Calling Heloise. Can This Pan Be Saved?

“Others” (who shall not be named) left a pan unattended on the stove with some sort of pasta cooking in it. Unattended for so long that the entire saucepan is fried. I haven’t asked the guilty party how he couldn’t have smelled the burning because the whole damn house smelled of it – worse than burned microwave popcorn. I think the neighbors can smell the stench. I was not home at the time of the crime, officer.



But the greater problem, now that the house smells okay again, is how to clean the pan, if it can be salvaged at all. It’s one of my favorite All-Clad pans that I refuse to discard. It isn’t just slightly scarred, it seems permanently etched.

For the near term, the pan is staying outside because the pan still has a strong burned aroma that is probably baked into the surface.

Meanwhile, I’m heading to Stamford to grocery shop, thanks to all the suggestions from so many of you. I’ll report later. For now, your housekeeping advice would be appreciated.

16 thoughts on “Calling Heloise. Can This Pan Be Saved?

  1. Baking soda, vinegar, Barkeeper’s Friend are the most common solutions. I’m pretty sure that pot can be saved without desperate measures. Give Google a google and choose among the many suggestions. Some say not to mix baking soda and vinegar but I’ve done it to keep drains clear.
    For starters, I’d boil water in that pot to loosen as much of the burnt on stuff as possible.

  2. I’ve tried baking soda & hot water. Set the oven to low & let it sit until the black crap becomes soft. It works MOST of the time. You’ll still use a lot of elbow grease. Please let us know the outcome. I know I’m not finished burning pans & can use all the advice I can get.

  3. I am just glad someone didn’t burn the house down!!!! I burned a pan last night too. Maybe it’s the time change? Throws people off.

  4. Another trick is to coat the burn with ketchup. That breaks it up. Barkeeper’s Friend is the best use that after you get the crud out.

  5. What, are you spending all the money you just saved on the cable bill for dinner?? Hit the pot with some ketchup and leave it in there over night, you’ll be amazed.

  6. I’m late to the party…but I had a similar, but not as severe (yikes!!) episode with a giant All-clad sauté pan–bunted up some toasting pine nuts. It was awful to clean, and the pan is not quite the same, but SOS pad helped. You could also soak it with a few (since it’s all the way up the sides) dishwasher tablets. The idea is to soak it in a concentrated dishwasher soap solution over night. It usually loosens things up, but your pot looks really bad! I, too, am happy the house didn’t burn down!

  7. never fail burnt-on stuff remover. Fill pot to top, or better, use another pot big enough that burnt pot is totally submerged in water. Bring water to boil, and dump in a ton of powdered dishwasher detergent. Simmer 5 minutes or more. It will smell awful. Scrape a bit with a metal spoon to see if stuff is coming loose.If it still sticks, just cook a little longer. All-Clad can clean up easily Bibi

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