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Cleaning Burnt Pots and Pans

Category Kitchen
Occasionally it happens that foods are burned onto your cookware, and it can be a challenge to get it clean again. This is a guide about cleaning burnt pots and pans.
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Solutions

Share on ThriftyFunThis guide contains the following solutions. Have something to add? Please share your solution!

14 found this helpful
May 24, 2011

Don't waste your time scrubbing a badly burned pot or even think about throwing it away! All you need to do is put it outside in direct sunlight for a few days. The burnt food will crust up together, and when you turn it upside down, it will all fall out. I burned a huge pot of food the other day and my mother called up with this tip. Sure enough, the pot is back to normal thanks to the sun!
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Before:

After:

Source: My mother

By attosa from Los Angeles, CA

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May 26, 20110 found this helpful

I have found that soaking the pan overnight with a new fabric softener sheet also does the trick. Most burnt and sticky food come right out. I then run it through the dishwasher and it is ready to use again.

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6 found this helpful
January 25, 2013

I took a telephone call and completely forgot my saucepan boiling my Udon noodles. I didn't think anything would shift the burnt-on food. How wrong I was.

I soaked the pot for two days with cheap cola (17p for 2 litres in my supermarket) and a dash of bicarbonate of soda (baking soda).

I was then able to remove all burnt residue with a ball of foil and it came up as shiny as if it was new! See my picture.

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June 26, 20140 found this helpful

When I burn a pot I basically clean & dry it. Then I spray it with Easy Off oven cleaner and let it sit overnight. Next day I wipe it with a paper towel and the burnt food comes right off.

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October 24, 2013

Dawn to Clean Burnt Pans

It worked! I used the tip for using Dawn on my burnt pan and it worked! But I had to improve on the tip a little since my pan was really burnt.

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August 18, 2014

Using my favorite and best cooking pot, I put some green beans on to cook and went to the computer to check the weather while the strings beans were coming to a boil. Next thing I knew, the smoke alarm was blaring...

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January 22, 20050 found this helpful

Sprinkle powdered cleanser or baking soda liberally over the burned portion of the pot, then add only enough water to moisten the powder or soda well.

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1 found this helpful
January 30, 2013

To clean the worst burnt pots and pans in just a few minutes, put about 1/2 to 1 inch of water in the pan then shake a generous amount of Comet and boil.

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July 11, 2008

Who hasn't burned a pot really badly on the stove! To clean it, get some rhubarb, several handfuls. Cut it up into about half a pot of water and boil gently for about 10 minutes. Don't let it go dry. Your pot will sparkle!

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Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

0 found this helpful
March 26, 2008

How do I get burnt tomato soup out of a metal pan? I was making grilled cheese and tomato soup the other day and seemed to let it sit to long. I now can't seem to get the burnt soup off the bottom of my pan. Can anyone help?

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
March 26, 20080 found this helpful
Best Answer

Automatic dishwasher detergent in water will dissolve just about all cooked on food. Just let sit for a while.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
March 26, 20080 found this helpful
Best Answer

Barkeepers Friend....looks like white comet. It cleans everything. Sprinkle it on a wet pan and let sit a few minutes. Shines everything like new.

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November 24, 20140 found this helpful

I didn't realise peas cooked so quickly. I left the kitchen for a bit and scorched the pot. I scrubbed for hours and hours and I'm still scrubbing. I've gotten a lot of the burnt off and broken two nails in the process, but it's not my pot it's my roommate's. I don't wanna hear about it or worse have her make me replace it. This thing could cost a lot of money. Anyways I realised my metal spoon was really good at getting hard oatmeal off of plastic so why not this pot. Sure enough it got a lot more of it off, but I had to stop cause it was leaving these huge visible scratch marks. Anyways I need to know what to do to get it clean the rest of the way and if I can make the scratches disappear. Thanks.

By Savannah K.

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
November 24, 20140 found this helpful

I used a plastic ice scraper to clean the burned snaps off the bottom of my pot. I also put some cooking oil in it and got it hot before using the ice scraper. It saved my pot and did not scratch it.

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November 25, 20140 found this helpful

Barkeeper's Friend soft cleanser with a green scrubber should take care of it.

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0 found this helpful
December 4, 2007

My Revere Ware has sufficient build up of burnt food on the OUTSIDE (sides and bottom) of the pots and pans. There is advice on cleaning the INSIDE not the OUTSIDE - I'm considering using a Magic Eraser but I'm wondering about the copper bottom as well. Would be interested in detailed information. Thanks so much!

