With the dozens of ideas and variations for natural oven cleaners all over the web, I was very skeptical as to what would work and what would not. I decided to take the most popular 3 Natural Oven Cleaning Recipes and put them to the test.
Most recipes have a variation using baking soda or washing soda, and for good reason. It has incredible cleaning powder. It helps to understand that the difference between washing soda and baking soda is slight, but important. Washing soda comes from the same “rock” so to speak. It is just that the molecules are left larger. For this reason, I like to use washing soda on projects such as oven cleaning.
A few of the sights I found useful were The Prairie Homestead and Yum Universe (along with a plethora of others with slight variations). I ended up changing proportions from the recipes I found to make logically more consistent pastes, or making better portions. But I had to test them myself. See the Results below.
3 Natural Oven Cleaning Recipes
Step 1 to all oven cleaning – give it a good wipe down. You can see from my picture that I already got up the wet or charred bits. I did no scrubbing, but a good wipe down does wonders.
Step2 to keeping a clean oven is wiping it down more regularly. If you wait months, then you’re going to have a harder time cleaning it.
1) Baking Soda and Salt
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 1 Tbsp salt
- 2 Tbsp water to make a thick paste (leave on overnight)
- Make into a thick paste and leave for a few hours or overnight before scrubbing.
2) Washing Soda, Dish Soap, and Vinegar
- 1/2 cup of washing soda
- 1 Tbsp dish soap
- 1 Tbsp white vinegar
- Combine ingredients. The will form a foamy paste.
- Rub onto the surface and leave for a few hours or overnight before scrubbing.
3) Borax, Vinegar, Dish Soap, and Water
- 1 Tbsp Borax
- 1/4 cup white vinegar
- 1 ½ Tbsp dish soap
- 1 cup hot water
- 1 cup baking soda
- Combine borax, white vinegar, dish soap, and water.
- pour onto bottom of oven and sprinkle with baking soda.
- Leave for a few hours or overnight before scrubbing.
There was a clear winner in my mind. Recipe #2 with just washing soda, dish soap, and vinegar seemed to work great in comparison to the other two.
I put #2 on the entire front and sides of the oven, #1 on the left, #3 on the right. Right away I liked how #2 felt – it feels creamy and sits easily on whatever you put it on without crusting off or running off. I waited 4 hours. As soon as I started on #2 I was happily surprised. My kids had declared which one they thought would win so they were standing on my heals as I tried scrubbing. Everywhere #2 sat was scrubbing up nicely. The other two helped somewhat, but not nearly as much as the first. The clear loser in my mind was #3 with borax. I don’t think the proportions were right enough to allow the vinegar to loosen the baked on grease. It loosened some bits, but I had to scrub a lot harder with it than the other two. With #1, I’m sure the salt was a big help in scrubbing.
In the end, I ended up putting recipe #2 on the other areas before finishing the scrubbing.
** Hint, when it comes to those last little stubborn bits, I used the point of a steak knife back and forth. They came right off.