I season my cast Iron thoroughly until it is so slick it could sell a used car. However, whenever I cook chicken breast, I notice the seasoning comes off? No other foods do this. I can cook eggs and vegetables in it with no problem, but for some reason chicken breast is the problem food.

I suspected I wasn't oiling the pan enough for cooking, but even when I added more, the seasoning came off. Is this a thing with chicken? Does the fat coat to the seasoning and cause it to come off?

Also, if relevant, I season using grapeseed oil on my range until the oil coats and seasons the pan as it should.

  • 1
    maybe probably too much oil when seasoning your pan.
    – Max
    Commented Apr 16, 2020 at 19:10
  • Mind going into that a little more? Why would too much oil when seasoning impact the quality? Commented Apr 16, 2020 at 19:39
  • My understanding is that, short of taking a metal scouring pad to your pan, the seasoning won't come off from simple cooking use. That's because the oil which makes up the seasoning has become polymerized onto the pan itself as a result of the high heat from previous use. Can you describe the appearance of the substance which comes off the pan when you cook chicken? Source for the above info- seriouseats.com/2014/11/the-truth-about-cast-iron.html Commented May 20, 2020 at 22:07
  • @RichieThomas, that's what I understood as well. And I don't see any substance come off on the food or as residue afterwards. I just notice the pan is seasoned prior, than the usual matte-black/grey of being unseasoned afterwards. Commented May 21, 2020 at 23:33
  • I see. I misunderstood what you meant by "the seasoning comes off". Commented May 22, 2020 at 15:09

2 Answers 2


Seasoning in cast iron pans is very sensitive to acidity. For example, tomatoes or a sauce based on it, will easily degrade your seasoning. It is possible that your chicken, its marinade or exterior is acidic as well.

Make sure also you cook the chicken on its side long enough for it to naturally come off and no longer stick to the pan surface. Don't force it off.


This just sounds like a bad seasoning, quite possibly a too thick layer - especially with the super-slick description, you usually don't get that if you can't quench the pan in the oil.

The reason it is happening with chicken is just that chicken is high in protein and low in fat, so it is stickier than most other foods. If you don't have the experience to use the perfect heat and timing for it, it will stick a bit, and if the seasoning is a bit gummy, it will come off. The extra fat was a good idea, it just seems that it did't contribute enough to save your pan.

Both problems are of the "practive makes perfect" type - just redo both the seasoning and the chicken until you get what you need.

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