Non-stick pans are essential cookware that makes cooking more convenient and stress-free. You don’t have to exert much energy when cleaning a non-stick pan. However, nonstick pans tend to lose their nonstick properties over time, especially with careless use and improper maintenance. Below is why non-stick pans stick and how you can make your non-stick pans non-stick again.
This article will cover
- Why Non-stick Pans Are Popular Cookware
- Why Nonstick Pans Stick
- 3 Ways to Make Your Nonstick Pans Non-stick Again
- Tips For Using Non-stick Pans
Why Non-stick Pans Are Popular Cookware
Non-stick pans are cooking or baking pans that food doesn’t stick to. They are popular cookware, as you will find them in most private and commercial kitchens. There are many reasons why many people find them useful, but some are listed below.
Non-stick pans are cost-efficient. Non-stick pans are excellent heat conductors with uniform heat distribution, providing consistent cooking results. They are energy-saving, as you don’t need much heat to cook your food.
Also, they are durable and affordable. They come in different price ranges. If you want top-notch cookware on a low budget, consider buying a non-stick pan. In terms of durability, they last longer with proper use and care.
You need little to no fat when cooking your foods in non-stick pans. They are naturally non-stick, so you don’t need to grease the pans before using them. Since most of your cooking is oil-free, the rate at which you consume fats is reduced.
Even though fat is essential for your health, it should be consumed in moderation. Consuming excessive fat can lead to an increased calorie intake, which can contribute to various health conditions. Non-stick pans help to promote a healthy lifestyle by reducing the amount of oil you use.
Easy to clean
Pans that aren’t non-stick are challenging to clean because food gets stuck on the cooking surfaces. Sometimes, you have to soak the pans in water for some time or exert much energy scrubbing g the pan’s surface before you can remove the food residues.
This isn’t the case with non-stick pans. Food doesn’t get stuck on non-stick pans, which makes them easy to clean. Cleaning only requires warm soapy water and a soft sponge.
Non-stick pans are stylish and well-designed. They are unlike other cookware whose polish gets duller day by day till it becomes hideous. Displaying your non-stick pans in your kitchen makes it elegant and classy. Their aesthetic value doesn’t diminish with proper use and maintenance.
Why Nonstick Pans Stick
In as much as durable non-stick pans are, you can damage their non-stick properties with improper use. They aren’t immune to bad practices like overheating, cleaning them with harsh agents, not seasoning them at all or improper seasoning, etc.
One primary rule you need to note when using non-stick pans is that they aren’t made for high heat. Using your non-stick pans on high heat will lead to overheating, and this will destroy the non-stick properties of your pan.
Also, if the coating of the pans’ cooking surfaces isn’t strong, overheating can cause the release of dangerous fumes. Always use your non-stick pans on low heat. If you want to cook foods that require high heat, use a stainless steel pan instead.
Applying cooking spray on non-stick pans
Even though cooking spray enhances the performance of your cookware, it isn’t suitable for use on non-stick pans. It causes buildup on your pans. With time, this buildup becomes challenging to remove and destroys the non-stick surface of your pans. You should use oil or butter instead of cooking spray.
Cleaning your non-stick pans with harsh agents
Non-stick pans need to be tenderly handled. Their non-stick properties make food easily slip off their cooking surfaces, which makes them easier to clean. As such, you don’t need to exert much energy to clean a non-stick pan, nor do you need harsh cleaning agents like steel wool, hard sponge, etc.
Mild soap and a soft cloth or dish towel are enough for cleaning your non-stick pans if you don’t want the cooking surfaces to start peeling.
Non-seasoning of your non-stick pans
Unlike other types of cookware, such as cast-iron pans, non-stick pans generally do not need to be seasoned regularly to maintain their non-stick properties.
This polymerized oil forms a plastic-like layer on your pans’ cooking surfaces and makes them resistant to scratching and sticking. If you don’t season your pans at all or not as required, their non-stick properties will start to break down.
