The stains on the bottom of pots and pans are most likely a combination of soot and oils that have accumulated throughout cooking. When the bottom of pans are not cleaned after each use, these accumulate burnt grease that could hinder proper heating when cooking.
That grease layer can be a fire hazard as well, which is why it is important to clean burnt grease before they accumulate on the bottom of your pots and pans. In this article, we'll provide a step-by step process on how you can clean your pots and pans for a thoroughly clean cooking!
What You'll Need
Depending on the severity of the stains, you can use a commercial cleaner or degreaser, or make your own using pantry staples like vinegar and lemon juice. These cleaning solutions will remove the stains with ease, so you don't need to apply as much elbow grease to scrub out the stains. Here's what you'll need:
- Commercial oven cleaner; OR
- Baking soda and White vinegar; OR
- Cream degreaser
- Dish soap
- Scrubbing pad
- Steel wool - for tough stains
- Paper towel
How to Clean Outside Bottom of Pots and Pans: A Step-by-Step Guide
Step 1: Create Your Cleaning Solution
If you're using a commercial cleaner, you can skip this step as most commercial cleaning solutions are ready to use. For the DIY method, simply mix three parts baking soda to one part white vinegar or lemon juice to create a cleaning paste for your pots and pans. Adjust the thickness of the paste as you see fit.
Step 2: Apply the Cleaning Solution
Apply your preferred cleaning solution all over the bottom of your pots and pans. You can also clean a cast iron pan or stainless steel pans with the same solution to remove rust spots and grease stains. Make sure you completely cover the stained pan bottom with the cleaning solution for its full effect.
Let the cleaning solution, cream degreaser, or baking soda paste sit on the bottom of pans for 15 to 30 minutes. The more severe the staining, the longer you need to let the paste sit. If your baking soda paste starts to dry out before the allotted time, spritz the paste with some white vinegar or plain, warm water.
Step 3: Scrub Out the Stains
Use a scrubbing pad or steel wool to scrub out the stains. Only use steel wool for stubborn stains on a stainless steel pan, or a non-coated pan like cast iron. Avoid using steel wool and abrasive cleaners on ceramic pans, non-stick pans, cast iron coated pans, and similar materials.
Remove stubborn stains using your scrubbing tool dipped in warm water to soften the grease left on the burnt pan. Keep scrubbing until you feel the stains lifting out with the help of the cleaner or baking soda solution. It is a good idea to add baking soda for a gentle abrasive action.
Step 4: Wipe Clean
Wipe away any cleaner or baking soda residue from the pan using a paper towel, and inspect its condition. Check for any missed spots, and repeat the process if there are stains that refuse to come out. Heavily-stained pots and pans may need multiple cleaning sessions to completely remove the stains.
Step 5: Wash and Rinse
Wash the pan as you normally would with dish soap and a kitchen sponge to remove any remaining baking soda residue. Rinse the pan, and leave it in the dishwasher, on the drying rack, or on top of an open stove to dry.
Step 6: Let the Pots and Pans Dry Completely
Allow the pots and pans to dry completely after cleaning. Cleaning pot stains may have scratched the surface, so drying out your cookware is a great way to prevent rust. Always store your cookware dry, and use an oven or stove to quickly dry the pan with heat.
Keeping Your Pans Stain-Free
Keeping your kitchen cookware clean and stain-free is simple: form a habit of proper cookware care, and you'll never have to scrape out stains from the bottom of your pots and pans again! Here are a few tips to help you maintain your cookware:
- Wash the bottom of your pans after every use. This will prevent grease, soot, and burnt bits from accumulating on the pan.
- Use a separate sponge to clean your pots and pans. Your kitchen sponge is used on surfaces that come in direct contact with food. Keep your food sanitary by using a different scouring pad for the bottom of your pans.
- Store cookware dry. Cookware materials, like stainless steel and cast iron, can rust when exposed to prolonged moisture. Always store your cookware dry.
- Avoid scratching your cookware when cooking. These groves are where debris and germs accumulate, and are difficult to clean. Avoid using cooking utensils that may lead to scratches on pots and pans.
Cleaning Made Easy
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