Guaranteed Christmas Delivery | Free Shipping over $49

How to Clean a Stainless Steel Rainbow Stain in One Minute

Don't panic—here's how to remove the dreaded heat tint.

By Team Made In
Sep 21, 2023
stainless steel on electric stove
Share This

Picture this: After cooking your first meal in a brand-new Stainless Clad Pan and admiring how it shines on your stovetop, you notice a rainbow stain on the interior—and your dreams of perfect sears and simmering sauces disappear.

Luckily, this rainbow stain—otherwise known as heat tint—doesn't affect the cooking performance of your pan at all, and is simply an aesthetic imperfection. Let's get into why this rainbow stain appears and how to get rid of it.

What Causes a Rainbow Stain?

The rainbow stain on Stainless Steel is what's known as "heat tint." Stainless steel contains a small amount of chromium to help resist corrosion and rusting. When chromium and air mix, a protective layer is formed on your pan.

More simply put, when stainless steel is heated to high temperatures, the oxidized top layer can thicken, which causes a rainbow tint.

Does This Have Any Effect on Performance?

This is a simple answer: No. This is purely an aesthetic issue, so if it doesn't bother you, then you can cook away with your Stainless Clad.

But if you care about having both functional and beautiful cookware, then read on for tips on getting rid of the rainbow tint for good.

How to Get Rid of Heat Tint

If you have your Make It Like New Cleaner handy, simply create a paste with some water and the cleaner and scrub it away with a non-abrasive sponge.

If you don't have our cleaner, you can use Bar Keeper's Friend as a substitute, or follow the below instructions to restore your pan:

  • Step 1: Pour diluted white vinegar into your pan.

  • Step 2: Use a soft sponge to work the vinegar into the interior of the pan and clean the stain.

  • Step 3: Rinse and completely dry the pan with a dish towel.

Your pan should look brand-new after this treatment, and you can proceed cooking with your restored functional—and now equally beautiful—cookware.

Ready to Cook?

Now that you know how to get rid of heat tint, you're free to sear, sauté, and simmer to your heart's content with our Award-Winning, chef-approved Stainless Clad Collection.