When I was learning how to cook, I made every mistake in the book. Because of this, I have burned a gazillion pots and pans! Cleaning them was a tough job, so I used to discard a pot or two to save time and hide my cooking fiascoes from my family. I tried scrubbing the grime away but failed.

With time I realized that this was not the solution and out of desperation I started inventing hacks to clean them in no time. After trying a plethora of substances, I have narrowed down to a few methods that I use to clean scorched pots. These methods can also help you in cleaning salvaged pots which are worth throwing. I am sharing them with you today since I know the pain of cleansing a burnt utensil.  Read on to know more!

Soaking Method

If you have time on hand, you can soak your burnt pan overnight. This method is effective when the layer of food stuck to the pan is not too thick. To do this, boil some water and add some soap to it. Transfer this soapy solution to the pan and make it sit overnight. The next morning, you will be able to see if the food has loosened.

Try to loosen it further with a metal wool scrubber that is full of dish washing liquid. However, try to work your way through one corner as this can scratch your pan.

Cleaning a Burnt Pot with the Oil Method

Another effective method is to use oil to soak the pan. This is particularly beneficial if you have a burnt iron pan. Follow these simple steps to complete the procedure.

Step 1: Pour in a thin layer of oil to cover the scorched layer.

Step 2: Heat the oil till it starts bubbling in the pot.

Step 3: Cover the pot with a lid and let it soak.

Step 4: Additionally, you can also keep the pot on a source of indirect heat which will keep it warm. After some time, use a wooden spatula to scrape the bottom of the pot.

Step 5: Wipe the pot with a tissue and clean the grime using lemon juice and soapy water.

Baking Soda and Vinegar

This hack involves the usage of two powerful cleaning agents. This is extremely useful since it cleans in a jiffy without soaking or scrubbing the pot. Vinegar and baking soda cut through the burnt food.

Step 1: To begin with, add one cup of water and white vinegar to the pot.Make sure that these two ingredients cover the base of the pot.

Step 2: Add three tablespoons of baking soda in the pot. When it starts fizzing, the burnt bits of food will start loosening up. Leave the mixture to cool.

Step 3: Once it stops fizzing, pour out the residue and add a bit of water and dish liquid and scrub. Rinse the pot and dry it.

Your pot will now be sparkling clean.

Scrub with Sugar Cubes

If you have nothing else to clean scorched pans, use sugar cubes. They act as scrubbers, and you can use them by lightly wetting the cube. Do not wet the sugar cube too much as it will dissolve in the pot.

Table Salt

Another effective way of cleaning a pan is by filling it with warm water and three tablespoons regular table salt.

  1. Stir the salt and mix with water. Then let the pan cool for sometime.
  2. After a few minutes put the pan on the stove-top and boil the water for ten to fifteen minutes.
  3. When you remove the pan, you will be able to see burnt scraps come out. Pour out the water and leave some water in the pan.
  4. Add some more salt and use a scrubber to clean the pot away. Wash it with warm water and leave the pan to dry.
  5. This method takes 20 minutes flat and makes your pot sparkly clean!

BKF or Carbon Off

Products like Bar Keeper’s Friend or Carbon off can be beneficial when you need to speed the process along. Apply these cleansers to the burnt area and gently rub to release residue and grime. When dealing with difficult stains, leave the cleaning product on for a few minutes and then wash off. Make sure you wash the pot thoroughly with soapy water. You can purchase both cleaners online.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Add some Hydrogen Peroxide to the pot. Warm it on the stove until the solution bubbles. Simmer the flame and use a brush to clean the gunk. The solution might stink so make sure you open your kitchen windows.

Fabric Softener

Boil water in the pan and add some fabric softener. Soak for 30 minutes and wash away with ease!


Use ketchup on the pot if the burnt mess is thick. Leave it overnight and then scour away the next morning. Tomatoes are acidic, and it will loosen the burnt gunk off the pot.


If you have nothing on hand, take some Coca-Cola and add it to the utensil.Soak for 5 hours. Use a scraper and remove residue from the pan.You will be able to see a shiny new pot in no time!

Cream of Tartar

Cream of Tartar is also acidic. Therefore, it is beneficial for cleaning burnt pots. Mix two tablespoons of cream of tartar and one cup of water. Boil this mixture on medium heat. Switch off the flame and cool it down before washing it with a warm and soapy solution.

A majority of the substances used to clean a pot can be found in your household. Based on the availability, choose a method and follow the steps to clean a pan.However, prevention is better than cure! Try to be attentive while cooking so that you do not burn anything thereby saving yourself from the hassle of scrubbing the pot.