2 Recipes To Clean Burned Pots and Pans

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From: Janine

I have a problem with my burned pots and pans. I can soak them all day and night but still I can’t get them clean. I was told to use aluminum foil but it still won’t work all the way clean. Any other tips? I’m desperate. God bless you guys.

2 Recipes To Clean Burned Pots and Pans

Cleaning Burned Pots and Pans

I normally would soak a pan in hot soapy water first. If that fails and things are really bad, try some of the formulas I’m including here. The one that works best will depend on what type of pan you’re using.  If a pan is burned beyond being able to use it, whether you ruin the finish or not is the least of your worries.

Because I’m not sure what kind of pan you have, I will have to be a little bit general in my answer. I really should be an expert at this now. My daughter, who is going to kill me when she reads this, has been burning pans on a daily basis for years and I’m talking really burning pans. Once, she burned a pan so badly that she fused the pan to the burner and we couldn’t get them apart. : )

(Note from Tawra: The sign up above my stove says: “I kiss better than I cook” :-)

Needless to say, we have tried every method known to man. Sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t. The best method to use depends on what you have burned on the pan and what type of pan you used so you may have to try a couple of different things to find the best one.

The easiest way to clean a burned pan is not to burn it in the first place. I know that may seem like a less than brilliant statement but sometimes when we continually have problems with burned pans, there may be an easy solution to it.

1. It could be the pan itself.

The problem isn’t always your cooking. If you find yourself burning one pan frequently but you don’t have problems with other pans, it could be something about the pan and you may have to get rid of it. I hate to say that because I know pans can be expensive but if you keep ruining everything you cook in a pan and you must keep throwing food away, it might be cheaper in the long run to replace the pan. Sometimes when a pan has been severely burned it will have a tendency to burn again and again if you aren’t careful with it.

2. It could be your stove.

I had always had an inexpensive set of pans, which worked beautifully for me. Once, I was given a set of very expensive stainless steel pans to use. The first time I cooked with them I burned everything. I kept adjusting the heat (I was down to using simmer and low on my burner) and trying to do different things to prevent it but I still kept burning things. Finally I discovered my stove cooked hotter than many other stoves and the pans I was using simply wouldn’t work on it.

3. You always cook on high.

A lot of people cook on too high of a temperature so if you have trouble with continually burning things, try turning your heat down a little and paying more attention. Follow the directions in your favorite cookbook!

4. Watch what you cook.

Ninety percent of the time something gets burned because we haven’t paid attention to what we were cooking. If you have to step away from the stove even for a minute, turn the heat down or off or set a timer. (I really must practice what I preach. Would you believe the day after I wrote this, for the first time in ages, I put some oil in a pan, walked away to check the mail and forgot it?!?!)

(Note from Tawra: Oh, you’re supposed to pay attention to what you’re cooking?)

Now to your question Janine.

Often, you just have to use good old fashioned elbow grease. (For you who don’t know what that means, it’s hard scrubbing). The kind of pan you’re working with will make a difference in the way some of these methods work so you may have to try a couple of methods to find one that works for you.

I know you are not supposed to use a steel wool pad (SOS) on pans but, to be honest, I use one most of the time. Like I said before I have very inexpensive pans and I’m not too worried about ruining them. I paid less because I wanted to be able to scour my pans rather than having to leave a pan soaking for days to get it clean.

I even use SOS pads on non stick coated pans and I’ve never had trouble with flaking or ruining a pan. If you have expensive pans and don’t want to use steel wool, I completely understand, but if I am ever in a situation where I have to either scrub a pan and put a few scratches on it or throw it away, I would rather keep the pan with a few scratches than get rid of it.

Here are a few formulas for you to try. You may have to scrub the pan no matter which formula you use but, with the right formula, you shouldn’t have to scrub as much. You don’t really have to use exact measurements. I just dump the ingredients in. The measurements are just to give you a general idea of the proportions.

Burned Pan Cleaning Recipe #1

In the pan, place about:
1 inch water
1 Tbsp. baking soda
2-3 Tbsp. hydrogen peroxide
1-2 drops liquid dish detergent (no more or it will bubble like crazy)

Boil (don’t simmer) 10-15 minutes. Check it to make sure it doesn’t boil dry. If necessary, just add a little more water.


