It’s my most requested life hack. What does that say about me? Don’t answer that.
Let’s chat ovens and why they should be clean, then we’ll get to the magic.
For starters, never ever, ever, ever use the self-clean button on your oven. Those are words straight from my oven repairman. That button heats your oven to over 500 degrees for a prolonged amount of time, increasing the likelihood that you’ll fry the motherboard that powers your oven. Thus, breaking it. So, feel free to push the button if you’re in the market for a new one. Otherwise, keep reading.
Having a clean/ish oven also prevents the chance it will catch on fire, due to debris left over from previous baking sessions. Ask me how I know.
While I’m no oven cleaning expert with a degree in cleanliness, I do cook for eight people on the regular and I run a tight ship. Here are the steps I recommend.
- Water/vinegar solution (1 tsp. per 1 c. water)
- Magic solution (1 c. water, 1 T. castile soap*, 10 drops of essential oil, optional)
- Baking soda
- Old towels
- Scotchbrite sponge
- Hand-held vacuum
*You can find castile soap on Amazon or in the organic/health food aisle at the grocery store
- Turn off your oven. It should be completely cool, prior to cleaning.
- Remove your oven grates and vacuum out the big debris with a hand-held vacuum.
- Place old towels in the bottom of a bathtub, lay your grates on top. Fill the tub with hot water and 1 c. of Oxiclean powder. Soak overnight or 8 hours, then scrub with a scotchbrite pad and rinse with water. Note: Steer clear of cast iron tubs because the Oxiclean can eat away at the finish.
- Spray the glass and inside of the oven with magic solution. Let sit for 15 minutes. You may need to repeat 2-3 times, depending upon how long it’s been since you cleaned your oven (never?!).
- Sprinkle baking soda for extra grit and get to scrubbing.
- I *sometimes* will use a razor blade on the glass of the oven (but never the glazed inside!) to scrape away caked on grease.
- Wipe clean and finish with a water/vinegar solution.
The first time is always the most painful. After that, we typically clean ours once a year (twice if it’s a pandemic) and the buildup isn’t nearly as bad.
Happy. Cooking. And, don’t forget to invite me over to dinner to show it off!