How does one treat a "pre-seasoned" cast iron pan?
Lodge now seems to only sell factory seasoned cast iron pans. Do they ever need to be reseasoned, as do regular cast iron pans?( (I assume they should be cleaned the same way after use.) Thanks in advance.
What a tough question. This has been asked many times, and the truth is that there is no one good answer for it.
In an ideal world, these preseasoned cookware do not need to be seasoned for the initial use, and they do not require intentional re-seasoning unless the seasoned surface starts to wear off.
In the real world, Lodge does a "hit or miss" job on the preseasoning process. So you could end up with a pan with poor preseasoning and will need to strip the preseasoned surface in the future, and start from scratch.
I find myself just go ahead and strip the preseasoned surface and season the pan on day 1.
yep the preseasoned pans should be treated through out the life of the pan as any other cast iron pan.
My experiance with the pre-seasoned, is that it needs more seasoning layers than comes on the pan. It appears to me that the factory-preseason is more for the purpose of keeping the pans from rusting. Much like in the past when it had a wax like coating on the pan that needed to be removed before seasoning the pan.
I have just added my seasoning layers to the top of the factory seasoning, but found that after a short time it comes off. It is as if the factory seasoning is not stable or something. For it eventually pops off, taking my seasoning off with it. Sort of like a bad paint job..
So I recomend just getting the factory seasoning off and starting brand new with your own.
To me it's a question of how comfortable are you starting from scratch, the processes and the time.
If not comfortable then I would leave it as is and use it and re-season as necessary. If you are aware of the time and effort to start from scratch then the choice is yours.
While, as Chem pointed out, Lodge's preseasoning isn't perfect it does satisfy two problems of the past with their pans. It eliminates the step of removing a protective coating and you can cook immediately if so desired after a light washing.
Skillets and griddles are the easiest to strip and season, any of the grill pans or cornbread stick pans I wouldn't waste my time.