Burned Pan Cleaning Recipe #2

In a pan, place:
1 inch of water
dishwasher detergent tablet (You could try 1-2 Tbsp. powdered dishwasher soap instead.)
1 Tbsp. baking soda
2-3 Tbsp. vinegar

Boil (don’t simmer) 10-15 minutes.


P.S. I know there are many cleansers to use on pans but that is another whole different subject that I’ll have to touch on some day. This article is only about removing things that have been burned on.


For more easy cleaning tips to make your life easier, check out our Keeping It Clean e-books.



  1. Robin says

    Just thought I would comment that the way I have always gotten burnt on gunk off my pans. I pour about 1-2 cups vinegar (depending on the size of the pan) in the bottom of the dirty pan and let it boil for several minutes. Then, let the pan cool some and take a rubber ‘scratchy’ to it. The stuff has always come off with very little scrubbing. My mom taught me this years ago.

    • Gigi says

      Omg thank you so much for this advice I tried it thinking this is never going to work but what the heck o had a school function so hubby attempted to make dinner needless to say he burned my favorite pampered chef pan I thought it was ruined so I tried the vinegar as a last attempt and whalaaa it worked thank you for posting this fabulous trick I will definitely pass if on!!!!

    • Melanie says

      I just used the first boil method, and I threw a wooden spoon over the top and no boil over! It started to but I put the spoon on quick and it stops. I dont know why it does that but it certainly is a life saver. I use it while cooking ANYTHING that boils.

      • says

        In almost all the cases when it comes to cleaning regular white vinegar is what is used. Other vinegars can live a residue on things.

  2. Jodee says

    Don’t use the method of boiling a baking soda mixture in hard anodized pans like Calphalon! I used it in mine a few years ago and it removed the burned goop, but it also removed the finish from the inside of the pan.

  3. patty says

    i’ve used a used dryer sheet to remove burned on food. i just fill the pot with water throw in a dryer sheet and let it sit for a couple of hours and the majority of the burned food is loose. Of course a new dryer sheet would work also

  4. says

    This won’t help if the pan is already burned but maybe this tip will.I have stainless steel pans and have found that if you spray a generous amount of non stick spray like Pam, this will help in the clean up part later.

  5. says

    I admit to using scourers but another method that works straight away is while the pan is still hot put it back on the heat and let it heat up again and slowly pour cold water (and I mean really slowly) onto the burn spots and they usually pop up.
    Dealing with anything burn straight away usually helps most times rather than letting it sit there, even if you have put water or some such into it

    • Noelani says

      I agree about pouring cold water into a hot pan, slowly! I have several good pans that have been warped by one of my kids taking a hot pan, sticking it in the sink and filling it up with cold water.

      Pouring a little bit of some kind of liquid, like water, wine or stock, is a good way to deglaze it and get the brown bits off, to be used in a sauce or gravy. Of course, if it is literally black, deglazing is only a helpful method of getting the burnt part off! I get SO mad at myself if I burn something! I came to this page because I put on a pot of pinto beans the other day and forgot about them. The top part was fine. They tasted a little smokey but the spices covered it up. I just had to make a smaller batch of chili than I had intended. The bottom, however, is a different story!

  6. Jennifer says

    I would not normally plug a particular product, but my mom turned me onto a cleaner called Cameo Cleaner years ago for stainless steel pots and pans. It is great for getting stuff off! It is comet-like in consistency; just put a little water and cameo cleaner in your pot and scrub with your dishrag. It works great. You can find it at Wal-Mart or possibly your local grocery store. It is great for getting your stainless steel pans shiny like new!

