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Dec 17, 2008 09:28 AM

Induction and cast iron

cast iron is supposed to work really great with induction, but what can one do to avoid scratching up the cooktop surface? I am not moving the pan around, while cooking just small movements from handling.

I heard you can put a piece of silicone mat or paper towel under the pan. while cooking. What have you used that work well?

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  1. Parchment paper.
    Also, sand the bottom smooth and season it.

    1. I received a free stand induction burner as a it, but I'm with you on the problems of scratching it. So far, I've only used a fairly new cast iron skillet and have done no dammage, but I want to buy pots and pans to use. I don't want more cast irom so what's my solution? I want something I can make great gobs of soups/stews and not have to worry about the acidity (anything tomato based). I read the instructions with the burner suggesting "Magnatized Stainless Steel" What the deuce is that????? Can anyone offer a brand name it? Who on the planet sells it? CH'ers please help!

      7 Replies
      1. re: amazinc

        Hi Amazinc,

        The term 'Stainless Steel' actually refers to a pretty wide range of alloys that usually contain steel, chromium, and sometimes nickel . Stainless steel made from steel and chromium is magnetic - 'Magnetized Stainless Steel'. But, if nickel is added to the mix, it changes the properties of the steel to make it non-magnetic.

        The key here is that a pan has to be magnetic for magnetic induction to work. There are lots of pans that are - I know All-Clad's stainless line work. But, there are also lots of cookware that doesn't work - All-Clad's MC2 and LTD lines don't work. So, the easiest thing for you to do is to go looking for cookware and bring a magnet along. If the magnet stick to the cookware, it should work on your induction burner. If not, it won't.

        Hope this helps!


        1. re: MEH

          Depending on your cooking needs, enameled cast iron (e.g. Le Creuset, Staub) works great on induction and won't scratch because of the enamel.

          1. re: Caitlin McGrath

            or even inexpensive enameled steel - it's usually speckled.

            1. re: paulj

              In my experience, much of that cookware is not magnetized, so it doesn't work with induction burners.

              1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                ""In my experience, much of that cookware is not magnetized, so it doesn't work with induction burners.""

                Steel is magnetic, however a greater portion of enameled cookware isn't made with a totally flat base. Enameled cookware that contains a dimpled base understandably isn't meant for induction cooking.

                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                  Every piece of enamel steel that I own sticks to a magnet - both the blue speckled from Mexico, and black from Spain.

          2. re: amazinc

            just google induction ready cookware macy's and walmart both have a nice selection

          3. IMHO, cast iron pans are simply unsuitable for any glass top cooking appliance.

            Even if the base is ground or sanded flat, the natural imperfections of CI (and weight), can still cause the glass to "micro" scratch.

            1 Reply
            1. re: RShea78

              I think the scratch danger is overblown. Sure the manuals warn about it but I haven't seen any glass cooktop be damaged by cast iron any way other than by dropping the pan on it.

              I view a stove as a tool to be used, not something to obsess over keeping in pristine condition.

            2. I found one of my stainless steel pans is not flat but slightly concave, so it does not work. That makes only contact on the outside edges and the induction shuts off. Take a straight edge ruler and check. Some may be be convex or warped, also.