I am unsure of the brand on this pan. This is a pan from my kitchen that I just grabbed off the rack for this post. I believe we got it at a yard sale, maybe 20 years ago. In addition to the words “Made in USA” and “6-1/2 inch Skillet” there is a “T” symbol in two separate places. Perhaps that indicates the brand? If you have any information about this please let me know (I googled it but didn’t find any answers!)
Since so many people ask me (all the time!) what is EXACTLY in plain cast iron, I thought this would be a good opportunity to answer that question.
When tested with an XRF instrument (for a full 2-minutes / 120 seconds), this particular cast iron pan had the following readings:
- Chromium (Cr): 551 +/- 70 ppm
- Iron (Fe): 987,700 +/- 1,200 ppm [so about 99% iron!]
- Vanadium (V): 192 +/- 72 ppm
- Titanium (Ti): 496 +/- 112 ppm
- Cobalt (Co): 2,353 +/- 990
- Manganese (Mn): 7,370 +/- 446 ppm
- Metals not detected are not listed, testing was done multiple times and all test results are replicable.
If you like you can compare this XRF reading set to the XRF reading set for the Stargazer pan (which is also plain cast iron) and you will notice that the readings are very similar, yet with some distinct variations as well. Cast iron is always mostly iron – usually very close to 99% iron. The remaining 1% is not generally additives to the cast iron, but more likely low level contaminants or artifacts of the mining and manufacturing process (or in some cases the recycling process if the pans are made of recycled iron as they are with the Stargazer product.)
We have many cast iron pieces in our home (7 I think altogether) and we use them every day. I think plain cast iron is an important part of a non-toxic kitchen. My favorite piece is our stove top cast iron waffle maker (vintage), and I also love our stove top griddle for pancakes (it plunks down right over the top of two of the burners on the gas stove giving us a lot of real estate for making lots of pancakes for my ever-hungry boys!)
I often use these little pans (I have two like the one pictured on this post) for grilling mushrooms or garlic – or cooking a quick fried or scrambled egg for my one lacto-ovo vegetarian (non-vegan) son!
As always, please let me know if you have any questions.
Thank you for reading and for sharing my posts!