How do I Clean Stainless Pots & Pans?

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Things You'll Need

  • Dish soap

  • Rags

  • Nylon scouring pad

  • White vinegar

Clean stainless pots and pans properly to prevent damage.

Stainless pots and pans are an asset to any kitchen. Not only is stainless steel aesthetically appealing, it is easy to maintain and durable. Stainless steel cookware will need to be cleaned after each use. It is important to properly clean stainless steel pots and pans so their surfaces are not scratched or damaged. Whether you are doing general cleaning or trying to remove burnt-on food or white residue from cooking, use the proper products and methods to protect your stainless cookware.

General Cleaning

Step 1

Allow the cookware to cool after use. Rinse excess food from the pan with warm water.

Step 2

Fill the sink half full with warm water. Add a few drops of dish soap.

Step 3

Submerge the stainless steel pot or pan in the soapy water. Wash the cookware with a rag and the soapy water.

Step 4

Rinse the pan under warm water. Dry promptly with a clean rag before storing.

Cleaning Burnt-on Food

Step 1

Fill the pot or pan with warm, soapy water so the burnt spots are covered. Let it sit for one hour.

Step 2

Place the pan on the stove and bring the soapy water to a boil. Let it boil for 10 to 15 minutes.

Step 3

Remove the pan from the heat and let the water cool down. Scrub the pan with a nylon scouring pad.

Step 4

Discard the soapy water and wash the pan in the sink with fresh soapy water. Rinse and dry thoroughly.

Cleaning White Residue

Step 1

Fill the pot with 3 parts warm water and 1 part white vinegar so the residue is completely covered.

Step 2

Put the pot on the stove and bring the water to a boil. Let it boil for 10 to 15 minutes.

Step 3

Allow the liquid to cool down. Discard the vinegar mixture and wash the pot with hot, soapy water. Rinse and dry the pot thoroughly.


To remove fingerprints from your stainless steel pots and pans, clean them with a soft rag and glass cleaner. Sprinkle baking soda on especially tough burnt-on food stains. Drizzle vinegar on top of the baking soda, let it sit for a few minutes, then scrub with a nylon scouring pan. Wash the pan with warm, soapy water, then rinse and dry thoroughly.


Avoid using steel wool or abrasive cleaning pads, chlorine bleach, alcohol or any abrasive cleaners on stainless steel pots and pans. Avoid using ammonia-based cleaning products.