Cleaning Ovens

Maybe I'm just lazy or grossed out by that caustic oven cleaner stuff, but cleaning my oven is one of those things I put off until I have so much grease and carbonized foodstuffs caked on that I'm afraid the stove will go up in flames with my next pizza! Does anybody have any good techniques/tips for cleaning ovens without using harsh chemicals or scrubbing while on hands and knees until my knuckles are rubbed raw?



Melusine July 6, 2012
I'm in a similar position -- leased housing with a non-self-cleaning oven, I hate the caustic chemicals, and if there's a store in Jerusalem that stocks Easy Off, I have yet to find it. So...a bit of a reverse process than HalfPint's recommendation, from a website called "TipNut." We'll see this weekend....

3 tsp Borax
1/4 cup vinegar
1/8 cup liquid dish soap
2 cups hot water
Baking soda (do not add to mix)
Combine ingredients in a spray bottle and shake to mix.
Spray mixture generously to cover surface completely.
Sprinkle generous amounts of baking soda on top.
Spray liquid mixture over the baking soda.
Leave overnight.
The next morning wipe out the cleaning mixture and wash the surface with hot soapy water.
justpicked July 5, 2012
Thanks all for the advice. I'm not in a position to buy a new oven at the moment, but when I am, self-cleaning it shall be! In the meantime, I'll try the dawn detergent product AntoniaJames mentioned and the procedure used by HalfPint. Thanks!
AntoniaJames July 5, 2012
I really like a product called "Power Dissolve" made by the manufacturer of Dawn dish detergent. I use it for the inside of my kitchen door (the glass), which tends to get really grubby (which of course you can see, when the door is shut, unlike the rest of the inside), so it needs extra attention between major oven cleanings. And I second the recommendation to get a self-cleaning oven, though it only helps with some of the work. The racks still need to be hand scrubbed. I use the Power Resolve for those, too, with a heavy green plastic scouring pad (looks like Scotch-Brite) but is generic, and purchased at the hardware store. The Power Dissolve also works well in removing the brown stains from All-Clad pots and pans. The key for all of the aforementioned uses is to spray the stuff on and then let it sit for 5 or 6 or more hours. ;o)
HalfPint July 5, 2012
Sorry, but you can't have it both ways unless you have a self-cleaning oven.

My recommendation is to degrease first with some hot soapy water and a scrubbing sponge. Use Dawn dish detergent. It's the best degreaser I've ever encountered and no, I don't work for the company in any way. This step is to just degrease as much as you can. Apply the hot soapy water, leave it for about 15 minutes. Use a scraper to chip away any carbonized foodstuff that you can. Then wipe and scrub as much as you can. Then wipe down with a clean wet sponge. Wipe away and discard debris.

Next step, make a paste with baking soda and water. Apply the paste to the oven and leave it overnight. Starting with bigger 'cruddy' spots, try to scrape it away with plastic scraper. Then take a wet sponge and wipe away the baking soda paste.

It's a messy process and you still have to get on your hands and knees, but it doesn't use harsh, smelly chemicals and you won't need to scrub your knuckles raw. Obviously, wear a pair of good kitchen gloves when doing all this. It will save you from the raw knuckles and chapped skin.

GiGi26 July 5, 2012
For over 40 years my husband cleaned my oven. Lucky girl, I know just how lucky. Last year we also bought a self-cleaning oven! I have to agree with Maedl it is one of the best purchases we have ever made.
Maedl July 5, 2012
One of the best purchases I ever made is a self-cleaning oven! I highly recommend it.
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