How to Clean Hard Anodized Cookware Exterior (In Depth Guide)

Hard-anodized aluminum cookware is now one of the most popular cookware all around the world. It has taken its place in the modern kitchen for having a lightweight and durable body. It's also very much affordable for all. However, some are afraid of using hard-anodized cookware because of not knowing how to take care of it. This article offers a step by step guide on how to clean hard anodized cookware exterior.

Is it safe to use hard anodized cookware?

The hard anodizing process makes the aluminum cookware safe to use. The anodized aluminum contains only a tiny amount of aluminum that is not harmful to the human body.   However, you have to be careful with the heat when cooking on hard-anodized cookware.

How to Clean Hard Anodized Cookware's Exterior

Aluminum is a soft metal, and it is reactive to acidic foods. As aluminum is lightweight, it is used widely for making cookware. To solve the reactive problem, manufacturers found out that electrically hardening thickens the oxide layer, making the aluminum durable and safe from reacting to acidic contents. The coating is also non-sticky. 

How to Clean Hard Anodized Cookware's Exterior | Step by Step Guide

The hard anodized cookware exterior is smooth, and it also shines. It's essential to know how to clean hard anodized cookware exterior with caution and care to keep it looking like a new one for a longer time. Taking proper care of this cookware will benefit you in the long run, and you will have to spend less time on restoring the cookware. Here is a step by step process to clean the exterior of hard-anodized cookware.

Soak the pan in warm water: First and foremost, you will want to soak your hard anodized cookware in warm water for 15-30 minutes to soften the burn and grease that’s stuck on your cookware. This step will make the cleaning process a lot easier and gentle.

Use the right cleaners: Using appropriate cleaner is essential to retain the hard-anodized layer damage-free and keep the cookware looks shiny. For that, you will need to use gentle dishwashing soap or any gentle soap to clean the exterior. You also have to be gentle with the cookware while you clean.

Use gentle scrubber: To clean the hard-anodized cookware, avoid using scrubbers with harsh surfaces. This will damage the outer hardened oxidized layer, covering the cookware with scratches and make it look old. The scratched surface may also expose you to health hazards as aluminum is reactive to acidic food and hazardous when exposed to high heat. 

This can cause you to mix the aluminum with your food while cooking. So be very careful. Nylon scrubber, cleaning brush, or a dishcloth are good options for a gentle scrubber.

In case of burning the pan, use baking soda and water: If you happen to burn some of your cooking and it's stuck on the pan or pot, you have to be careful with the removal of burnt meals. For this kind of situation, baking soda and water solution is your best friend. 

The process is simple, make a water solution with a few tablespoons of baking soda and soak your scrubber in the solution for about half an hour. Clean the cookware and rinse. Rinse it carefully and well to remove all the burns and residue of the baking soda solution.

Benefits of Hard Anodized Cookware

Hard anodized cookware offers a great range of facilities. They are also elegant-looking, which is why almost all household and restaurant kitchens now have hard anodized cookware. Here are some benefits of hard anodized cookware for you to know and consider if you are thinking of buying them:

Benefits of Hard Anodized Cookware

  • Durable: Anodized aluminum is scratch-resistant; it doesn't peel or chip away easily. It's 80% stronger and stable than metal alloy. Although aluminum itself is soft, manufacturers have solved the problem with electrically hardening the outer oxide layer. This has made the cookware quite strong and durable.
  • Non-toxic and non-stick: The cookware's outer layer is hardened and smoothed with an electric hardening process, making it non-toxic also non-stick. Unlike Teflon, it doesn't use any chemical.
  • A great heat conductor: Hard anodized cookware spreads the heat evenly and perfectly, giving the user high-performance cooking benefit.
  • Easy to clean: The non-stick surface makes it harder for foods or grease to stick to the pan, so cleaning the cookware is quite easy.
  • Non Reactive: The Anodized surface protects the aluminum for reacting to foods and acidic content, making it safe for the human body.
  • Oven-safe: The hard anodized cookware is also oven and broiler safe. You can safely put the pan or pot in the oven or broiler when needed. 

Frequently asked questions

Below are answers to some of your most frequently asked questions regarding hard anodized cookware exterior: 

Can you use steel wool on hard anodized cookware?

Steel wool will cause scratch and damage to hard anodized cookware. You must not use steel wool and any oven cleaner on your hard anodized cookware.

Can you use metal utensils on hard anodized cookware?

You must not use metal utensils on hard anodized cookware. Chopping or cutting on hard anodized cookware with metal will damage the non-stick coating.

Is hard anodized cookware the same as Teflon?

It is not the same. Hard anodized is the electrical hardening process of the oxide layer on the aluminum. But Teflon is a coating of polytetrafluoroethylene on metal.

Can you put hard anodized cookware in the dishwasher?

The dishwasher detergent is harsh on the non-stick layer of hard-anodized cookware. So it’s not a good idea to put them in the dishwasher.

Final thought

In conclusion, a final tip to users is that you should oil your hard anodized cookware for long term use. And follow decay-free storage. The layer of oil will keep it safe from any scratch or damage.

This kind of cookware will give you a very comfortable and enjoyable cooking experience with such great benefits. We hope we could answer your question of how to clean hard anodized cookware exterior properly.

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