How to clean stainless steel pans so they look like new

Ready to scramble some (herbal) eggs? You pull out your handy stainless steel skillet, only to see it’s riddled with grease buildup, stains, and other residue. So you drop it in the sink and you try everything to remove residue. Nothing seems to work.

Just because your stainless steel cookware has those stubborn stains doesn’t mean it’s destined for the trash. Instead of stocking up on new kitchen utensils, you can revamp what you already have with a simple cleaning hack.

Here’s how to clean stainless steel pans so they look like new and you don’t have to to buy New.

How to Clean Stainless Steel Pans

According to Nicole Modi, alias @kalejunkie on TikTok, it’s the only natural hack that will get rid of those stubborn stains and residue. And it will leave your stainless steel pans looking like new.

With a few simple ingredients (which you probably already have in the pantry), you’ll have what she says looks like a “science experiment.” Plus, it only takes five short and simple steps. Follow the instructions below to clean stainless steel pans like a pro.

What do you need:

half a lemon
Baking soda
White vinegar


1. First, squeeze half a lemon into your dirty stainless steel pan. Add the zest to the pan and don’t worry about the seeds.

2. Pour in your baking soda and white vinegar.

3. Place your pan on the stove and turn up the heat. Bring the mixture to a boil and let it melt away all those yucky stains.

4. Stir for about a minute. Yes, just a minute.

5. Rinse the pan under running water and watch the magic happen. Your spots will disappear in seconds.

Additionally, if you notice that even your nonstick cookware has residue buildup, Modic says you can use baking soda and olive oil to remove stains. Rub in gently and you’re good to go.

These hacks aren’t just great for your stainless steel pans, they’re great for the environment and keep you from throwing away old products that still have some use. Moreover, this hack saves you from breaking the bank.

If you’re looking for more ways to make your kitchen sustainable, check out our favorite eco-friendly kitchen swaps.

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