How to Season a Ceramic Pan: A Five-Step Guide

A ceramic pan

As you can see, it’s pretty much similar to seasoning a cast iron cookware. But for most professional chefs and home cooks, seasoning ceramic cookware is easier. I tend to season ceramic pans at home and in the restaurant every five to six months because I use ceramic frying pans more frequently.

I will show you a step-by-step guide on how to season and take care of your ceramic pans.

Read along to learn more. 

And here’s a table of contents for your convenience:

What Do You Need To Season a Ceramic Pan

things you need to season a ceramic pan

To begin with, seasoning your ceramic pans, make sure you have all the things in the list below:

  • Dishwashing soap
  • Soft scrub sponge or a scrubbing pad
  • A paper towel or a clean cloth
  • Vegetable oil
  • Rubber gloves (optional)

Here’s How to Season a Ceramic Pan Step By Step

It only takes around 20 to 25 minutes to clean and season the ceramic pans. So make sure you follow these steps below to season your ceramic cookware well.

1. Clean The Pan

I assume your ceramic pan is brand new. In this case, take some dishwashing soap and a soft sponge and gently clean the pan’s surface. You have to be careful with a brand new pan since it has no layer of seasoning. Avoid scrubbing it with an abrasive side of a sponge as it may damage a ceramic coating.

cleaning the pan

However, if your pan has a thick layer of oil and residue, it’s not harmful to use an abrasive sponge or brush to clean your ceramic cookware. It will help clean the pan better, which can be hard to do with a soft sponge.

After you’re done with the cleaning, make sure to rinse it with warm water. Leave it on the counter to dry, or use a clean cloth to dry it quicker.

2. Apply Vegetable Oil to the Interior of the Pan

Apply vegetable oil to the interior of the pan only. Add a few drops of oil to your pan. Use a paper towel to spread it evenly to the entire surface of the ceramic pan. Always make sure to add some more oil if necessary to coat a surface well.

applying vegetable oil to the ceramic pan

Make sure to use neutral oils only to season your ceramic cookware. It includes soybean, sunflower, linseed (flax), canola (rapeseed), vegetable, and grapeseed oils. On the other side of the spectrum, avoid using saturated fats such as butter.

3. Heat the Pan

Place your ceramic pan on the stovetop over medium heat. Keep it there until the oil begins to smoke. It may take around five to seven minutes. Once your pan starts to smoke, remove it from the burner.

Some stovetop surfaces are not even. And when you place a pan on a burner, the oil distributes unevenly. To prevent oil from pooling in one place, make sure to swivel a pan around to distribute the oil evenly once in a while.

heating the pan

You can also bake your ceramic cookware in the oven—Preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Once the oven is hot, place it on the middle shelf and bake it for 15 minutes. First, make sure your ceramic cookware is safe to use in the oven.

From my personal experience, using a stovetop method to season ceramic pans is by far the best option.

4. Let the Pan Cool

letting the ceramic pan cool down

Ideally, leave your pan to cool at room temperature. Do not rinse it under cold water or put it in the fridge. Sudden temperature changes can damage the ceramic coating.

5. Dry Your Pan Using Paper Towel 

After you left your ceramic pan to cool down, it’s time to clean it with a paper towel. So take a piece of clean paper towel and wipe the surface of the pan gently. Remove any excess oil from the surface.

drying the pan with paper towel

I know some of you will be tempted to clean it with dishwashing soap and a sponge, but don’t do it. The whole purpose of seasoning your ceramic pan is to create this layer of the non-stick coating. Scrubbing pads and dishwashing soap will remove this layer. It means you’ll have to re-season your pan all over again.

Re-season the ceramic pan At Least Once Every Six Months

You should re-season your ceramic cookware at least every six months. However, it depends on how often you use it as well as how new your pan is.

If your ceramic pan is brand new, I suggest you season it once every month for the first six months. But a lot depends on the manufacturer. Make sure to read the instructions and follow them appropriately. 

I season my ceramic frying pan every five to six months. But only because I have it for a while now and I use it frequently. When I start noticing that food begins to stick – it’s a good indicator that the seasoning layer begins to fade. So I repeat the seasoning process all over again.

Why do I need to Season a Ceramic Pan?

Seasoning your ceramic pan will prevent food from burning to the surface of your pan. You can’t see it with the naked eye, but a non-stick surface will appear after a proper seasoning. You can notice this layer when you touch the pan. It feels greasy, but that’s fine. That’s how it suppose to be.

After a while, you’ll have to re-season the pan again. Usually, after five to six months, depending on how often you use it.