  7. rose says

    as long as the pan isnt like a tephlon pan, which i dont have, i only have the stainless steel pans (i think that is what they are called bc they are silver)…
    what i do is wipe out as much of the stuff in the pan as usual with a napkin (anything hard i normally try to scrape it out)… then i take a dot of either palmolive or dawn and add some water to it… put it on the stove and then heat it up for a few mins… then turn off the heat and let the pan soak for a while… normally a good hour…
    after that, rinse the pan out and wash as usual…
    pan comes out like new…
    i have also did this without “cooking” the mess away (as i like to call it)… put a dot of dish detergent in pan, add the hottest tap water you can get out of the faucet and soak overnite… still works like a charm! 😀

  8. rose says

    one other thing, i asked my sister what does she do for this bc she has tephlon pans… she told me that she wipes out the pan as best as she can without scratching the surface… then she does what i do, a dot of dish detergent and lets it soak all nite long … the next day rinses well adn then washes the pan…
    thought i would share this with everyone… 😀

  9. Kim says

    Bar Keeper’s Friend works great and doesn’t scratch up the pans. It’s not very expensive ($1.50-$2/can depending on where you buy it), especially since it saved a very expensive pot I could not get clean.

  10. Aunt Marie says

    My mom always used Cameo Stainless Steel Cleaner too, and so did I, until I tried baking soda. Now I use baking soda to clean stainless steel, aluminum pans, and glass ovenware like Pyrex (even other glass, like mixing bowls). I really like how it makes the glass shine. I even used it today to clean a big see-thru (in otherwords, clear) plastic bowl, and maybe it was just my imagination, but the plastic bowl seemed shinier…and it doesn’t get much cheaper than baking soda! Great tips on the really burned-on stuff. Thanks!

  11. says

    my grams always said that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Pots and pans were meant to be started and kept at a low heat,after all we ain’t cooking out on the range,we be cooking on the range… but if you have found yourself with some mighty nasty pots just put some water and enough vinegar to make it work[add as needed]this works beautifully on casseroles.

  12. Amy says

    This works on all types of pans, including stoneware, and will not harm the finish:

    Cover the “gunk” with water and add about a Tbs of liquid fabric softener. My mom usually lets this sit overnight, and in the morning everything just slide right off.

  13. says

    to get the stains out of stainless steel pots, that come with age and repeated burnings.
    make a pot of apple sauce.
    it does nothing to the sauce so it is quite edible but when you wash the pot after, it looks like new.

    I always use a stainless steel sponge on my pots and pans as I have no teflon coated ones and they are not scratched at all.

    My major problem is the flat top surface on my stove.
    How do you clean them?

    • Melanie says

      Also I used shakely’s pink tub of goo, its 12 bucks but lasts about 6 months I can’t remember the exact name of it, but its a paste like substance and I loved it!

  14. Lea Stormhammer says

    To answer Grandma’s question about the flat top stove – use glass-top stove cleaner. It’s about $5 a bottle and a bottle lasts a LONG time (we just finished our first bottle and it we’d had it about 8 years!). Ours comes in a white bottle with a black label and we get it in the cleaner isle at Target. Liberally cover the spots. Let soak about 15-20 min and scrub off with a soft rag. I just wipe things up normally once the burners are cool with a damp rag and dish soap and leave the rest for the cleaner about once a month.

    My question is, how to you get the burnt on oil/butter off glass baking ware? I have two casserole pans that I’d love to get ‘clear’ again insead of yucky brown. I haven’t tired the vinegar yet, but I’ve tried boiling water with baking soda or dish soap (tried both) and neither worked no matter how hard I scrubbed!


    • says

      Grandma I just use a razor blade and/or SOS pad on my glass top stove. A paste of baking soda water works really well too!
      Lea, I use an SOS on my glass pans.

      • says

        I rarely scrub my glass stove top. I keep what’s called a “Chore Boy” by my dish rag. They use to be a small square brown cloth with rough nubbies on it. I think they are yellow now. You can find them by the rubber gloves,sponges, dish clothes etc.I wipe my stove with it each time I do the dishes and it takes everything all off and with not much more effort then just wiping with a rag.

    • marlxoxo says

      try making a paste with baking soda and hydrogen peroxide then scrub the casserole dish. I just did this, I scrubbed it with my hands. I couldn’t believe how clean this clear glass pan got. It’s old and had that discolored stuff that I thought was there for life. I may have scrubbed and let it sit for a while, I can’t remember. Then I just washed it with Dawn. Added bonus!!!! the baking soda and peroxide whitens your nails.!! lol I also used this on my stove top and it was sooo shiny.

