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Carbon Steel Wok 101

Carbon Steel Wok 101

Get to Know Your New Go-To

Get to Know Your New Go-To

A wok is a timeless, unique pan for all kinds of everyday cooking.

A wok is a timeless, unique pan for all kinds of everyday cooking.

Congratulations! You’re going to love your new wok. Here’s everything you need to know about making this one-of-a-kind pan your favorite cooking tool.

Congratulations! You’re going to love your new wok. Here’s everything you need to know about making this one-of-a-kind pan your favorite cooking tool.

Seasoning

The Misen Carbon Steel Wok is Pre-seasoned

It’s ready to use right out of the box. But the more you cook with it, the stronger — and more naturally nonstick — it will become.

How to Build and Maintain Your Wok’s Seasoning

Supplies

  • A clean towel or paper towels
  • Seasoning wax or high-smoke point oil, such as canola, grapeseed, soybean, or vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. After cooking with your wok, wash it by hand, and then thoroughly towel dry, to prevent rusting.
  2. Place the wok over medium heat on your stovetop.
  3. Using the towel or paper towel, apply a thin layer of the seasoning wax all over the inside of the wok.
  4. Continue rubbing it evenly all over the inside of the wok until you’ve soaked up the excess. There shouldn’t be any visible wax or oil remaining. The wok should appear dry—and not shiny, greasy, or wet.
  5. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

A properly seasoned wok should feel smooth to the touch. If you notice rough, uneven, or sticky patches, you may need to scrub those away with a sponge and apply a new layer of seasoning.

Scratch or damage your seasoning? Don’t worry. You can always rebuild it. Your wok is indestructible and will last a lifetime.

Cooking

Cooking with Your Wok

It's More Versatile Than You Might Know

Beyond stir-fries, it’s an excellent everyday tool for steaming, boiling, searing, frying, braising, and more.

  • It’s compatible with all types of stovetops, including induction.
  • Give your wok time to preheat before adding cooking oil or food. This will help prevent sticking.
  • We recommend wood or silicone utensils. Metal can be used, but it may scrape off your pan’s seasoning.
  • Your wok is fully oven safe up to 500 F.
  • Avoid cooking high-acid foods for long periods, such as tomato sauce. These can strip away your wok’s seasoning. Small amounts — such as deglazing with wine — are fine.
  • To prevent rusting, don’t expose the pan to water for prolonged periods, and don’t allow it to air-dry. Towel dry your wok, and/or place over low heat to eliminate excess moisture.
  • The wok lid is not oven-safe.

Cleaning

Cleaning Your Wok

Cleaning Your Wok Is Easy

You can usually just rinse, wipe it clean, and towel it dry.

  • Hand wash only — cleaning your wok in the dishwasher can cause it to rust.
  • If using soap, just a few drops will do. Excess soap can remove your pan’s seasoning.
  • Use only non-metallic scrubbers and brushes — highly abrasive materials will strip off the seasoning.
  • Dry thoroughly after washing, again to prevent the carbon steel from rusting.
  • For stubborn, stuck-on food, gently scrub using a non-abrasive sponge or brush, and re-apply a layer of seasoning once the pan is dry.

FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

What is “seasoning” and what does “pre-seasoned” mean?

A pan’s “seasoning” refers to the build-up of fats that bake into its metals over time. These layers of fats create a smooth surface that requires very little extra cooking fat to prevent food from sticking. It’s the same thing as a patina on a well-loved cast-iron pan: the more you cook with it, the stronger and more nonstick the pan becomes as it builds up more and more layers of fats.

By pre-seasoning the wok as part of our manufacturing process, we’ve established a strong base layer of seasoning for you. Then, its seasoning will continue to get stronger as you cook with it.

Is it oven-safe?

Yes! This Wok is oven-safe to 500º F / 260º C. But to best protect the silicone lining, we don’t recommend using the lid in the oven.

Can I cook high-acid foods in it?

Small amounts of acidic ingredients — like wine or vinegar — are okay to use in the wok. But we recommend avoiding cooking large amounts of acidic foods (such as tomato sauce) in the wok, as these can cause the buildup of your seasoning to deteriorate.

My wok isn’t as nonstick as my nonstick pan. Why?

Naturally seasoned carbon steel is a little different from a commercial nonstick coating. It's created by a build-up of fats that bake into the metal, making it more and more nonstick the more you cook with it. We recommend using some cooking fat when you cook with your wok, and it’s always a good idea to properly preheat the pan over medium heat before adding any fat or food.

Does it work on induction cooktops?

Yes, the Wok is made with induction-compatible carbon steel and designed with a flat base that will work on any cooktop: gas, electric, ceramic, you name it.

My wok isn’t nonstick anymore, what do I do?

Your wok’s seasoning may have deteriorated—but no big deal. Here’s what to do if you need to start building a new one.

  1. Place your clean, dry wok over medium heat for a few minutes to warm up.
  2. Use a clean towel or paper towel to rub a few drops of a high-smoke point oil into the wok interior.
  3. Continue wiping away the excess oil while it’s over the heat (your wok surface should appear dry, instead of oily or wet)—it may smoke lightly, which is fine! Then remove from the heat and allow it to cool.

What kind of fat or oil is used in the pan’s preseasoning?

