How to Use Cast Iron on a Glass top Stove Effectively

If you’re a fan of cooking with cast iron, you may be wondering if it’s safe to use cast iron cookware on it. The good news is that you can use cast iron on a glass top stove, but there are a few things you need to keep in mind to do it safely.

In this article, I’ll discuss whether it is a good idea to use cast iron on glass-top stoves and will also guide you on how you can use cast iron electric glass-top stoves safely, as well as how to protect your glass-top stove from damage.

Is it safe to use Cast Iron on Glass Top Stoves?

Glass, ceramic, or ceramic-glass cooktops? All flat-top cook stoves, whether electric-radiant or induction, are built from a glass-ceramic blend rather than being all-ceramic or all-glass, despite their many brand designations.

Though the top is made from glass and ceramic blend, it can withstand the high heat and weight of the heaviest of pots.

However, they are prone to getting scratches if not used mindfully. So, while you can use your cast-iron skillet on the glass top, make sure you’re using it with caution.

What Is It About the Glass Top Stove and Cast Iron Skillets That Is So Appealing?

how to use cast iron on glass top stove

It’s not only the glass stove top’s sleek and shiny appearance that is so eye-catching. One of its benefits is its smooth, flat surface, which makes it simple to clean up.

This flat surface eliminates the need to clean areas between the coils if the food spills or splatters while cooking. Bye-bye, removing pieces of burned food from burners!

A cast-iron pan is a multi-purpose tool. You can start cooking on the stove and finish it off in the oven or vice-versa. Cook a peach crumble or make a crispy crust pizza, or soft dinner rolls, and sear a steak with it. Cast iron can be used in the oven, on the stove, or over an open fire. Needless to say, they’re tough as nails. 

But together glass cooktop and cast iron, things get a little more complicated.

Views of Glass Top Stove Manufacturers On Using Cast Iron on Glass Top Stoves

Some glass-top stove manufacturers like Miele, Beko, and GE do not recommend using cast iron on glass-top stoves. And if I followed their advice, I’d never use some of my favorite cast iron pots and pans on my home glass-top cooking range.

Some manufacturers, like Kitchen Aid, recommend that their glass-ceramic cooktops can be used with cast iron with the caution of not sliding the cookware.

After my research and reading statements from Lisa McManus, executive editor of reviews at America’s Test Kitchen, Whirlpool’s Pat Duffy, product marketing manager, and Katie Sadler, kitchen brand manager, It’s OK to use cast iron on glass top stoves, but with some care manufacturers who are recommending otherwise are probably protecting themselves in case of customers damage the glass due to improper use and need repairs or replacements while the cooktop is still under warranty.

Will Cast Iron Scratch on an Induction Cooktop?

will cast iron scratch on an induction cooktop

Yes, it can. All of the precautions I’ve discussed in this article apply to induction stoves since they feature glass cooktops. 

Induction stoves use magnetic induction to heat the cookware. An induction cooktop transfers electric energy straight into the pan, which heats up as a result. Induction heating is a safe and efficient way of heating.

With an induction cooktop, it’s even more crucial to have a smooth and clean bottom of a cast iron skillet so that the current penetrates uniformly.

How to Use Cast Iron On a Glass Top Stove Safely & Effectively

how to protect glass top stove from cast iron

Don’t Drop or Slide cast-iron cookware across a glass surface

The testing department at America’s oldest manufacturer of cast iron cookware Lodge Cast Iron state that they cook every day with cast iron on glass top stoves without any problem.

They do, however, advise that you proceed with caution. “We take care not to drop it or slide it over the surface, as we do with any heavy cookware,” they stated this fact in a discussion on their Facebook page dedicated to cast iron cookware and glass tops. They also said that even engraved skillets or ones with patterns on the bottom are OK too.

They advised being particularly cautious with cookware that is chipped or has rough edges on glass-top stoves. If you do need to reposition the cookware, pull it straight up and gently lower it again.

Clean Cast Iron Cookware Before Heating it on a Glass top

On a glass-top stove, oil and other debris on the bottom of cast iron cookware can carbonize when heated, creating a black stain. Before you begin cooking, clean the bottom of your pan to remove any particles of oil or bits of food that might stain your stovetop.

As soon as you are done cooking, remove the cookware from the cooktop, and thoroughly rinse both the inside and outside of the pan using a nylon brush or sponge. Use a plastic scraper or salt and a wooden spoon to scrub if you have to.

Clean the Glass top after every use

It’s important to wipe clean the Glass top after you are done cooking. I use water and a sponge to gently cleanse my electric cooktop after each usage, which keeps everything quite clean.

However, it’s a good idea to clean it down thoroughly once a week using something intended to remove oil stains and buildup. I use Weiman Glass cooktop cleaner which is easily available in the grocery store near me.

