Aluminum pots and pans are inexpensive and easy to use, requiring very little maintenance to keep them in shape. When exposed to high heat or food and when grease stains burn and build up inside the pot, unsightly black stains are left on the aluminum surface. Although the aluminum cookware may look like it's ready for the trash, black stains and discoloration can be removed from the metal to restore the appearance of your cookware.
Drop 2 tbsp. of cream of tartar into the blackened aluminum pot. Add 1 qt. of water and stir the two together until the cream of tartar is dissolved. Bring the liquid to a boil and continue boiling for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and pour out the cream of tartar mixture.
Rinse the pot with water to remove loosened stains and the cream of tartar solution. Treat any remaining stains on the inside of the aluminum pot by filling it with 1 qt. of water and 4 tsp. of white vinegar. Boil the solution for a few minutes, then empty the pot and rinse it out with cold water.
Scrub the inside and outside of the pot with a few drops of dishwashing detergent and a nylon mesh scrubber. Rinse the pot and dry it with a clean kitchen towel.
Remove black stains on the bottom or exterior sides of the aluminum pot by polishing it with silver polish. Apply the polish and rub it into the aluminum according to he package directions. Give the aluminum pot one last washing to remove any polish residue that might have gotten into the interior of the pot.