I cook a lot, so my stove can get pretty filthy. And even though I tend to be a clean person, I'm embarrassed to admit that I let the grime on my stove build up for years before I ever did anything about it. Most of the products available at the store are harsh, and okay, I'll be totally honest, when I'm cooking, if a piece of tofu flies out of my skillet and onto the cooking surface, it's going to become my snack. So I like to minimize the amount of unrecognizable chemicals that come into contact with my stove top!
Finally one day when I was due to have family visit I decided enough was enough and my stove would get clean! In an effort to create a stove cleaner that actually worked, I did some experimenting with household items known for getting things clean naturally, like lemon juice and vinegar. Unfortunately, while vinegar makes a great counter cleaner, it wasn't cutting it with 5 years worth of stove top buildup.
Eventually I found the item I was looking for: baking soda!
Whereas lemon juice and vinegar are acidic, baking soda is alkaline, and it works by dissolving dirt and gunk and whatever is contained in those years and years worth of food residue on the stove.
So, how do you clean the stove top with baking soda? Glad you asked!
Here's the basic formula for my baking soda stove cleaner:
- 1 part water
- 3 parts baking soda
Measure by volume — so if you use ¼ cup of water, use ¾ cup of baking soda. I actually find this amount is perfect to clean my whole stove top, but it'll really depend on the size of your stove and how dirty it is. If the mixture seems really thick you can add a little more water, a splash at a time.
Start by spraying or wiping down the stove top so it's damp. Next, spread the baking soda stove cleaner over the stove top, focusing on the really dirty spots. Let it sit for 30 minutes or more, then start scrubbing with a dishcloth. You should find that the dirt wipes up with a little elbow grease — if not, just let it sit a little longer.
Once you've removed all the grime, wipe down the entire stove top with a wet rag to remove all of the baking soda. You might start to notice a film as the stove dries. This just means you missed some, so give it another wipe. When everything is dry and looks clean feel free to give your stove a spritz with this vinegar-based cleaner to get it shining.
Stove image via Shutterstock.