2

votes

Cleaning eggs from frying pan

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created September 21, 2011 at 4:19 PM

Every time I scramble eggs, I get a good amount of egg residue stuck like a bastard to my pan. No matter how much butter I use, and I cook with low heat. It's not the worst thing in the world but there has to be some easy way to get that egg off, right? It's only annoying because I almost always cook eggs at least once a day, and I'm sure I'm not the only one here.

Fff58a1fd1e29d93fd6a25d3fdebbade

(400)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

The safety of teflon for cooking is highly questionable.

De65560c40ddb3f27764307ffa504240

on September 22, 2011
at 01:36 PM

I honestly do not, other than that's the way I learned it and it *seems* rational, lol. There may be a compelling reason, or it may be the culinary equivalent of bro-science.

07ca188c8dac3a17f629dd87198d2098

(7970)

on September 22, 2011
at 01:19 PM

I've never understood why one should bring the heat of a pan up gradually, though this isn't the first time I've heard or read of such advice. Do you have any reasons why one must be so gently with the heating?

3f11b5fda91063846bba45daac3541bd

(1186)

on September 22, 2011
at 12:03 AM

way better than teflon!

3f11b5fda91063846bba45daac3541bd

(1186)

on September 22, 2011
at 12:02 AM

I use a brief water soak and a bamboo pan scraper on my cast iron.

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on September 21, 2011
at 08:58 PM

Great answer & in perfect timing this morning!

Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on September 21, 2011
at 07:22 PM

I use a 12" All Clad for the bulk of my cooking and if anything seems a little stuck I'll put hot water to cover the stuck parts and let it sit until after I've eaten. Drain the water and scrub with a scrubby and it's clean. I've used baking soda for stubborn spots - I mean, it works on teeth so why not the pan?

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 21, 2011
at 06:53 PM

That's interesting. I'll have to try it. I'm not sure if the water method is dulling my pan, but although it isn't rusting, it definitely isn't as beautifully seasoned as it once was. Like you, I'm not adverse to leaving bits, as long as they aren't burning.

1bc18852894dad9d6dddfb3dfed49ab3

(341)

on September 21, 2011
at 06:33 PM

rarely sticks when i use butter, but sticks when i use coconut oil

Af005ec9a8e028f2b04bf5367b64e0d6

(2797)

on September 21, 2011
at 04:42 PM

"forged aluminum."

De65560c40ddb3f27764307ffa504240

on September 21, 2011
at 04:35 PM

With cast iron, I've had good luck with a combination of hot water, coarse salt, and a pan scraper.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on September 21, 2011
at 04:29 PM

Would have answered the same way. I personally only make hardboiled eggs now so I don't waste any coconut oil.

De65560c40ddb3f27764307ffa504240

on September 21, 2011
at 04:25 PM

What kind of pan?

  • Af005ec9a8e028f2b04bf5367b64e0d6

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12 Answers

8
De65560c40ddb3f27764307ffa504240

on September 21, 2011
at 05:34 PM

I don't know if I've ever cooked eggs with aluminum, but I suspect many of the techniques for stainless steel work similarly. The following methods help me a lot with my tri-ply stainless steel skillet:

  • Take your time!
  • Make sure you have your stove fan or other ventilation on in case of smoke.
  • Take your food out of the fridge a little while in advance of cooking it. Room-temperature food, including eggs, will stick less than cold food.
  • Start the (dry) skillet on low heat, and only go up to medium at most. I can probably count on one hand the number of times I've ever needed to crank a stainless steel skillet up to medium-high, much less high.
  • After a couple minutes on low, go up to medium if you're going that high. Give it a couple more minutes.
  • Toss a couple drops of water on the skillet surface. You should get the "mercury ball" effect, with the water skittering around.
  • Now put your oil on. If the pan is hot enough, it should quickly shimmer and spread. Give it another couple minutes.
  • Add the eggs. Tilt the pan gently to keep the oil evenly spread and get it thoroughly around and under the egg whites.
  • Don't be in a huge hurry to turn the eggs. If you have to hurry, your heat is too high.
  • The eggs will actually stick more at the beginning. Food will often (but not always) release much better when it's "done."
  • When the eggs are ready to turn or serve, test with the edge of your (thin) turner. If they're still sticking, turn your heat down and give it a little while longer.
  • Hopefully, by now, your eggs will disengage properly for turning or service.
  • If you have residue problems, just do the best you can to get them cooked and served, turn your burner off, and add a little water to the skillet. If you have some around, you might also add some coarse salt. Let it sit while you eat, then get after any stuck bits with your turner or a pan scraper. "Epoxied" bits can be addressed with Bar Keeper's Friend, fine steel wool, etc. You need to get these bits off so they don't contribute to future sticking.
  • Thoroughly hand dry your skillet and store it.

I hope this helps. Other people may have different methods, or think one or more of the steps above is unnecessary or counterproductive. Good luck!

07ca188c8dac3a17f629dd87198d2098

(7970)

on September 22, 2011
at 01:19 PM

I've never understood why one should bring the heat of a pan up gradually, though this isn't the first time I've heard or read of such advice. Do you have any reasons why one must be so gently with the heating?

