Having trouble cleaning your pots and pans? Here are 8 scrubbing tricks using everything from club soda to Windex to remove stains and gunk from your kitchenware.
Club Soda Cookware Cleaner
Here’s a dishwashing trick that will save you a lot of scrubbing time! After you’ve finished cooking, add some club soda to empty pots and pans (just enough to cover their bottoms). By the time you’re done eating, the bubbles in the soda will have loosened the grime, making your cleaning job much easier.
Getting Gunk off Glass Dishes
To remove baked-on stains from a glass casserole dish, fill it with warm water and add two tablets of Alka-Seltzer or denture cleaner. Leave for an hour and the stains will be gone.
Removing Stains from Aluminum Pots
To remove stains from aluminum pots, fill the pot halfway with water and add a quarter cup of vinegar or lemon juice. Bring to the boil, and simmer for several minutes before washing as usual. For particularly stubborn stains, try cream of tartar. Sprinkle a few teaspoons cream of tartar on the stain, and add a cup or two of water. Bring the mixture to the boil for a few minutes, then wash as usual.
Cast Iron Cure
The best way to clean cast iron pans is to cover any stain with a paste of cream of tartar and white vinegar. Apply liberally, let it sit, then scrub with a damp, soft cloth.
How to Get Burned Food Off Pots and Pans
Feeling hopeless about the seemingly permanent baked-on gunk on your pots and pans? Don’t trash them yet: Hydrogen peroxide will come to the rescue! Mix peroxide with baking soda until the mixture forms a paste. Coat your dirty pan with it, making sure you rub the mucky areas particularly well, and let stand for at least an hour so the grime-fighting powers can work their magic. Soak in warm water and wipe down with a scrub sponge, and the nasty crud will miraculously wash off.
Freeze Stuck-On Food
If the bottom of your pot or pan is a burnt-on mess, another thing you can try is popping it in the freezer for an hour or two. The stuck food will freeze and be easier to remove.
Cut Grease with Ammonia
Ammonia helps cut grease better than practically any other ingredient. To clean a really greasy pan, add a few drops of an ammonia-based cleaner like Windex to the dishwashing liquid.
To treat rust on metal baking dishes and cookware, sprinkle powdered laundry detergent on the spot, then scour with the cut side of half a raw potato. Who knew?