Have you ever spilled the thick liquid from a baked ham or roast turkey onto the bottom of your oven? Maybe you’ve had a pie spill over because you overfilled the crust and forgot to put a baking sheet down underneath the pie pan.
If you’ve ever found yourself with a greasy, baked-on mess at the bottom of your oven, you’ve likely searched near and far for the best cleaner to remove stubborn grease—preferably before it burns up and leaves an unpleasant odor in your home (and an impossible stain in your oven).
Thankfully, there are oven cleaners specially designed to remove even the toughest grease messes, so you can get back to baking and roasting. Here’s my favorite. Find it at Amazon here.
Finding an oven cleaner that’s strong enough to remove the mess, without being too harsh and full of noxious chemicals, is a balancing act. But, it can certainly be done.
How can the oven cleaner get rid of my biggest kitchen messes?
If you’re the unlucky victim of a massive grease spill inside the oven, you’re going to want to clean it immediately. If you can, try to finish cooking your dish before attempting to use any oven cleaning products. However, if you spill a lot of grease and what you’re cooking needs to slow roast for another 2 hours, it may be better to remove the food and promptly clean the mess. Removing grease stains before they become baked-in nightmares is crucial to maintaining a clean and odor-free oven.
Take a close look at your oven. You’ll notice that it probably has a self-cleaning function. Although some may have had success with this option, the oven usually auto-locks and skyrockets the temperature to a ridiculously high level in order to obliterate all baked-on grease and grime. This isn’t always a sensible option and may be downright dangerous if it’s a warm day in July when the air conditioning won’t work. Something about having your oven locked while it’s running just doesn’t sit well with me.
Many oven cleaners, homemade or commercially-produced, utilize the power of baking soda (also known as sodium bicarbonate) that work deep down to remove the baked-on grease stuck on the bottom of your oven. By applying this solution to the caked-on grease spots, a bit of time and elbow grease can help you easily remove those pesky stains.
What makes these oven cleaners work so well?
Many commercially-produced and homemade oven cleaners utilize a simple compound that helps lift up dirty baked-on grease spills inside your oven. Whether you choose a commercial spray or simply use baking soda, you’ll be sure to see results after a little waiting.
Baking soda has been used for cleaning and deodorizing for years, but many people forget that it has great potential when it comes time to clean up messes as troublesome as oven grease spills. Although this method isn’t as fast-acting as the products in a spray bottle or can, it can still yield impressive results—so long as you have a few extra hours on hand to let it soak.
ARM & HAMMER Baking Soda
If you’re looking for a recommended baking soda brand, you can’t go wrong with a classic. ARM & HAMMER has been around for decades, used in the households of millions for all sorts of cleaning jobs (and even cooking and baking!). It is aluminum free with no harsh chemicals or additives. Just the pure sodium bicarbonate.
If you’re looking for a quick fix and can’t afford to have your oven out of commission for a moment longer, you’re going to want an oven cleaner that promises to deliver grease-scrubbing power in a short amount of time.
What properties should my oven cleaner have?
All oven cleaners should do what they advertise—clean! If possible, try to choose an oven cleaner that is fume-free.
Oven cleaner fumes can be harmful to your family or pets and are just generally unpleasant. It’s possible to get a really great shining clean without having to breathe in toxic fumes while you’re scrubbing away.
If you can find a spray oven cleaner that requires less scrubbing, this may be beneficial for your peace of mind. Scrubbing the oven is a job that nobody really wants to do, so if it can be made easier, go for it!
When there’s a really tough grease spot that needs attention, it’s almost inevitable that you’ll be waiting some time while the oven cleaner works its magic. Some cleaners require an overnight soak period to allow the spray work into the stain. While it is inconvenient, these cleaners are often the most effective and will save you some manual labor.
Learn how to use heavy duty oven cleaners here.
Easy Off Professional Fume Free Oven Cleaner Aerosol
One of the most effective, and cheapest aerosol oven cleaners on the market is from Easy Off. It’s fume free and lye too, which is a major plus. You don’t even need to wear protective gloves when using this product.
It’s great for tough, caked on messes, but also everyday spot cleaning if needed. It comes in a nice, light lemon scent, but is tough enough to clean ovens, broilers, even barbecue grills. Check it out today!
Puracy Natural All Purpose Spray
If you’re willing to pay a little extra for an all natural cleaner, go with Puracy Natural’s All Purpose Spray. It’s more expensive because of its plant based formula, but this is arguably safer for your kitchen anyway. It’s still effective as well – removing all sorts of stains and messes from any surface, from the kitchen to the car and even jewelry!
Its non-toxic formula is also hypoallergenic, so if that’s a concern for you or a family member, this is the way to go. It’s also vegan, gluten free, biodegradable, and not tested on animals. This is a great, ethical, healthy buy that’s just as effective as other oven cleaners for your home.
Sprayway SW826 Oven and Grill Cleaner
A top rated oven cleaner that has gotten rave reviews online and is one of the top performing cleansers tested is the Sprayaway oven and grill cleaner. It’s a thick foam material upon application. This allows it to cling to any surface without dripping. You can also use it on warm or cold ovens – so if you have a mess to clean up while you’re in the process of cooking, this is a great option.
It works wonders in just minutes. Just spray it on, let it work its magic (by penetrating, emulsifying, and holding the mess), and wipe it clean with a damp cloth! Simple as that.
Try them out!
A tough grease stain that’s been left to fester in the oven for too long is likely to give you a hard time. By picking an oven cleaner that suits your cleaning style and habits, you’ll be more likely to clean out the baked- and caked-on grease spills before they get to the point of no return.
Make cleanup even easier with enameled cast iron. Here’s my post on the best dutch ovens made from the best cookware material, and coated in enamel!
Do you have a gas oven? Check out my recommendations for the best oven cleaner for gas ovens. And for more recommendations for kitchen maintenance products, see these reviews of the best garbage disposal for septic systems and eco-friendly paper towels.
Image credit via Flickr Creative Commons: Magic Madzik and Jennifer.