One reason people often give for not cooking more often is that they don’t want to clean up a mess. Unfortunately, messes are just a regular part of cooking, though there are ways to be more efficient at cleaning them up. Discover how to make your oven and cooktop sparkle like they’re brand new.
Cleaning Your Cooktop
The process for cleaning your cooktop will be different depending on which style you have. Here are some of the most common varieties. Always make sure your cooktop is turned off and completely cool before cleaning.
For a glass cooktop, you’ll need a special cleaner from the hardware store that won’t scratch the stove’s surface and is safe to use around food. Periodically, you may also want to clean the stovetop with a glass top polish and a soft cloth. To take care of the toughest food and burn stains, use a razor to gently scrape up hardened residue.
Deep-cleaning a gas range is a little more involved, but you’ll love the results! Soak the stove grates in a non-toxic degreaser, using a gentle scrub brush or old toothbrush to remove anything stuck to the grates. For the stovetop itself, use the same degreaser or liquid dish soap and your choice of paper towels or cloth. Repeat as needed until your cloth or towel comes away clean.
To clean an electric coil stovetop, pull the coils out of their sockets and lift up the drip pans. Scrub the coils with a sponge and dish soap until clean. You can either do the same for the drip pans, or replace them with new ones if they’re especially dirty. Before you put everything back, make sure to wipe out the inside of the stovetop to remove any food residue.
Cleaning Your Oven
There are basically two options for cleaning your oven. If your oven has this feature, you can use the self-cleaning setting to make cleanup a breeze. However, if your oven doesn’t have this feature, or you’re uncomfortable with the high temperature some ovens require to use it, there are other ways to clean it.
First, remove the oven racks and place them in a garbage bag overnight with either store-bought cleaner or baking soda paste. Spread the same product on the insides of your oven and leave it to sit overnight. In the morning, wipe everything out. If you still have food residue, use a razor or a cast iron pan scraper to gently remove it.
Helpful Cleaning Tools
- Baking soda
- Dish soap
- Paper towels/rags
- Utility razor
- Cast iron pan scraper
Make Cleaning a Routine
Once you know how to make your oven and cooktop sparkle, you’ll be ready to handle any mess you might make while cooking. Don’t let a fear of cleaning stop you from trying out new recipes and cooking techniques!