If you don't, you probably wish you did. The thought of oven cleaning is just not appealing on any level. The chemical fumes, the difficulty reaching the back of the oven and the elbow grease required all add up to one, not-very-pretty picture.
There was a time when we all thought chemical cleaners were the only way to get an oven clean.
The truth is, there is another way! You can clean your oven without using nasty chemicals!
|Photo courtesy of Gracey at Morguefile.|
Years ago, I came across a magazine article called "The Safest Cleaners You Can Find". I snipped it out and put it in a binder of household tips I used to keep in the pre-Internet age. (Unfortunately, I don't remember which magazine it came from, so I can't give proper credit, but the author's name was Shannon Loughrin-Hunt.)
The simple tip for cleaning your oven is to switch the chemicals for baking soda.
Here's the direct quote:
Trade your oven cleaner for baking soda. "Cover the bottom of the oven with about a quarter inch of baking soda," says Berthold-Bond. "Spray water over the baking soda to keep it moist, and let it set for six hours or so," she says. Afterward, scoop the goop out and then sponge-clean. "It lifts up the grime just as well without any of the danger."
(Berthold-Bond refers to Annie Berthold-Bond, author of Better Basics for the Home: Simple Solutions for Less Toxic Living.)
I can vouch for how well baking soda works as an oven cleaner. In our last apartment before home ownership, we had a non-self-cleaning oven. I used this method on it several times. It works as an all-over oven cleaner and as a spot cleaner when you need to just clean up a small oven spill.
A word of caution: Don't try this on your self-cleaning oven. Most manufacturers will tell you not to put any type of cleaning agent, baking soda included, on the finish.