Cheap and Easy Solution for Burnt on Sugar

Cheap and Easy Solution for Burnt on Sugar: Vinegar

 It's a miracle!  I happened to make some caramels for Christmas this year, and I burnt the first batch.  (Incidentally, the second batch turned out great.)  This left my stainless steel pan caked with burnt sugar.  I tried boiling water on the stove.  It didn't work.  I tried letting it soak overnight with dish detergent and water in it.  No luck.  I also tried a scouring pad.  Again, a failure.  Then I put enough vinegar in the pan to coat the bottom of it and I let it soak overnight.  The next day I thought, "Well, this failed too, as none of the residue lifted." So I poured out the vinegar and left the pot for more tending after work.  I never rinsed the pot out!  When I arrived home the burnt sugar had lifted from the pan and it was perfectly clean.  I just had to open up the trash and throw away the dried up burnt sugar.  So, to clean burnt on sugar:

  1. Pour enough vinegar in a pan to cover the affected area (the burnt sugar);
  2. Let the vinegar sit  overnight;
  3. Pour out the vinegar in the morning; 
  4. DO NOT RINSE THE PAN; and
  5. Let the remaining vinegar and sugar dry; and
  6. It should fall right off the pan. 
I'm not sure why this worked, however, it is a great trick! :) Good luck with your pan!