Laura asked in Food & DrinkCooking & Recipes · 2 months ago

Should I buy a 12" cast iron skillet? Largest burner on my stove is 7"?

The bottom of the skillet is about 11.5''.  I make pot roast every month, or two. I need something that I can sear it in. I can get buy without it, otherwise. I am just cooking for myself. 

9 Answers

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  • IvaB
    Lv 5
    2 months ago

    Personally,I think a cast iron skillet is a poor choice for what you want it for.A better choice imo is a Dutch oven,or a pressure cooker.Both those choices have a heavy bottom thats' good for searing,plus the benefit of being able to actually finish the entire dish in one pot-meaning you wouldn't need to transfer the pot roast from the skillet to another pot (Dutch oven!),and you can add all the vegetables as well to it.The pressure cooker will cut down cooking time.A dutch oven is more versatile than a skillet,as you can sear,make soup,etc.etc.I have a 12' cast iron skillet,and I use it only occasionally due to its enormous weight.I recommend looking/thinking about it before you purchase.

  • 2 months ago

    I have a 12" Lodge that was left for me, on the wall of the Tiki Hut, when I bought the property. I have used it quite a lot in the last four years. I do use it to sear steaks that I have cooked sous vide. I've also made dishes like stroganoff in it, using an induction hot plate. It's not really hard to maintain, once it is seasoned. I generally reheat it after use and deglaze with cold water. Sometimes I have to use a little dish detergent, but by judiciously brushing he pan, I can avoid removing the seasoning. I also regularly level the bottom with a stainless spatula. It's a cool thing to use, and it does a pretty good job of distributing the heat across the bottom of the pan. Check thrift shops before you buy a new one.

  • Mark
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Not for use on the stovetop.  The diameter of cooking vessels should be about the size of the burner, or else excess heat will bounce back and scorch the stove.

    (I say "not for the stovetop" because one can use a skillet to make things like cornbread and upside down cake.  (They are slow to heat, but they stay hot.) Better yet, enamelware, like "Le Creuset.

    Finally, they manufacture a 7" cast iron skillet.  (In fact, I'm looking at one now.)

  • denise
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    THE 12" SKILLET WILL COME IN HANDY FOR OTHER THINGS TOO,  You can even bake corn bread or biscuits in it [in the oven].

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  • Rick
    Lv 4
    2 months ago

    I think the iron one food stick at the bottom

  • 2 months ago

    Once the cast iron skillet has heated up it will retain that heat much better than the same size skillet in aluminum or stainless steel. 

    It will take longer to heat completely though. 

    And your cast iron skillet can go in the oven. (make sure you get one with a lid) 

    Or get a smaller Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven, about a 4 quart size.  You can sear on the stove top, you can go into the oven they are easier to maintain. Useful for a lot of things and you can cook higher acid food in them that you might not want to cook in a cast iron pan. 

    But basic answer is yes you can use a 12 inch cast iron skillet on a smaller burner.

  • Goerge
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    The type of pan really doesn't matter where searing is concerned. It's the skills of the cook that truly matter. A cast iron skillet does need to be maintained regularly, never washed in soap and water and special care needs to be exercised if you use an induction cooktop. Your regular 7" burner will work just fine for your cast iron pan. While regular pans normally have a non-stick surface which makes cooking easier, cast iron pans need to be seasoned by the cook first. I coat the entire pan with peanut oil and put it in a 400f oven for about 20 minutes. Immediately remove the HOT pan from the oven and wipe it down with paper towel to remove any excess oil. While the pan may say pre-seasoned I prefer to season it at home. If the surface isn't prepared correctly the sear may end up sticking to the pan instead of the roast. If you get your pan too hot and need to cool it down, set it outside. Cooling it down with water can CRACK/break the cast iron skillet. Cast iron is not a fan of rapid heating nor cooling. You also want to ensure the bottom of the pan is perfectly flat. Some cheap pans won't be perfectly flat and the pan will be relatively light. Older cast iron pans are much more desirable because most cast iron pans I've seen in places like Walmart are lightweight and won't retain heat as well as the older pans. You might consider buying a used cast iron griddle on Craigslist or Facebook. A rusty cast iron pan can be brought back to life but if it's pitted, nothing can help that. 

  • kswck2
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    A cast iron skillet, if properly cared for, will outlive You. Buy one-BUT keep it in shape-just don't put it into a cabinet and forget about it. Use it. 

    Even if you have an electric stove and a small burner, you may need more time for the pan to heat up. But an iron skillet will also retain heat for cooking. 

  • Anton
    Lv 6
    2 months ago

    Cast iron is a one time purchase. 

    You will be cooking for more, sometime in the future.

    Can be used for a lifetime, and passed on to your grandchildren.

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