I'm currently in the middle of seasoning some new pans that I received from made in. I accidently messed up one of my pans by not wiping off the excess seasoning wax and now the pan has dots all over it.

In the past I have used the 24 hour soak in oven cleaner method for my wok. I'm curious since I'm using stainless would the oven cleaner (Easy Off, a brand whose active ingredient is lye) be safe to use to help remove the messed up patina? My pan is stainless clad and manufactured by made in.

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    Welcome to SA! What do you mean by "seasoning wax"? Wax is not normally used for seasoning pans. Also, stainless steel pans are not normally seasoned.
    – FuzzyChef
    Oct 19 '20 at 21:10

Firstly, there should be no need to season a stainless clad pan. Stainless pans are generally kept pristine, with any oil residue scrubbed off after use. Seasoning is done on cast iron and carbon steel (which is black and looks like thin cast iron). I'm not aware of any guidance that suggests seasoning stainless steel in the same way cast iron is.

Oven cleaner is essentially just lye, mixed into a form factor to make it a spray on foamy cleaner. Lye is a strong base (the opposite of a strong acid), and can be similarly caustic and harsh on surfaces. This article outlines the damage that can be caused by it on certain stainless steel surfaces. It also contains guidance directly from the manufacturer of the Easy-Off brand that it's designed to be safe for stainless steel inside the oven (such as the oven racks), and not for other stainless steel surfaces.

Serious Eats has a recommendation to use oven cleaner as a last resort after using other cleaners and scrubbing for the bottom & exterior of a stainless pan. I would not use oven cleaner on the interior cooking surface of a stainless steel pan.

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