how to clean oven racks
Kitchen cleaning

How to clean oven racks

Unfortunately, burnt-on food and grease can build up on oven racks & pans if they aren't regularly cleaned. Read on for tips on cleaning oven shelves & pans.

Stains from burnt-on food can be enough to put anyone off cleaning their kitchen, but with this simple and effective guide to cleaning oven racks and scorched pans, you’ll be wiping the floor with the toughest stains in the kitchen before you know it.

How to Clean Burnt Pans

Don’t get yourself in a boil over a little scorched milk on the bottom of your saucepan: these savvy tips for cleaning burnt pans can rescue any scorched pot.

  • For most burnt-on food on pans: Put a mixture of washing up liquid, water, and a tablespoon of salt or vinegar in the pan, and then bring to a simmer for a few minutes. This will help to soften the stain, making it easy to wash the pan as usual. Remember to let the pan cool completely before continuing the cleaning process.
  • If your pan is severely burnt: Cola could provide a headache-free solution to badly burnt pans, removing all traces of burnt-on food when left overnight or boiled in the pan, and leaving your cooking tools shiny and clean. Remember to test this method first.

How to Clean Oven Shelves

To clean oven shelves or oven racks, you can use an oven cleaning product like Cif Oven Cleaner. Ensure you follow the product instructions and safety guidelines.

However, it is possible to clean oven racks with washing up liquid - you just need a tub big enough to submerge the trays or oven shelves.

  • First, soak your oven shelves in a solution of hot water and washing up liquid.
  • Leave them for around two hours or longer, but don’t allow the water to cool completely as heat helps when cleaning scorched oven shelves.
  • After soaking, the stains will mostly just rub straight off with the firm wipe of a sponge or clean cloth, but if marks still remain, try something more abrasive like a dish scourer. If you are cleaning an oven rack with a painted finish, take care not to apply too much pressure and scratch off the paint, and also do not leave the product in contact with the rack for a long period of time. An old toothbrush may also be necessary for scrubbing right into the corners and completely removing scorch marks from oven racks.

So next time you’re wondering how to clean oven shelves, or considering throwing that burnt pan away, you can reassure yourself that removing burnt-on food can be a breeze with the right method.

For more information on the ingredients in products mentioned in this tip, visit What’s in Unilever Products here.

Top Tip


The most important tool at your disposal when dealing with burnt-on grease and food is the power of a good soak – it’s best to do this as soon as possible after use, to soften and loosen grime before you tackle the pan or rack with a good scrubbing.