De65560c40ddb3f27764307ffa504240

on September 22, 2011
at 01:36 PM

I honestly do not, other than that's the way I learned it and it *seems* rational, lol. There may be a compelling reason, or it may be the culinary equivalent of bro-science.

4
Cd2d1fcf77345c9b2889ab56ecf5c842

(250)

on September 21, 2011
at 07:38 PM

I use well-seasoned cast iron and cook scrambled eggs in butter, and never have any trouble with them sticking. However my husband and kids use the same pan, also cook in butter, but they always have a LOT of stuck-on egg afterwards. I finally figured out what they are doing differently. They don't let the pan do it's job! Basically they "play" with the eggs too much instead of just letting them cook. It's the same principle that you have when cooking meat on a grill....if you try and turn it over too soon it will stick to the grill; but wait a little longer and it will come off easily.

With eggs you don't want to wait too long and turn them brown and crisp, but you do need to let the pan do it's job. It's kind of an art but once you get it, you'll never have trouble with it again.

4
D3ff004d4a0c42b67cc2c49a5ee9c0f3

(5801)

on September 21, 2011
at 04:40 PM

You're not using enough oil and heat when you cook your eggs. They should float. Heat the pan so that when you put the scrambled eggs into the pan, they are done within 2 minutes. Faster than this, they burn and your oil smokes.

2
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on September 21, 2011
at 11:24 PM

A Chinese chef once told me "Hot pan, cold oil, food won't stick."

As an alternate, call the neighbours dog over for cleanup detail. LOL!

2
100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 21, 2011
at 04:27 PM

I don't know what kind of pan you're using, but here's what I do with my cast iron when stuff gets stuck on it. Fill it with water and bring it to a boil. This gets the egg mostly loose. Then scrub with a stiff steel brush. Dry and coat with oil.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on September 21, 2011
at 04:29 PM

Would have answered the same way. I personally only make hardboiled eggs now so I don't waste any coconut oil.

3f11b5fda91063846bba45daac3541bd

(1186)

on September 22, 2011
at 12:02 AM

I use a brief water soak and a bamboo pan scraper on my cast iron.

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on September 21, 2011
at 08:58 PM

Great answer & in perfect timing this morning!

De65560c40ddb3f27764307ffa504240

on September 21, 2011
at 04:35 PM

With cast iron, I've had good luck with a combination of hot water, coarse salt, and a pan scraper.

1
345c1755efe005edd162b770dc6fb821

(8767)

on September 21, 2011
at 06:36 PM

Is it possible the pan is past it's prime?

When my Teflon pans started doing that I tossing them out and replaced. I have two just for eggs and nothing else, you will note the difference brand new vs old.

1
15307127b011c7c276e76adc46bd1d31

on September 21, 2011
at 06:10 PM

I use teflon pots and pans and they never stick. The eggs come out fluffy and slide right off the pan. Just look for a nice set of non stick pans and your golden. It drives me nuts when anything sticks to the pan too. I also use butter before dropping the eggs into the pan.

Fff58a1fd1e29d93fd6a25d3fdebbade

(400)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

The safety of teflon for cooking is highly questionable.

1
07ca188c8dac3a17f629dd87198d2098

(7970)

on September 21, 2011
at 05:14 PM

I've stopped using water on my cast iron, it always seemed to take too much seasoning off. (Maybe in truth it actually didn't, but the pan would always look so dull afterwards).

Instead, I dump a little kosher salt in the pan once its cooled down and scrub anything that's stuck with my fingers. Once it's reasonably clean, I wipe the salt and anything that came loose out of the pan, and re-oil if necessary.

I also do this if I've cooked e.g. hamburgers and am left with carmelized food bits. I don't always get everything off, but it usually works itself out after another cooking or two. (Extra flavor!)

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 21, 2011
at 06:53 PM

That's interesting. I'll have to try it. I'm not sure if the water method is dulling my pan, but although it isn't rusting, it definitely isn't as beautifully seasoned as it once was. Like you, I'm not adverse to leaving bits, as long as they aren't burning.

1
3414f91a77f564517f30c391d36c85b4

on September 21, 2011
at 05:06 PM

I use an awful lot of butter when I cook eggs. The eggs (scrambled or over medium) just slide out and then I pour the butter over the eggs. My husband always says " that's a lot of butter". Um yeah, and it's freaking delicious too. :-) Nothing sticks.

3f11b5fda91063846bba45daac3541bd

(1186)

on September 22, 2011
at 12:03 AM

way better than teflon!

1
51b472fa449ab0e5433f27dcd799fedd

(1091)

on September 21, 2011
at 04:44 PM

The only reason I don't make scrambled eggs anymore is exactly because of this issue! I love scrambled eggs, but now I usually cook my eggs over-easy because it's a million times easier to clean. And has the side benefit of keeping the yolk undercooked while cooking the whites.

0
319cdfcd8ec0467f34a3c5aeb2a5e045

on October 16, 2012
at 07:06 AM

Another cast iron pan fanatic here. If it's well-seasoned they come out like a dream.

0
0a819d945f30ae46a104d7a14e50e739

on September 21, 2011
at 04:59 PM

Soak in hot water for the day. When you come home, use a copper or steel scrub brush and gently remove. heat to dry. I've never had an issue with rust with this method.

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