Q: Can Muslims eat food cooked in a pan already used for cooking pork? Please note they do not use these pans for cooking pork or any haram dish anymore?
Ans: I can understand your concern over the Halal food teachings of Islam. There are some basic rules mentioned in Quran about pork. Let us understand them first before I answer your question.
Islam forbids eating pork. It is undoubtedly not permissible to eat pork in Islam as the Holy Quran says,
حُرِّمَتْ عَلَيْكُمُ الْمَيْتَةُ وَالدَّمُ وَلَحْمُ الْخِنْزِيرِ وَمَا أُهِلَّ لِغَيْرِ اللَّهِ بِهِ
“Forbidden to you (in food) are: dead meat, blood, the flesh of pork, and that on which has been invoked a name other than that of Allah.” (Al-Ma’idah 5: 3)
The Holy Qur’an also prohibits pork in these words in another surah.
إِنَّمَا حَرَّمَ عَلَيْكُمُ الْمَيْتَةَ وَالدَّمَ وَلَحْمَ الْخِنْزِيرِ وَمَا أُهِلَّ بِهِ لِغَيْرِ اللَّهِ
“He has made unlawful for you that which dies of itself and blood and the flesh of swine and that on which the name of any other than Allah has been invoked. ” Al-Baqara 2:173
A major Islamic Scholar from Al-Azhar University says in response to your question that “A Muslim can eat Halal food cooked in a utensil already used for cooking of pork provided that it is cleaned completely to remove remains of pork or any other Haram food cooked in this”
Another related question might be as follows.
Is it permissible for a Muslim to eat from a pot that has been previously used to cook pork but afterward is scrapped and wiped clean with paper towels without using water? How about if it still has a very minimum of pork grease left in the pot?
In this case, the pot is dirty. It must be cleaned before it is used for cooking any Halal food. But, if you cannot find water, the pot can be cleaned using sand before wiping with towels. I would not eat from it unless it was a last resort situation.
The Halal Times staff has touched upon a similar topic that might be of interest to those readers who live or visit non-Muslim majority countries.