Dealing with Heat Stained Pots
There are a lot of good things to say about stainless steel pots and pans, but there are a couple of negatives as well. One of the biggest problems that face stainless steel pans is that if you are not careful when first using them, you can easily find yourself with some heat stained pots or pans. Luckily dealing with heat stained pots, while a tad frustrating, is possible. All it really takes is a little bit of time and effort on your part. Here are a few methods that you can use to deal with this annoying problem.
- Make something tomato based. While it may surprise some people, one of the best ways that you can deal with a heat based stain is to make something tomato based in the pot or pan. Ideally you should make the spaghetti sauce or chili from scratch instead of something that has already been premade. The slightly acidic nature of the tomatoes will help to get rid of the heat stain as long as you are careful to keep it from scorching. Simply wash the pot after you have finished making the dish, and you should notice that most of the heat stain is gone.
- Use commercial cleaners. Commercial cleaners such as Zud, or Bar Keeper's Friend are perfect at dealing with heat stained pots. Simply make a thick paste of the cleanser, being sure to follow the manufacturer's directions, and then clean the pot as normal. This should remove most, if not all, of the heat stain from the pot or pan.
- Hydrogen peroxide can be useful. Another method of using commercial powdered cleaners is to first make the paste from the cleaner as described above, but with a slight twist. Instead of making the paste with water, instead use some hydrogen peroxide to make the paste. After the paste has been made, apply it to the stained area and allow the pot to sit overnight. The next morning wash the pot as you normally would, and you should notice that the stain has been removed.
- Aluminum foil may work. While this method may not exactly remove heat stains, it could help you to hide them. Simply scrub the stained area of the pot with some crumpled aluminum foil balls. While this method ideally works with chromed steel bumpers, it should also work pretty well with stainless steel pots. After using the pot again in the future, you may have to repeat the process again.
- If all else fails...In the event that you are unable to remove the heat stain from your pot, you are pretty much left with two options. Since the heat stain does not in any way really affect the capabilities of the pot, the first option is to simply live with the stain. The second option is to go out and purchase some new pots and pans. Ideally, this is only used as a last resort since it can be a fairly expensive option.
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