At the end of a nights dinner, the pots and pans may seem like a mountain. There are cleaning methods that will make them nothing but a mole hill.
It is important to use the right cleaning method for each pot. This will allow you to make your precious pans last.
The correct method for cleaning each pot and pan is listed below in this cleaning guide; How to clean different types of pots and pans.
A stock pot is a deep pot with a flat bottom. It is used to cook liquid foods that don’t need to be close to the heat source.
These pots allow you to brown or sauté ingredients, then add liquids to make them into soup or stock. There can be food stuck to the bottom of these pots.
With their thin nature it’s important to be gentle. Try to use methods that will clean with minimal scrubbing.
Clean your stock pot with vinegar and lemon. Pour vinegar into the pot until it fills up half way. Slice 1 lemon into 4 or more pieces and bring this to a boil.
Let it simmer for 30 minutes and the stuck on food will lift right off. The next step is to encourage the more stubborn pieces to lift with a soft sponge.
The last step is to rinse it clean and let it dry.
A fry pan or skillet is used for frying and deep frying side dishes and meat. It is used to bring food to a crisp.
The main concerns for one cleaning a skillet are getting rid of grease and burnt on foods.
To clean, just sprinkle the bottom of the skillet and scour with a mesh sponge. For best results, maintain circular motions and rinse and repeat as necessary.
Cast Iron Skillet
A cast iron skillet is a heavy duty fryer that is used for fast cooking. This is pre-seasoned to ensure that it has a non stick quality.
To determine the best care for your cast iron you must first determine whether it is bare cast iron or enamel coated cast iron.
Bare cast iron has a dark, stone-like texture and requires seasoning before use. While enamel coated cast iron is smooth and looks refined.
It is recommended that your bare cast iron skillet be cleaned by wiping with a cloth. You should avoid soaking and washing it with soap.
On the other hand, enamel coated cast iron can be cleaned with soap and warm water to lift the grease away. This type of cast iron skillet is low maintenance for as long as the coating lasts.
A sauté pan is made for frying food while moving them around quickly. This type of pan comes with a lid that allows it to bring foods to a simmer.
This is ideal for sauces and fillings in festive seasons. This type of pan can be easy to clean if there are no burnt on foods.
Just wash it clean with soap and water or place it in the dishwasher. If there are burnt on foods, give it a short soak before actively washing.
A sauce pan is made with a rounded bottom and tall straight sides, making it ideal for making sauces, noodles or boiling eggs.
They can be used with or without a lid to control evaporation and cook grains like rice. The pans are made from thin sheets of aluminum and takes scratches easily.
With this in mind it is important to pay attention to the mixing tools used when cooking.
To clean this type of pan, it is recommended that you use a gentle cleaner. If there is stuck on food, spritz it with water to ensure that it is completely soft and easy to lift.
Sprinkle a small amount of bar keepers friend and work it in with a sponge or your hands. Once all the food has lifted, rinse it clean and pat it dry with a clean cloth.
A griddle is a flat piece of cookware that may have a ridged surface. It can be used to cook pancakes, eggs or hash browns.
A short handle and the capacity for cooking with a very small amount of oil are characteristics of a griddle. The ridged surfaces are great for creating those deep grill marks when needed.
Cleaning a griddle can be quite straight forward. It is important to avoid using soap on the surface as this may cause damage.
Just allow it to cool down after cooking.Then scrape the surface with a metal spatula or scraper.
If there is some stuck on food, add some water to the warm griddle to lift this away. The next step is to gently rub with a scouring pad and rinse it clean.
A wok has high sloping sides and a flat bottom. They are traditionally made of carbon steel and are a staple in asian cuisine.
When cooking with a wok, you have the option of temperature control by moving the ingredients around the sides.
The bottom stays hot and the temperature gets cooler up the sides. These are ideal for deep frying, steaming and frying.
If a wok has been seasoned, there is no need to use soap to clean it. Simply soak the wok in hot water for 5 minutes to loosen stuck on food.
Then wash the inside with hot water and a soft sponge. Detail the exterior of the pot with hot water and a scouring pad or scrubbing sponge. Allow this to dry over low heat before placing it in storage.
A roasting pan is a large rectangular pan with short sides. This allows the heat of the oven to reach as much of the food as possible.
These are often used with a roasting rack to ensure that the food is adequately elevated above the cooking surface.
This pan is ideal for cooking at high temperatures and essential for roasting both meats and vegetables.
1 cup of Bar Keepers Friend will do wonders to sanitize and deodorize your roasting pan and rack. Just create a paste of Bar Keepers Friend and water and rub it onto the surface of the pan.
If there is stuck on food, allow it to soak for 30 minutes. Then scrub it in circular motions with a soft sponge to get it clean and grease free. Bar Keepers Friend will make your roasting pan shiny in minutes.
A dutch oven is a large, heavy duty pot that holds on to high levels of heat for long periods. This pot is designed for slow-cooking and can even be skillfully used for smoking meats.
Most dutch ovens are made from cast iron and have a pair of short handles. This makes safe lifting much easier.
The dutch oven can be a real asset to the kitchen for cooking large portions of food.
For easy cleaning, soak the cool pot in a small amount of Dawn dish soap and hot water. You may add a tablespoon or 2 of baking soda and allow it to sit, covered for 15-20 minutes.
Once the time has elapsed, drain some of the water and use a plastic scraper to lift burnt on bits of food if there are any.
Give it a light scrub with a scouring pad and rinse it clean.
A pressure cooker allows the cooking process to go by quickly and with out waste. With the quick release option, it completely seals and uses all the water in the pot to cook and stay inside.
Steam builds the pressure which will be released once you open the hatch, nozzle or enclosure. It is quite possible to have burnt food if there isn’t enough moisture in the pot.
For cleaning, disassemble the pot, removing the rubber and pressure regulator. Each piece including the pot, can be cleaned with a gentle dish soap and warm water.
Just scrub with a soft sponge and it will be as good as new. Another option is to use water and lemon to give it a steam clean.
Just boil 1 liter of water and add 1 cup of lemon juice. Leave it to soak for 15 minutes then rinse it clean.
Cast Iron Skillet
Pots are a lot easier to clean than they may seem. With the right cleaning methods, pots and pans will last a long time and stay clean and shiny.
There are some cleaning methods that will also make your home smell great. It’s always a good idea to add lemon to your pot and pan cleaning regimen for an extra cleaning.
The only exception is an aluminum coated cast iron skillet, as the acids will strip the coating.