It’s probably one of the worst chores in the kitchen, but if you follow these steps in cleaning your oven, it will be less of an arduous task. Also, this particular method removes the needs for those awful chemicals that seem to make the house stink for days after. Using baking soda and vinegar instead of a proprietary cleaner is also good for so called “self-cleaning ovens” – because seriously how can an oven clean itself of dried-on food and built up carbon? Don your rubber gloves, get your pinny on and follow these steps to clean the oven.
1. Get the Ingredients and Apparatus Together
The first in the steps in cleaning your oven without chemicals is to gather all the ingredients and things that you will need. You need baking soda, water, a pair of rubber gloves, a damp cloth, spray bottle, white vinegar and a plastic spatula. Most of these things you have probably already got, so not only will you be cleaning without chemicals you’ll also save money.
2. Remove Anything That is in the Oven
Take out your oven racks, the thermometer, trays, that burnt French fry that’s been lingering at the bottom of the oven for months, and anything else that is in there.
3. Mix up a Paste
When you are searching how to clean your oven without chemicals you might have come across a magical paste that you can mix up with baking soda and water. That’s what we’re using here. It’s easy to do. You just put ½ cup of baking soda in a bowl and mix in a couple of tablespoons of cold water. The paste needs to be spreadable so judge the consistency of the paste based on that.
4. Cover the Oven in the Paste
Slip your gloves on and spread the paste all over the interior of the oven’s surface, but avoid the heating elements. With the gloves on, your nails will be protected from the dirt and you will really be able to get in there and attack the grime, even in the tightest corners. The mix will go a brown colour when you rub it onto the surface and it might look a little chunky in areas - this is fine. Just use some elbow grease and pay attention to those really greasy patches.
5. Leave It to Soak in
You need to leave the mix to do its thing, and after all that hard work, you’ll probably have worked up a bit of a thirst. Leave the baking soda mix to soak in for 12 hours or more to get the best results. So, sit back with a glass of wine and relax.
6. Scrub Your Racks
This is the part when you will need some serious elbow grease. Get scrubbing and scrape off the grime before you put them back in your shiny oven. You can also smother them in another batch of the baking soda paste and leave for a while if they are particularly crusty.
7. Give the Oven a Wipe over
Once your mix has soaked in to the oven and worked its magic, you can get down to removing the paste (and all the gunk that comes with it). Use a damp cloth and wipe away as much of the dried on mixture as you can. It there is any hanging on then scrape it off with a spatula. You might find that the damp cloth works fine, but the spatula may come in handy for those deep dark places in your oven.
8. Spray Vinegar
Fill your spray bottle with white vinegar and give the inside of your oven a little spritz. You’ll notice that the baking soda mix and the vinegar react to create a foam.
9. Wipe over Once More
The last of the steps to cleaning your oven is to give the oven a final wipe over. Remove the foamy residue with a damp cloth and wipe it until it shines. If you want to get a high shine then add a little extra vinegar to your cloth and rub it in. Replace your oven racks and you’re all done. You no longer need to be ashamed of the state of your oven; it is now fit for royalty to eat from.
It has to be one of my least favorite jobs, but it has to be done! How often to you give your oven some TLC? Will you try this or will you stick with chemical cleaners?