Unusual oven-cleaning hacks – tried and tested

I tried three of the internet's most unusual oven-cleaning hacks to find out which method is most effective

A double silver oven and stove set up on a kitchen with marbel floors and blush pink cabinets
(Image credit: Rehome)

As an avid home cook, I usually make a mess in the kitchen, and my oven often finds itself on the frontline of this culinary chaos. While I know how often you should clean an oven, I'm the first to admit that the best way to clean an oven still evades me. 

I recently bought a new bulb for my beloved oven, and once I’d installed it, I was directly confronted with the scale of the filth that I had baked onto the door, racks, and floor. Something had to be done. 

The internet is full of self-proclaimed 'genius hacks' for cleaning just about anything, and the oven is no exception. So, I took this as an opportunity to try some new kitchen cleaning techniques. Below I share three viral oven cleaning hacks, what you need to try them yourself, and if they actually work.

Baking powder and aluminium foil

kitchen with cabinets, oven and stove

(Image credit: Future PLC)

This method for cleaning a glass oven door is simple: Add boiling water to baking soda and use aluminum foil to scrub off any dirt and grime. But does it effectively clean an oven door?

I scattered around 2 tablespoons of baking powder over the inside of my glass oven door and used around 8oz of boiling water. You use baking powder rather than baking soda for this hack because baking powder activates in contact with heat, whereas baking soda reacts with acid. Once it had spent a moment or two fizzing, I screwed up a ball of aluminum foil and started scrubbing. 

Overall, this technique worked quite well, removing most surface-level grease. However, it didn’t remove any deep stains. For that, I recommend something more heavy-duty, such as the highly-rated EASY-OFF Heavy Duty Degreaser from Walmart.

Dishwasher tablets

devol kitchen with chrome lacanche range cooker and navy paneled backsplash and cabinetry

(Image credit: Devol)

Dishwasher tablets have a range of different components to help them clean your dishes and glassware, including enzymes to break down starches and proteins. Because they work so effectively in my dishwasher, using them to clean my oven floor sounded promising.

I poured some warm water over the surface and started scrubbing away at the grime with the dishwasher tablet and a coarse sponge. I was surprised by how well this method worked. The tablets' abrasive quality makes scrubbing with them quite easy, and it did break down most of the remnants of whatever I’d baked onto my oven. 

Just like using a commercial oven cleaner, make sure you rinse away any residual dishwasher tablets with clean water before using your oven again. 

Scrub Daddy Non-Scratch Sponge |

Scrub Daddy Non-Scratch Sponge | $3.88 at Walmart
The Scrub Daddy smiley face scrub sponge doesn't scratch your oven and resists odors for up to eight weeks

Coffee Grinds

A double gas stove with a broiler drawer

(Image credit: Getty Images)

I was reluctant to use my fresh coffee beans to clean my oven racks, but thankfully, there are plenty of uses for old grounds (including a few hacks for cleaning a kitchen with coffee grounds). So, I set aside around 2 tablespoons of grounds left over from my morning brew and got to work. 

Coffee grounds are abrasive, so in theory, they should be good for scrubbing with. I placed my oven racks in the sink, filled it with hot water, added the coffee, and left them to soak for just under an hour. This hack was by far the worst one. I gave them a good scrub, and while it did clean them, I don’t think it was any more effective than soaking and scrubbing would have been without the added coffee. At least it made my kitchen smell nice.

If you're not convinced that these unusual kitchen cleaning hacks will do the trick, you could always try the salad dressing cleaning hack

Thomas Litten
Freelance Writer

Thomas Litten is a freelance food and drink writer whose articles and product reviews have been featured in a variety of national publications. His introduction to food and drink came through the hospitality sector, running bars for Michelin-starred restaurants. This experience, plus a love of good food, wine, and spirits, led to a career selling premium drinks to high-end restaurants and later providing consultancy services to food and drink start-ups across the UK. Now, based in southwest England, he mainly divides his time between working for a leading bakery business, visiting coffee shops, and collecting and writing about kitchen gadgets.