How to Clean Stainless Steel Pans

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Stainless steel cookware is great for cooking as it provides even heating, and can sear meats well by conducting high heat. While stainless steel pans are great for cooking, keeping them looking new and shiny can be a challenge. Here's how to clean stainless steel pans to keep them durable, shiny, and smooth!

What You'll Need

You'll need a few household cleaning materials to get started. Dish soap and water make for a great cleaning solution for everyday cleaning, but baking soda will get rid of those tough stains from your pans. Here's what you'll need:

  • Dish soap
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Water
  • Neutral oil - for seasoning
  • Scrub brush
  • Soft sponge
  • Paper towel

How to Clean Stainless Steel Pans: A Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Cool the Hot Pan

If your stainless steel pan is fresh off the stove, allow the pan to cool before cleaning it. Running a hot pan under cold tap water will cause a sudden temperature shift, which may warp your stainless steel cookware over time. Always start with a cool pan, never a hot or heated pan.

Step 2: Wash the Pan

Wash the pan as you normally would with a soft sponge and dish soap. Stay away from abrasive cleaners as these may scratch the surface of your stainless steel pans. Clean stainless steel pans with mild, soapy water, and focus scrubbing water spots, oil marks, and grease stains out of your stainless steel cookware.

Step 3: Boil Away the Stuck-on Food Particles

For any stuck on food bits, add some water into your stainless steel pans, and place them back on the stove to boil. Make sure the water completely covers all food particles, as the water will soften the food particles to make them easier to remove. Turn off the heat, and allow the pan to cool before scraping out the food bits.

Step 4: Clear Away a Burnt Stainless Steel Pan

Cleaning the Bottom of the Pan

Burnt stainless steel pans are difficult to treat, but a mixture of baking soda and water or vinegar will help soften the burnt food particles to make them easier to remove. Mix together enough water or vinegar with baking soda to create a cleaning paste. Apply the baking soda paste directly onto the burnt food bits, and let it sit for 15 minutes.

After 15 minutes, use a soft brush to clear the baking soda paste, and scrub out the softened grime. Repeat the entire process if there are still bits of burnt food or oils stuck on your stainless steel pans. The same method can be used to clean stainless steel pots and other cookware.

Cleaning the Outside of the Pan

The same baking soda and vinegar paste can be used to clean the outside of the pan, and remove the burnt bits and soot that muddy the surface. Apply the cleaning paste directly on the outside of your stainless steel pans, and let the paste sit for 15 minutes. Use a scrub brush to clear the burnt areas away.

Step 5: Dry the Pan, and Season with Neutral Oil

After cleaning your stainless steel pan, it is a good idea to dry it on the hot stove, and season the pan with a neutral oil. Apply a thin layer of oil onto your stainless steel pan, and use paper towels to remove as much excess oil as possible. Your pan should have a very thin layer of oil on top to polymerize the oil without creating a sticky surface.

Place the oiled pan directly on the stove, and heat it up until the oil starts to smoke. After which, turn the stove off, and allow the pan to cool completely. This method can also be used to season a stainless steel pot. The pan should have a glassy surface with an even coating of oil that will act as a non-stick layer.

Tips for Keeping Stainless Steel Pots and Pans Clean

  • Stay away from abrasive cleaning tools such as steel wool when cleaning stainless steel pans. While these may easily remove stains and burnt food, they will also scratch the surface of your pans.
  • Store your stainless steel cookware dry. Storing your cookware while moist will cause corrosion, which may form rust on the surface of your pan.
  • Season your pan before cooking to prevent food from sticking on your pans.
  • Use a non-abrasive sponge when cleaning stainless steel pans as these will get rid of grime while leaving the surface of your cookware intact.
  • Clean your stainless skillets after every use to prevent food from drying on the pan and becoming difficult to remove.

Clean Your Kitchen

Your kitchen needs as much cleaning as any part of your home, and our cleaning services at Luce Home makes kitchen maintenance simple, easy, and convenient! Schedule your cleaning session with just one call, and our experienced cleaner will get to your home to get rid of those stains, dirt, and grime. We'll leave you with a spotless home you can stay comfortable in!

Contact us today, and let's fit you into a cleaning session that works with your schedule!

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