3 Ways to Make Your Nonstick Pans Non-stick Again
If your non-stick pan starts to stick, it may be time to consider whether it needs to be replaced. You can save money by restoring them, which means that you repair the coating so that the pans will be non-stick again. However, it’s important to know when to throw away non-stick pans.
1. Non-stick coating sprays
One of the easiest ways to make your non-stick pan non-stick again is to apply a non-stick coating spray to its cooking surface. Non-stick coating sprays can be found in local stores or online, but ensure you get a good one.
Before you apply the coating spray on the pan, wash, rinse and dry the pan thoroughly. Ensure you use the coating spray evenly across the pan’s cooking surface to form a thick layer. You can either place the pan on your stovetop and set the heat to medium or heat it in your oven. Let the pan cool before you rewash it. After this, your pan will be non-stick again.
Another way to make your non-stick pan non-stick again is to season the pan. You do this by applying oil such as coconut oil to the pan’s surface evenly and place the pan on medium heat or in the oven.
Ensure the oil isn’t too much and the heat isn’t high. Heat the pan until the oil starts to smoke. After, remove the pan from your stovetop or the oven and let it cool before wiping the excess fat with a soft cloth. Your non-stick pan won’t stick again.
You can also heat some salt in your non-stick pan until it starts to smoke and becomes dark brown. Throw away the discolored salt and rub the pan’s surface with some oil and a dish towel until it shines.
3. Hire a pan coating specialist
If you don’t want to go through the stress of applying non-stick coating spray to your pan’s surface or seasoning it with oil and salt, you can take the pan to a pan coating professional or reach out to the manufacturer.
If your warranty is still on, you can get a free repair or replacement from the manufacturer. If not, you have to use the services of the coating professional, which will cost you more.
Tips For Using Non-stick Pans
Only proper use and care can make your non-stick pans maintain their non-stick properties for long. Some basic rules to follow when using non-stick pans include:
Avoid storing food in your non-stick pans
Many people leave cooked food in their non-stick pans after cooking. This is wrong. Non-stick pans aren’t suitable for storing food. Use other containers to store food instead. Storing foods in non-stick pans can cause degradation of the pan’s surface or change the taste of your food, especially if the food is acidic. Don’t turn your non-stick pans into food storage containers.
Use the right utensils
Not every utensil is suitable with the non-stick cooking surface of your non-stick pans. For instance, most non-stick pans aren’t resistant to the scratches metal utensils cause on their cooking surfaces.
Even though some manufacturers find nothing wrong with using metal utensils, you should note that not all metal utensils are equally sharp. Some have rougher edges than others. Don’t use metal spoons, knives, whisks, forks, etc., with your non-stick pans. All it takes the pans’ non-stick coating to peel off is just a scratch. To be on the safe side, use silicone, plastic, or bamboo utensils.
Improper storage destroys the non-stick properties of your non-stick pans. Don’t stack all the pans in your kitchen carelessly on top of one another. Ensure that you reduce contact with the non-stick cooking surfaces of your pans as much as possible.
You can pad the pans before you stack them on top of one another, or you install racks on your kitchen walls or cabinet doors to hold up your pans’ handles.
Avoid instant temperature change
Instant temperature change causes your non-stick pans to warp. Allow your pans to cool down from a hot state before cleaning them in water to avoid rapid temperature changes that could damage the pans. Warping destroys the heat distribution and non-stick properties of nonstick pans. Besides, cooking in a warped non-stick pan makes cooking stressful.
Non-stick pans make cooking more convenient and practical. To preserve the non-stick nature of these pans, you have to season them regularly, avoid exposing them to high heat or applying cooking sprays on them, use the proper utensils with them, etc. Also, you can always restore a sticking non-stick pan back to its original state.
Michael Johnson is the founder of The Pan Handler, Inspired by his blacksmith grandfather’s legacy has a deep appreciation for hand-crafted pots and pans, he provides invaluable guides, reviews, and recipes to enhance your culinary journey.