Kris from Austin, TX

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
March 3, 20080 found this helpful

I have the solution to your problem,this will work on the copper bottom & the inside that was burned from water,milk excetera.My husband is a body work man fixing & painting cars,when he paints cars afterwards he has to wet sand & buff the paint to get out imperfections.He uses a 1000 grit or 1,500 grit sandpaper,it's really fine grain.I use it on the inside & the out side of my Revereware pans,you have to let a slow flow of water run on it the whole time your scrubbing.It does not scratch the pans because it's such a fine grain of sandpaper.I promise you it will not scratch & they come out looking brand new,you have to remember to run a trickle of water over it as your scrubbing.Your wet sanding the burnt stuff & film off the pan,if it works on car paint without scratching it will work on your pans.I have been useing this method for 20 years now with perfect looking pans.You can get the sandpaper at the hardware or automotive store,ask for 1000 grit to 1,500 wet dry sandpaper,it don't take much scrubbing neither.I promise you will never go back to any other way again after useing this method.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
March 3, 20080 found this helpful

I just posted about the sandpaper too,when people think of sandpaper they think of the rough stuff.There is a sandpaper out there that is 1000 grit and 1,500 grit,you have to get the right type.It's called wet/dry 1000 grit sandpaper,it's the type used to wet sand and buff out imperfection in the paint after a car is painted.I use this method and I promise you it does not scratch your pans.You have to REMEMBER to run a trickle flow of water over the pan as your wet sanding it.It's more like a rubbing method but it WILL NOT SCRATCH YOUR PANS.If it does than you have used the wrong grit,it has to be 1000 grit or 1,500 wet/dry sandpaper,it is a very very fine sandpaper grit.Once you use this method you will never bother with others again,it works on the inside and the outside of the pan.

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0 found this helpful
June 24, 2014

How can I clean copper bottom pans that have years of stuff on them?

By RB

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
June 26, 20140 found this helpful

I've had good results on my older copper bottom pots using Revere Copper and Stainless Cleaner paste. If you can't find it in your local stores it is available online. It may take more than one application but it will do the job.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
November 3, 2009

My pans are greasy and spotted on the bottom. Can I put them in my self cleaning oven? Thank you.

By Dan from Las Vegas, NV

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
November 3, 20090 found this helpful

Dan, I only know that I can clean cast iron pots and pans because they don't have any non-metal handles, those would probably all melt, besides make a awful mess with any plastic in there. That happened to me once with a can opener was in my oven, and the black stinky plastic coating everything, and I had to do a major cleaning with the oven, and that wasn't with the oven self cleaner. And yes, I have no idea why my can opener was in the oven. lol.

The cast iron pans will clean well, but, afterward all of the seasoning is all gone, so you would have to start from the beginning.

If it is something that is not cast iron, I think there are lot's of tips in here for cleaning the ones that you have. Click on find on the menu and type something like "cleaning greasy and spotted pan bottoms" and see what comes up.

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November 4, 20090 found this helpful

Spray the bottoms with Oven Cleaner and let them sit overnight in the sink. The grease should be dissolved by the morning and remaining remnants can be removed by scrubbing with liquid Metal Cleanser; first with 2/0 steel wool, followed by 4/0 steel wool. Develop a habit of cleaning the pots after use.

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July 25, 20130 found this helpful

I cannot clean my fry pans that are burnt from using the gas too high. I tried all types of cleaners, but nothing works.

By Helen

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July 27, 20130 found this helpful

Hi - just type - burnt pans - in your Thrifty search area and you will find many suggestions.

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March 11, 20130 found this helpful

How can I clean it? It is very burnt from the custard boiling over in the pan.

By wd

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
April 18, 20140 found this helpful

Put some baking soda in pan, add water. Bring to rolling boil uncovered for a while. Sorry I don't remember quantities or time, but this worked for me to remove burned on simple syrup. Repeat if needed, but it should get it all out.

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0 found this helpful
July 28, 2010

I burned my copper whistling tea kettle. I can get the outside reasonably clean, but worry about the inside. How do I make sure it's free of nasty stuff inside?

Pat R

By Pat R from WI

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
Anonymous
July 30, 20100 found this helpful

You can smear ketchup or tomato sauce over the inside of the kettle, let it stand 10 minutes, then wash the kettle.

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August 4, 20100 found this helpful

The acid in the ketchup or tomato sauce would probably work if you can get inside the whistler pot to smear it on. If not, try filling the pot with water, add about 1 tablespoon of baking soda, and let it boil for several minutes. Wash it out and rinse. I know this works on pot that have food burned onto the bottom.

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January 5, 20150 found this helpful

I've got scorched milk on my pan. Can you use Clorox? Or what is the best way to take it off?

By CAL

Answer Was this helpful? Yes

0 found this helpful
December 31, 2009

How do I get burned on milk off a T-fal pan?

By grannyearth from PA

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
January 2, 20100 found this helpful

Try "Dawn Power Dissolver". It's with the Dawn detergents at WalMart. Also WalMart is the cheapest.

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January 5, 20100 found this helpful

Boiling water with baking soda for a few minutes works for me.

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0 found this helpful
March 4, 2009

If you have any burnt pans: instead of scrubbing them, simply fill pans that are burnt on the stove with boiling hot water and simply put a little soap powder in the pan. Boil gently for about 10 minutes then rinse out thoroughly before use.

Source: This is my own tip as I have had lots of burnt pans in the past and, believe me, this works!

By Joanne1012 from United Kingdom

Comment Was this helpful? Yes
March 4, 20090 found this helpful

Sorry, I know this is a cultural thing, but what is soap powder? something for dishes? dishwashers? washing mashines (i.e., for laundry)?

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
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