The great thing about cast iron cookware is that it can be used on pretty much any cooking surface.
Whether you have an induction or a gas stovetop, cast iron is more than up to the job. The only place you can’t use it is in a microwave – for obvious reasons…
Can you use a cast iron skillet on a Traeger pellet grill though?
The answer is a resounding yes.
You don’t have to cook your meat directly on the Traeger grill itself. If you want to contain the ingredients in a single pot, a cast iron skillet is just what you need.
It’s easier to manage, and easier to clean up too.
What’s the best cast iron skillet for a Traeger grill though?
In this guide you’ll find essential information to help you work out what type of skillet you need.
I’ve then highlighted the best products within each category. By the time you’ve finished reading, you should have a clear idea of the best option for your own backyard cooking.
(Head back to my massive cookware guide when you’re done for more help with this side of kitchen life!)
(Image credit: Z Grills Australia)
What To Look For In A Cast Iron Traeger Skillet
Before I move onto the various options, it’s important to know the most important criteria when buying any kind of skillet.
Selecting A Size
Although brands differ, most cast iron skillets are available in either 8, 10 or 12 inch editions.
As a general rule of thumb, an 8 inch skillet is only really suitable for preparing individual sides or servings for one.
Even in that case, I’d be more inclined to opt for a 10 inch. That lets you cook the smaller stuff, while still having wiggle room to make larger meals (or cook for more people).
Better still is to go for a 12 inch skillet. It’s not an enormous pan to find a home for, and it gives you the best of all possible worlds.
As you can imagine, the price goes up the bigger these things get. You need to consider whether you can justify the extra cost based on your own kitchen use.
The Shape Of Your Skillet
Most skillets are circular in shape, but it is possible to buy square and even oval skillets.
My advice is to stick to the circular shape. It’s easier to shake, wiggle and slide food around on a circular surface.
It’s also easier to swirl juices around a circular pan, which is useful for those times where you don’t want to sear the contents.
Choosing The Best Brand
There are two big players in the world of cast iron skillets: Lodge and Le Creuset.
Lodge is a name you’re likely already familiar with. It manufactures high quality cast iron cookware of all kinds – and it’s the most affordable option too.
If you don’t do a huge amount of skillet cooking, it’s a very reliable name and I encourage you to explore this brand further.
Le Creuset, on the other hand, represents the very best of cast iron skillets. The heat distribution is second to none, and produces very even cooking.
Le Creuset skillets are also layered with an enamel coating. That means you never have to season the pan with oil, as you’d have to with a Lodge.
As you might have guessed already though, the difference here is the price.
Unless you’re lucky enough to stumble across a real bargain online, you can expect to pay quite a bit more for a Le Creuset skillet.
If you can make that upfront investment though, you’ll have a cast iron skillet that provides a lifetime of great service – no matter how hard you punish it on your Traeger.
Consider Your Budget
This follows neatly on from the last section.
“Best” is a subjective thing when it comes to managing your cookware budget.
If you’re only going to be using your cast iron skillet occasionally, choose one of the Lodge options I’ve outlined below. It’ll last for many years if you go the extra mile in caring for it.
If you plan to use your skillet a great deal though – whether on the Traeger or not – you’ll get more value from a Le Creuset over the long term.
Really, it all depends on how much money you can justify investing into a skillet for your Traeger.
Traeger Cast Iron Skillet Reviews
With that out of the way, let’s move onto the three options I’ve shortlisted for this guide.
BEST OVERALL: Lodge Chef Collection Skillet Set
You actually get a 10 and a 12 inch skillet in this Lodge collection.
The 10 inch will serve you well for smaller meals, but it’s nice to know you have a bigger option if you need it.
Most noticeable when compared to the classic Lodge below is the weight of these skillets. They’re lighter and have shallower sides as well.
No cast iron is exactly light to carry around the kitchen, but these skillets are designed to make life just a little bit easier.
In fact, Lodge claims these are 15% lighter than equivalent cast iron pans.
It’s also pre-seasoned, which means you can get cooking with it the moment you get it out of the box!
Just cooking with oil in regular use will help reinforce that seasoning, but it’s best to give it a proper top-up when you notice the surface becoming rough.
Both skillets are designed to be easier to clean as well, which is a good thing after they’ve had a workout on your outside grill.
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RUNNER UP: Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet
This is the classic Lodge skillet that many people own. The main difference between this Lodge skillet and the previous one is the weight and the taller sides.
If you actually prefer to work with heavier pans then this is actually a bonus. You might also prefer those taller sides for when you’re grilling bigger cuts of meat.
- One Lodge Pre-Seasoned 12 Inch Cast Iron Skillet with Handle Holder
- Assist handle for better control
- Unparalleled heat retention and even heating
That extra weight is made easier to bear thanks to the addition of a helper handle, located on the opposite side of the main handle.
This helps with stability when you’re transferring the contents around the kitchen or the yard.
You’ll need oven mitts for this though! Although Lodge includes a removable silicone grip for the main handle, the helper handle remains bare.
Overall, I prefer the Lodge Chef Collection I started with – not least because you get two pans for the same price as this one.
BEST PREMIUM: Le Creuset Enameled Cast Iron Skillet
Let’s deal with the elephant in the room here: the price.
Although price tags vary throughout the year and across different stores, a Le Creuset skillet always costs more than an equivalent Lodge.
- Enameled cast iron delivers superior heat distribution and retention
- Ready to use, requires no seasoning
- Easy-to-clean and durable enamel resists dulling, staining, chipping and cracking
How is this cost justified though?
Most significantly of all, the Le Creuset skillet bonds an extra enamel layering over the cooking surface. That protects the interior from stains, wear and tear, and dulling.
It also means you don’t have to go to the trouble of seasoning the surface. Ever.
If your kitchen time is short and you want as much convenience as you do performance, it’s a very attractive feature.
This enamel layer also means you can add the Le Creuset skillet to the dishwasher after you’ve used it on your Traeger.
That’s something you simply cannot do with bare cast iron, due to the rust problems that any kind of lingering moisture can introduce.
If you want a deeper dive into this one, take a look at my Le Creuset Skillet review. It contains a lot more detail, and will help you decide whether this extra cost is the right investment for you.
I hope you’ve found this guide useful for picking the best skillet for your Traeger grill.
Start by thinking through that buying guide, and then decide exactly what you really need.
We all have different priorities, and I’m a big believer in making your money go as far as possible when it comes to cookware.
If you’re a light skillet user, either of those Lodge options will serve you very well indeed.
If you’re a heavy user and only want the very best for your grill, the Le Creuset Signature really is the only show in town.