How to Take Care of Your Ceramic Cookware

Ok, now you know how to season a ceramic pan but let’s take a look at how to take care of your ceramic cookware.

Do Not Use a Dishwasher

do not use dishwasher to clean ceramic pan

I highly advise you not to use a dishwasher to wash ceramic cookware. And here’s why.

After seasoning a ceramic pan, you created a thin non-stick coating. You can damage it easily if you wash your pan in a dishwasher. It can’t withstand the pressure of hot water and all the dishwashing detergent chemicals. Save your time and wash it by hand. And that brings me to the next step.

Clean Your Ceramic Pans by Hand (Avoid Abrasive Scrubs)

After we established that using a dishwasher to wash your ceramic cookware is not the best option, it would be best to wash it by hand. Luckily it’s straightforward. However, it would be best if you kept in mind that using abrasive scrubs or steel wools can damage the surface of your pan. So please stay away from them.

hand washing ceramic pans

Instead, you can use a soft sponge or scrubbing pad with a tiny drop of dishwashing soap to clean your ceramic pan. I prefer to use warm water and a soft sponge to clean my pan if the pan isn’t too dirty. 

What you can do is wipe your pan with a paper towel first. Remove excess oil and leftover food. Rinse your pan under warm water and clean it either with a soft sponge or scrubbing pad. That works well. Not only it protects the surface of the pan from any damage, but it keeps the non-stick layer intact. 

Use Wooden, Plastic or Silicom Utensils Only

Sharp edges of metal utensils can damage the surface of ceramic cookware. If you want to take care of your cookware, use utensils made from materials like wood, plastic, or silicon.

wooden plastic and silicon utensils

If you scratch, the ceramic coating and the scratches are deep. The pan will lose its non-stick properties.

So remember, if you want your pans to last for a long time, consider using utensils made from soft materials like plastic, silicon, or rubber. 

Cook Only on Low to Medium Heat

To protect your seasoned ceramic pan from losing its non-stick properties, cook only on low to medium heat.

It took me once to put a pan on high heat for a few minutes after losing its non-stick layer. And guess what I had to season a pan all over again.

You don’t need high temperatures to cook food. Aluminum or stainless steel with ceramic coating has excellent heat conductivity. I can assure you even on medium heat; your food will cook evenly and fast.

Avoid Drastic Temperature Changes

When you’re done with the cooking, leave your ceramic pan to cool down to room temperature before washing it. Drastic temperature changes are harmful to your pan.

Some home cooks like to dip their pan into cold water after they finished cooking. It will speed up the pan cooling process. Unfortunately, that’s not good for the non-stick ceramic surface. It can be damaged after repeating it many times.

Going from hot to cold is not suitable for your cookware and not only for ceramic but for Teflon and cast-iron pans as well.

Store Your Ceramic Pans Safely

Store your ceramic pans in a safe place away from other cookware and utensils with sharp edges.

If you don’t have enough storage space and stack your cookware on top of each other, use a clean cloth to cover the pan’s surface. This method will reduce the risk of damaging your cookware.

In the restaurant, we like to hang our ceramic pans. It both protects them from scratching, and it’s easier to take one when we need it.

A Few More Tips From a Profesional Chef About Ceramic Cookware

I want to add a few more tips or kitchen hacks, as we call them, on how to make your ceramic cookware last longer.

Use Vinegar To Clean a Dirty Ceramic Pan

Vinegar is an excellent ingredient and not only for food preparation. It can help to clean and refresh the surface of your ceramic pan in no time.

Vinegar is widely used in many restaurants to clean all sorts of kitchen equipment. From pans to surfaces.

To remove a built fat and protein layer on top of your pan, follow these steps. Add a small amount of vinegar to your pan. Spread it evenly across the interior of the pan. Put the pan over medium heat and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes. Make sure that the vinegar is not boiling. Also, make sure your kitchen vent is on because the vinegar smell is not the nicest one. 

After you’re done with the simmering, let the pan cool down. Remove the excess vinegar. Rinse the pan under warm water and wash it thoroughly. Use a soft sponge or scrubbing pad and a small dash of dishwashing soap to clean it well.

Do Not Use Olive Oil To Season Ceramic Pans

Do not use olive oil to season your ceramic pan because it has a moderate smoking point. Instead, go for neutral oils like soybean, sunflower, linseed (flax), canola (rapeseed), vegetable, and grapeseed. These oils will create a non-stick layer after seasoning your pan.

The Bottom Line

Learning how to season a ceramic pan is easy. However, It takes more effort to take care of it properly so that it doesn’t lose its non-stick properties. But, with this guide, you can be sure that your ceramic cookware will last for years.

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