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A Potato Might Be the Secret to Clean Skillets

An image of a cast iron skilelt that is fairly well-maintained.
Oksana Mizina/Shutterstock.com

Cast iron can be a confusing material to have in the kitchen. If you’re new to caring for it or cooking with it, there are some things to learn. But when it comes to washing, don’t worry because a common vegetable is the secret.

A potato and salt can clean a cast iron skillet, and yes, it’s as simple as it sounds.

So how does it work? Potatoes contain oxalic acid, a common ingredient in household cleaners. The acid can break down rust and clean surfaces, and when you pair it with salt, you’ll get a good scrub on your pan. Plus the combination also works to season it.

Lodge Cast Iron Skillet

Don't be afraid of cast iron.

If you want to try this method, you’ll coat the pan with salt (any salt will do), and then, cut a potato in half, leaving enough on the end to grip with your hand. Place the exposed flesh of the potato on the skillet and scrub in a circular motion.

As the baked-on food and gunk begin to come up, rinse the pan with water and dry it thoroughly. Then, the next time you’re ready to use it, season your pan with oil and bake it in the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for an hour or so to ensure it’s ready to use.

That’s it. If you’ve got potatoes in the house, you’ve got a cast iron skillet cleaner. If you’ve been concerned about working the material into your cookware routine, maybe you should consider it one more time.

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is the Editor In Chief of LifeSavvy. Previously, she worked as a freelance writer with a focus on beauty and lifestyle content. Her work has appeared in Bustle, Allure, and Hello Giggles. Read Full Bio »
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