A beautiful enameled cast iron cookware looks excellent in your kitchen, no doubt about it! Enameled cast iron cooking pans are very good if one wants to slow cook, giving the food all the rich and aromatic flavors. Cast iron cookware is made up of a cast iron base. It consists of 98% iron and 2% carbon.
They retain heat well, and the base is thick and heavy. The enameled cast iron cookware looks even more attractive because of the additional coating, which gives it a shiny look. But if you buy a cast iron pan for the first time or are unaware of its pros and cons.
On the other hand, if you already know most things about enameled cast iron, you might want to compare Regular vs Enameled Cast Iron.
18 Pros And Cons Of Enameled Cast Iron Cookware
The best part about cast iron cookware is that it can be used for many purposes. You can use it to braise, grill, deep fry, bake, and all the good things. It is compatible in a gas oven, induction, broiler, and also inside the oven.
The enameled cast iron cookware is built in a way to last you a lifetime! The coating is of very high quality that won’t chip anytime soon like the toxic non-stick coating and ceramic coatings.
These cookwares have the plus point that cast iron cookwares are built with high heat tolerance. The enamel coating forms a non-stick surface that can sustain high temperatures way better than PTFE coated pans which are anyway not good for the health. You can also put the enameled cast iron cookware in the oven and it can sustain heat up to 580 degrees Fahrenheit. The cookwares come with lids that are also oven safe.
Excellent Heat Retention
The way the cookware retains the heat says a lot about their built quality and excellence. The thick base and walls which had mentioned earlier owe to the brilliant heat retention of these cookwares. The cookwares must be able to keep the food hot when cold foods are added – a sign of a good performance. It has also been tested in the labs that enameled cast iron cookwares provide you with superior heat retention.
The coating on the enameled cast iron cookware is non-reactive to acidic foods. There are coatings that come off when they are exposed to wine and lime juice, but the same is not the case with enameled cast iron cookware. Enameled cast iron is also advantageous over regular cast iron as the bare cast iron can react with the iron which makes the food taste metallic.
The cast iron cookware comes in a wide array of colors. The enamel is as it is smooth and shiny, and the multiple color option adds more to it. The designs are attractive that one cannot restrain themselves from purchasing them. Even though they are of different colors, the inside is pretty simple like the regular pans – white and black. These two colors help you to see the food clearly and monitor them.
Compatible With All Cooktops
Iron is magnetic so it is compatible with all kinds of cooktops, starting from gas to induction. Enameled cast iron cookware also can be used on stoves and microwave ovens.
No Added Iron Taste
They are advantageous over regular cast iron cookwares as they do not add the iron taste to your food. Iron is good for the body no doubt, but the metallic taste that comes with it might prove to be harmful.
Despite the pros, there are many such grounds where cast iron cookware can prove to be disadvantageous.
Cast iron cookware, especially the ones which are enameled can be really bulky and heavy. It can prove to be quite a disadvantage when you have to serve or constantly move it from the kitchen to the dining room and so on. A cast iron skillet only weighs about 4 to 8 pounds. If you’re cooking something heavy, be prepared to add some more weights to it.
Vulnerable To Thermal Shock
Thermal shock is when you instantly put your hot pan into cold water after taking it down from the gas. The instantaneous temperature change can result in shrinkage or expansion of the cookware. This also results in cracks that tend to spread over time and it will only damage your cookware in the long run. The only way to not face this problem is to never put a hot pan under the cold water tap. Let it come to room temperature first and then wash it.
Prone To Chipping
The coating of the cast iron cookware might be prone to chipping. A drop on the floor accidentally may result in the coating being chipped off or scratched and the bare cast iron will be exposed. Once the enamel is chipped, the best thing you can do is dispose of it.
The bottom part of the cookware is generally rough sometimes which leads to damaging the glass cooktops. It is better if it is not dragged along the surface as it again leads to damaging the surface beneath. Lift the pan and then put it.
Yes, the enameled pans are nonstick but they are not entirely nonstick like the Teflon pans. They need to be greased with oil or butter first before you cook something in them, especially if it’s eggs or cheese.
Harder To Clean
All the cast iron cookware should be hand washed and should not be washed with a dishwasher. Most labels will say that they are safe with dishwashers but the chemicals will tend to break the coating in some time. Since the pans need to be seasoned, there are rims that need to be seasoned as they do not have an enamel coating. The pans must be fully dried before keeping them aside as the rims can accumulate dust when damp.
Enameled cookware is made up of thick walls and so it takes a lot of time to cook. It is not suited for instant cooking purposes.
As iron has relatively low thermal conductivity, enameled cast iron cookware does not heat evenly. The cooking and the taste of the food may be hampered owing to this.
Cast iron cookware is one-piece cookware so the handles also get heated up with the body when it is on the flame. One needs to be very careful while putting them down after cooking. Also, be extra careful to not touch the handles while the food is being cooked.
The regular cast iron cookwares are not as expensive as the enameled cast iron cookware.
We have thoroughly discussed 18 pros and cons of how enameled cast iron cookware is a must-buy and why it is not. In short, the cookwares are really versatile, attractive and durable but at the same time are also heavier, chips easily and expensive.
If you are okay with the cons, cast iron enameled cookware is a must-buy, as it is an excellent investment for a lifetime. The enameled cookware will last a long time; they just need a little maintenance and care. If you’re willing to do it, you have nothing to worry about and can surely buy a cast iron cookware set.