A couple of weeks ago I bought this "grill and pan cheese" in a supermarket and I distinctly remember to have chosen this one because it didn't contain any weird chemicals... It seemed to me "only cheese" and nothing else.
It came in a parallelepiped form (just like feta would... and looked just like that) and both grilled and pan-roasted, its consistency was a bit chewy (to the point that I would hear squeaking every time that I put a piece in my mouth).

I'm explaining this whole thing to help you better understand what I am talking about, so you can maybe have a better opinion on the fact.

When I roasted the squeaky thing in the pan to the point that it was brown on both sides, I noticed that my pan was stained. After the meal I rinsed it (when it was cool), and put it in the dishwasher. After having it washed, the rectangular brownish stain remained (and I could also not remove it washing the pan by hand). Notice that the pan is a ceramic "non-stick" one.

What do you think caused the stain? How can I clean the pan?


Just a follow up... After all this time my pan never failed me. Nothing else sticked to it or caused nasty stains. The one of the cheese remained though.

2 Answers 2


The most likely explanation is that your pan starts failing. When ceramic pans fail, they do so by getting gummed up with food buildup.

I am a bit surprised to see it first occur with cheese, but maybe you dipped it in batter before frying? Also, the herbs on it could have been mixed with starch before being applied to the cheese, this is done to prevent caking and mold. Typically, the worst combination for these pans is starch with fat. On the other hand, I have no proof that it can't happen with cheese, it's just that I haven't heard of it being the first food to start sticking.

Once this happens, you can't really clean it. A lye solution will restore it for a short time, but I don't know the physics of the pan failure, so I have no idea if it is beneficial, or on the contrary, if it speeds up the degradation process.

Just continue using the pan, and once it becomes too non-nonstick, decide if you want to keep it that way and fry with it as with a standard pan (it behaves much like a stainless steel pan afterwards) or throw it out. For me, it depends on the pan heating quality, if it is a good pan with thick bottom and even heating, it continues doing a good job after the coating fails.

  • Well it would be whether strange (the pan is 2 months old) or really sad that I bought a nasty product. No I didn't use any batter or fat to "sauté" the cheese... And what is also very strange is that the pan works good with everything. Jul 1, 2015 at 9:48
  • You didn't need to use fat, the cheese has it. Two months is indeed a bit soon, but maybe you used it very frequently? They typically last 6-9 months. Also, if it is a white coating, I don't know when the first visible buildup occurs, on the dark one the failure is noticeable when it literally starts sticking, but maybe it starts with small residues early on and still works at that point. And yes, before it loses its property, it really works great with everything.
    – rumtscho
    Jul 1, 2015 at 9:52
  • The coating is white. So you are basically saying that it is highly probable that the stain was not caused but ingredients in the cheese...? Jul 1, 2015 at 9:59
  • Depends on how you understand it. Of course it was caused by the cheese, but by the ingredients you want to eat. It's not some weird contamination in the cheese corroding your pan if that's what you are worried about, it's your food starting to stick to the pan.
    – rumtscho
    Jul 1, 2015 at 10:01

Generally when cleaning pieces of kitchenware I like to provide extra care for (such as non-stick pans), and when cleaning those horrible stains that tend to get on baking pans of glass and ceramic, I have good experience with leaving it in hot water for a couple of minutes and using the soft part of a sponge. If the stain proves particularly resistant and I want to give up all hope I leave it in the hot water for a bit longer, try with the soft part again, and if there is no luck with that I either abandon the project or use the more ragged side of the sponge.

Other than that I think rumtschos answer on what might cause it and why you might not want to go to hard at cleaning it is very good =)

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