With time, an oven can get grimy due to regular baking and roasting. Unfortunately, when the grease from oil and food leftovers burn, it may present some unpleasant effects when cooking. Besides causing a strong burning smell, it can cause food to cook for longer, make your oven inefficient, or turn into carbon, which may taint your food or cause a fire hazard.
That’s why it’s essential to clean your oven regularly. Luckily, cleaning an oven isn’t that hard if you know how to go about it. In this article, we’ll discuss in detail how to clean an oven. Since people have varying needs, we’ve included 5 different procedures that you can use to clean an oven. Let’s get started!
What Materials Do You Need?
Before you start cleaning up your oven, it’s important to ensure that you have the right tools and ingredients. Depending on the procedure you’ll be using, the following are some of the materials you may need.
- Lemon and water – they are the best DIY home remedies for cleaning a mildly dirty oven. It takes about 2 to 3 hours.
- Baking soda, vinegar, water, and a spray bottle – BestDIY method if your oven is pretty dirty or grimy. Done overnight or within 10 – 12 hours.
- Chemical oven cleaner – Best if your oven is really dirty. While it’s easy and fast, it’s not the best option if you’re concerned about the harsh chemicals.
- Damp cloth or towel – Needed to wipe and rinse off the grime after cleaning the oven
- Sponge – Help to wipe off grime wastes and deposits
- Paper towels or newspaper – To place on the oven floor when cleaning
- Protective safety glasses /Rubber cleaning gloves – Necessary if you’ll be using store/chemical-based oven cleaners
- Plastic Garbage bag
Oven Cleaning Tips
Procedure 1 – Self-Clean Function
It’s the easiest and fastest way to clean an oven – recommended if your oven is moderately-dirty. This method aims at melting down the grease and grime build-up on the oven. Here is everything you need to do:
- Remove the racks and clean them separately
- Press the Self-Clean button – the oven will lock and raise the temperature to 550+ degrees.
- Allow the oven to do its work – it takes approximately 2 hours (may vary depending on the oven model). You are advised to stay at home during this phase just in case things go wrong. (if there’s lots of buildup at the bottom, it can even start a fire or smoke up, leaving a burnt smell in your home
- Once the process is complete and the oven is cool, open it and wipe off the white ash at the bottom using a Damp cloth.
- Thoroughly rinse the oven until it’s clean
Procedure 2 – Vinegar and Baking Soda
This procedure is the most effective method of cleaning your oven if it’s dirty. Here is what to do:
- Take anything removable off the oven – racks, foil, temperature gauges, etc. Soak them separately in warm soapy water for about 1 to 2 hours. Use a sponge to clean them and rinse thoroughly.
- Make enough spreadable paste out of water and baking soda in a bowl. You can use 90 grams of baking soda in appropriately 44mL of water. Mix thoroughly until you get a smooth paste. Add more baking soda or water if necessary.
- Spread the paste over the inside of the oven using a paintbrush to apply the paste. Pay more attention to grimy areas and avoid the heating elements.
- Allow the paste rest for 12 hours or more in order to saturate the grime thoroughly. If possible, leave it overnight. Once the paste reacts with the grime, it turns brown, meaning that it’s absorbing the grime.
- After 12 hours, use a damp towel and a spatula to wipe off the waste until it’s clean.
- Spray the oven with the solution -water and white vinegar. It will react with the leftover baking soda to form foam.
- Take a wet towel and clean away the remaining residue until you notice the interior of the oven shining.
- Put the racks back, and you’re good to go.
Procedure 3 – Chemical-Based Oven Products
You can visit your local store and inquire about Oven cleaning products. Once you get your product, go ahead and clean the oven as follows:
- Remove everything from the oven – thermometer, racks, pizza stone, etc. Take them outside and spray them. Put them in a large airtight plastic garbage bag as directed on the product label.
- Get back to the oven and place paper towels or newspapers on the floor beneath it.
- Wear rubber gloves and protective glasses
- Spray the inside of the oven thoroughly – avoid the heating elements. Once you’re done spraying, close the oven and allow the spray to rest for the recommended time (product label). It takes about 20 to 30 minutes.
- Once the recommended time has elapsed, open the oven and wipe off all the grime using a damp towel or a microfiber sponge. Rinse thoroughly.
- Remove the racks and other tools from the bag and wash them with hot, soapy water using a sponge. Rinse them thoroughly and allow them to dry.
- Place the racks back, and you can start cooking
Procedure 4 – Lemon Water
For regular mild cleaning of an oven, lemon water is the best DIY method worth considering. Here is how to go about it:
- Put water in an oven-proof bowl until full.
- Cut two lemons and squeeze the juice in the water
- Place the bowl inside the oven and close it
- Turn on the oven and wait until the water starts to boil. Turn off the oven and keep the door closed to allow the steam to circulate.
- When the oven cools down – but is still warm, take a damp cloth or a microfiber sponge and thoroughly clean all the surfaces.
Procedure 5 – Use Professional Help
If you don’t want to or can’t make it to clean the oven on your own, you can have it professionally cleaned.
As you have seen, cleaning an oven isn’t as hard as you may have imagined. Whether you’re performing a deep or light cleaning, no special skills are needed. All you need are the right tools and ingredients, and you’re good to go!