Using a Heat Diffuser

While researching the topic I came across many sites advising using a heat diffuser between the glass top and cast iron. A heat diffuser in my opinion is just an add-on on top of the glass top.

It will not only increase the cooking time but will also become very hot because of the heat from the burner and reflected heat from the cast iron. The diffuser can also scratch the glass top if dragged or slide.

Cast Iron Heats More Slowly on an Electric Stove

Electric stoves take longer to warm up than gas ranges because heat must travel from the coils to the glass and then up to the pan. This, in turn, will affect the amount of time it takes to cook.

A cast-iron dish cooked on an electric burner may take somewhat longer than a similar dish cooked on a gas stove.

So make sure to use the upper time limit of the recipe you are following.

For the most perfect results and equal heat distribution, Lodge cast iron suggests heating cast iron cookware on low and gradually increasing the heat to medium or medium-high. 

The cast iron griddle, which takes up the space of two burners, should be preheated for several minutes before you start cooking.

Inspect Your Cast Iron for Damage Before Use – Use only good quality pieces

When compared to the smoother, sleeker finishes of current cast iron cooking equipment, older cast iron cookware might be uneven.

If your iron cookware has been damaged, or if the bottom has rough bumps or bigger chips, you might want to upgrade before you start cooking on glass top

You may get enameled cast iron, which will quickly reduce the risk of scratching your glass stove’s surface. If you don’t want to use enamel, well-seasoned cast iron with a smooth outside surface would suffice.

Choose the Right Size Skillet for the burner eye

Keep an eye on the burner you’re using and choose one that’s the same size as the cast iron cookware you’ll be using.

Placing an enormous skillet on a burner that is much smaller will not only lengthen the cooking process but also the heat will be trapped beneath it, potentially causing damage to the burner and the stovetop and reducing its lifespan.

Using the wrong size cast iron skillet on the burner can also create hot and cold spots in the skillet. So it’s a good idea to buy the appropriate size pots and pans.

Use Enameled Cast Iron Skillet

If you are still unsure about using cast iron on glass top stoves, then you can always opt for an enameled cast iron skillet. They come with a smooth bottom and are best to use on a glass-top stove.

They are also easy to clean and don’t require any seasoning. However, they are a bit on the expensive side as compared to the regular cast iron skillet.

How do Prevent Scratches On a Glass Stove Top?

Here are a few tips to prevent scratches on a glass stove top and ensure that your shiny glass stove top remains as shiny as new:

Like cast iron, other heavier cookware like stoneware and ceramic cookware can potentially scratch the glass stove top, so be mindful when using heavier cookware on the glass stove top.

It doesn’t matter what type of cookware you use; if you don’t have the habit of gently lifting and setting cookware on the stovetop, your stove will be scratched.

Choose pans with flat bottoms rather than rounded bottoms, they are more stable on the stovetop and are less likely to move or shift, producing scratches. This is especially true for induction glass top stoves.

Take the time to gently wipe and clean up spills as soon as they occur. Food that spills on the surface quickly burns and cooks on the stovetop, making cleanup difficult afterward.

Keep your kitchenware in good shape! Make sure the bottom of the pot is free of any food residue or grease after cooking. Because the heat from the element can cause the grease to melt, heating the stove surface and leaving stains that may be difficult to remove, just like cast iron.

Never place anything other than cookware on the glass top of your stove. It can endure extreme heat but not considerable weight, such as kneeling or standing on it to reach into a higher cupboard or onto an overhead shelf.

Use a spoon tray to keep any utensils you’re using while cooking. Spoons and whisks should not be placed directly on the glass top stove since they may burn or harm the surface.

As a Regular User of Cast Iron How Do I Maintain My Glass Top Stove?

how to maintain glass top stove

These tips will not only keep your glass top stove shiny but also increase the life span of your cooktop

Steps for a quick clean

After every use, wipe down the glass top stove with a paper towel to remove any food debris and oil splatters. Clean with soapy water and a sponge and dry using a clean paper towel.

Deep Cleaning – How Do I Clean Stubborn Burnt On Food?

Give your stove a thorough cleaning once every two weeks.

First, wipe it down using a paper towel. Then sprinkle baking soda on the cold glass top and spray vinegar over the baking soda. Allow one minute for the baking soda to dissolve in the vinegar.

Place a soft hot towel (soak it in hot water and wring it) over the stovetop.

Let it sit for 10 to 20 minutes.

Remove the towel and wipe up the vinegar and baking soda with a new clean, moist cloth.

Bottom Line

Cast iron is durable, efficient, and affordable. If you are the kind of person who dances and shakes the pan while cooking, then I am afraid cast iron on a glass top stove is not the right choice for you.

But if you can put in a little extra effort to be mindful when using cast iron on smooth cooktops, it’s worth the extra care needed to use this fantastic type of cookware. 

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