How do I get rid of burnt stains on stainless steel pans?

Begin by filling your stainless steel pan with warm water. Add a squirt of dish soap to help loosen the burnt residue. Let the pan soak for an hour or until the water has cooled down, which will help lift the stains off the surface.
2. Scrub with Baking Soda
Empty the pan and sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda over the affected area. Baking soda is a non-abrasive, natural cleaner that can effectively remove burnt marks. Using a damp sponge, gently scrub the stains in a circular motion, focusing on the toughest parts without scratching the surface.
3. Use Vinegar for Tough Stains
For more stubborn stains, prepare a mixture of equal parts white vinegar and water in the pan. Allow it to sit for a few minutes, and then bring the solution to a simmer on the stove. The acetic acid in the vinegar will help to dissolve the burnt residue. Once cooled, empty the pan and scrub again with baking soda.
4. Apply Cream of Tartar
Cream of Tartar, a byproduct of wine making, is effective in cleaning stainless steel. Make a paste using Cream of Tartar and a little water. Apply this paste to the stain and let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Scrub with a non-abrasive sponge, then rinse and dry the pan.
5. Non-abrasive Cleaner
For those preferring ready-made solutions, opt for a non-abrasive cleaner designed for stainless steel. Apply according to the instructions, scrub gently, and rinse the pan thoroughly.
6. Bar Keepers Friend
Another trusted product is Bar Keepers Friend, which contains oxalic acid. Make a paste with the powder and water, apply it to the stained area, and allow it to sit for a minute. Scrub lightly with a wet sponge and then rinse thoroughly. Always follow the directions on the product.
7. Polish with Olive Oil
After the stains are removed, if the stainless steel looks dull, you can polish it with a bit of olive oil. Pour a small amount on a soft cloth and rub it in the direction of the stainless steel grain. This will not only shine your pan but also help prevent food from sticking in the future.
Prevention Tips
– To avoid burnt stains, never leave an empty pan on a hot burner.
– Use lower cooking temperatures to prevent food from sticking and burning.
– Always add oil to the pan once it’s adequately heated, creating a temporary non-stick surface.
– Clean your pans immediately after use to prevent burnt food from attaching to the pan.

Burnt stains on stainless steel pans can certainly be a nuisance, but with patience and the right cleaning agents, they can be eradicated. Remember to be gentle with your cleaning to ensure your stainless steel cookware remains a cherished part of your kitchen arsenal for years to come.

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