How to Clean and Care of a Nonstick Pan?

by Chef Maryam Ghargharechi December 28, 2018 3 min read

How to Clean and Care of a Nonstick Pan?

Just like a good set of knives, the nonstick pan is a kitchen essential. Non-stick pans offer an easy cleaning surface if properly maintained. Here’s what you need to know about how to clean a nonstick pan! 

What You'll Need

  • Water
  • Gentle liquid dish soap
  • Non-abrasive sponge or soft-bristle brush
  • Baking soda (optional)
  • Vegetable oil
  • Paper towel

Instructions

  1. Wait for the pan to cool: Let the pan cool completely, as putting a hot pan in cold water can warp it through thermal shock.
  2. Scrub the pan: Squirt the dish soap onto your sponge or brush and gently rub the surface in a circular motion. Never use an abrasive scrubber or one made of metal because it can scratch the coating. And don't use a harsh cleanser (like oven cleaners, bleach, or liquid household cleaners used for floors or porcelain) to clean the pan because that can damage the surface, too.
  3. Don't forget the outside of the pan: Repeat for the outside of the cookware. (And the handle!)
  4. Rinse: Run the pan under the water to rinse off the soap and see if you've got any remaining residue left.
  5. Tackle burnt spots: If some stubborn spots remain, sprinkle a little bit of kosher salt onto the area, add a splash of water to make a paste, and use your sponge to gently dislodge it. Be careful not to scrub too hard, as you don't want to scratch the coating. Then rinse and dry the pan.
  6. Season the pan: To condition the pan once it's dry, rub the surface with a dab of vegetable oil (less than a teaspoon)and a paper towel, then use another clean paper towel to wipe off the excess. 

How do you get burnt food off a nonstick pan? 

  • Put your pan back on the stovetop.
  • Fill it with ¼ cup of baking soda and 2 to 3 inches of water.
  • Simmer for about 10 minutes.

Let the baking soda-water mixture cool, and then wash your pan like normal with soap and warm water. It should be clean and back to its nonstick glory! 

How do you make a nonstick pan nonstick again?

When you’ve had a nonstick pan for a few years, you might notice a sticky buildup. If your food is starting to stick, don’t replace it quite yet. Vinegar to the rescue! Bring one part vinegar and two parts water to a simmer, and then cool and wash with soap. This should take care of all the sticky residue that has built up on the pan over time. 

What kind of cooking utensils should I use with a nonstick pan? 

Step away from the metal tongs! You want to avoid scratching the nonstick surface at all costs—and that means no metal utensils. Use only wooden or heatproof silicone utensils when cooking with your nonstick pan. 

Is it OK to use high heat with a nonstick pan?

The quick answer is no, do not use high heat with a nonstick pan. Keep your burner on medium or low to protect the pan’s surface. High heat can warp the coating and ruin the pan. Keep in mind most nonstick pans should never go in the oven. 

When should you replace a nonstick pan?

Unfortunately, nonstick pans do not last as long as some other types of cookware. If your pan is sticky even after cleaning, the coating is flaking off or the interior is badly scratched, then it’s time for a new one. Your nonstick pan should last about 5 years when it’s properly maintained.

Share your thoughts with us in the comment section.

 

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Chef Maryam Ghargharechi
Chef Maryam Ghargharechi

Proud mom, wife, and red seal chef with a passion! Member of WACS, CCFCC, and BC Chefs' Association.


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