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Cookware

When to Season Stainless Steel and How to Clean That Off

westes | Aug 15, 202112:07 AM     90

Should stainless steel ever be seasoned? With a cast-iron pot, seasoning is essential. A good method is to use a polyunsaturated fat with a low smoke point and to put a light coating on the cast iron and run that in an oven at 500F for an hour. That polymerizes the fat and creates a non-stick coating. Typically you have to repeat this process five or more times to get a thick polymer layer.

I think it makes no sense to season a good quality stainless pan with its own finish. I own quite a few Demeyere Atlantis pans and the Silvinox finish is brilliant. I have my own process for cleaning that, but it cleans very well and I can live without a nonstick finish.

I do have stainless pans with no real finish on them and cleaning them can be a pain. A single cooking session with eggs will be enough to create a two-day cleaning process, mostly allowing the pan surface to be covered in a strong dishwashing detergent. I can get the pan clean like new, but doing that is real work. If there is a way to season such a pan, I would like to know what that is.

I did an experiment with the inside lid of such a pan, trying to season it with jojoba oil and exposing it to high heat in the oven. Unfortunately, my experience seasoning stainless steel is a lot different than seasoning cast iron. The oil browns and forms wavy patterns in the metal. It's unattractive, and I would like to remove it. Does anyone have a thought on the best way to get this off the pan? I tried to soak overnight in dishwashing detergent, but that did not make a dent at all. A photo of what I am dealing with is attached.

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