How To Easily Get Rid Of Rust On Your Kitchen Tools

Rust is a normal part of working with metal tools. It forms when the iron within the metal reacts as it comes into contact with oxygen and water, according to Home Depot. While there are some great tricks for removing rust from gardening tools, it's easy to forget even utensils we cook with can get rusty. Since kitchen tools frequently get wet during use, it makes sense that they will eventually gather rust, especially if not kept dry. It is important to treat rust as it occurs and avoid cooking with products that have accumulated the substance as it can be incredibly detrimental to your health.

Although it is less common with indoor tools, rust attracts a bacteria called Clostridium tetani, which can cause tetanus when ingested. This disease leads to muscle contractions that can make it impossible to swallow or move your jaw, leading to severe complications if not immediately treated, as per the CDC. If you have a condition known as hemochromatosis, meaning your body absorbs an excessive amount of iron from the food and drinks you ingest, consuming rust can be even more dangerous, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Regardless of whether or not ingesting small amounts of rust will do you harm, it's still not ideal to cook with rusty kitchen tools. While it is best to prevent rust by rinsing your tools thoroughly after use and keeping them dry, the good news is that you shouldn't have a problem getting rid of rust on your cookware, meaning you won't have to go out and purchase new tools when you notice it developing.

Getting rid of rust

You may be pleased to learn that there are multiple ways of getting rid of rust on your kitchen tools that don't require any fancy products. One of the best ways to remove rust is with white vinegar, says Architectural Digest. The reason this works so well is that vinegar is acidic and capable of destroying the rust that sticks to metal objects. You will need to give this solution a bit of time to work — preferably leaving your rusted tools to soak in a container of vinegar for several hours. After that, you can scrub away the remaining rust with a wire sponge. You may need to repeat the vinegar soak if you can't get all the rust off. When the item is sparkling clean, make sure to wash it well with soap and warm water.

Another tried and true way to remove rust from kitchen tools is with a bit of dish soap, salt, and a potato. This method might appear odd at first, but it is surprisingly effective. Like vinegar, potatoes contain oxalic acid, which reacts in the same way when it comes into contact with rust. The fighting power comes from the salt, which adds the abrasion that a wire sponge supplies. Simply spread some soap on half a potato, dip in salt, and scrub away. Clean the tools thoroughly once the rust is removed.