Our factory uses a blended oil to create our wok’s pre-seasoning. It’s a combination of soybean, rapeseed, sunflower, peanut, rice, corn, sesame, and linseed oil.

The Misen Carbon Steel Wok is Pre-seasoned

It’s ready to use right out of the box. But the more you cook with it, the stronger — and more naturally nonstick — it will become.

We designed the Misen Dutch Oven to last a lifetime. While the enamel system is very durable, and can tolerate almost anything in the kitchen, we have a few suggestions that’ll keep your dutch oven working great for even longer.

How to Build and Maintain

Your Wok’s Seasoning

Supplies

  • A clean towel or paper towels
  • Seasoning wax or high-smoke point oil, such as canola, grapeseed, soybean, or vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. After cooking with your wok, wash it by hand, and then thoroughly towel dry, to prevent rusting.
  2. Place the wok over medium heat on your stovetop.
  3. Using the towel or paper towel, apply a thin layer of the seasoning wax all over the inside of the wok.
  4. Continue rubbing it evenly all over the inside of the wok until you’ve soaked up the excess. There shouldn’t be any visible wax or oil remaining. The wok should appear dry—and not shiny, greasy, or wet.
  5. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

A properly seasoned wok should feel smooth to the touch. If you notice rough, uneven, or sticky patches, you may need to scrub those away with a sponge and apply a new layer of seasoning.

Scratch or damage your seasoning? Don’t worry. You can always rebuild it. Your wok is indestructible and will last a lifetime.

Cooking with Your Wok

It's More Versatile Than You Might Know

Beyond stir-fries, it’s an excellent everyday tool for steaming, boiling, searing, frying, braising, and more.

  • It’s compatible with all types of stovetops, including induction.
  • Give your wok time to preheat before adding cooking oil or food. This will help prevent sticking.
  • We recommend wood or silicone utensils. Metal can be used, but it may scrape off your pan’s seasoning.
  • Your wok is fully oven safe up to 500 F.
  • Avoid cooking high-acid foods for long periods, such as tomato sauce. These can strip away your wok’s seasoning. Small amounts — such as deglazing with wine — are fine.
  • To prevent rusting, don’t expose the pan to water for prolonged periods, and don’t allow it to air-dry. Towel dry your wok, and/or place over low heat to eliminate excess moisture.
  • The wok lid is not oven-safe.

Cleaning Your Wok

Cleaning Your Wok Is Easy

You can usually just rinse, wipe it clean, and towel it dry.

  • Hand wash only — cleaning your wok in the dishwasher can cause it to rust.
  • If using soap, just a few drops will do. Excess soap can remove your pan’s seasoning.
  • Use only non-metallic scrubbers and brushes — highly abrasive materials will strip off the seasoning.
  • Dry thoroughly after washing, again to prevent the carbon steel from rusting.
  • For stubborn, stuck-on food, gently scrub using a non-abrasive sponge or brush, and re-apply a layer of seasoning once the pan is dry.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is “seasoning” and what does “pre-seasoned” mean?

A pan’s “seasoning” refers to the build-up of fats that bake into its metals over time. These layers of fats create a smooth surface that requires very little extra cooking fat to prevent food from sticking. It’s the same thing as a patina on a well-loved cast-iron pan: the more you cook with it, the stronger and more nonstick the pan becomes as it builds up more and more layers of fats.

By pre-seasoning the wok as part of our manufacturing process, we’ve established a strong base layer of seasoning for you. Then, its seasoning will continue to get stronger as you cook with it.

Is it oven-safe?

Yes! This Wok is oven-safe to 500º F / 260º C. But to best protect the silicone lining, we don’t recommend using the lid in the oven.

Can I cook high-acid foods in it?

Small amounts of acidic ingredients — like wine or vinegar — are okay to use in the wok. But we recommend avoiding cooking large amounts of acidic foods (such as tomato sauce) in the wok, as these can cause the buildup of your seasoning to deteriorate.

My wok isn’t as nonstick as my nonstick pan. Why?

Naturally seasoned carbon steel is a little different from a commercial nonstick coating. It's created by a build-up of fats that bake into the metal, making it more and more nonstick the more you cook with it. We recommend using some cooking fat when you cook with your wok, and it’s always a good idea to properly preheat the pan over medium heat before adding any fat or food.

Does it work on induction cooktops?

Yes, the Wok is made with induction-compatible carbon steel and designed with a flat base that will work on any cooktop: gas, electric, ceramic, you name it.

My wok isn’t nonstick anymore, what do I do?

Your wok’s seasoning may have deteriorated—but no big deal. Here’s what to do if you need to start building a new one.

  1. Place your clean, dry wok over medium heat for a few minutes to warm up.
  2. Use a clean towel or paper towel to rub a few drops of a high-smoke point oil into the wok interior.
  3. Continue wiping away the excess oil while it’s over the heat (your wok surface should appear dry, instead of oily or wet)—it may smoke lightly, which is fine! Then remove from the heat and allow it to cool.

What kind of fat or oil is used in the pan’s preseasoning?

Our factory uses a blended oil to create our wok’s pre-seasoning. It’s a combination of soybean, rapeseed, sunflower, peanut, rice, corn, sesame, and linseed oil.

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