After years of caked-on food, sticky oil, burnt crumbs (who me?), and improper drying, your once-shiny bake ware is not so glistening anymore. You scrub and scrub, but it feels like you’re not getting anywhere. You succumb to the stubborn grease, grime, and rust. You feel you’ve lost a piece of your kitchen to that icky brown and black gunk.
But not anymore. Stop scrubbing without getting anywhere. Don’t spend a small fortune buying new bakeware. There’s an easier, natural way to bring bake your bakeware back to its shiny, spotless state.
There are three basic types of bakeware that each call for unique care. We’ll go through stainless steel, aluminum, and glass cleaning, so you can know how to treat each material with the TLC it deserves.
Stainless steel is a high-quality, sturdy material that makes up some of our favorite pots and pans. It’s supposed to be “stainless,” so it can be highly disappointing when your stainless steel wares finally meet their grimy match.
The safest way to clean stainless steel is a hydrogen peroxide and baking soda paste. Make a paste with 1/4 cup of baking soda and just enough hydrogen peroxide for the solution to be malleable and thick. Place the paste on the marked areas of your stainless steel wares.
Leave the paste on for 1-2 hours. This will transfer and refresh the stain. Then use an abrasive scrubbing pad or sponge to scrub away the grease and grime. The baking soda will work like an exfoliator to get rid of any locked particles while the hydrogen lifts and lightens stains.
Hydrogen peroxide can have a bleaching effect, so we always recommend wearing dish gloves when handling.
To clean rust off of your stainless steel, sprinkle pumice cleaner on the rusted areas. Start scrubbing with an abrasive pad. If the stain lifts, great! If not, then you’ll want to spray the stains with an oven-cleaning product. Wrap the stainless steel in plastic wrap to keep the pot or pan soaking in the oven cleaning solution. Let sit overnight.
In the morning, unwrap the plastic wrap. Put the bakeware in the oven at 150 degrees F for 20 minutes. Remove the bakeware with oven mitts and let cool. Once cool, soak in hot, soapy water (dish soap is fine) for 30 minutes. You should be able to remove the rust easily with a sponge or scouring pad.
Fill the aluminum pot/pan with equal parts water and white vinegar. Bring the mixture to a boil on the stove. Once boiling, turn the stove off. Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature. Dip a scrubbing pad or sponge in the water-vinegar solution. Use the sponge to scrub the bakeware clean. Rinse in soapy water. Dry off immediately to prevent rust.
When cleaning a dirty sheet pan, you’ll want to use a mixture of 1/2 cup of baking soda and 1/2 cup of white vinegar. Cover the sheet with the mixture. Plug your sink, place the sheet inside, and fill the sink with hot water. The reaction will start to bubble up, which will help loosen the residue on the sheet. Keep the pan submerged and soaking for 30 minutes.
Unplug the sink and let drain, but don’t rinse yet. Scrub the sheet pan with a scouring pad or scrub sponge. After the marks are gone, wash with regular soap and water to remove any remnants of the reaction. Dry immediately to prevent rest.
Plus, this process helps clean your sink with the drained baking soda and vinegar. Be sure to wear dish gloves to protect your hands.
Glass baking dishes are beautiful and sparkling, but they can quickly start to feel greasy and show off the brown gunk. To get your glassware spotless again, you’ll need baking soda and dish soap.
Fill the bottom of the glass container with dish soap. Sprinkle a layer of baking soda on top. Fill with hot water and soak for 15 minutes. After, scrub with a sponge. Avoid using steel wool or abrasive sponges as these can damage the glass. If the spots are still stubborn, sprinkle more baking soda over as you scrub. This will help further exfoliate away any persistent gunk.
Now that your bakeware is clean and spotless—just like new—how do you protect it from future gunk?