Dish Scrubbing Tips

I have a problem. Whenever I make stir fry, tortillas, pasta sauce, or et cetera, I have this bad tendency of burning the food onto the pan or pot. Even though I have tried not to, hard to clean pans end up sitting on the counter multiple times a week.  As you might guess, dishwashing scrubbers are one of the first items for which I am wanting to save money. Today’s experiment: Dish Scrubbing Tips.

In our home, our scrubbing supplies are limited to three items: stainless steel scrubbers, Scotch-Brite scouring pads, and baking soda. Yes, that’s it. Well, actually throw in some good old-fashioned elbow grease too (provided by my husband).

Stainless Steel Scrubbers
These durable little scrubbers are good to use on pots and pans that are just plain old metal.  They’ll scratch off Teflon, so keep these powerful little puppies away from your nonstick pans. We use this variety of scrubber the most.

I bought a package of three for a dollar at Wal-Mart and we went through them very quickly.  That was before I had my moment of brilliance. Why not cut them into smaller pieces? I anticipate stretching my dollar much farther this time. Simply stretch the scrubber out and clip with kitchen shears.

These last for multiple scrubbings, being metal and all. Simply rinse off the gunk and air dry before you store them. They’ll go bad more quickly if you put them under the sink while wet because the steel rusts.

Scotch-Brite Scouring Pads
This is the same idea as the stainless steel except it’s great for using on nonstick pans, ceramics, crock pots, and anything that you’re afraid could not handle the harsh abrasion of the stainless steel.

Make these guys last longer too. Cut the squares into smaller pieces. You can also use these multiple times, but I haven’t been able to use them as long as a stainless steel scrubber. After several uses, they retain the gunk you’ve scraped off the pan and lose their scratchiness. Because the weave is so close, they are harder to get completely clean.

Baking Soda
Baking soda is amazing. Not only is it cheap, but it will make your metals shine like you’ve never known.

But, how, you ask, is it effective for scrubbing burnt food off of pans? Let me tell you a story.

One day, this sweet, little homemaker decided to make her husband his favorite meal, Ginger Chicken. While making her husband the delicious Ginger Chicken, she burned chicken, cornstarch, oil, and onions to her pan. Oh, no! What to do?

Have no fear! She quickly grabbed her box of baking soda, sprinkled a generous coating onto the oily mess and let it sit out overnight. The next morning, she used a washcloth to wipe the mess away. Success!

I’ve looked it up and the baking soda works because it absorbs the oils keeping the junk stuck to the pan. Thank you, Baking Soda! You’re great!

From my home to yours, scouring saving 101.  Enjoy!

5 thoughts on “Dish Scrubbing Tips”

  1. I save used aluminum foil…wad it up and scrub your pan, works just like, NO…even better…than the stainless steel scrubbers. :^D

  2. I hear the overnight with baking soda and water trick works. But i can never wait that long to use my rescued pot or pan again. I do not have that many.

    This is quicker…Cover the scorched mess on the bottom of the pot or pan with a liberal amount of baking soda and a couple of cups of water. Boil for ten minutes. Allow to cool. The scorch slides right out when washed with the dish rag.

    For double duty, pour the soda water mess into a strainer over the sink drain. Follow with a white vinegar chaser to clean the drain.

  3. I think it helps to use netting in lieu of the cloth with the baking soda. Just make a ball out of net or if you want to tear up your hands, lol, you can crochet a dish rag out of net strips. The net is abrasive enough for any stickies but gentle enough to not scratch.

  4. Hi!
    Just have one tip I think is so smart every time I do it I smile!!

    It is an old tip, but still quite useful. When I am thru using an SOS pad (or one like it), I put the perfectly good soapy pad in a baggie and freeze it. Next time I need it I just pull it out and use again (and again!)

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