware. Along with their conventional copper assortment, Mauviel makes different items in aluminum, chrome steel, and carbon metal. M’Metal is the model’s title for its vary of carbon metal items which might be made to the identical exacting requirements as their skilled high quality copper items.


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In case you already know find out how to clear and look after forged iron, then you definitely routinely know find out how to care for carbon metal. Its powerful end can resist scratches and is appropriate with metallic utensils which makes it, for probably the most half, pretty low upkeep. Like forged iron, carbon metal shouldn’t be washed with dish detergent or positioned in a dishwasher as it should take away the seasoning. Scrub away any particles, rinse with water, and wipe clear, then warmth some oil within the pan till it begins to smoke. Wipe away the oil with a paper towel, and your pan is able to retailer.

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How do you season a carbon metal pan?

To season a carbon metal pan, you’ll want to first take away any protecting coating—many pans include a layer of beeswax to guard the floor in transit. DeBuyer recommends utilizing scorching water and a tender material to rub away as a lot of the beeswax as attainable. Dry the floor, then coat it in a skinny layer of oil or fats, then place the pan within the oven at 300 levels for an hour. Alternately, you may warmth the oiled pan over medium warmth on the stovetop till the oil begins to bead. Take away from the stovetop and wipe away any extra oil with a paper towel. In case your pan has arrived seasoned, you may skip this course of, however you may need to re-season your pan each every so often.

How usually do you re-season a carbon metal pan?

You will discover that that you must re-season your pan if there are any indicators of rust, or in case your pan feels prefer it’s crusted with previous meals buildup. Usually your pan will preserve build up seasoning with use, however in case you ever need to “start over”, scrub the floor with an abrasive sponge (or warmth the pan barely then scrub with a combination of salt and oil), eradicating any roughness, then begin the seasoning course of over.

How do you get rust off a carbon metal pan?

Typically a carbon metal pan may present indicators of rust if it was put away with any moisture on it or it has been sitting unused for some time. If this occurs, merely scrub away any of the patina with an abrasive scrubber, wipe dry, then start the seasoning course of.

Can you utilize a carbon metal pan on any cooktop?

Sure. Carbon metal is likely one of the most versatile supplies for cookware and can be utilized on electrical, fuel, and induction ranges in addition to over open flames like campfires and BBQ grills.

Why Belief The Spruce Eats?

Donna Currie is a meals author and product tester for The Spruce Eats. A self-professed “kitchen geek,” she’s written many roundups on a spread of important kitchen gadgets, from the very best induction burners to the highest seafood kitchen instruments of the 12 months.

This piece was edited by Bernadette Machard de Gramont, an LA-based author who makes a speciality of international meals and wine content material. She researches and exams quite a lot of cookware, bakeware, and wine instruments, and interviews area specialists for his or her perception.

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