How to clean your oven: 3 steps to get your grates gleaming

Show your oven some love...go on

how to clean an oven
(Image credit: Africa Studio / Shutterstock)

In an ideal world, we'd all clean our ovens thoroughly after using them. After all, not only is grime and grease a fire hazard, but it also has an effect on how food cooks and tastes. However, if we're being realistic, who has the time? 

Cleaning your oven and racks can be a bit of a chore, and it may seem a little overwhelming, but it's still an important task. Even the best ovens should be cleaned regularly, and especially when they're about to do a whole lot of cooking. 

With this in mind, we spoke to the appliance experts at RGBDirect, who gave their advice on how to clean your oven and the racks with cupboard staples. Keep reading to find out exactly what you need to do...

What you will need:

Rubber gloves

Baking soda



A spray bottle

A scrubbing brush or sponge

A plastic scraper 

Towels or rags

Step One: Start with the oven itself 

To begin, remove the oven racks and any other parts so you can wipe away any loose debris or crumbs from the oven interior. The best way to do this is use a dry cloth or paper towel. 

Then, mix a paste of baking soda and water. It should be thick enough to spread easily, similar to the consistency of toothpaste. Spread the baking soda paste over the interior surfaces of the oven, avoiding heating elements and any openings. 

Pay extra attention to areas with heavy grease or food residue. Let the paste sit for several hours or overnight as this will help break down the grime. Whilst the paste is working its magic, move onto the oven racks separately...

Step Two: Move onto the racks 

Start by filling a large bowel (or your washing up tub) with hot water. Add a few cups of white vinegar to the water and submerge the oven racks in the tub, leaving them to soak for a few hours or overnight. This will help to loosen the grease and grime. 

After soaking, use a scrubbing brush, steel wool or sponge to remove any remaining residue from the oven racks. Rinse them thoroughly.

Step Three: Go back to the oven 

After the baking soda paste has had time to work, use a damp cloth or sponge to wipe away the paste and loosened grime. You may need to use a plastic scraper to help remove stubborn bits.

If there are still tough stains or grease spots, you can spray a mixture of equal parts water and vinegar on the affected areas and scrub gently. Once you're satisfied with the cleaning, wipe down the interior with a clean, damp cloth to remove any remaining residue. 

Replace the clean oven racks and any removable parts. Preheat the oven to a high temperature (about 230°C) for about 15-20 minutes to burn off any remaining odour or residue from the cleaning process. 

Finally, wipe down the oven's exterior with a mixture of water and a little dish soap to remove any grease or fingerprints. 

Your oven should now be clean and ready for cooking. Remember to allow some time for the cleaning process, as it may take a few hours or even overnight for the best results! 

Interested in more? Check out some of our other cleaning guides: 

How to clean a pizza oven

How to clean a vacuum cleaner

How to clean an electric blanket

Lizzie Wilmot
Staff Writer, Home

Lizzie is T3's Home Staff Writer, also covering style, living and wellness. She works closely with Bethan Girdler-Maslen, T3's Home Editor, ensuring all the latest news, trends and recommendations are covered. Outside of T3, Lizzie can be found mooching around Bath, attempting (or at least trying to) a new DIY project or spending time with family and friends.