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Friday, October 22, 2010

Can Coca Cola clean rust off cast iron?

A friend sent me this pan she found in her attic. She called it a tamale pan, but it's a breadstick pan.

You could make tamales on it, but tamales are usually made by the dozen, and breadstick pans only have 11 molds. Why don't they have twelve?

And then some breadstick pans had 5 molds. Why not six? You know, half dozen?

It had some minor rust, so I decided to try cleaning it with Coca Cola.

Pictured above is before, and after.

First I tried scrubbing it with the coke, which didn't help much.

Then I poured it in the molds and let it soak for 5 minutes. Scrubbed, washed off with water, dried.

How long you soak depends on how bad the rust is, but never more than an hour.

If the rust is really bad, then you put the whole thing into a vat of coke, checking every 15 mins.

The after picture is on the right. As you can see, it helped.

I could do another round to get the remaining rust completely off, but this is good enough for me.


  1. Ye Gods! And to think I've put that stuff in my stomach!

  2. And Taco Bell hot sauce cleans pennies, very very shiny and new.

  3. Well, an old Amish farmer is known to have said that Worcestershire sauce will polish brass, so I shouldn't be too surprised.

  4. it works because of the phosphoric acid.

    phosphoric acid is rust converter. it's the same stuff you get at the hardware store.


  5. I've been known to clean pennies with Taco Bell hot sauce. That would probably work too.

  6. The more I look at your site, the more I like it!

    I have one of these pans, excited to find it in a second hand store for a mere four dollars. Did I ever feel like an idiot when I realized it was cast iron that had been spray painted. What on earth might I use to get the paint off? Or, did I buy a wall hanging. LOL.

    Thanks for any input.

  7. Oh yuck, spray paint! Unfortunately I don't know how to get that off and I'm not sure it would be safe to cook in anymore. You might want to check the Wagner and Griswold society forum, they have experts who might be able to give you more info than I could.