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Apr 5, 2009 08:22 PM

Blue stains on stainless steel pots...

We just bought a set of Kitchen Aid pots to replace the ancient mismatched ones that are at the end of their life. The first time we used them, we got terrible blue spots and smudges on them. It is not due to high heat [as Google seems to think ], because we used both pots to simmer ingredients on the lowest minimum setting [also, no acidic ingredients were in the pots]. As well, 1] baking soda, 2] vinegar, and 3] SOS pads did nothing to get rid of the stains [thanks for nothing again, Google!]. So, what gives? Why is it that my crappy, cheap 18/8 steel pots I bought/got as hand me downs never did this once [and I've scorched food on them many a time at the highest heat setting]? It's frustrating to finally have a set of matching, heavy gauge pots, only to have them lose their gorgeous shine and be stained the first time out! I figure if anyone can help me with this, Chowhounders can...

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  1. This, too, will pass. Whether you treat it or not.

    If you are impatient, try making a paste from white vinegar and cream of tartar, and use that to scrub the pot vigorously. After rinsing that out, pour some plain tomato juice into the pot and let it stand for a couple of hours. When you rinse the pot out the second time, the stain should be gone.

    1. As a last resort you might want to stop in a motorcycle shop. They sell stuff that removes those blue spots from chrome exhaust pipes. Maybe that will do it.

      1. I wouldn't worry too much about the blueish stains. This is often a result of cooking starchy things like rice, pasta... even beans will do it. The next time you cook something non-starchy they will likely go away. It does not affect performance and does not affect taste/flavor of your finished dish.

        I can add that you should be more concerned with the final, finished food product than with the looks of your pots & pans. Many people get hung up on polish and shiny things (we like shiny things though, huh!) from watching Food TV. Be aware that they receive brand new pots and pans for every single show so don't try to keep your pans looking "out of the package" new. Get used to lots of scratches and some oil stains. Consider them battle scars, not imperfections.

        1. I use Bar Keepers Friend and a Scotch Bright sponge. It has kept my 7 year old SS cookware looking brand new.

          1 Reply
          1. re: dsquarefla

            Bar Keepers Friend is one of my best friends. Not only does it keep my SS pots gleaming, but it works well on my old kitchen sink, dirty grout, and so many more things. I have never never 'scrubbed' my pots - BKF and a sponge is all I ever use --- and I am one of those people who love shiny polished cookware - including my copper.