I will admit it, I can be lazy. My wife has been pushing me to clean the oven for some time and I always had a reason why I didn’t do it during the weekend. We don’t use our oven for a ton of stuff, but we do use it, especially for things like sweet potatoes that can at times leak sugar if you put them directly on the grates. Needless to say, when it was time, I pulled the racks out and cringed.
I then went searching on the best way to clean these bad boys and the results were annoying. Use a power washer! I live in an apartment! Use the built in oven clean cycle! But the directions tell you directly don’t use the oven clean cycle with the self clean cycle. Use Ammonia! What? Ya, lets kill my family with ammonia fumes!
I scrubbed with lots of different things then finally found the one thing that really worked.
Bar Keepers Friend to clean your oven racks
I forgot that I had purchased this a few months back. I had originally bought it to clean my stainless steel cookware as after heavy use the polish becomes real dull. And after trying lots of cleaning, this worked the best to really clean off the cooked on and baked on caking and what could be described as rust in the crevices.
I put it in the bath tub but I would recommend is putting a couple of thick, throw away towels to hold it because it will move. second, get yourself a small kitchen brush to get it in to the nooks and crannies.
Scrub those bad boys. Use a brush to get into the little nooks and a sponger to get the rounded stainless steel. Just scrubbing it this way till get a lot of the really caked on good off the stainless steel. Once you are done, go ahead and plug the tub and start filling it with hot water. Then add in some dish soap if you want and let it soak. This should soak for between one and four hours. I check every hour and run the sponge over the stainless to make sure its ok.
Be cautious how much dish soap
This is especially important if you are in a condo but be careful how much dish soap you actually use. You do not need a ton of it and if you put to much in the tub, when you try and drain it, it will take for every to get the soap to go down and it can even back up a little bit. It is not a whole lot different when you put to much laundry detergent in your clothes washer and when it drains, it over flows.
After you have rinsed, place them in a place to dry. I put them on my lanai and in a couple hours they were ready to head back to the oven. While they were out, I also took the time to run a clean cycle on the oven so that after a couple hours, I just needed to finish cleaning that and it was ready to go.
Every three months
The longer you wait, the worse it gets so if you can schedule every three months, then it will make the cleaning easier and less a mess. If you wait a year, you will be scrubbing and soaking those racks all day. What did you find works for you?