View Full Version : Cleaning a stainless steel pan
09-04-2008, 01:07 AM
I burned the bottom (inside) of an expensive stainless steel pan with olive oil the other morning and i CAN NOT get the stupid thing clean!!!! I can't use steel wool or anything with bleach, and I feel like I've been scrubbing for hours and hours to no effect. What can I try?
Jan in CA
09-04-2008, 01:11 AM
Barkeeper's Friend (http://www.barkeepersfriend.com/) works wonders. It's powdered like Comet, but doesn't scratch. I use it in my sink to take out the pan marks, in the tub on occasion, and it works well on pans, too. Oh and I much prefer the powder to the liquid.
There is a cleaning link on that page, but I didn't check it out.
09-04-2008, 01:27 AM
Have you tried to deglaze the pan?
You heat it up with nothing in it (it needs to start smoking a little bit) then add about a half cup of soapy water to the hot pan and then take a green scrubber (using a rubber spatula) rub it around while the water bubbles n sizzles. You'd be surprised at how that works. If the oil has turned to varnish though you might have to use a degreaser and let it soak for a bit to get it off.
09-04-2008, 02:07 AM
you might also try baking soda
also may be worth trying hot lemon in there as well, or even vinegar. white vinegar is great at getting stubern burnt things off here (i do it ofetn :aww: ).
Cooking tomato sauce will strip the seasoning off cast iron.
Seasoning is burnt on oil.
09-04-2008, 11:14 AM
I boil mine out with baking soda and white vinegar. I have one pan that my MIL put in the dishwasher and the oil stain has turned to varnish. It's in the bottom of a stock pot that I don't use too much (much prefer my cast iron dutch oven) so I just live with it. It doesn't seem to get any worse when I do use it and it doesn't seem to give an off flavor to anything...
My new favorite cleaner is CLR, not sure if you can use that on stainless steel or not....
best of luck
09-04-2008, 11:50 AM
Uhm... how do I know if it's turned to varnish or not? :??
Mike, every time I cook, I say to myself "grr, this would be so much better in cast iron" ... but it isn't my house, and the pots and pans we have are fine, I'm just still getting used to cooking with non-coated steel on an electric stove (why does it take so long for "low" to actually become low?" I want my gas stove back!)
Thanks for the suggestions everyone... I live with The King of Exaggeration, and the pan I ruined is "an 800 dollar pan" :shock: :roll:
I have some cleaner for the flat stove-top, I wonder if that might work too...
Jan in CA
09-04-2008, 12:16 PM
$800 :noway: Yeah, I'd say that's a bit of an exaggeration! :doh:
09-04-2008, 01:06 PM
I inventoried what all we have available from your suggestions, and all we had was baking soda.... but we ALSO have a ton of SALT! So I used both, and it worked like magic :thumbsup: So much so , that I used the same mixture to clean both sinks and 2 other pans that had icky marks. thanks again everyone :hug:
Jan in CA
09-04-2008, 02:58 PM
Excellent! And environmentally responsible, too! :thumbsup: That's good to know!
Disclaimer: I know that I posted about Barkeeper's Friend and it's not the most environmentally safe, however there are times when you do have to use what works. Products like Bon Ami just don't work as well. I just try to be environmentally friendly as much as I can and use products like BF as little as possible. :)
The trick to not do this again is to never heat the pan over high heat. That's what did it in the first place. I believe they addressed this subject on America's Test Kitchen, on PBS with Cristopher Kimball as the owner/host. He also publishes a magazine titled "Cook's Illustrated'' that should be a bible for anyone that wants to learn how and why ingredients do things the way they do in a recipe. I wish it was around when I learned to cook 40+ years ago. Look for it in the bookstore, and you will become a fan like I am.
09-08-2008, 04:26 PM
I've never tried it, but I've heard that if you put Coca-Cola into the pan and then bring it to a boil that will work.
But I don't want to burn a pan to find out.