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When I got married, I received a nice set of Cephalon non-stick pans. And, for the last 7 years, I have been using them almost daily. However, in the last 12 months, they have begun to deteriorate and I started looking for a new set of cookware.

*Note: When non-stick pans deteriorate, they begin to peel and leave behind this toxic substance that sticks to your food. Eww!

There are so many options out there: Stainless, copper, ceramic, non-stick and, finally, cast iron. I did a lot of research on each type of cookware, and although they all have their advantages, I chose cast iron and here are 5 reasons why.

1. Cast Iron Will Last a Lifetime

When seasoned properly and taken care of, cast iron will outlive me. After only 7 years of use, my non-stick pans began to break down. I love that I can use cast iron daily and not have to worry about a time when these pans will wear out and I will once again have to go looking for new cookware. Although some people may enjoy the search and purchase of new cookware, I see it as another errand I have to run.

2. Cast Iron is the Ultimate Non-Stick Pan

I didn’t know this, but when seasoned properly, nothing will stick to them! I can cook anything in these things and they don’t stick. I don’t even have to use butter or oil (although I do anyway because fat makes everything taste better).

3. You Can Put Them in the Oven

Cast iron pans can be used similarly to dutch ovens. It means I can fry something in the pan, then place in whatever needs to be baked and throw the whole thing in the oven. I then only need to clean one pan! Serving multiple functions just makes life easier, and who doesn’t want to do that?

4. Everything Cooks Evenly

Alright, when I first started cooking, I didn’t really think about how heat got absorbed by the pan and changed the way food cooked. It wasn’t until after years of cooking that I researched why one pan was better than another and it all comes down to the way heat spreads across a pan. Cast Iron takes a bit of time to heat up, but once heated, cooks evenly and retains that heat for a while. My meals cook better now than they ever did before. Yay for science!

5. Cast Iron Lasts Forever, That Means Less Consumer Waste

From the moment I chose to lead a more “homesteading” lifestyle, I have made it a priority to up-cycle, re-use, and choose options that are better for the environment while being cost effective and healthier. Cast iron lasts FOREVER, that means less waste and I can donate, sell or give them away and they will be good as new! Less waste is better for everyone.

So there you have it, the argument in favor of cast iron. If you’re considering the switch, look into how to properly care and season your pans because that makes all the difference.