Seasoning a Cast-iron Skillet

For the love of cornbread! Return the sparkle to a Southern kitchen staple.

Your trusty cast-iron skillet will eventually lose its sheen and, as a result, its super nonstick powers. Bringing back its luster and protecting it from rusting is as easy as a scrub, oil, and bake. Here's what to do.

1. Scrub skillet well in hot soapy water.
2. Dry thoroughly.
3. Spread a thin layer of melted shortening or vegetable oil over the skillet.
4. Place it upside down on a middle oven rack at 375°. (Place foil on a lower rack to catch drips.)
5. Bake 1 hour; let cool in the oven.

Tip: For day-to-day TLC, clean cast iron under hot water only (never use soap) and dry with towel before storing.

More from Southern Living:
Seasoning a Cast-Iron Skillet Video
Superfast Skillet Suppers
Cooking in Your Cast-Iron Skillet