Looking for some one-pot meals for simple dinners?
How about twice-baked potatoes dripping with delicious cheese and bits of bacon?
Maybe chicken and broccoli mixed together with creamy pasta shells in a smooth milky base?
Or kick it up a notch with a spicy Mexican rice dish with smoky poblano peppers?
Enter the casserole, a kind of stew or side dish that you slowly cook in an oven. And, your cast iron skillet is actually the perfect vessel for serving a well-balanced casserole.
Let’s look at why cast iron makes the perfect partner for casseroles.
Cast Iron and Casseroles: A Perfect Match
Combine a protein like beef, chicken, or fish; a grain to bind the dish like pasta, potatoes, or rice; some fresh vegetables; a creamy filling; and cheese, and you have the casserole.
Each bite meshes almost seamlessly together so that you almost think those ingredients can’t possibly exist alone.
Not only are casseroles quick and easy to make, but they can usually feed the whole family or a larger group and even provide some leftovers.
Cast iron makes the perfect casserole vessel for a number of reasons.
Handy Handles For Better Grip
When you’re putting a casserole into the oven and taking it out again, you want sturdy handles so your delicious meal doesn’t end up all over the floor instead of in your belly.
Glass handles can be slippery, especially with fabric potholders. A GRIZZLY cast iron casserole can help here with grooves on the underside of two sturdy side handles to increase grip. using custom leather grips ensures additional support and safety.
Versatility So You Can Dirty Fewer Dishes
Instead of sauteing in one pan and transferring to another for baking, your cast iron casserole can do both, moving from the grill or range-top to the oven with ease. This means less mess to clean up when you’re done.
Nickel-coated cast iron has the added benefit of not requiring seasoning before use, so you can cook a perfect casserole from day one without any weird flavor transfer or the entire bottom of your casserole sticking to the pan.
Consistent Circumference For Even Baking
A consistent shape – width and depth – is ideal for casseroles that require even baking throughout the dish for the perfect bite every time.
Cast iron casseroles offer heat retention and even heat distribution. This is thanks to the weight of a 10-inch cast iron casserole, which can help you avoid burned bits or unbaked middles.
You Can Bake Sweet Treats in Addition to Savory Ones
You might be thinking about savory dishes when you’re considering baking up a casserole.
But the same qualities that make your cast iron casserole work for dinner, can also give your desserts an edge.
We’re talking about a warm, classic apple pie or a clafoutis with tart cherries and bourbon. The same even temperature and consistent heat transfer that works for cheesy potatoes and meat and veggie dishes can handle heavy cream and sweet dough topped with cinnamon- and sugar-spiced fruits.
Cast Iron Casseroles Please Taste Buds Any Time of Year
You might think warm, gooey casseroles are best for those colder months, but they can feed your family in any season.
And the beauty of using cast iron to bake them means you can even forgo turning on your oven and use your outdoor grill instead.
The recipe ideas for deep dish goodness are endless with nickel-coated cast iron. Grab one and try it today. Happy casserole cooking!
If you still have questions about cast iron’s many uses, let GRIZZLY help. We have years of experience using these skillets and can share some tips and tricks to perfect your casserole cooking. Get in touch with us today to learn more about cooking and baking with nickel-coated cast iron.