HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >
What's your latest food project? Share your adventure
TELL US

Lodge mini cast iron

BiscuitBoy Nov 8, 2010 06:20 AM

I went to my local hw store for propane over the weekend, and noticed they all of a sudden, have a cookware aisle, le creuset, even. What was even stranger, was a tiny lodge cast iron skillet I found. The thing had to be all of 3 inches across. Was this some kind of promo item? Too small to use on a stove, too heavy to hang on the Christmas tree. Would make a cool incense tray, I guess. Anybody else seen'em?

  1. d
    dixiegal Jun 20, 2011 04:01 AM

    I have, they have been around for years. Some say and use them for ash trays, others as a spoon rest. I always thought they would be good to melt a small amount of butter in. I have also seen them in souviner type shops with the name of the place stamped on them.
    I have seem people use them as a catch all. Spare change, a place to put your rings in the kitchen, or what ever.
    I don't really know what their original purpose was. Perhaps a promo item?

    1. Wtg2Retire Nov 10, 2010 06:26 AM

      I, too, have the small 5" and have used it many times throughout the years. The small size is not new. As stated, it is great for: frying one egg, frying one small onion, a grated small potato. You get the idea.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Wtg2Retire
        g
        greenturtle36 Jun 19, 2011 11:09 AM

        Hi, I'm pretty much echoing everyone else. There are several different ones:

        There's the miniature skillet which is 3 inches, does NOT have the 2 spouts on the side and meant for decoration. There's the spoon rest/ash tray which has 2 spouts and can hold a tablespoon or maybe a wooden spoon but but a big spoon-- it sits on my stove and I don't use it much.

        And then there's a 5 inch round skillet which has an optional lid, that I would definitely get because it expands the usefulness of the skillet. With the lid you can cook an egg without flipping it, or you can roast garlic cloves on the stovetop.

        And then there's a 5 inch square skillet meant for one grilled cheese sandwich. It's called a "wonder skillet" and I'm not sure why. They used to make a 4 inch square skillet as well, but you can't fit a grilled cheese sandwich on that one and it's not very useful.

        Personally, I've used the tiny skillet to cook up scraps of meat for the dog...

      2. r
        roadfix Nov 8, 2010 01:14 PM

        El Torito restaurants use them for their dips with their appetizers.
        My wife thought they were so cute she accidentally brought one home. I scolded her the next morning.

        1. j
          jbuttitta Nov 8, 2010 07:08 AM

          If I remember correctly they used to sell these as ash trays, back in the days when nearly everyone smoked

          2 Replies
          1. re: jbuttitta
            MikeB3542 Nov 8, 2010 09:41 AM

            Lodge makes two mini skillets -- one is indeed an ash tray (they market it now as a spoon rest). The "ash tray" skillets have oversize spouts, better to rest a coffin nail on.

            They also make mini skillets that are normally proportioned (just really small) -- those seem to be just a conversation piece, since too small to cook or even serve with.

            1. re: MikeB3542
              bushwickgirl Nov 10, 2010 06:10 AM

              I have two. One works pretty well for a fried egg. Getting them positioned properly on the grate over the gas flame for optimum heating is difficult. They're also good for holding small objects, coins, keys, things of that ilk.

              As Lodge advertises, "great for single servings."

          2. BiscuitBoy Nov 8, 2010 07:03 AM

            Yeah, 3.5 sounds right. I kind of like it

            3 Replies
            1. re: BiscuitBoy
              monku Nov 8, 2010 07:17 AM

              If you like that you might like the Staub 4.5" mini cast iron skillet for $40
              http://www.google.com/products/catalo...

              1. re: monku
                s
                souvenir Nov 10, 2010 10:09 AM

                I love a lot of the Staub mini serving/cookware pieces. But I think the prices are pretty crazy now. So a couple of years ago, I started looking for quality alternatives and found the Lodge Mini line, which runs from under $10 for the skillets to $15 or so for the other shapes without handles. I ordered the cast iron mini rounds from Amazon.

                My intention was to use them for individual servings of things like macaroni and cheese, potatoes au gratin, etc. Since these aren't enameled cast iron on the inside, I have to remember not to use them when there is an acidic ingredient. I haven't used them on the grill yet, but I keep thinking they also would work well there, and then of course I forget to use them.

                Recently I was in a Crate & Barrel store and noticed they now have them on display, so for anyone who is curious to see them in person, you might look there.

                1. re: souvenir
                  n
                  Ninevah Jun 19, 2011 01:15 PM

                  Using them on the grill is an amazing idea. Now I want me some. :)

            2. monku Nov 8, 2010 06:33 AM

              You sure it wasn't 5" across? Because Lodge says it's perfect for making one egg or individual desserts. I'm a sucker and bought one.

              http://www.google.com/products/catalo...

              5 Replies
              1. re: monku
                dcole Nov 8, 2010 06:35 AM

                I also think they are used as serving pieces. ive seen a lot of restaurants that serve side dishes in tiny staub pieces. lodge has a lot of other small pieces meant just for sides.

                1. re: monku
                  a
                  andieb Nov 8, 2010 06:35 AM

                  This product wasn't on the Lodge site, but the 3" was on Amazon

                  1. re: andieb
                    monku Nov 8, 2010 06:40 AM

                    It's 3.5"
                    http://www.kitchenwindow.com/viewItem...

                    1. re: monku
                      a
                      andieb Nov 8, 2010 06:58 AM

                      My mistake, I was just pointing out that it wasn't the 5".

                      1. re: andieb
                        monku Nov 8, 2010 07:00 AM

                        No foul... 1.5"
                        I wouldn't notice the difference.

                2. monku Nov 8, 2010 06:28 AM

                  Maybe for a little girl's toy kitchen set?

                  1. a
                    andieb Nov 8, 2010 06:27 AM

                    Just checked this out online. The one site I hit referred to it as a mini skillet/spoon rest. I guess it would make a great spoon rest!

                    1. b
                      baseballfan Nov 8, 2010 06:22 AM

                      I've seen them both at the hardware store and at a camping store. I think some people do take them camping. I guess they would be a space saver but not sure how useful they would be.

                      Show Hidden Posts