Cooking in clay pot: A beginner’s guide to get started!

Cooking in clay pot" a beginner's guide to get started
Cooking in clay pot: A beginner’s guide to get started

Being close to nature offer many benefits for our health and well-being. From going on a simple nature walk to adopting nature driven health practices, everything provides amazing physical, mental and emotional health benefits.  

In fact, scientific studies have proven the fact that nature has amazing healing properties and adopting nature driven lifestyle practices helpful in improving overall quality of life.  

Nowadays, more and more people are exploring and adopting, natural healthy lifestyle practices in their day-to-day life. many ancient healthy lifestyle practices such as Yoga and Ayurveda is gaining immense popularity due to their holistic approach and incredible health benefits.  

“Cooking in clay or mud pot” is one of those ancient healthy lifestyle practices that are gaining popularity in mass. People all across the world are keen to use clay pots for their cooking and replacing their aluminum and non-stick cooking pots with clay or mud pots to obtain many health benefits.  

Personally, I had started cooking in clay pot few months ago. I am having an incredible experience with this change. I am making various dishes in clay pot and it is way better in many aspects compare to routine non-stick cookware cooking.  

What is clay pot cooking? What are some incredible health benefits of cooking in a clay pot? What are the things that you need to keep in mind before start cooking in a clay pot? Read the post to know more! 

Cooking in a clay pot: An overview and history  

Cooking in clay pot: a beginner's guide to get started
Cooking in clay pot: A beginner’s guide to get started

Using various mud pots like Matka (water-storing container) and Handi (deep round container for cooking) was a normal part of ancient traditional lifestyle in many parts of the world (including India, China, Vietnam, Korea and many other countries).  people had admired clay pots cooking as it was helpful in enhancing the flavors of food and also provides many incredible benefits for overall health and well-being.  

With changing times, clay pot cooking become an old-fashioned practice. Aluminium and non-stick cookware have become a more suitable option due to easy to use and hassle-free cleaning.  

Routine aluminium and non-stick cookware may seem like an easy option for everyday cooking but it may cause various serious health hazards in long run.   

Replacing this routine aluminium and non-stick cookware with clay pots is one of the best things to reduce the risk of health hazards and gain various other health benefits.  

Incredible health benefits of cooking in a clay pot!

health benefits of clay pot cooking
Health benefits of clay pot cooking

Here are some amazing health benefits of cooking in a clay pot:  

Cooking in a clay pot adds nutrients (like calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and other minerals) to food  

It has been said that cooking in a clay pot makes food nutrient-dense. It helps in adding various essential nutrients like calcium, iron, phosphorus and magnesium to food and enhance the nutritional value of food.  

It helps in keeping nutritional value of food intact 

Along with enhancing nutritional value, cooking in clay pot also help in keeping nurtional value of food intact. Clay pots are porous in nature. It allows the slow circulation of heat and moisture in food while cooking. Cooking in a clay pot is a slow process. And it plays a vital role in keeping nutritional value of food intact.  

Cooking in a clay pot help in reducing oil consumption 

Increase oil consumption is one of the major cause of many health issues (like heart disease and increase cholesterol level). Cooking in a clay pot requires less oil and help in reducing oil consumption. This small step makes the whole food healthier and reduces the risk of various lifestyle disease.  

It helps in maintaining a healthy PH balance of food 

Nowadays, we consume lots of acidic food that is not good for our health. A clay pot is alkaline in nature and it helps in neutralizing the acidic nature of food and maintain a healthy PH balance. This way, it makes food healthier. 

Cooking in a clay pot enhance the flavor of food and add an earthy aroma 

This one is another amazing benefit of cooking in a clay pot. Clay pot cooking helps in enhances the natural flavor of food and adding an earthy aroma to it. It makes food not only healthier but tastier as well.  

Along with these health benefits, clay pot cooking is an ecofriendly and economic option. It is good for our environment and helps in reducing pollution. Compare to other routine cookware, clay pots are a cost-effective option and did cause any burden on your pocket.  

Important things to keep in mind before starting cooking in a clay pot 

Selection or purchasing of clay pot 

selection of clay pot
Selection of clay pot

This is the first and most important step. Purchasing a good quality clay pot is essential to get above-mentioned health benefits. clay pots come in mainly two types glazed and unglazed. Unglazed clay pots are a way better option than glazed ones. Avoid buying glazed clay pots as they may contain lead or other toxic materials that may cause more harm than good to your health.  

Also, it is important to buy a clay pot from a trustworthy potter or shopping center. The clay that has been used in making pots should be of good quality. Otherwise, it may cause other health problems.  

Seasoning of clay pot 

seasoning of clay pot
Seasoning of clay pot

Seasoning of clay pot is the next important step before starting using a clay pot for cooking purpose. Seasoning is a process that helps in making clay pot solid and preventing early breakage.  

First, clean the clay pot with normal tap water properly and remove any dirt by handling gently. Now, immersed the clay pot in a large vessel (filled vessel with clean water) properly for at least 15-24 hours. Make sure to follow the same process for the lid as well.  

