Carbon-steel pans - FAQ

Carbon-steel pans - FAQ

Carbon-steel pans

Carbon-steel frying pans are durable, can withstand high temperatures and distribute heat evenly over the entire frying area. Carbon steel heats up quickly, unlike cast iron, which heats up slowly. This is why carbon steel is popular, especially in restaurant kitchens.
- Carbon-steel pans have been popular in France for a long time. The De Buyer factory has been making them since 1830, but in the Nordic countries the tradition is different: our grandmothers normally used cast-iron pans. Carbon steel is iron with a small amount of carbon in addition to iron. It is much lighter than cast iron, thus saving the cook's wrists.
- Carbon-steel pans are easy to use and maintain. However, they cannot be put in the dishwasher or left to soak, but should be washed in hot water without detergent and dried after use, e.g. with kitchen paper.
- It is a good idea to lightly oil the surface of a new pan to prevent it from rusting. Rusting is not a problem either, as you can always scrub off the rust, dry the pan, oil it and it is ready for use again.
Carbon steel should darken in use. The more you use the pan, the better it gets. After just a few uses, the surface of the frying pan starts to get non-stick properties and you don't need much fat or oil to fry it.
As a material, carbon steel is not suitable for braising or for making tomato and cream sauces. Raw materials containing natural acids, such as lemon and wine, can cause pale spots. They will not damage the pan and the spots will disappear with use.

What is the difference between Carbone Plus and Mineral B?
- Carbone Plus is the original series from De Buyer. It allows for more minor scratches and marks on the surface because professionals know that they do not affect frying in any way. The products are mainly sold to restaurants.
- Mineral B is otherwise the same product, but is treated in the factory with beeswax to protect it from moisture during transport and storage.

Steel or iron handle?
- The Carbone Plus 5130 and Mineral B PRO series have steel handles that do not get hot in use and can be put in the oven. The handles of the other series can withstand an oven temperature of 200°C for 10 minutes (factory warranty). With the exception of the Mineral B Bois with wooden handles, all pans can be placed in the oven at a mild temperature to keep food warm.

Suitable for induction?
- Yes, carbon steel is one of the most magnetic materials and works very well with induction.
- With induction, it is good to remember not to use the highest temperature (booster) as the material heats up very quickly.

Frying pan washing?
- With hot water, preferably without detergent. Drying is best done immediately after washing to avoid rusting the pan. It is particularly advisable to oil a new pan lightly after washing.
- Carbon steel is a porous material and cannot be put in the dishwasher.
- The easiest way is to wash the pan while it is still hot. This makes it easy to clean and it will dry by itself.

- See instructions in "How to season and use a carbon-steel pan?". It is important to remember that while it's good to season the pan, it's only when you use the pan that it gets its excellent, black, natural, non-stick finish. The more you use your frying pan, the better it will become.

Can I ruin my pan?
- A carbon steel frying pan is forever and can always be fixed. If it gets warped, you can fix it with a hammer blow; if it rusts, you can clean it steel wool or even sandpaper.

A new frying pan will have scratches. Can I use the pan?
- Yes, carbon steel is a soft material that may have small scratches. They do not interfere with use and will disappear on their own as the pan's own patina builds up.

Can I use steel utensils?
- Yes. Scratches do not interfere with use.

Is it suitable for an open fire?
- Yes, the carbon steel pan can be used on all heat sources.

Everything sticks to the pan! Why?
- The pan is too cold. The pan should be heated well with cooking fat (butter, oil, duck or pork fat) before adding the food.

My frying pan is rusty, is it ruined?
- Don't worry, you can save it by frying it with salt and sanding it with sandpaper, then season it again.