Pots and Pans in the dishwasher

by Yamikuronue   Last Updated October 11, 2018 08:17 AM - source

Settle a longstanding feud in our household for me: is it safe to put pots and pans in the dishwasher?

Assume we have both stainless steel and various non-stick pans. Assume we have frypans, sauce-pots, and larger pots that would conceivably fit, but we're not talking about cast iron pans here, or bakeware. The answer may differ based on the type of pan specifically being used, but assume all boxes and manuals have been lost since we bought the pans and we don't know if it's rated for the dishwasher.

Answers 4

There is no problem with putting either stainless steel or non-stick pans in the dishwasher in terms of their materials. However:

  • Non-stick pans are often better washed gently by hand without too much soap, so they retain a bit of oil. This helps them stay non-stick. You may note that a dishwashed non-stick pan is quite sticky the first time you use it after a wash.

  • Non-stick pans hold odours quite readily. Many dishwasher soaps are quite strongly scented, and this can be retained in the pan itself, and thus transferred to your food when it's heated up. I remember well a batch of marinara sauce with a noticeable lemon-fresh overtone!

  • Dishwashers knock everything around while they work. If your pans' handles are sturdy this shouldn't be an issue, but you can find that handles can loosen up after a few bouts in the dishwasher.

So, in summary, yes, you can put pots and pans in the dishwasher, with caution. Personally I put my Ikea stainless steel pans with welded handles in without a second thought, but I reserve my non-stick Tefals with bolted handles for hand-washing.

Go not to the Elves for advice, for they will say both no and yes

June 12, 2014 13:47 PM

I've been under the impression that placing pots and pans in the dishwasher will reduce their lifetime. However true that may be, in the overall lifespan of the pots or pans the difference is negligible.

In my experience with non-stick pans, they will wear out from normal use before the dishwasher will wear them out. I usually replace my pans every 2 years depending on use with commercial ones. They're not super expensive to replace, and the convenience of having a good coating is worth it.

What's nice about non-stick, as the name implies, they're really easy to hand wash. As a result they're the last thing I'll put in the dishwasher, but if I'm swamped with things to clean then in they go!

Stainless Steel follows the same rule, hand wash preferred but dishwasher safe. I've had a stainless steel pan for 3+ years now and it's still going strong, handle is well attached and the surface is smooth to the touch. I reserve stainless steel for more heavy duty cooking, such as situations where I make a reduction sauce, foods that require even cooking or anything that could damage non-stick pans. While the dishwasher works, it does a poor job of cleaning the pan and dulls the finish.

What I also find with stainless steel pans is they need an occasional thorough cleaning to remove built up residue. One culprit of such residue is making hash browns at a high temperature--after 7 days in a row of this the pan will get a thin sticky gold buildup. A little bit of elbow grease and acid cleaner like Bar Keepers Friend will remove the majority of this buildup.

So in summary...

Non-stick: Dishwasher safe, hand wash preferred and easy to do. Replace when the coating starts to wear.

Stainless: Dishwasher safe, hand wash preferred and gets the pan cleaner. Occasionally clean thoroughly by hand with Bar Keepers Friend to regain stainless finish.

June 12, 2014 19:27 PM

Depends on how you value your pans and the detergent you are using. If they are cheap and old, then toss them in the dishwasher. If they are expensive and new, it probably doesn't make sense to risk it. Lodge claims that over time the harsh detergents can cause spotting and discoloration in stainless cookware.

If you are specifically using stainless and non stick, I can't imagine you are saving much time by putting them in the dishwasher - assuming you are seasoning your stainless pans properly.

You can easily maintain a good seasoning on stainless steel frying pans so that they require nothing more than a rinse and an occasional (soap-free) wipe down after use. If your non-stick pans are in reasonable condition, this should be the case for them as well.

June 12, 2014 21:18 PM

as i have a canteen for the college hostel, for pot and pans washing man power is not available. this apart, i prepare four thousand meals a day. that's why look for a pot washer instead of depending on the people.

niranjan jena
niranjan jena
October 11, 2018 07:03 AM

Related Questions

How can I clean dark non-stick pots (e.g. Calphalon)?

Updated November 15, 2017 11:17 AM

Is Bar Keeper's friend safe to use on cookware?

Updated August 05, 2015 14:07 PM

How to clean an all-clad stainless steel pan

Updated June 06, 2015 23:07 PM