Why Carbon Steel Pans Are What the Pros Use

Once relegated to restaurant kitchens, carbon steel is winning over home cooks with its natural non-stick surface, excellent heat distribution and indestructibility

IN RECENT YEARS, the skillet de rigueur has been cast iron. This material goes from stove top to oven, distributes heat well and develops a natural non-stick surface. Meanwhile, another metal with these qualities has remained largely off the radar of home cooks.

Carbon steel has long been the workhorse of professional kitchens. Like cast iron, this metal is composed of carbon and iron, but in differing proportions. Cast iron’s higher carbon content makes it more brittle and prone to breakage; carbon steel is nearly indestructible,...

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