How Do I Remove Stains From Aluminum Pans?

Aluminium cookware is popular in the kitchen due to price and ease of cleaning. Despite the low-maintenance needs of aluminium cookware, stains will occur after cooking. Remove stains from aluminium cookware using proper supplies and techniques in order to maintain the appearance and condition of the aluminium pans. A few simple supplies from home are all that's needed, rather than expensive, often chemical-laden supplies from the store.

Measure and pour 2 tbsp cream of tartar into an aluminium pan and add 1 quart of water. Stir the two ingredients together and bring them to a boil. Allow the cream of tartar solution to boil for 10 minutes as it removes mild discolourations and restores sparkle.

Pour out the cream of tartar solution and wash it down the drain. Rinse the aluminium pan with warm water.

Tackle remaining stains or dark discoloured areas with a mixture of 4 tsp white vinegar and 1 quart water. Boil the solution in the aluminium pan for two to three minutes.

Rinse the aluminium pan with cool water. Fill the kitchen sink with warm water and a few drops of mild hand dish washing liquid. Wash the aluminium pan with a clean sponge and the soapy solution.

Use cool water to rinse the aluminium pan and dry it with a clean dish towel. Allow the pan to air dry the remainder of the way, after drying as much as possible with the towel, before putting the pan away.


Clean stains from aluminium pans promptly so they don't have time to become baked or cooked on.


Avoid using abrasive cleansers or cleaning tools on aluminium pans so the surface doesn't get scratched.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 tbsp cream of tartar
  • Wooden spoon
  • 4 tsp white vinegar
  • Mild hand dish washing detergent
  • Sponge
  • Clean towel
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About the Author

Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.