    • sheils says

      I always use baking soda with a dampened towel let the dryness of the baking soda scrub without scratching. Comet cleanser will also work this way.

  15. says

    thanks for the tips.
    Tawra I went back to the store where I bought the stove and was asking my neighbour who works there what to do besides not allowing anyone into my kitchen. She showed me the tool to use. razor blade in a safety holder. Works great and my stove looks a lot better.
    It had gotten bad when I bought the stove because my arms decided not to work for a month or two.
    I have the cleaner that came with the stove but by the time I got to use it the stove was really bad.
    Now with the tool and cleaner and arms that work it is much improved.

  16. Angie M. says

    I also use an SOS pad on my glass top stove. I know it’s supposed to be a big no-no but I do it and my stove top is not scratched. I tried using all of the special creams available to gently clean the stove top and was so frustrated with the lack of results. One day, I developed a whatever attitude and used an SOS pad. My thinking was that it may come out a little scratched but the burned on mess will be gone. It turned out fine. I am a little gentle while rubbing with the SOS pad but it works perfectly for me.

    The SOS pads also work on my glass baking pans. I love SOS pads! :-)

    • says

      So do I Angie. I use SOS pads pads on my pans and everything. The only reason I don’t use them on my stove top is I just keep my chore boy rag hung by my dish rag so it is easier to grab. I use comet a lot even though that is a no no too.

    • Doris says

      I found that if I tried cleaning the smooth top stove while it was still warm with a non abrasive scrubber that it worked very well with little effort. Just be careful not to get burned.

  17. janet koelle says

    The best thing I have ever found for cleaning stove tops and burned on food on pyrex is the “magic sponge”Mr. clean makes one ,but there are lots of brands available now… It’s the closest thing to a miracle I’ve ever seen. No more scrubbing until your arm hurts, it removes the most stubborn gunk on everything ( I use them on my car as well)..safe and sane ladies..

  18. Sandi says

    I use Bon Ami on my glassware and glass baking dishes, and it not only gets the gunk off, it gets off the white, scratched looking residue that settles on glassware when you don’t wipe them dry. I use it on my shower floor also.

  19. Teresa says

    I don’t usually use fabric softener sheets for my laundry but they do work great for getting off burnt gunk on pans. Clean off what you can from tne pan, put a fabric softener sheet in the pan and cover with boiling water. Leave over night. Sometimes you can peel the gunk right off the next morning!

  20. Sunny says

    I’ve had a glass-topped stove for over 10 years, and did a lot of cooking for a family of 6…plus friends. I clean it by spritzing with alcohol (water or vinegar will work also, but alcohol is best), then shaking a thin layer of Barkeeper’s Friend powder on it. Use a plastic scrub to blend the powder into the liquid in a layer all over the surface and leave to dry. In a few miutes, come back and wipe the surface with a hot, wet rag. For stubborn, burned on spots, cover the end of a blunt butter knife with a washrag and try to scrape them off carefully, then repeat the above paste scrub. My stovetop still looks like new after it has been cleaned, and the alcohol makes it really shine spotlessly.

    • says

      I am a firm believer in soaking and not scrubbing. You really don’t need to work that hard. If I have something stuck the my counter I just throw an sopping dishrag on it, leave it for awhile and come back and it always just wipes away. I can honestly say I rarely scrape anything because I either wipe it up right away or if I miss it I then soak. I have a scraper thing but can’t remember the last time I used it.

  21. says

    I second Teresa with the comment about soaking with a dryer sheet…it really does work.

    Thanks ladies as well for all of your ideas, my sister gave me your book and I refer to it on the regular:)

  22. Mary Ann White says

    Lea, I have a perfectly easy way to get all your clear bakeware clear again with NO SCRUBBING!! Gather all your glass bakeware and any stainless cookware you have (make sure it is not aluminum), some old newspaper. a heavy garbage bag (or 2 cheaper ones) and 2-4 cups of ammonia. Put a thick layer of paper in the bottom of the bag and pour on the ammonia. Place the bakeware on the layer of paper & close the bage well. Leave it for a few days and then wash your chrystal clear bakeware. I know it sound too good to be true, but it works!!

