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Dirty oven? Here's how to clean it without harsh chemicals

All you need is some simple household items and a little bit of time.

Chris Monroe/CNET

The inside of your oven is probably a lot dirtier than you'd like to admit. Fortunately, it's easy to clean. 

The following method works well if your oven doesn't have a self-clean cycle, or you just don't want to use harsh cleaning products. 

Now playing: Watch this: How to clean your oven with baking soda and vinegar


  • Dish gloves
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Dish soap
  • Water
  • A spray bottle
  • A sponge or cleaning cloth
  • A scraper or spatula
  • Paper towels
  • Bucket or bowl
  • Vacuum cleaner (optional)

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1. Remove the racks from your oven and wash them in warm, soapy water. Some oven racks are dishwasher-safe, but check your oven manual first to make sure they won't be damaged in the dishwasher. Dry the racks and set them aside.

2. Remove any loose food particles from your oven. 

3. Make a paste using three parts baking soda and one part water. 

4. Spread the paste around the inside of your oven. If there are really tough, burnt-on spots, put a little extra baking soda paste on them. Avoid putting the paste on heating elements inside the oven.

5. Close your oven, and let the paste sit overnight.

6. Moisten your sponge or cleaning cloth with warm water and wipe away the baking soda paste. Use a bucket or bowl full of warm water to rinse the sponge or cleaning cloth as you're removing the baking soda paste. For any stubborn messes, use a scraper or spatula.

7. Fill a spray bottle with one part vinegar and one part water. Spray down the oven and wipe away leftover baking soda paste with paper towels or another cleaning cloth. You can use a handheld vacuum or attachment to remove any remaining clumps of baking soda. 

8. Replace the oven racks.

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