Removing caramel off pots and pansCaramel can be almost as much fun to make, as it is to eat.

Unfortunately, it can be almost as messy to make, as it is to eat.

Once caramel hardens to your pots, it can seem an impossible task to get your pots completely clean.

Fortunately, there are a few methods for cleaning hardened caramel from your pots that are as easy as they are effective.

This article will present a few of the most popular methods, listing easy to follow steps for each one, thus giving you the secrets to quick and easy cleanup each and every time.

Method 1: Freezer method

Anyone who has made caramel knows that there are certain elements of chemistry at work in the process.

Simple ingredients turn from one texture to another, as if by some sort of alchemical magic.

Once caramel hardens, scrubbing is completely ineffective.

Never fear, the same chemistry that created the problem also provides the solution.

Carmel becomes very brittle in cold temperatures. Thus, to remove hardened caramel you can use the following freezer method:

  • First, remove as much caramel from the pan as possible through soaking and using a kitchen chisel.
  • Once you have removed all that will come out, place the whole pan into your freezer. Give the pan a full two hours in the freezer in order to ensure that the caramel is completely frozen.
  • After the two hours, remove the pan and use your kitchen chisel to remove the caramel. The brittle caramel should come out easily.

Method 2: Hot water method

If you are fortunate enough to clean your pot before the caramel has completely solidified, then the hot water method may be enough for you.

This method is designed to prevent the caramel from becoming rock hard, using hot water to dissolve it as much as possible.

The steps for the hot water method are:

  • Fill your pot with enough hot water to cover all of the caramel residue. Let the pot soak for an hour.
  • Empty the water from the pot. This should remove most, if not all of the caramel. If any caramel remains, repeat the process using even hotter water.
  • In the event that caramel residue still remains, fill your pot with enough water to cover all the caramel, then place on the stove and bring to a medium high heat. Be careful to not allow the water to boil. Simmer for a minimum of 10 minutes, before emptying and cleaning. This should remove all but the hardest of caramel residues.

Method 3: Club soda method

This method is best for when you have just finished making the caramel, while the pot is still warm.

Using club soda will help prevent the caramel from hardening, and thus save you considerable hassle.

The steps for the club soda method are:

  • Fill your pot with club soda while it is still warm.
  • Allow the pot to soak in the club soda for 15 minutes.
  • After soaking, but before dumping the club soda out, scrub the pot with a scrubby pad.
  • Finally, empty the pot of the club soda and the caramel remnants. Remove any remaining caramel with a damp cloth.


These three easy methods for cleaning caramel from your pots and pans will give you options for the various stages of cleanup.

As well as helping you to remove rock solid caramel residue, these methods will help you prevent the caramel hardening in the first place.

Now, you can make caramel with greater peace of mind!