    • says

      Yes ammonia works great for that. I was going to mention too for those of you too who are having problems with the tops of your glass stove you can soak the spot with a little ammonia too.

  23. rose says

    my sis in law has a few of those “scrapers” … she has several old gift cards (they are the plastic ones that you can get at walmart) .. and a few old spatula’s (they are so old) that the handle broke and now they small…
    i do like u do jill . if i have something hardened anywhere i normally let it soak in hot sudsy water or i put a sudsy dish rag on it and let it soak ..

  24. Vinnie says

    I use those green scrubby pads, the heavy duty ones, to get burnt on fat off my glassware. After washing the usual food gunk off I soak it for awhile (I try for half an hour or more, but some time is better than none) in very hot water with some dishwashing detergent, and then do a bit of scrubbing with the pads. Adding baking soda to the soak and/or sprinkling dry baking soda on the glassware when scrubbing can help things along too.

    All my glassware is pyrex, and I haven’t had any problem with scratching from cleaning it this way, but if yours is more delicate then do a small area to check that it won’t scratch first.

    Asthmatics like me sometimes find that ammonia is a bad thing to even have in the house. The fumes make my chest hurt for hours or even days afterward. Which is a shame, because that technique sounds a bunch easer.

  25. GWEN HARPER says


  26. Trish says

    I use old pt and pans or cheap ones. If I burn anything in them I soak them in hot soapy water and then if it still won’t come out I set on the stove with soapy water and boil the heck out of it. It takes some doing but usually works.

  27. Deb Brown says

    For burnt pans, pyrex, enamel preserving kettle etc. I rinse it out with water to dampen the surface and just sprinkle on baking soda. Leave it set overnight and just use your regular dishrag to clean it. If there are still a few stubborn spots, I keep a small cottage cheese container filled with baking soda under my sink, just stick the corner of your wet dishrag in it and scrub on the stubborn spot. Works on everything! I am a big tea drinker and my cups get washed like this each time. Doesn’t scratch the finish and helps dispel “off” odors.

  28. Lisa says

    You can add a handful of baking soda & a handful of kosher salt to a ½ filled pot of water and bring to a rolling boil. The burnt on mess will start flaking up to the surface in a few minutes. Depending on the condition of the pot or pan, you may have to repeat this process a few times. I did not use any utensils to scrape the bottom of the pan, as I was afraid of scratching the surface. Once the pot is essentially clean, soak it in a mixture of white vinegar with a few drops of castile soap over night and wash normally the next morning. I thought I had ruined an old La Crueset Dutch Oven, and was able to save it using this method. As a side note… my glass cooktop has never been cleaner! Hope this helps!

  29. Lorene Terwilliger says

    Have recently started using the magic eraser on pots and pans that had a buildup of oil and it comes right off. I shined up my stainless steel coffee pot and it really sparkles. Super on stainless steel from sinks to whatever. Great for hand prints on refridgerator. It really is magic and you can get a box in the $dollar store for a buck. No smell either.

  30. Carol Thomas says

    I have for many years used bar keepers friend, it works great! There has been a time when it was not sold where we lived. I use in its place salt and lemon juice. the acid and abrasive work well together without scratching. it can also be used to boil in the pan. If the burn is on the inside of a pot, put the salt, lemon and a few ice cubes in and shake around, works on everything from coffee pots to boilers.

  31. Jennifer Marks says

    I worked in a professional kitchen for years & went to culinary school – If a pan is scorched, scrap/scrub to get bigger pieces off & then put it back on stove. Simmer (almost boil) plain water & stir it occasionally with wooden spoon or spatula to loosen off black.

    If that still doesn’t work soak with water & vinegar. or scrub with half a lemon & salt. In general pans are expensive — take care of them. do not stack tephlon pans expecially inexpensive ones.

  32. lora melvin says

    My friend gave me the best answer, I thought it was crazy but I tried it, cover it overnight with catsup, ketchup, however you wanna spell it. It worked so good, I covered my stove rings with it and it worked on them too, unbelievable.

    • says

      Ketchup is acidy like vinegar so that is probably why it worked so well. I haven’t tried it but I wonder if leftover dill pickle juice would work too since it has so much vinegar in it.

