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I like pan sauces with my chicken or beef, but prefer the meat cooked over cast iron. Pan sauces apparently don't work well in cast iron, and should be done in a stainless steel saute pan.

How can I make a nice pan sauce if the meat has been cooked in a different pan?

The best I can think of is to save a small amount of the meat to be cooked into fond to start the sauce off. Will that work?

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  • A lot of pan sauces are fine in well seasoned cast iron (and are trivially fine in enameled cast iron).
    – Batman
    Commented Jul 11, 2016 at 18:46

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I think de-glazing the cast iron pan would be a good solution.

After the meat is cooked, remove it from the cast iron pan, and with the pan still on the heat, add a small amount of liquid. Just about enough to cover the bottom of the pan 1/4 inch. Then scrape the bottom with wooden spoon to get up all that goodness stuck to the bottom. Add this to your sauce to get the meat flavor into it.

Liquids you can use include: wine, stock, water, beer, probably a lot of other stuff. And the type of liquid to use would depend on the dish and personal preference.

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  • I think you need to avoid using wine or vinegar on the cast iron pan, and that might be one of the reasons why making pan sauces in cast iron is not a great idea. For this reason i'd stick to stock or water, you can add the wine, etc in your other pan. Commented Jul 11, 2016 at 19:16
  • I think it worked OK, thanks. Did the base of the sauce in a pan (butter, onion, schallots, mushroom), and deglazed the pan with stock, reduced it and added it to the sauce. My sauces are still a bit hit-and-miss but it certainly wasn't a failure.
    – Tony
    Commented Jul 12, 2016 at 22:48

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