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Buying guide for Best cast iron fajita pans

Some dishes, such as fondue or lobster, owe as much to the presentation as they do to the actual taste. One such dish is the traditional fajita. Served at restaurants as a sizzling pan of meat and vegetables with tortillas, this delicious dish can be recreated at home with the help of a cast iron fajita pan.

A cast iron fajita pan or skillet is ideal for cooking and serving fajitas. Not only is it a healthy way to cook, it offers up a culinary spectacle that will surely impress family and friends. In this buying guide, we examine the various factors you will need to consider before purchasing one of these pans. In addition to size and seasoning, we cover features such as ribbed surfaces, pouring spouts, and wooden bases that are standard accessories for these pans. We also break down what you should expect at various price points and offer a few recommendations to start your search off right.

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Cast iron offers excellent heat distribution and heat retention. This helps keep food warm when used as a table-side serving dish.

Key considerations


While the majority of cast iron fajita pans are on the smaller side, just large enough for one or two people, some are larger. Fajita pans range in size from 7 to 17 inches in diameter. A larger pan can be used to cook for a group, but the tradeoff is that it may be heavier and more difficult to wield. A larger pan also takes up more space on the table and is bulkier to store.


While fajita pans can be made from a variety of materials, cast iron is the material we focus on here. Cast iron is known to be highly durable and long-lasting. In fact, a cast iron pan can last a lifetime and get passed down to future generations. That said, some cast iron fajita pans have a thinner build than others, which may impact longevity.


When you season a cast iron pan, you create a layer that binds with the pan to protect it and help prevent food from sticking. Some cast iron fajita pans ship pre-seasoned so you can begin creating your own fajitas right away. Other pans must be seasoned after purchase. Seasoning a cast iron pan is not a difficult process, but it can be a bit time-consuming. Check the manufacturer’s care and use instructions for recommendations and tips on seasoning your pan.

Much like a pizza stone, a cast iron fajita pan is one of those items that rises above traditional cookware, making it a great gift idea.



Pan surface

While the majority of cast iron fajita pan cooking surfaces are flat, some have grooves or ribs. These raise the actual cooking surface, which can help keep food from soaking up grease. A ribbed pan can also add attractive grill marks to meats and vegetables.

Pouring spout

Some cast iron fajita pans have indentations on either side of the handle. You can use these to easily drain excess grease while cooking or before serving.


Cast iron fajita pan handles are typically made from cast iron too, which is why you should anticipate using an oven mitt when holding one. Handles run from short to long; some are curved to provide better leverage.

While rare, some handles can be removed from the pan, which helps cut down on the pan’s overall footprint (and burn potential) at the table.

If you plan to hang your cast iron fajita pan on a pot rack, be sure that it includes a hole at the end of the handle.

Wooden base

Standard with a cast iron fajita pan is a wooden base, or trivet, on which the hot pan rests. The quality of the base can vary from one product to the next. Look for one that is durable and thick. A wooden pan base should not easily split or break. The finish may be dark or light, and some bases sport the company’s logo.


Also included with some cast iron fajita pans is a mitt to protect your hand from the hot handle. These mitts are usually not as thick or as large as the typical oven mitt. If you get a mitt with your purchase, test it out before attempting to deliver hot food from stove to table.

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The sloping edges of a fajita pan help steam disperse quickly and aid in the searing of vegetables and meat.


Seasoning spray: Lodge Seasoning Spray
Apply some of this non-aerosol spray to your cast iron fajita pan after cleaning to protect its finish. You can also use this canola-based spray on other cast iron items in your kitchen, such as a Dutch oven or griddle.

Fruit and vegetable washBefore you slice up the peppers for the fajitas, wash them with a handy bottle of fruit and vegetable wash. 

Oven mitt: Big Red House Oven Mitts
The business of preparing delicious fajitas involves a lot of kitchen heat. Protect your hands as you work with the hot pan handle with these charming oven mitts from Big Red House. We especially love the silicone ribbing and the variety of color choices offered.

Tamale steamer: If you want to really impress your guests, you can serve tamales with your fajitas.

Cast iron fajita pan pricyoes


For under $20, you can find cast iron fajita pans that are less than 15 inches in diameter and usually only capable of holding one serving at a time. These no-frills pans may or may not be pre-seasoned. If you cook for two people, this price range may be suitable.


The majority of cast iron fajita pans sit in the $20 to $30 range. These medium-size pans typically come with a wooden base and mitt, and many are pre-seasoned. If you eat fajitas often and have a small family, this price range is a great place to start your search.


If you cook for a crowd, a cast iron pan over $30 would probably be best because these pans tend to be larger (17 inches or more) and offer the best build. You can also find some multi-pan sets in this price range.

When cooking fajitas, start with the protein (typically chicken or steak). Then add the peppers and onions, which take less time to cook.



  • Do not place the wooden base that comes with your fajita pan in the dishwasher, as the water exposure could ruin the wood.
  • While a longer handle can be easier to use while cooking, be sure that it is not so long that it takes over your table in such a way that it could burn someone.
  • Warranties for cast iron fajita pans vary. To protect their investment, some consumers prefer to buy a pan with a lifetime warranty.
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A cast iron fajita pan can be used to cook a wide range of foods that you would use a traditional cast iron pan for, including steak, chicken, and eggs.


Q. How should I clean my cast iron fajita pan?

A. While you should always adhere to the manufacturer’s recommendations when cleaning and caring for your cast iron fajita pan, these pans are typically hand washed with a cloth or brush and warm water. The best time to do this is when the pan is warm but not hot. Avoid soaking the pan in water, and steer away from harsh detergents and soaps, as this could strip the pan’s seasoning. For stuck-on foods, try boiling some water in the pan or scrubbing the surface with a cloth and some coarse salt.

Q. How can I protect my cast iron fajita pan from rust?

A. Dry your pan thoroughly after you wash it. Rub a bit of cooking oil into the surface before hanging it up or storing it. If you are storing it, consider covering the pan with paper towels, which can help absorb moisture.

Q. Do I need to preheat my fajita pan?

A. Yes. Searing is the name of the game with fajitas, so you are going to want a hot pan before you start adding ingredients to it. Heat the cast iron fajita pan on a grill or stovetop for two to three minutes, until it reaches medium-high heat. Add a little oil to the pan. Next, add meat, followed by vegetables. When everything is cooked, move the sizzling pan directly to the table and enjoy.


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