How To Clean A Burnt Pot

How To Clean A Burnt Pot

Do you ever find yourself multi-tasking while cooking?  I do it all the time.  The other day I was making my morning oatmeal, while checking something quickly on the computer.  The phone rang, I answered, and talked for just a few minutes, however, it was long enough to make my oatmeal look like mud. 

My stainless steel pot was caked with burnt residue I couldn’t remove with a pot scrubber.  I soaked it for a while, but still nothing came off.

If you’ve ever found yourself in this situation before, you probably feel like you’ve just ruined a good pot.  Have no fear…..Without using any elbow grease you can make your stainless steel pot look like new again.

Here’s how……………………..

How To Clean A Burnt Pot



  1. Fill burnt pot with water, enough to cover the area that's soiled and then some.
  2. Add about 1/4 cup of vinegar.
  3. Bring water and vinegar to a boil, then lower heat so there's a steady, yet visible simmer.  Continue cooking for 20 miniutes.
  4. Remove from heat, and pour liquid out.  Then rinse to cool down.
  5. With scouring pad, pour some Bar Keepers Friend into the base of the pot.  Scrub pot gently and watch as all the burnt residue magically peels away from the sides and bottom of the pot.
  6. Rinse, and clean with soap and water.

See how clean it is?  The pot looks brand new!

How To Clean A Burnt Pot

Now go find all those pots you've pushed aside and bring them to life again.

Have fun!

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  1. Thanks for the tip, I hadn’t heard about vinegar. I’ve only had to clean a burnt pot once but it certainly wasn’t easy.

  2. Great tip, Vicki! I hadn’t heard this one before. I usually use some dishwasher detergent and soak it in very hot water. Will give your method a try with my next kitchen disaster 🙂

    • That’s what I use to do but this literally just peels the burnt coating right off. Hopefully you won’t have a disaster but if you do now you’ll have a new method.

  3. I had no idea about this trick Vicki but I’m so happy to know about it! Amazing!! Thank you!

  4. This tip will come in handy! Thanks! 🙂

  5. I’ve used the vinegar idea before on stainless, and it works terrifically. You can also just put the pot in the sink with some bleach (and a bit of water) and that will often work, too (particularly good with enameled cast iron). But the vinegar is the best way. Good tip — thanks.

    • I’ve never tried bleach before. I will have to give it a try. I used to use ketchup to clean my copper bottom pots when I was out of vinegar. Of course ketchup has vinegar in it.

  6. That can come in handy, Vicki! Thanks. I usually burn apples…
    🙂 ela

  7. wow the pot looks brand new now! Thanks for sharing, Vicki.

  8. Been there, done that! What a great tip about boiling the vinegar and water! I love Bar Keepers Friend and always have a container in my cupboard. It’s wonderful for cleaning a stainless sink too.

  9. Thank You!!!! I so needed this post – I have one pot I hve tried EVERYTHING – vinegar, baking soda but nothing has worked – I need to get my hands on some bar keepers friend -for pots and stove top! Thank you!!

  10. Oh wow – that really worked! great tips!

  11. This process might damage aluminum utensils that have anodize coating (thin). I might use a Friend if I can find it in liquid form.

  12. Great article! I’ve tried a few of these methods and they really help with the clean-up. For those stubborn spots, I’ve had success with just baking soda too. It takes a bit longer, but the results are worth it! And if you’re looking for a more in-depth guide, I found this article at Cookware Gurus to be incredibly helpful. It offers some additional insights and expands on the baking soda method among others. Definitely worth a read for anyone serious about their cookware care: Effortless Burnt Pot & Pan Cleaning Methods. Happy cleaning, everyone!

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