The Best Cast-Iron Skillet

The Best Cast-Iron Skillet

Our pick

Lodge Chef Collection 12 Inch Skillet

Lodge Chef Collection 12 Inch Skillet

The best cast-iron skillet

This affordable pan is lighter than a traditional cast-iron skillet and a little shallower. It’s an ideal shape for searing, roasting, and sautéing.

Buying Options

$20* from Home Depot
$40 from Sur La Table

*At the time of publishing, the price was $40.

The Lodge Chef Collection 12 Inch Skillet delivered evenly browned steaks, crisp golden cornbread, and sunny-side-up eggs that slipped right out of the pan. At 6½ pounds versus the 8½ pounds of the classic Lodge, it’s more manageable to maneuver than traditional cast iron, and the slightly lower, gently sloped sides make stirring foods and maneuvering a spatula easier. Just note that since it’s shallower than the classic Lodge, this skillet is not as good for deep-frying—if that’s something you do often, go for the original design instead. Although it’s priced a little higher than the classic Lodge, the Chef Collection skillet is still affordable and is also made in the USA.

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Also great

Lodge Pre-Seasoned 12-inch Cast Iron Skillet

Lodge Pre-Seasoned 12-inch Cast Iron Skillet

A deeper, heavier skillet

The classic Lodge sears well and is deep enough for frying chicken, but it is hefty to maneuver around the range.

Buying Options

$48 from Amazon
(with handle grip)

If you want to deep-fry and don’t mind doing a little heavy lifting, we think the Lodge Pre-Seasoned 12-inch Cast Iron Skillet is an excellent choice. It seared steak, fried eggs, and released cornbread well in our tests. And though it weighs about 2 pounds more than the brand’s Chef Collection skillet and has a shorter (though still comfortable) handle, it’s about a quarter inch deeper, which makes it better for frying chicken or preparing shallow braises. It’s also a little less expensive than the Chef Collection skillet.

Everything we recommend

Our pick

Lodge Chef Collection 12 Inch Skillet

Lodge Chef Collection 12 Inch Skillet

The best cast-iron skillet

This affordable pan is lighter than a traditional cast-iron skillet and a little shallower. It’s an ideal shape for searing, roasting, and sautéing.

Buying Options

$20* from Home Depot
$40 from Sur La Table

*At the time of publishing, the price was $40.

Also great

Lodge Pre-Seasoned 12-inch Cast Iron Skillet

Lodge Pre-Seasoned 12-inch Cast Iron Skillet

A deeper, heavier skillet

The classic Lodge sears well and is deep enough for frying chicken, but it is hefty to maneuver around the range.

Buying Options

$48 from Amazon
(with handle grip)

Source: NY Times – Wirecutter

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