How often do you clean your oven? Once a week? Once a month? Once a year? I’ll be honest. One of the best things ever invented was the oven self-clean feature. (Ok, that and name-brand toilet paper, but we’ll save that story for another blog post!)
When I made meatloaf earlier this week, I attempted to take it out of the oven and spilled excess grease all over. And by all over, I mean all over. It was on the oven mitt, it was on my arm and it was now on the floor of the oven. I drained the excess fat from the meatloaf and returned it to the oven to finish cooking. I thought the grease at the bottom of the oven would slightly burn off during those last ten minutes, but it just baked right into the oven itself.
To make a long story short, I turned on the self-clean feature of the oven as we ate dinner, thinking the grease would disappear. BIG BAD MOVE. I’ll spare you the details of my son saying, “Look at the smoke coming from the oven!” and my daughter screaming, “There’s a fire in the oven!” ….Yes, it went there. (Luckily my husband was smart enough to turn the oven off, while I pretended to know what to do. *You can not open the oven when it is at a certain temperature in self-clean mode. Just a FYI in case you ever find yourself in this situation.)
Tonight, as I sit watching tv, I ran across an advertisement for oven cleaner. Though it is nearly 3:00 AM as I type this, it “reminds” me of the dirty oven (that I am afraid to turn on until cleaned).
With that, I bring you DIY Oven Cleaner:
I show that picture and cringe. My usually clean oven looks horrible. That black you see on the bottom? The burnt grease.
To begin, I took 5 Tablespoons baking soda, 5-6 drops of dishwashing detergent and 4 Tablespoons vinegar and mixed them into a paste.
With a sponge or scour pad, wipe the paste on areas to be cleaned. Let it sit for about 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes, you can take a half of a lemon and sprinkle it with salt. This creates an abrasive, which will help with scrubbing! *If you don’t have a lemon, you can sprinkle the salt and possibly use lemon juice, splashed on the paste.
I let the lemon juice sit for a minute, while I filled a small pan with warm water. (You may want to use something old and/or disposable.)
Dip the sponge or scour pad into the warm water, ring out, then scrub the oven clean – rinsing the sponge or pad in the water as you go. (Change the water as needed.) It is a big challenge and takes a little “elbow grease”. <pun intended> Make sure, when you are done, you give the oven one final rinse!
Now tell me the truth….what other appliance do you wish came with a self-clean feature?