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Favorite Size Cast Iron Skillet

rcspott Mar 8, 2009 08:33 AM

Just curious what size is your favorite cast iron skillet and for what dish?

  1. MikeB3542 Mar 8, 2009 05:20 PM

    Personally, my 12-inch skillet suits me fine (cooking for a family of four). Used for just about anything and everything.

    1. m
      maggiej Mar 8, 2009 05:28 PM

      I have a 10in and a 12in. The 10in is more comfortable, less heavy/unwieldy, and I find my small burners have trouble heating the 12in evenly to the edges. However, I use both of them ALL the time and sometimes appreciate the extra space in the 12". I use them for pancakes and french toast, frying up some potatoes, searing fish and meat. Pretty much everything that isn't braising and doesn't have acid/vinegar/tomato.

      1. flourgirl Mar 8, 2009 05:40 PM

        I have a 10" and a 12" and I use them both regularly but I prefer the 12". I use them for lots of things, but my favorite thing is searing sirloin steak in the 12" and cutting it up for steak salad. I also really like the cast iron pan I have that's divided into wedges for corn bread.

        1. c
          chuckl Mar 8, 2009 06:18 PM

          I'm going to weigh in with those who have more than one. I have a small skillet we use for eggs and small amounts and a larger one, I believe its called a chicken fryer, that i can use to brown food on the stovetop and finish in the oven. The big pans can be pretty hefty, though

          1. ccbweb Mar 8, 2009 07:59 PM

            I've got a 10 inch Lodge skillet and it's the perfect size but that's only because it's just me and my wife that I'm cooking for most often. I use it for fried chicken most frequently.

            1. m
              MakingSense Mar 9, 2009 12:08 PM

              I have quite a number of cast iron pieces but the ONE that lives on my cooktop - my baby, the workhorse - is a 12 inch skillet.
              It is bigger than I need to cook a single steak but it functions like a grill would. Better too big than too small, huh?
              I do pull out an 8" for some small jobs, deeper ones for frying, the old Dutch oven for braising, etc., but that 12" gets most of the work because it's right there.

              1. billieboy Mar 9, 2009 12:55 PM

                I am the same as Making Sense. I use the 12" most of the time even though it is much bigger and heavier than I need. I also have a 10" and an 8", but the 12" has the best seasoning and hence gets used more. Of course it has the best seasoning because it is used the most......Self-fulfilling prophesy.

                1. ipsedixit Mar 9, 2009 11:30 PM

                  12 inch.

                  Not the most easy to use (esp. when frying one egg), but definitely the most versatile.

                  1. b
                    BigE Mar 10, 2009 08:57 AM

                    12" for me as well, although it is incredibly heavy. I'll probably get an 8" or 10" soon.

                    1. c
                      cyberroo Mar 12, 2009 11:42 AM

                      I have an 8" and a 10". The 10 gets used regularly, but the 8 is pretty much too small to do anything that I want to do in a cast iron pan. I'm cooking for two, though, so I don't need room for 4 steaks or pieces of chicken.

                      1. rockandroller1 Mar 12, 2009 12:05 PM

                        We have a 12" and use it for everything.

                        1. m
                          mlgb Mar 13, 2009 06:54 PM

                          10-inch but I rarely cook for more than two people.

                          1. o
                            onrushpam Mar 13, 2009 07:12 PM

                            I have a 8" and 12" skillets and a very old 10" Griswold chicken fryer (with the drip points on the lid). I use the 12" most, though a 10" regular skillet would also handle most of what I use it for. The 8" is perfect for a small pan of cornbread or a frittata for two. I bought it just for those purposes.

                            I love my old chicken fryer, but don't use it all that much. It's good for braises and for frying chicken. :-)

                            1. kchurchill5 Mar 13, 2009 07:19 PM

                              12" would be best if you want one.
                              I have a 6, 10 and 12 and at 8 4" high pot and at 12 6" high pot. I love them all. I also have a old flat round skillet which is wonderful for eggs and bacon with a slight 1/2 edge. And I have gramas 5 qt (I think) pot. I cook that on my grill or outside fire a lot. Great for the oven and big soups and stews.

                              1. WCchopper Mar 19, 2009 10:12 PM

                                The 8 inch size is very good for toasting nuts and spices

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: WCchopper
                                  beauxgoris Mar 19, 2009 10:22 PM

                                  I love my 10", I would say it gets the most use. I also like that it has a small handle on the other side of the main handle: makes it easy to move it around. I've had it for 20 years and counting. I'm sure it will go another 20 no problem.

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