Bundt pans are notoriously difficult to keep clean because of their intricate shapes. When remnants of the cake mixture get burnt onto the pan this adds an extra layer of difficulty, but it’s essential that bundt pans are clean when you bake with them because a dirty pan can cause the cake batter to stick to the sides. You might be tempted to scrub a burnt bundt pan to get it clean, but in doing this you run the risk of scrubbing away the non-stick layer on the pan, which would also cause issues.
Instead, the best way to clean a bundt pan is to be gentle and use natural cleaning products such as baking soda. Avoid putting the bundt pan in a dishwasher, and try to deal with any cleaning as soon as possible.
Here we look at tips in more detail that will help to extend the lifespan of your bundt pan.
Tips for Cleaning a Bundt Pan
The way that you clean your bundt pan can make a big difference to the performance of your pan during baking, and its longevity of the pan.
Using harsh cleaners can cause scratches to aluminum pans, and they can also cause non-stick coating to disintegrate, or cause build-up which interferes with the non-stick properties. The best way to clean a bundt pan with burnt stains is with gentle, natural methods.
Time is of the essence
When it comes to cleaning a bundt pun, time is of the essence. Don’t leave a dirty bundt pan in the sink to deal with later, because your cleaning is going to be much more effective when the stains or burnt-on crumbs are fresh. After you’ve baked a bundt cake and removed it from the pan, the cake will need to cool to room temperature before it can be glazed or iced.
Take this opportunity while your cake cools to clean your bundt pan. Start by wiping out any crumbs or cake residue with a paper towel, and then set the pan in a bowl of hot soapy water. Use a minimal amount of dish soap, and let it soak in the water for a few minutes before wiping out the inside of the pan. If the bundt pan is heavily soiled, you can leave it to soak overnight.
Most good bundt pans have a non-stick coating which helps to ensure that baked cakes come out of the pan in one piece. If you are too hard on your bundt pan when cleaning it then the non-stick coating can deteriorate. You should avoid using scouring pads on a bundt pan, as these will act like sandpaper on the inside of your pan.
Instead, if you have particularly burnt-on patches in the bundt pan, you can clean these with an old toothbrush or a bottle brush. These are more gentle, and the smaller nature of these brushes will also allow you to clean the more awkward crevices inside the pan.
Use natural products
A lot of cleaning products we use in the home, and especially in the kitchen, are filled with harsh chemicals which can cause the non-stick coating on your pan to deteriorate. Some cleaners can actually cause build-up on the bundt pans which will also interfere with the non-stick properties of the pan.
Avoid using chemical cleaners on bundt pans, and instead, try natural cleaning products. These will be more gentle on your bundt pans, and they also have the added benefits of being more gentle on your hands, on the environment, and on your bank balance.
Products that you probably already have in the pantry can make excellent natural cleaners for bundt pans, such as baking soda, white vinegar, and lemon juice.
Avoid the dishwasher
Some bundt pans will advertise themselves as being suitable for cleaning in the dishwasher, but it is advisable to avoid putting any type of bundt pan in the dishwasher. Dishwasher detergent is extremely powerful, and though it will undoubtedly get your bundt pans sparkling clean, it can also cause the integrity of the pan to deteriorate.
If you run your bundt pan through the dishwasher then you will effectively be shortening its lifespan, and you can expect to have to buy a new pan to replace it much sooner than is normal.
If you treat a good bundt pan properly then it can last for many years and even decades. When put through a dishwasher cycle frequently, some bundt pans will not last more than a year.
Cleaning a Bundt Pan Naturally
Using natural products to clean a bundt pan will help extend the lifespan of your pan, effectively saving money in the long run and preventing unnecessary waste.
Baking soda is a mild abrasive, so it can help to scrub away baked on crumbs without causing any damage or scratching the pan. If soaking your dirty bundt pan in hot soapy water hasn’t loosened the burnt-on crust from your bundt pan, sprinkle baking soda onto the problem areas and gently rub it in with a sponge until the pan is clean. As well as being a mild abrasive, baking soda is alkaline, which helps to neutralize any acidic burnt residue.
Baking soda and lemon juice
If baking soda alone isn’t getting your bundt pans clean, you can add an acidic natural product to give it more power. Sprinkle baking soda onto the dry bundt pan and then use half of a lemon instead of a scrubbing brush to work the baking soda into the pan.
The acidity of the lemon juice will mix with the alkalinity of the baking soda and cause it to fizz, helping to remove the toughest burnt stains. Squeeze extra juice from the lemon onto the pan and rub it in to clean the pan.
Baking soda and white vinegar
If you don’t have a lemon, white vinegar can also be used as a natural acidic cleaning product. Sprinkle baking powder onto the dirty bundt pan, and then add a few drops of white vinegar on top so that it fizzes. Allow it to fizz for a few minutes or even for several hours, and then scrub it in with a gentle scrubbing sponge.
Cleaning a Bundt Pan with Cleaning Products
There are some chemical cleaning products that are suitable for use on bundt pans, though use extra caution when cleaning any bundt pans with a non-stick coating.
A degreasing dish soap is a simple and effective cleaner for burnt stains on bundt pans. Add a few drops to a sink full of hot water and let the pan soak in the soapy water. Tough stains may need a few hours of soaking, and the dish soap will work to lift the stains so they can be scrubbed off with a sponge without too much hard work.
Bar Keepers Friend
For really tough stains you can use Bar Keepers Friend, which is an acidic and abrasive cleaner that will break down burnt-on food so that it can be scrubbed off. Apply the cleaner and leave it to work its magic before scrubbing and rinsing off.