Adding Cold Liquid to Hot Pans

I was making some sausage gravy this morning in my #8 Southern Mystery Skillet and was wondering if adding milk straight out of the refrigerator to the sausage/flour mix in the pan could be harmful to the pan? I'm always very careful about letting pans cool before rinsing, etc. but wasn't sure if I should've heated the milk first. Thanks!


Probably better to let it come to room temperature first or nuke it in the microwave for a few. Cold liquid and hot cast iron don't play well together.

Steven C

Doug, the way I do it is start with a good splash of milk and stir. Add more and keep stirring then add what you need for the thickness your looking for.
Think along the line of tempering eggs with a hot liquid by adding a little at a time so they don’t scramble. I deglaze mine same way when when making a sauce for whatever.

Big difference than sticking a very hot pan in a sink of cold water. You can turn it down as your making your rue add milk and bring it up to temp to thicken.


+1 on what Steven C said.

Adding a relatively small amount of liquid to a hot pan is a lot less risky than submerging it or placing it under running water. But stirring it in gradually is a better general practice, also in terms of how your gravy turns out.
Thanks all

I stirred it in a bit at a time. I don't have a microwave so that's not an option and I did take it out and pour into a measuring cup when I started browning the sausage. I'll try to be more careful next time, though.