  33. Grandma says

    The acid is what does it Jill. so pickle juice would work.
    Apples do the same thing.
    Knew I shouldn’t have thrown out that last bushel of apples I don’t burn many pans anymore. Don’t know why.

  34. Grandma says

    forgot this one.
    a friend of mine puts pots oven suitable no handles and all her glass casseroles in the oven when she uses the self clean thing.
    She loves it. she is a terrible cook and she prides herself on having the cleanest oven in town.

  35. judy says

    I only use the dryer sheet option, drop a used one in pan fill with hot water and when I come back in 30-60 minutes it wipes right out. Number one time saver for this full time working mom-grandma.

  36. lora melvin says

    i don’t know about pickle juice, but I did try hot sauce, and it worked too, so for free, maybe those little left over hot sauce packets everyone has?

  37. says

    Salt, I use plain table salt, but a course salt would probably work better, on a very warm (but not so hot it will burn your fingers) dirty cast iron skillet will scour the cooked on food without removing your seasoning. Scrub well with rag or paper towel, throw salt away. Wipe well with a clean rag or paper towel, to remove all traces of salt. If your rag comes away “discolored” add more salt and do another scrub.

  38. Fran says

    I spray my burned casserole dish with some Oven cleaner and but it in a garbage bag over night and wash it the next day just like new.Yes that easy and so simple .

  39. says

    HI Ladies, Thanks so much for all the helpful hints. I still need to use elbow grease with SOS pad on those pesky gas stove grates, even when I soak them over night in sink with Cascade. Is there a lazy woman’s way to clean them?

    Many thanks, Meg

    • says

      Meg I’m afraid I used to have to use SOS pads and elbow grease too. The only reason I don’t now is I have a glass top stove. One thing I have found and I hate doing it, is as soon as something gets on a burner wipe it clean just as soon as I can. The longer it is on there the more it gets heated, burned on, and stuck. It is kind of like the new polish they have come out with. They have found if you heat set it after each application it stays on 10 times more then regular polish and I think the same principle applies with burnt on things.

  40. Elaine says

    I found a product that removed burnt chicken right off my pan, I was amazed how quick it worked they are called magic sheets. my neighbor order them and ran me over one at the time of my mishap chicken. I ordered 4 boxes lol. magicproductsllc.com is where I order from. Non toxic was a big plus for me.

    • says

      Here is a list of things you can try. The first 2 are what I always use and the rest are things others have had success with.
      Soak over night.
      Use a good old SOS pad. Always works great for me
      Place some water in the pyrex dish and microwave until is very hot. Wipe clean. (Can clean your microwave at the same time.)
      Use some kind of pumice heavy duty hand cleaner
      Soak a dryer sheet and water in it. Although I’m not sure if this works because of the dryer sheet or the fact you just soaked it.

    • says

      LOL you haven’t seen my pans. Seiously, I have to take a razor blade to them AFTER they have soaked more than an hour in baking soda or dawn. I guess leaving them burning on the stove for an hour really gets it baked on good. LOL

  41. Theresa says

    Hi, I use Barkeeper for cleaning burnt pans. Yes, I do soak it over night in dish detergent but then I use the Barkeeper and a good cleaning sponge with a scrub side to it to scrub the rest. The pans always come out shiny and clean.

    You can find Barkeeper in any store in the cleaning products isle..

  42. Mary Jane says

    Most of my cookware is the old fashioned, black cast-iron cookware, without any coating, other than what may be seasoned into the pans. On the occasion that I have a truly stubborn bit burned on that won’t come off with soaking, or scratch pads and scraping, I found a solution by accident. After washing and scraping out what I can, I dry the pot or pan on a hot burner until it is thoroughly dry and heated super hot. Then I remove the pot from the heat and let cool until the next morning. Nine times out of ten, the burnt spot has started to flake up around it’s edges and will simply come out with the gentle scraping of a teaspoon. Then it wipes out like ash. I wouldn’t recommend this with any other pot other than cast-iron, as the heaviness of cast-iron allows for the super heating on the stove. Since I finish drying up all my cast-iron pots and pans on the stove when I am done washing them (to prevent rust),this is a simple solution for me. Do not walk away from the stove while you are heating the pan. Two or three minutes of heating after the pot is dry, should be sufficient. The burnt spot should look good and dry when you remove the pot from the heat. You may want to lightly oil the cooled pan after you have removed the burnt spot. I also use SOS pads on my enamelled stove top, to remove grease type stains, as nothing else seemed to work. The secret is to make sure the area is wet and to use a light touch, applying just enough pressure to get the job done. No scratching that is visible to our eyes.

