Penne pasta with vegetables and parmesan cheese, close-up

Cast-iron skillets are versatile cooking tools that you can take from your kitchen stove to a campfire out in the wilderness and still cook a wholesome meal. Through repeated heating and cooling or rough handling and dropping, cast-iron skillets can become bent and warped. This creates an uneven cooking surface and an unstable skillet that may cause burns or unnecessary spillage. Fixing a warped pan can be costly unless you do it at home.

Locate a stable, hard surface. This can be a concrete floor, workshop table or a surface on which you don't mind getting scuff marks. Fold one towel in half and lay it on the surface to create a barrier between it and the skillet.

Place your skillet bottom side down on the towel. Place your second towel over the skillet to keep it from getting damaged. Begin hammering on the warped section of the pan until it evens out and becomes flat. Depending on the size of your warp, bend or dent, this may take anywhere from a few minutes to an hour or two.

Turn the skillet over and hammer down any areas that are warped in the other direction or to correct bumps created by your hammer. Continue to hammer out any lumps. Repeat Steps 2 and 3 until the bottom of the skillet lies completely flat on the hard surface and doesn't wobble when you move it.


Heat up the skillet to make hammering easier. Make sure to wear heat resistant gloves if the skillet is hot.


Do not hammer the skillet without the towels. It may mark up your skillet or floor.

Do not hammer on an uneven or soft surface.