How to Clean a Burnt Pot

If you have a burnt pot and are worried that you won’t be able to use it again, don’t fret. There are several simple and inexpensive ways to clean a burnt pot and have it ready for the next time you need it.

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Benefits of Cleaning a Burnt Pot

If you have burnt a pot making a meal, you will want to try your best to clean it for continuous use later. If you leave any residue burnt to the bottom while you are cooking your next meal, it could alter the flavor of your dish. You may also have burnt residue come off into your new meal if it isn’t clean from the last use.

Related: How to Clean Cast-Iron Cookware

The Best Way to Clean a Burnt Pot

When you have to clean a burnt pot bottom, you want to make sure you do not cause damage to the surface so you can use the pot again later. If it has a non-stick coating, it is best to avoid any abrasive tools that could scratch the coating and cause a worse problem.

Here are the top three ways to clean a burnt pot.

1. Cover the Burnt Bottom With Water to Soak

Depending on the severity of the mess, a good overnight soaking can help lift any burnt food remnants off your pot. You may get lucky and be able to scrub it lightly with a dishcloth to clean it the next day. If you still have stubborn stuck-on food after this step, you can try these other methods.

2. Add Salt to the Water and Bring to a Boil

To clean the bottom of a burnt pot with stubborn food, cover the entire area with water, add two or three tablespoons of salt, and bring it to a boil on the stove. Let it boil for about 10 minutes and let it cool completely. The salt raises the boiling point, making the water hotter and more effective at cleaning a burnt pot bottom.

3. Use a Water and Vinegar Mixture with Baking Soda

Vinegar and baking soda can clean virtually anything in your home, and a burnt pot is no exception. Mix equal parts of water and vinegar to cover the entire bottom. Bring this mixture to a boil on your stove for about 10 minutes.

Carefully remove the pot and place it in your sink before adding the baking soda. Once you add two tablespoons of baking soda to the mixture it will fizz up and create a mess. This chemical reaction can help clean the bottom of a burnt pot easily.

Good old-fashioned vinegar and baking soda is the best way to clean a burnt pot. It is not only effective and inexpensive, but it is also environmentally friendly. You do not need to purchase any harmful chemicals to get the job done.

Don’t Allow a Burnt Pot to Become Worse

Try to clean a burnt pot as soon as possible, so it doesn’t become worse. If you continuously use pots that are not clean, your food quality will suffer, and it will not effectively cook your food.

Be sure to remove a pot from the heat source as soon as you realize there is a burnt bottom so that the stuck-on food does not continue to cook on the surface. Any residual heat can make the burning worse and make it harder for you to clean it later.

Sources: Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. “Why Adding Salt to Water Increases the Boiling Point.” ThoughtCo, Aug. 28, 2020,

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