20.1.13

Cooking Class Monday - How to Clean a Scorched Pot

I have burned a lot of pots in my day but I have never burned one this badly. I wish I had taken a picture before I soaked it overnight in water and baking soda.  I would have cried if that would not have made me feel defeated.  This was not just some cheap old pot.  This was my beautiful All-Clad pot.  It was the bottom of a double boiler unit that held a ceramic pot insert.  So you can see, I was not about to give up without a fight.

Even after soaking overnight it is a mess.  I scraped out the loose bits but there is still no way I can use this pot yet.

Now it is time to go to the internet for ideas. This is how it looks after try #2. I filled the pot half-full with water, added a cup of vinegar and brought it to a boil. Then I added two tablespoons of baking soda. Prepare for it to fizz when adding the baking soda.



I used the boiling water and vinegar with baking soda method twice.  I am encouraged.  I finally feel like this pot will once again return to its rightful place among my favourites.


I have scrubbed it a bit with SOS but lots of the burnt food is still not releasing.  The last trick from the internet is to boil water with detergent in the pot.  Claims are this will release all the burned stuff magically.  I used dishwasher detergent because it was handy.  Perhaps laundry detergent would also work.  Within minutes the burnt matter was coming off in sheets.  Yippee!  My pot has been salvaged to live many more happy days making wonderful food. 

To summarize, cool pot.  Then fill with water as needed and add 1 cup white vinegar.  Bring to a boil and add 2 tablespoons baking soda.  Let sit overnight.

Remove as much of the burned matter as possible.  Repeat if necessary.

Scrub with soap pads as much as possible.

If there is still a lot of burned on food, fill the pot with as much water as needed.  Add detergent and bring to a boil.  Remove from heat and soak overnight.  Look at that!  Amazing!  The burnt pieces just fell off.  Next time I might just cut to the chase and boil with detergent from the get go.  Trust me, there will be a next time.

Shine up with a soap pad.  Tada!  There is still a little bit of staining but I trust it will come out with use.  I am just so thrilled that I can continue to use this lovely pot.

14 comments:

  1. Yikes... that was NOT the before photo?
    Thanks for posting your little science experiment.
    Boiling with detergent from here on.

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  2. No! It was even worse! I fell asleep while I was scalding milk. It was a mess.

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  3. Yay:-)
    Oh my gosh..you fell asleep..
    I have trouble doing that in bed:-)
    Thank you for this tip!

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    1. That is so funny! If I lay down while I watch TV, I'm out!

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  4. Oh my goodness was that ever burnt. I have used the boiling water with baking soda trick (not the vinegar), but I didn't know about the detergent. Good to know. I find cooking rice in a pot helps remove stains so you might try that.

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    1. It was the worst I have ever burned a pot! I'll try cooking rice. Thanks for the tip.

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  5. This is good to know Sarah since there will be a second time for me too.

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  6. I have done this more times than I want to admit. This is why I have 3 timers. I just get taken away from things and then womp... disaster. I have used the baking soda part but never boiling with detergent. Will give it a go next time.

    PS the tip I just read was to use banana peel to polish silver... it does work. Used it on a new-old piece that I discovered had a film of something sticky on it –– it still took off some tarnish. Will try it on something just plain tarnished next time to see how it works under normal conditions.

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    1. Banana peels, eh. I'll have to try that.

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  7. J'ai brûlé plusieurs casseroles. Cette méthode a l'air très efficace. Je note.
    A bientôt

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  8. Huh. And my dearly beloved was cleaning out the rice pan the other night, because I was busy elsewhere, and he whined about some rice grains and starch stuck to the bottom. I told him he's never seen a hard-to-clean pot. I'll have to remember the detergent and water trick. There will be another pot like that for me, too; it goes with cooking.

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    1. Poor boy! Now that I know the detergent trick I am just waiting to try it again!

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  9. cette méthode a l'air très efficace à noter merci
    bon dimanche

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  10. great tip! I knew baking soda was useful for many things but didn't know about this. Thank you for the info, will make sure to try it out

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