How to Clean Your Oven Trays

People say that blackened oven trays are a sign of a good cook, but when your baking trays start to become greasy or sticky, it’s definitely time to do something about it! Clean trays, clean oven.

Maybe you’ve tried conventional elbow grease, the dishwasher and experimenting with household items in various combinations, but nothing’s shifting the baked on grime? Well rather than just buying new trays (we’ve all been there!), consider the Ovenclean-approved ‘soak and scrub’ method with the inclusion of a powerful, but less-than-obvious ingredient to give them a new lease of life.

Culinary Battle Scars

Culinary battle scars, or just eyesores? You decide!

Get your trays looking and feeling clean

Whether it’s thick, burnt on dirt, or a sticky film of grease, a mistake many of us make is assuming that a dishwasher will do all the work for us. But when it comes to greasy oven trays, using the dishwasher in the first instance can be counterproductive, and may end up simply end up spreading the grease throughout the whole load.

And sometimes, all the washing up liquid and elbow grease in the world just never seems to shift the more stubborn stains. So instead, consider a combination of soaking and scrubbing with the following steps.

  1. Slip on your finest marigolds to protect your hands from grease, grime and cleaning agents.
  2. Use paper kitchen towel to wipe away as much grease as you can. Don’t worry about getting it all, just focus on removing any big clumps or residue that may have accumulated in the corners.
  3. Fill the sink with enough warm water as is necessary to cover the tray (don’t worry about it being especially hot, or boiling the kettle).
  4. Add biological washing powder (the stuff you wash your clothes in). The enzymes will help make easy work of the fatty oils and grease. Warm rather than hot water ensures the enzymes don’t denature and stop working.
  5. Soak the tray for at least one hour (preferably three or more), allowing the detergent to break down any oils and grease. If your tray doesn’t fit into the sink completely, you’ll want to turn it over at the half way mark and allow the other side to soak.
  6. If you’ve got a non-stick tray, use a soft sponge or cloth and wipe away the remaining grease. If it’s regular metal, grab a scouring pad or Brillo pad and let loose. You should find that all that stubborn dirt and grease glides off relatively easily!
  7. To make sure your baking tray is as clean as can be, slide it in the dishwasher for a final once over.

How to Keep Your Baking Trays Clean

It’s possible that this doesn’t sound like much fun, and may not be a task you want to repeat any time soon. In which case, you might like to consider ways to keep your baking trays clean all of the time.

The age-old favourite of lining your oven and baking trays with tinfoil remains both hygienic and fairly effective, but with good quality foil costing upwards of £3 a roll, it may be worth considering reusable tray liners as an alternative.

They aren’t the cheapest, but if looked after can last for years, and represent particularly good value for those with big families that cook a lot. Baking tray liners come in a number of materials, shapes and sizes, but we like the Seraphina’s Silicone Baking Mat because of its non-stick surface and dishwasher-safe construction.

Seraphina 's Silicone Baking Mat

Baking mats have come a long way in recent years

And if you’d like to bring your entire oven back to the same sparkling standard as your newly ‘soaked and scrubbed’ trays, call in the experts and let us take care of it for you! Call us on 0800 840 7127 or complete our online form for a free estimate.

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