How can you tell if a ceramic non-stick pan has suffered damage from overheating?

Will there be a point at which the pan is no longer safe to use? If so how can you tell if this is the case?

  • Are you sure that it was overheating? Ceramic pans are heat stable to really high temperatures, they don't get temperature damaged with normal use, unlike teflon pans. But they still lose their anti-stick properties and feel damaged, even though they are not overheated.
    – rumtscho
    Sep 28, 2013 at 14:50
  • @rumtscho I'm not sure if it this particular pan has been damaged by overheating, essentially that's what I'm trying to figure out. I'm told the pan was left on highest heat with nothing in in for at least 20mintues. Ideally I'd like to see some photographs of damaged pans so I can compare visually. So far I have found it has been very difficult to find any images like this by searching on the internet as it seems as though all the different combinations of keywords I've tried have mostly ended up at the various manufacturers pages.
    – shuttle87
    Sep 28, 2013 at 15:00
  • If it's indeed ceramic, then the pan is safe to use at least. Non-stick properties may have suffered somewhat, but ceramic can withstand temperatures much higher than what you can achieve on a normal stove since the heat is still conducted away by air, even if there is nothing in the pan.
    – Anpan
    Jan 26, 2014 at 22:18

2 Answers 2


The main issue you will see with ceramic pans is crazing (a network of small cracks) of the enamel layer from thermal expansion and contraction.

This may reduce the non-stick properties of the enamel layer and is not terribly attractive, but otherwise the pan will continue to be usable.


When you heat up a ceramic pan too quickly, it gets this cracked-looking dark brown stain on it that you sometimes see cookie sheets get after many uses. I tried using boiling water and baking soda--didn't work. WHAT DOES WORK: Scrub hard using Barkeeper's Friend + the rough side of a sponge. The sponge did not scratch my ceramic sautée pan and my pan looks good again.

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