Cleaning burnt grease from frying pans

  • By: Emma
  • Date: May 19, 2022
  • Time to read: 6 min.

Cleaning burnt grease from frying pans

Few things could be more annoying than burnt grease on the bottom of your frying pan. Today, I will show some very easy-to-follow homemade solutions for cleaning the bottom of your frying pans. So, if you reached this page searching for cleaning burnt grease from frying pans, then you will surely get some help here.

There are plenty of tutorials and proven solutions available on the web; what is so special about the tips I will share here? Well, I kept in mind two factors while writing this article for you. These factors are:

  • You should be able to clean the bottom of the frying pan without using any potentially dangerous chemicals.
  • You should be able to clean the bottom of the frying pans with the items which are almost always available in your kitchen.

How to clean burnt grease from the bottom of frying pans with baking soda?

Step 1: Mix baking soda in water

You would need 3 tablespoons of baking soda and one tablespoon of water. Mix the baking soda and the water in a bowl. With the help of a spoon, prepare a paste of the two ingredients in the bowl.

Step 2: Apply the paste on the burnt spots

Take a moist sponge and cover it with the paste. You can also use a damp cloth instead of a sponge. Then apply the paste to the bottom of your frying pan where there are some burnt spots. In case you have some very stubborn burnt spots, then you may have to apply more amount of baking soda-water mixture to those areas. This is because baking soda has been observed to be most helpful in removing even the toughest stains from metal surfaces.

Step 3: Increase the volume of paste if needed.

The 3:1 ratio of baking soda and water should be good enough for a small to medium-sized pan. For a larger pan, you must increase the two ingredients in the same ratio.

Step 4: Always apply the paste on the cold frying pan surface.

This step is critical. You would apply that paste to the bottom of the frying pan. However, make sure that the frying pan is not hot. This paste does not work on a hot frying pan surface, and you may end up burning your hand on a hot pan.

Step 4: Wait for 10-12 hours (overnight)

Some people suggest leaving the paste on the frying pan for 3-6 hours. However, we suggest you wait for at least 10-12 hours (overnight). The paste will gradually loosen the grease on the frying pan.

Step 5: Wash the frying pan, repeat if needed.

In the morning, clean the frying pan with a damp cloth. This should remove the loose grease on the frying pan. Applying the baking soda paste for 10-12 hours should get you the desired results. However, if the grease persists, repeat the baking soda paste application one more time.


  • Make sure the baking soda paste is still wet when you apply it to the bottom of the pan. If it dries up, it will be far less effective.
  • Do not rush it. Leave the past for 10-12 hours, especially if the grease is thick.

How to clean burnt grease from the bottom of frying pans with vinegar?

Do you remember the acidic nature of vinegar? This is precisely why vinegar could cut through the grease and stains if appropriately used. Here are the key steps of how to clean burnt grease from the bottom of frying pans with vinegar.

Step 1: Cover the bottom of a sink with vinegar

Take a bottle of vinegar and pour it into your sink until the bottom of the sink is covered with vinegar. The idea is to have so much vinegar in the sink that the frying pan’s bottom can be submerged in it.

Step 2: Soak the frying pan in vinegar

Take your frying pan, immerse it into the sink, and allow the burnt grease to loosen. Let it sit in the sink for an hour or two. The acidity of the vinegar will cut through the grease on the bottom of your pan easily. If you do not have a large sink, you can use a large bowl instead of a sink too.

Step 3: Clean with water whatever is left over

Using clean water scrub off whatever loose bits are still there using your fingers or using a sponge. Don’t be scared if some pieces fall down from the frying pan into your sink/bowl – just leave them there until they dissolve into the vinegar. When done let everything dry for a while.

Step 4: Scrub the softened grease

The acidic vinegar would soften the grease in 1-2 hours. Now, use a toothbrush or a scrubbing pad to remove the loosened grease. Additionally, use a bar of dishwashing soap to wash the pan.

Step 5: Use cooking oil to polish the pan surface

Take a piece of paper towel and wipe off all remaining bits from your frying pan’s surface. If there are some stubborn spots, take a little cooking oil and confirm them again with a paper towel. This is how you can clean burnt grease from the bottom of frying pans with vinegar so quickly and effectively.

Additional tip

In most cases, the method mentioned above of using vinegar alone should work. But some stains could be adamant even for vinegar. In such cases, you would need to add abrasive vinegar. And what could be a better coarse ingredient in your kitchen than table salt?  

After you have submerged the pan’s bottom in vinegar for at least one hour, pour a lot of salt on the bottom of the pan. Now, scrub the pan with a scrubbing pad or toothbrush. The abrasive nature of salt will cut through the grease vigorously.

In the end, wash the pan with a bar of dishwashing soap.


Never submerge any electrical part of your pan (in the case of electric pans or skillets) in any liquid (unless otherwise advised in the user manual). These homemade solutions are primarily meant for standard non-electrical pans.

How to clean burnt grease from the bottom of frying pans with Ketchup?

What if you do not even have vinegar in your kitchen? Well, I bet you will still have Ketchup in your fridge or on your dining table. But can we clean the bottom of the frying pan with Ketchup? Yes! We can.

But how does Ketchup clean the bottom of the frying pan? Well, Ketchup has an ingredient called ‘acetic acid’ in it. Ketchup has a pH value of nearly 3.9. The acidic nature of Ketchup can cut through the carbon that accumulates on the bottom of the frying pan during cooking.

So, let us get to the simple steps of cleaning burnt grease from frying pans using ketchup.

Step 1: Apply Ketchup to the frying pan

Use a generous amount of Ketchup to cover the bottom of your frying pan fully. Make sure you do not have any leftover bits of food on the bottom. If there is any, remove them with a spoon and then apply Ketchup to the frying pan.

Step 2: Let Ketchup work for half an hour

Take a paper towel and soak it in water; then keep it on top of the Ketchup that you applied to the bottom of your frying pan. This will prevent fumes from releasing into your home kitchen while Ketchup works its magic on removing burnt grease from the frying pan.

Step 2: Leave overnight

Leave it like this for half an hour or so (you can also leave it overnight). You may be surprised to see how quickly ketchup penetrates through the carbon layer on the fried pan by this time! After you are done with half an hour, take the paper towel out of the pan.

Step 3: Wash it off using water

Using clean water wash away whatever is leftover from the frying pan. Make sure you scrub all bits of dried ketchup on your frying pan’s surface to make it look shiny again. After rinsing, use a paper towel to rub off any loose bits that are still there. Once done leave it upside down on a paper towel for some more time so that the remaining water gets dried up.

Final Thoughts

It is time to understand the proper cleaning tips for your cookware. Time to clean burnt grease from frying pans. Now, with these simple and quick tricks, you can clean burnt grease in a matter of time. Given the problems that we face with oil splashes and oily food, it is important that we take care of our kitchen tools too. The best way to do that is using these easy and natural kitchen cleaning techniques instead of using chemically loaded products (which are mostly harmful). We hope this article was interesting enough for you!

Happy cleaning!

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