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How to Remove the Black From a Frying Pan

Cookware manufacturers make frying pans in a variety of metals, ranging from copper to aluminum to stainless steel. Some frying pans develop black marks because of burnt-on foods. Black marks occur on aluminum frying pans from acidic foods. Acidic foods cause a chemical reaction with uncoated aluminum, leaving behind a dark, dull gray or black stain. Using a frying pan with a discoloration is anything but appetizing, making black stain removal necessary.

Aluminum Frying Pans -- Cream of Tartar

Clean the black marks off frying pans to return the shine.

Step 1

Fill the frying pan with enough water to cover the black marks.

Step 2

Add 2 to 3 tbsp. cream of tartar for each 4 cups of water.

Step 3

Turn the stove on and let the water come to a boil. Let the water boil for 10 minutes.

Step 4

Pour the water out of the aluminum frying pan and let the frying pan cool.

Step 5

Wash the frying pan with dish soap and rinse well. Dry with a dishcloth.

Aluminum Frying Pans -- White Vinegar

Step 1

Add water to the aluminum frying pan, covering the black marks.

Step 2

Pour 1 to 2 tbsp. of white vinegar for every 4 cups of water into the frying pan.

Step 3

Bring the water to a boil for five minutes.

Step 4

Pour the water out of the aluminum frying and allow it to cool to room temperature.

Step 5

Wash the aluminum frying pan in warm soapy water, rinse and dry it with a dishcloth.

Copper-Bottom Frying Pans

Step 1

Pour 1 to 2 tbsp. of ketchup into a small bowl.

Step 2

Dip the corner of a clean, soft rag into the ketchup.

Step 3

Apply a layer of ketchup over the black marks, using the rag. Let the ketchup sit on the copper surface for 15 to 20 minutes.

Step 4

Wash the ketchup off the copper with dish soap, rinse well with water and dry the frying pan thoroughly with a dishcloth.

Stainless Steel

Step 1

Wet the black with water.

Step 2

Sprinkle baking soda over the black marks.

Step 3

Wet a soft scrub brush or nylon scrubbing pad with water.

Step 4

Scrub the black marks until they disappear.

Step 5

Rinse the baking soda residue off the stainless steel frying pan. Wash the frying pan with dish soap, rinse it with water and dry with a dishcloth.

Things You Will Need

  • Cream of tartar
  • Dish soap
  • Dishcloth
  • White vinegar
  • Ketchup
  • Bowl
  • Rag
  • Baking soda
  • Scrub brush or nylon scrubbing-pad

Tips

  • Wet a melamine foam sponge with water, squeeze out the water and wipe stains on any type of frying pan.
  • Clean aluminum frying pans frequently to avoid a buildup of black marks.

Warnings

  • Do not attempt to clean hot frying pans; always allow them to cool to room temperature before cleaning.
  • Avoid using scouring powders or steel wool to clean black marks on frying pans; abrasive cleaners may scratch the pan.

About the Author

Sal Marco began writing professionally in 2009. He has written many online home improvement articles based on his more than 20 years of experience in the home improvement and building industries. He has worked as both part of a team and as a site supervisor. Marco has a Bachelor of Science in management science from Kean University.

Photo Credits

  • BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images