The enamel surface does not interact with food, which makes cleanup extremely easy. In addition, the material is durable and oven safe to high temperatures. However, due to their porcelain coating, it is very common for enamel cookware to get stained or discolored from use over time.
Cookware stains are a common household problem that anyone who has ever owned an enamel pot or pan will have experienced at some point in their life. If you have a nice set of expensive pots and pans that have started looking faded or dusty then this article will help you bring your enamel pots and pans back to life.
In this article, we will give you some useful tips on how to clean your enamel cookware and remove even the most difficult stains.
The method described below can be used on any type of enamel-coated cookware, including pans, woks, pots, or casserole dishes. The only exception is glass and ceramic stoneware as these types of materials cannot withstand very high temperatures.
Why Enamel Gets Discolored?
The discoloration that you see on your cookware is usually not a big problem and can be easily removed with the right cleaning product. Enamel wear is caused by normal use and exposure to high heat. Some people mistake these dark spots for rust, but they are actually tiny chips in the enamel due to overheating or scratching against metal utensils. Some of the most common discoloration spots are:
- Watermarks around the rim or on the bottom of pots.
- Grease marks from cooking.
- Soil accumulation from use over time.
How to Clean Discolored Enamel Cookware
Here are some methods that can help you to clean your enamel cookware back to its original glory.
Method 1: White Vinegar Cure
This is by far the easiest way of cleaning your enamel cookware. Simply add a generous amount of white vinegar to two cups of water in a large pot and bring it to a rolling boil. Once the liquid starts boiling, place your pots and pans into the pot and leave them for an hour or so.
After boiling, let the cookware cool down and then remove them from the vinegar solution. You can now wash it in warm soapy water to remove any traces of vinegar, grease, or dirt that might still be present on your cookware. Repeat if necessary until you are happy with how clean your enamel pots and pans look.
Method 2: Baking Soda Cleanser
Another popular method for cleaning pots and pans is to use baking soda. Combine three tablespoons of baking soda with one liter of water in a large pot and bring it to a rolling boil on the stove. You can then place your stained cookware into the pot, submerge it entirely under the solution.
Leave them on the heat for half an hour or so before removing them from the pot and rinsing them clean with warm water. Make sure that you wear some rubber gloves during this process as baking soda is basic (which means it is alkaline) and can cause burns.
If both vinegar and baking soda fail to work, the final option we would recommend is trying out Bar Keepers Friend. This is an acidic powder that is very good at removing stains from metal, porcelain, and enamel surfaces.
Mix a small amount of Bar Keepers Friend in water before applying it to the stained areas using a clean sponge or kitchen brush. Leave it on for 10-15 minutes before rinsing with warm water and drying with a soft cloth.
Method 3: Cream of Tartar
This is another popular home remedy that you can use to clean your enamel cookware. Simply mix a quarter of a teaspoon of cream of tartar with half a cup of regular baking soda, or two tablespoons of white vinegar.
Add the mixture to two cups of boiling water in a large pan and bring it back to boiling point before letting it simmer for 10 minutes on the stovetop. Afterward, leave the solution in the pot until it cools completely.
You should then be able to remove any stains from your pans by scrubbing them with a sponge or old toothbrush dipped into the liquid.
How to Clean Enamel Cookware in the Dishwasher
If you want to clean your enamel pots and pans quickly in the dishwasher, simply wash them on a lower heat setting or by themselves without any detergent. This method is not advised for aluminum or copper-bottomed cookware sets as high temperatures can damage their surfaces.
However, here are some tips you can use to reduce the chances of your enamel cookware being damaged by dishwasher cleaning.
Step 1: Fill the Dishwasher
Fill your dishwasher with clean water before adding your enamel pots and pans. Place them carefully so that they don’t knock against each other while being washed or you’ll risk chipping the enamel coating, which is more likely to happen if they are stacked up.
Step 2: Use a Lower Heat Setting
If you have an option on your dishwasher for heat settings, always opt for the lower temperature. Check what setting other people used when cleaning their enamel cookware in case that it might be too high which can damage the enamel coating of your pots and pans.
Step 3: Rinse Thoroughly After Washing
After washing, let the dishes cool down before removing them from the dishwasher. It’s important that you dry them completely before putting them away to ensure that they don’t have any water or detergent left on them which might damage the enamel coating over time.
Also, avoid using soap at all costs as this can leave soap scum on your cookware which might cause stains in the long run.
If you’re looking for a new dishwasher safe cookware, check out our top recommendations.
There are a number of different ways that you can use to clean your enamel cookware back to its original glory. Simply pick the method that you feel most comfortable with and follow the steps outlined above. Hopefully, after using the method you choose, your cookware will be left looking as good as new.