Given that the weather has turned from chilly to cold and the holidays are approaching, it's officially time to use your stockpot and roasting pan. Just the notion of a savory something simmering in the oven or on the stove all day is enough to warm your bones! Unfortunately, it only takes a little recipe miscalculation or even a slightly longer cook time to end up with a scorched pan — and those caked-on burnt bits are notoriously hard to get off.
When you use the big guns, keep this at heart: Depending on which your pan is constructed of (most of those available on the market are constructed of metal, enameled cast iron, or aluminum with or with no nonstick coating), you are able to damage it if you are using a too-scratchy scrubber like steel wool or an ultra-strong cleanser. So begin with the gentlest possible fix and work your path up to something stronger only when necessary.
Here are a few methods you can try to remove those burnt bits from the scorched pan.
The simplest 4 methods to save lots of a scorched pan without scrubbing
Even the best cooks burn their pans sometimes. It can't be helped. You're in the midst of fixing dinner when the telephone rings or someone knocks on the entranceway or any number of distractions pulls you away from the job at hand. Next thing you know, dinner is burning and your pan is all but ruined.
You can allow it soak overnight and then spend time attempting to scrub away all evidence of one's burnt meal, but who would like to fuss with that? Instead, try one of these simple foolproof methods that'll restore your pan to its former glory. No scrubbing required.
1. Dish soap and dryer sheet
The most convenient method for cleaning a scorched pan is to use dish soap and a dryer sheet. Simply fill your pan with water, squirt in a bit of dish soap and drop in a dryer sheet. Ensure you push the dryer sheet into underneath of the pan and then allow it sit for an hour. Once you pour out the water, you can use a paper towel to get rid of any residue.
2. Cream of tartar
Full disclosure: this method might demand a bit of scrubbing, but only when your pan is scorched almost beyond recognition. Otherwise, everything should get rid of fairly easily. Start with filling the pan with enough water that underneath is totally covered. Add 1 tablespoon of cream of tartar and set it on the stove with heat on low. When it starts to simmer, wait 5-10 minutes longer before turning off the stove and letting the pan cool. Use a sponge to get rid of as much residue as possible. When there is still some gunk left, rinse the pan and put more cream of tartar directly onto the burnt surface. Use a sponge to scrub anything that's left until the pan is clean again.
3. Vinegar and baking soda
Since it's basically impossible to wash without vinegar, no you need to be surprised by this method. Just fill underneath of one's pan with water, add a pot of vinegar and bring the whole thing to a boil. Eliminate the pan from heat and sprinkle in 2 tablespoons of baking soda. Pour everything out from the pan and use a sponge to get rid of any gunk left behind.
If you enjoy drinking a wonderful, cold bottle of Coke after having a long trip to work, you might not wish to wreck havoc on this method. Because when you see what Coke does to the burnt-on gunk in your pan, you're never going to want to put that stuff within your body ever again. For people who wish to try this, just pour some Coke into your scorched pan, allow it simmer for some minutes and then dump it out. Anything left over should easily get rid of with a sponge. (Side note: You can use other sodas with this, but Coke is apparently most effective.)