Cast iron griddles are becoming increasingly popular for home use. But what exactly are they, how do they benefit you, and what are the top 5 cast iron griddles available for purchase today?
Well, read on, because this guide will take you through some of the reasons why a cast iron griddle is not only a brilliant product to have but why it’s absolutely necessary for any home cook today!
Not only that, but we’ll take a look at the pros and cons of the 6 best cast iron griddles for you to consider so that you know that you’re getting the best quality product for your money.
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What is a cast iron griddle used for?
A cast iron griddle is an excellent product to have, because it is so versatile. Not only can you usually use it on a grill or stove top, but it can also be placed in the oven too (depending on your product, but more on that later), so you can make sure that whatever dish you are making is thoroughly cooked.
The best part is, the cast iron spreads heat evenly throughout the griddle, so whatever you are cooking will be cooked evenly too. All you really need to do is cover the griddle with a thin layer of oil, and you are free to try cooking almost any food on it.
If you can think of a dish, the likelihood is you’ll be able to utilize your new cast iron griddle to cook it somehow. Some of the more popular choices though include meats, fish, vegetables, eggs, grilled sandwiches, flatbreads, and even pancakes!
Is a griddle pan worth it?
In short, yes.
You won’t get the same even cooking throughout your food with other products. A cast iron griddle is an excellent, versatile product that you can use for almost anything.
Yes, it may be seen as a bit of an investment, but if you look after your new product well, it will be working perfectly for years to come. Is a griddle pan worth it? Absolutely.
Are griddle pans healthy?
Griddle pans are an excellent way to cook meat, fish, and vegetables healthily. Just be mindful of the oil you apply to the surface beforehand to ensure that you aren’t adding too much unnecessary fat to your dish, and you can be sure that griddle pans are a healthy way to cook.
As a side note, it’s good to know that cast iron griddles in particular don’t come with the toxic materials that some other cookware does. Cast iron is non-toxic, and cast iron griddles are not treated with any toxic or harmful products during production, so you know that your new griddle pan is perfectly safe to use from the get-go.
Should I season cast iron griddles?
Seasoning your cast iron griddle here doesn’t mean adding some salt and pepper. Seasoning refers to cooking an oil (preferably vegetable, but others will work just as well too) into the cast iron griddle through a process known as polymerization.
Without getting too technical, this just involves placing your cast iron griddle in the oven with 1-2 tablespoons of oil rubbed into the surface, and nothing else. Leave it in the oven for around 45 minutes at 400 Fahrenheit and your griddle pan should be ready to go. Essentially this prevents your product from rusting and will help it to last for years to come.
Now, some cast iron griddles come pre-seasoned (check each individual product because they do differ), but the beauty about seasoning your cast iron griddle is that you can never over season it.
So if you aren’t sure if it is pre-seasoned or not, you can simply season it anyway to make sure. That way you can guarantee that your cast iron griddle will last the distance.
So yes, you should season your cast iron griddle, and you should do so regularly for better results.
The 6 best cast iron griddles
Now that we’ve covered what a cast iron griddle is and why you really ought to purchase one if you haven’t already, we can take a closer look at the 6 top cast iron griddles on the market today.
Now, any of these griddles would be a welcome edition to any home, but there are a number of pros and cons attached to each one. I will not dictate to you which one is the best because each one has it’s own strengths and weaknesses.
If you want to know which one is best for you, read each of the reviews carefully and you should get a rough idea about which one will suit you and your cast iron griddle pan needs.
Uno Casa Cast Iron Griddle
I must confess that I wanted to start this list with my favorite option. This reversible cast iron griddle is an all in one griddle.
You can use the flat side for pancakes and you flip it and you have a heavy duty grill for your steak.
It’s super versatile and saves tons of space.
It comes already pre-seasoned so you don’t have to worry about food sticking to your griddle. Just make sure to retouch the seasoning when needed.
This cast iron griddle can withstand temperatures up to 698ºF (370ºC). It s perfect for gas, oven and open campfires.
The uno casa brand is one of the best when it comes to high-quality non-toxic cast iron cookware.
BackCountry Cast Iron Skillet 20×9″
This cast iron skillet has to be one of the most impressive cast iron griddle pans available for purchase, and it can usually be picked up for a more than reasonable price.
In fact, this is the only griddle pan on this list that promises restaurant-quality finishing when searing your meat, and it seems to deliver on that promise.
Not only that, but this cast iron skillet comes pre-seasoned and guarantees a non-stick surface that only requires a light coating of oil for best results whilst cooking.
This is good news as it makes the cooking process even healthier, and reading some of the customer reviews of the other griddle pans featured in this list, many of those require slightly more oil for best results.
So if you’re looking for a restaurant-quality finish without having to pay extremely high prices, and health is a concern of yours, this might be the griddle pan for you.
However, at 20 x 9″ (a more than reasonable size for most), some customers have complained about the size of the pan itself, meaning that for large gatherings or parties, some food needed to be cooked in batches, which isn’t ideal.
