How to Clean a Rusty Iron Pot

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Cast iron pots are ideal for cooking at low temperatures.
Cast iron pots are ideal for cooking at low temperatures. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Iron pots are prized for their durability and even-heating, but they require special care and maintenance to keep them performing their best. Without the proper seasoning and cleaning, iron pots can rust, ruining their appearance and usefulness. Most rusty iron pots can be cleaned and restored to their original state with the right products and technique. Prevent future rust by properly seasoning the iron with oil, and making sure the pots are dry before storing.

Things You'll Need

  • Bucket
  • White vinegar
  • Rubber gloves
  • Scrub brush
  • Towel
  • Oven mitts

Place the rusty pot in a bucket, and fill it with equal parts water and white vinegar. Use enough to completely cover the pot.

Soak the pot in the bucket for up to 4 hours. Check the pot often to make sure the vinegar doesn't wear away the surface.

Remove the pot from the vinegar solution while wearing rubber gloves, and scrub any remaining rust spots with a scrub brush.

Rinse the pot thoroughly with warm water, and dry it with a towel.

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees, and place the pot into the oven for five minutes or until it's completely dry.

Remove the pan from the oven with oven mitts, and season the pot as usual.

Tips & Warnings

  • For light rust, scrub the pan with scouring powder and a damp sponge. Rinse the pot and dry it, then season it as usual.

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