Here's the easiest tip ever. Fill up your sink with really hot water, coat the inside of your pan with non-biological washing powder, fill with hot water and allow to sit in the sink. Allow the washing powder to do its work for at least 30 minutes then rinse. Your pan should be nice and clean!
Recently for a large pot luck event Mr Thrifty cooked Nigella's famous ham in cherry coke but man, does that stuff wreck a perfectly shiny pot! That sugary, fatty stuff was not budging so we busted out the laundry detergent and around 45 mins the grime just slid off in one thick layer.
It even worked on a 1940s saucepan we picked up at a bootsale. We had no plans to use it for cooking but wanted to use it in the garden - it was too filthy even for that. One quick cup of washing powder lately and it was as good as new.
Yup you will get a grubby tide line around your sink but it will wipe right away if you do it immediately. Of course you'll want to wash your pan thoroughly just to make sure every last bit is long gone.Your dirty old pan is now saved from landfil/the back of your cupboard, you may now praise me.
P.S. Do you think you'll give it a go?
P.P.S. You can read more about #DHWP here.