How to clean oven racks: 4 methods to do it

Get your racks shiny and bright as new with these methods

How to clean oven rack
Source: Groupon

If you dread even the thought of cleaning the oven racks, you’re not alone. Between the tight and tricky corners and the grease that sticks to it as if its life depended on it, scrubbing these racks looks more like torture rather than a home chore. But fear not! It is only difficult because you haven’t learned yet how to clean oven racks easily.

How to clean oven racks: 4 methods

Excited to learn how to clean oven racks easily? Then you will be even happier to know that there is more than one way to do it! You just need to pick the one that suits you the best, either because they look easier to you or because you have all the required tools to give it a go right away.

Bathtub and dryer sheets

How to clean oven racks bathtub dryer sheets
Source: Pinterest

What you need

  • Dish soap
  • Dryer sheets
  • Scrub brush or sponge

How to do it

1. Line the bottom of the bathtub with the dryer sheets.

2. Place the racks over the sheets. Be careful not to scratch the bathtub in the process.

3. Turn on the hot water faucet and when it’s burning hot, seal the tub and let it fill only until the racks are covered.

4. Add anywhere between 1/4 or 1/2 cup of dish soap to the water and stir a bit so it dilutes in the water. Use a long brush or a similar object to do this, not your hands. Be careful not to burn yourself.

5. Let the racks soak in the bathtub overnight or at least for quite a few hours.

6. After that period, grab a dryer sheet and wipe the biggest residues out of the racks.

7. Use the sponge or the scrubbing brush to reach the hardest corners and to remove any resilient grease.

8. Dry the racks with a towel or let them air-dry before you set them in the oven again.

How it works: these sheets are antistatic and they help to separate the grease from the racks by diluting their bonds. They also contain fabric softener, which softens any residues of grease or baked food.

Bathtub and soap

How to clean oven racks bathtub dish soap
Source: Blueclicks

What you need

  • Dish soap or dishwasher granules
  • Old towels
  • Scrub brush

How to do it

1. Line the bottom of the bathtub with old towels and rest the racks on top.

2. Fill the bathtub with hot water, just enough so the racks are submerged.

3. Add 1 cup of dish soap or dishwasher granules to the water.

4. Let the racks soak overnight.

5. Rinse the racks and use the brush to remove the grease.

6. Pass the racks under clean water and dry them very well before putting them back in the oven.

How it works: the soap and the hot water will soften the grease to detach it from the racks. You might need to apply some force to scrub harder areas still.

Baking soda and vinegar bath

How to clean oven racks baking soda vinegar
Source: Hunker

What you need

  • Old towels
  • Vinegar
  • Baking Soda
  • Scrub brush

How to do it

1. Place the old towels on the bottom of the bathtub and lay the racks on top.

2. Sprinkle baking soda over the racks and then douse them in vinegar.

3. Once the foam recedes, turn on the hot water and fill the tub until the racks are submerged. Let them soak overnight.

4. Use a brush to scrub away the grease and residues of baked-food.

5. Rinse and dry the racks before placing them in the oven again.

How it works: vinegar is an acid while baking soda is a base. When combined they cancel each other and become water, but while this transformation takes place the foam it creates helps to disintegrate the grease from the racks and loosen it. Soaking them overnight adds the powers of hot water to soften the already detached grease.

Ammonia trash bags

Ammonia trash bags How to clean oven racks
Source: Blueclicks

What you need

  • Ammonia
  • Trash bag
  • Scrub brush or toothbrush
  • Goggles
  • Gloves

How to do it

1. Put the racks in the trash bag and add 1/2 quart of ammonia.

2. Make sure there are no leaks in the bag and tie it closely so no fumes escape.

3. Take the bag outside just in case there might be a tiny leak and let it sit overnight.

4. Open the bag outdoors or in a very well ventilated room and stand as far as possible to avoid breathing the fumes.

5. Remove the racks from the bag and rinse them thoroughly with a hose or in the shower.

6. If there are any residues still attached to the racks, use a scrub brush or a toothbrush to help remove them.

7. Rinse again and dry the racks before putting them in the oven again.

Be careful! This is the most straightforward way to clean the oven racks, but also the most dangerous. Use gloves and goggles when dealing with ammonia and, if possible, perform the cleaning outside so no harmful fumes circulate inside your home.

It doesn’t matter how excited you are to learn how to clean oven racks, your health should always come first!

Why you should clean your oven racks

How to clean oven racks why cleaning
Source: Lacanche

The racks are the closest objects to your food when in an oven, so it’s very easy for them to become dirty or contaminated due to spills. As a simple matter of hygiene, you should clean the racks frequently to avoid the build-up of germs and bacteria.

The high temperatures also harden grease, fat and baked-food residues over time, which can produce a foul smell that can taint your meals.

Tips to keep oven racks clean

Since now you have learned how to clean oven racks easily, you might become too relaxed but you should try to avoid needing to soak the racks too often.

Try to clean the racks after each use. Just let the oven cool down, remove the racks and scrub them as you would do with any dishes.

If you don’t let the grease accumulate it will be much easier to keep them clean every time without needing any soaking or special tricks.

After cleaning and drying the racks you can also use a paper towel or an old newspaper to apply vegetal oil to the racks. This will reduce the chances of food sticking to them the next time.

How well do these tips work?

Did you get suspicious after learning how to clean oven racks? Sounds too easy for such an arduous task, right?

Out of the 4 methods to do it, the weaker one is the simple mixture of hot water, soap and soaking overnight. Check the video below to see this hack in action, and you will be able to have a clearer picture of how well these tricks work.