The Next day, remove the pot from the water and make it dry completely. After that, apply a generous amount of any vegetable oil (coconut or sesame oil) all over the clay pot properly. Now, fill the pot with water and put this either on stove pot (at medium or low heat) for 2-3 hours. Alternately, you can bake the pot in oven (at 350–400 Fahrenheit) for 2-3 hours. After 2-3 hours, take out clay pot from the heat and allow it to cool down completely.  

When it gets cool down completely, wash it again properly and dry it thoroughly. After this step, your clay pot is seasoned and ready to use.  

Cleaning of clay pot 

cleaning of mud pot
Cleaning of mud pot

Cleaning a clay pot is another important aspect and it requires using another approach. Clay pots are porous in nature and they can absorb dish-washing soaps or liquid easily. It is advisable to avoid using any harsh and chemical based dish- washing soap or liquid for cleaning the clay pot.  

You can use lemon, salt or baking soda mixture to clean the clay pots.  

Avoid using a steel wire scrubber for cleaning clay pots. Use coconut scarps as a natural scrubber for easy and effective cleaning of clay pots.   

Storage of clay pot 

store clay pot properly
Store clay pot properly

Clay pot requires careful handling and storage. If you are going out of station and not using clay pots for a few days, then it is best to keep them in a safe storage place. First, clean the clay pot properly and allow them to dry completely. You can keep them in sunlight for drying properly. After drying, you can store them in a proper place. Make sure the pot is completely dry before storing, otherwise mold may form due to remaining moisture.  

Bonus tips 

  • Never make an extreme temperature change while cooking in a clay pot.  a sudden rise or decline of temperature may cause a breakage of clay pots.  
  • Avoid putting a hot clay pot on a cold surface, as it may break. Use heat resistant potholder for avoiding breakage.  
  • Read the manual or “how to use” instructions properly before starting using it. Each manufacture may have some unique guidelines that you need to understand before starting using it.  

 So, there were some amazing benefits of cooking in clay pots. Have you tried cooking in a clay pot? What was your experience? Please share with us. 

Before ending this post, I want to share a good news with you all. I am sure you all had heard about prestigious “Orange flower blogging awards” hosted by women’s web.

The Orange Flower Awards 2022 will recognize India’s leading content creators across blog, social media & video spaces!

Nominations will be adjudged by a panel of accomplished jurors from fields including Literature, Art, Poetry, Advertising & Business, Film &TV as well as other related areas.

This year, I got shortlisted for the same and feeling so happy and satisfied with this achievement.

I want to say a big thanks to all of you for being so supportive in this journey and appreciate my write-up. your support means a lot to me.


    • Imagemakeover

      I remember having tea in clay pot called kulhad. Just loved it. In fact I was so fascinated by this clay pots as I know how nutritious it is and the aroma is superb. But I also knew cleaning and maintaining is not easy but your post has given all the important information that now I think I would like to get one and try it out.

      • Thatmadrasmom

        I’ve tasted food from clay pot at hotels but haven’t personally bought one. Your post is very helpful, I. will definitely look to purchase one this year. Congrats on your nomination and shortlisting

  • Varsh

    Food prepared in clay pots is not only nutritious but also has a lovely aroma. Recipes like biryani taste even better when made in them. Good tips on cleaning, will try them with my pot.

  • Anjali

    Clay pots are popular all over the world for their ability to cook especially delicious food while concentrating flavours and easily retaining heat. But cooking with clay pots requires a bit of know-how. All pointers are great. It was a bit difficult to find an unglazed clay pot here in Oman. Though I have started using a clay pot, I was not aware of the brief benefits of it.

  • Sandy N Vyjay

    Clay pots have been a part of traditional cooking in Indian culture. The health benefits are really tremendous, and the fact that this type of cooking is being revived is really encouraging.

  • Indiacafe24

    First of all congratulations to you Surbhi, being a content creator I am proud to see you as one of the shortlisted candidate of this prestigious award. I wish you win it. On the other part guide me where I can have quality clay pots.

  • jhilmildsaha

    Thank you so much for this. My MIL is an amazing chef and she always wanted to cook in clay pots for the authentic taste and the rustic look. I will surely share this with her.

  • Roma

    First of all my heartiest congratulations love. Also, thanks a lot for all the useful tips and benefits of cooking in a cost pot. I will love to try it.

  • Jeannine

    Interesting article. Something different especially nowadays when airfryer is the new thing. haha…This are one of those things which is good to know yet you know for yourself personally that you wouldn’t want to use or own a clay pot anytime soon. Thanks for writing this!love the new info especially the benefits it gives. Not for us though, for now.

  • Snigdha

    Food cooked in clay pot tastes divine and so flavourful. In my village I have ate clay pot cooked food . Now I know the tricks to use it ,hence I will also get one for me .

  • freemindtree

    Oh woww i didnt know that cooking in a clay pot had so many benefits. I am surely trying it but the only concern that still remains is the cleaning aspect of this pot. Still I will give using it a thought.

  • rakhiparsai11984

    Clay pots are fabulous. In fact I have used one of my grandmothers clay pot and have loved how it cooks so well. I am sure going to buy few for my house as it indeed has a lot of health benefits and overall flavor of the food also gets enhanced.

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