Wednesday, December 19, 2012

How to Clean Burned Oil from a Pan

I burned my veggie burger and in doing so sealed an enamel-like coating of oil onto my stainless steel pan.

Uh oh.

The oil wasn't budging with regular dish detergent and sponge action. I dusted the pan with baking soda then sprayed it with water to create a paste that I left to dry overnight. Baking soda paste gets grime build up off of ovens, so I figured it should also work on my pan. Right?

fingers crossed.

Wrong. When I tried scrubbing the pan the next day, I still made very little progress. I should note that the scouring pad on my two week old dish sponge is basically non-existent. (The plant-based scrubbers on biodegradable sponges don't hold up too well.) I'm pretty sure a better scrubber would have yielded better results.

I tried heating water in the pan along with some baking soda before scrubbing again. No change. I possibly made things worse because I got distracted and let the water boil for a pretty long time. The pan was smoking again. Argh!

I scrubbed the pan with my scrappy sponge, some Bon Ami powder cleanser, and lots of elbow grease. I did this for about three minutes, then left to go grocery shopping, leaving the damp Bon Ami paste to dry on the pan until after dinner. Four hours later I scrubbed some more, probably a solid five minutes, et voila...

Thanks Bon Ami!

It's about 98% perfect. The few remaining brown specs of oil can be addressed with some more Bon Ami and elbow grease the next time I clean. Almost perfect is good enough for me tonight.

Olivia Lane is a Blogger, Green Living Educator, and Health Coach trained at The Institute for Integrative Nutrition. She's also author of Baking Soda & Bliss: The Healthy & Happy Guide to Green Cleaning 

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  1. Love your post. I've been hearing good things about Bon Ami and seeing the results from your pan really makes me want to go buy some try it.

    1. Angela, thanks so much for your comment! Yes, Bon Ami is wonderful. You must try it. Since it's healthy and usually less than $3 a container, you really don't have much to loose.



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