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I live for those moments when I discover a great new piece of cookware. What can I say? I’m a kitchen nerd. I’ve used a lot of pots, pans, skillets, and dishes in my life, and even though I don’t work in restaurants anymore, I still find myself in my home kitchen for hours at a time, with pleasure. So, discovering a new favorite kitchen tool is a real treat.

Why carbon steel you ask? Well, with many of the same cooking properties as cast iron (including amazing heat distribution, long-lasting seasoning, and timeless versatility), these steel pieces are much lighter in weight and easy to clean. While Lodge makes a variety of carbon steel pieces, I’ve personally found this18-inch, heavy-duty griddle to be the most versatile piece of cookware in my kitchen to date.

Large enough to bake a whole fish, roast a boatload of potatoes, or sear several steaks on the grill, the pre-seasoned pan fits in my oven, on my barbecue, and across two of my stove burners. With two perfectly placed handles, maneuvering this bad boy through my tiny apartment kitchen is super easy. I even plan to take it camping with me once it warms up. Campfire smash burgers, anyone?

Whether you plan to griddle fluffy buttermilk pancakes, make a plateful of cheesy quesadillas, or caramelize a glazed filet of salmon,this pan can do it all. The griddle’s even heat distribution is virtually unparalleled, and as you build up a patina with decades of cooking, the pan is only bound to become more and more nonstick. Whatever you decide to whip up atop yournew favorite piece of cookware, just know you will not be turning back.