There are larger products available for similar prices, so depending on what you intend to use your new griddle for, this might not be the best option. In fact, there are some larger griddle pans featured in this list that are aimed at cooking for larger groups.
Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Reversible Grill/Griddle with handles, 20×10.5″
At just over 1.5″ of extra room here, this cast iron griddle might not be the best for larger groups either, but it also comes pre-seasoned and ready to use and promises lasting durability for decades of high-quality cooking.
Whilst most cast iron griddles are durable by nature, some are specifically designed with durability in mind, and this certainly seems to be the case here.
It also comes with easy-grip handles that are comfortably large, making using the griddle pan especially safe, and also providing a storage solution if you have somewhere you could hang it. Placing an iron griddle pan in the cupboard usually takes up a fair amount of room, so it’s nice to see a storage solution that has clearly been thought about here.
It’s also important to point out that this one does not promise restaurant quality, but that’s likely because durability took precedence over quality here.
If you’re looking to cook excellent food, this still provides a high-quality finish and the searing and heat distribution is still amazing, but you won’t get quite the same level of finish as you would with the Black Country Skillet.
That being said, this is a robust skillet that is sure to stand the test of time, so have a think about what’s more important to you before making any final decisions.
Legend Cast Iron Griddle for Gas Stovetop 20×10″
I’m actually going to start with the main con to this griddle here because it’s pretty important.
Although the clue is in the title, many customers have overlooked the fact that this iron griddle is only safe to use on gas stovetops (and campfires) but certainly not for induction hobs.
As many people have mistakenly purchased this product and tried using it with an induction hob, I thought it was important to point out that if you have an induction hob, this really isn’t the product for you.
That being said, if you do have a gas stovetop or your thinking about only using your iron griddle pan outside on a campfire, then this is still a product worth thinking about.
It has a smooth scratch-free surface that is almost impossible to damage, so it’s sure to look good and perform well for years to come. This one, interestingly, promises to improve with every use.
Basically, the manufacturer has designed the product with continued seasoning in mind, so that with each use the quality of the product increases. This is a pretty impressive feature and one that the manufacturer has really focussed on.
You’ll get a care instruction booklet in the box as standard, so you can make sure that you’re sticking to the guidelines and making your iron griddle pan the best it can be.
This iron griddle pan also promises to be a 3-in-1 product, claiming to be both a grill, and griddle, but also a keep warm tray for serving, so you’ll also save on washing the dishes!
Campchef Reversible Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Griddle 24×16″
As the largest iron griddle pan featured on this list, this is perfect for those backyard BBQ’s or large family get-togethers, but be warned, this product is not for indoor use.
This griddle pan was designed specifically for outdoor cooking, and heavily aimed towards fitting other outdoor products in their range such as the Campchef outdoor stove.
If you have one of these already, then this iron griddle pan might be an excellent addition to your outdoor cookware, but it does make it one of the least versatile products on the list, as many of the others are capable of moving from stovetop to the oven, to campfire without any issues.
However, this is one of the best cast iron griddles on the market for outdoor cooking, because it has been designed with that in mind. If you’re only really interested in griddle pans for outdoor use, you’ll struggle to find one better suited to you than this. It’s ready to use out of the box, so you can start cooking outside immediately after purchase too!
Cast Iron Reversible Grill/Griddle 12″ Double Handled Cast Iron Stovetop Grill/Griddle by BrightTalk
Again, I’m going to be starting with a negative here because it’s important that you know it before purchasing.
This product is not oven-safe, as it has been designed specifically for stovetops, so don’t purchase this if you’re looking for a truly versatile iron griddle pan that you can put anywhere without worrying.
This product also does not come pre-seasoned, because it recommends seasoning prior to your first use.
Still, this cast iron griddle has a lot of selling points, and you shouldn’t strike it out of the running just yet. As the only griddle pan featured in this list that is circular, this might be perfect for you depending on your preference.
It also promises to work on any gas, electric, or ceramic stovetops, and it is still capable of being used on the campfire, so there is still some versatility here. It’s also lightweight, so is perfect for taking with you on camping trips so that you can cook a delicious breakfast over the campfire in the morning.
This griddle pan is incredibly durable too and is rated highly amongst customers as being a product that will last with you for years.
You’re the only person that knows what you want your new cast iron griddle pan for. Above is a list of the best cast iron griddles on the market today, and they each have their own pros and cons.
The best recommendation I can give you is to think deeply about what’s important to you. Large get-togethers? Quiet campfire cooking? Restaurant quality finishes? Whatever it is, one of these 5 cast iron griddle pans is sure to be perfect for you!
Owner and Food blogger on The Cookware Geek. She loves cooking, baking, traveling, playing with the cats, and knitting. She believes that eating delicious meals doesn’t require a culinary degree or a Michelin-star chef in your kitchen.