How to Remove Rust from Knives

how to remowe rust from kitchen knives

It is hard to complete any dish without the aid of a trusty kitchen knife. But while these tools are extremely useful, there are some occasions where we can neglect them for a while. When that happens, it is not uncommon for you to find some rust spots on your metal blades. If you are in that situation, use this article to learn how to remove rust from knives. 

A Few Ways to Remove Knife Rust


If you have allowed your knives to become a bit rusty, don’t worry because you are not alone. Many chefs in the past have allowed that to happen. Fortunately for you, that also means that those same chefs have discovered multiple ways to remove knife rust. Here are a few of the most effective tactics. 

Baking Soda


The first way that we suggest removing rust from your knives is to use baking soda. This method is ideal if you are dealing with a moderate amount of rust on your blade. 

To use this approach, you need to mix baking soda with water. Alter the proportions until you are able to create a paste with that mixture that is somewhat thick. 

Once you have that paste, spread it on the blade of your knife. After covering the surface, it is time to scrub. You can either use something small like a toothbrush or something a bit more abrasive like steel wool.

Either way, the scrubbing action should help to loosen and remove the rust from your blade. To complete the process, wipe the blade clean and see how much rust you have removed. Repeat the process as needed. 

White Vinegar


Here is another simple method to remove rust from a knife. In this instance, all you will need is some vinegar. However, it is important to know that not all types of vinegar will be equally effective. 

The type of vinegar you should use is white vinegar. This variety contains acetic acid, which is the active component that will act to eliminate rust. Other types of vinegar are not good because they can further stain your knives without removing the rust. 

Once you have the right kind of vinegar, fill a cup or bowl with it. Then let your knife soak in that bath for no more than five minutes. After that time has elapsed, remove the knife and wipe it clean. The rust should come off with the vinegar. 

Salt and Citrus Juice


For this rust removal trick, you will need only two ingredients. Find some salt and citrus fruit, such as a lemon. Those two materials will perform two separate roles in rust removal. 

The grains of the salt will add friction to help loosen the rust. The acidity of the citrus will break the rust down on a chemical level. 

Start by covering the blade with salt. Then squeeze your lemon so that the juice covers the salted area. Then, let those substances sit on the blade for a few hours. 

After at least two hours have passed, it is time to scrub. You can use the rind or the lemon, a toothbrush, or steel wool to remove the citrus/salt mixture and the rust from your knife. 

Alternative Methods


The three tactics that we just revealed to you are effective. But there may be some instances in which you cannot come by the ingredients you need to use those methods. 

If that happens to you, you might want to try one of these alternative methods to remove rust from your kitchen knives. While these approaches seem odd, they may be more successful than you might expect:

  • Potato: Embed your rusted knife into a potato and leave it there for a few hours. The inside of a potato has some unique acids that will help to remove rust over time. 
  • Onion: Onions also contain acids that can reduce rust. All you need to do is cut through a few onions with your rusted blade, and that rust should reduce. 
  • Dirt: Stick your knife in dirt and remove it several times. After repeating that process, wipe the blade clean, and you may be shocked to find that a lot of the rust is gone. 

These alternatives may seem far-fetched. But if you are in a pinch, they can act as a convenient way to reduce the amount of rust on your blades.

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