  43. Kathy says

    I have had very good luck with dryer sheets for burned on food on anything——glass, metal,ceramic etc. fill the pan with water. drop a dryer sheet in the water(any brand will do), let it soak at least 30minutes (I don’t watch the clock on this) then take the sheet and rub it over the crusted on food. There is something in the dryer sheet the “break the bond”of food to surface. You can re-use the dryer sheet (not in the dryer, of course) many times. Try it! I think you will be surprised. SO sorry if this is a repeat of this tip but I didn’t read all the comments before this.

  44. Jenny says

    The one way that I have works every time. First scrape off as much loose food as possible, just the loose food. Second, put the pan on the burner. Turn burner on Medium high to high. Heat pan until you can hear it sizzle, when you are sure it is plenty hot pour water in the
    pan as you do start scraping the skillet.

    • says

      Tina you might read through some of the comments because there are many different ideas. It also depends on what kind of pan you have and what it is made of. For example stainless steel pans scratch very easily, copper pans need something completely different (I use either powdered copper cleaner or if I only have one pan I don’t use often I wet it with vinegar and the sprinkle salt on it) but to be honest I don’t baby my pans at all. I don’t have the time or energy to worry if my pans get scratched or not and I personally would rather see a pan with a few scratches then all black on the bottom so I most of the time for badly burnt pans use a good old steel wool SOS pan and scrub it to death with that.

  45. Cindy says

    I have burned a few pots. Usually stainless. I just put the pot in the sink, squirt in some dish soap, add about an ounce of bleach and let it sit overnight. Usually nothing left to scrub in the morning. If there is just a green scrubby works.

  46. Shay says

    I have a very easy answer to healing any burnt pots and pans. It doesn’t matter how burnt they are, all you have to do is put Cascade powder (not liquid) into the bottom of the pot. Make sure the bottom of the pot is dry, not wet. Let it sit overnight for about at least 12 hours, then add a small amount of water to the bottom of the pot containing the Cascade and let stand for about 4 hours. When you run the pot under the hot water tap, all the burnt crust will fall out. I had a very expensive Lagostina pot and was about to throw it out when I learned of this Cascade trick.

  47. beejsteph says

    I Have ALWAYS Used Nothing More Than Some Baking Soda And Vinegar…And Throw In A Dryer Sheet…And In Less Than 10 Minutes…I Have A Pot/Pan That Might Have Been Burned Or With Seriously Stuck On Food…Completely Clean With Little To No Elbow Grease Being Used!!! The Dryer Sheet Is The MOST AMAZING Trick EVER!!! Then I Wash It With Regular Soap, And Water…Rinse, Dry And Put Away. #DryerSheetsAreAMAZING

  48. Donna Bonistall says

    I tried the soaking and scraping for days, and still the burned food in my pan was not budging . Yeah, it was pretty bad!
    I asked around on FB and someone mentioned sprinkling the bottom of the pan with Oxyclean and adding hot water and letting it stand for an hour or so. I. Was. AMAZED. No scrubbing–came right off. It left my pan so shiny too. If you ever have that filmy look even if your pan is clean–this will take care of it. Hope this helps!

  49. Roni says

    What about burnt Pam I burned Pam on my moms pizza pan and I burned Pam on it but now it won’t scrub clean so could these methods still work on it?

    • says

      I would give it a try. With out knowing what the pan is made of it is hard to tell. If the pan is so badly burnt it at least won’t hurt to try.


  1. […] Cleaning Burned Pots and Pans « How to save money and get out …Jan 14, 2011 … If a pan is burned beyond being able to use it, whether you ruin the …. I would comment that the way I have always gotten burnt on gunk off my … […]

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