How to Clean Your Oven Naturally after the Holidays

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The holidays are over, and now the new year has started. You still have to take down the Christmas tree and decorations and by the way, have you looked in your oven lately?

Or did you forget about the green bean casserole that spilled on the bottom of the oven on Thanksgiving Day? You know that burnt aroma you smell every time you turn it on. Or have you managed to ignore the smoke that is billowing out of the bottom of the oven?

Okay, maybe it isn’t that bad, but you should clean your oven after the holidays. And now you’re probably thinking you don’t have the time to clean the oven because you have to take down the Christmas tree and decorations. But if you clean your oven naturally, you won’t need a lot of time right now. All you need right now is baking soda, water, and five minutes to prepare your oven for cleaning. Then you can come back tomorrow or in 12 hours with vinegar to finish it, giving you time to take down your Christmas tree and decorations. So order some pizza or take out for the family tonight (you did enough cooking over the holidays) and relax as the natural ingredients in this cleaning solution work for you.

Before you start, let’s learn why these natural household products clean your oven so well.


Clean Your Oven Naturally with Baking Soda and Vinegar

Most likely you have three options for cleaning your oven.

  1. Self-cleaning oven feature (if you have one).
  2. Store-bought oven cleaning product.
  3. Natural & non-toxic oven cleaning solution consisting of baking soda, water, and vinegar.

We always suggest natural & non-toxic cleaning solutions for every cleaning situation, so we will be using number three. And here’s why:

The self-cleaning oven feature may emit obnoxious fumes and odors. And some store-bought oven cleaning products may emit toxic VOCs. Coming in contact with VOCs can result in temporary health effects like

  • Headaches
  • Nose, eyes, and throat irritation
  • Skin irritation
  • Asthma symptoms
  • Nausea and dizziness

Why Use Baking Soda and Vinegar to Clean?

Baking Soda occurs naturally in the earth and has the following cleaning properties:

  • It is an alkaline and base which makes it react with acids
  • Dissolves dirt and grease in water
  • Moderately abrasive making it a good scouring powder
  • Deodorizes bad odors by neutralizing them

Want to learn more about baking soda? Check out Baking Soda — The Everyday Miracle

Vinegar can be naturally made using grapes, apples, coconut, sugarcane, grains, corn, or yeast.

It has the following cleaning properties:

  • It contains acetic acid and therefore reacts with bases
  • Cleans water spots
  • Removes dirt, debris, grease
  • Disinfects and deodorizes

Want to learn more about vinegar? Visit The Vinegar Institute

Now follow along as we show you how to clean your oven naturally in six steps.

Clean Your Oven Naturally in 6 Simple Steps

Before step one, if you have any pots or pans or anything else stored in your oven, remove them along with the oven racks.

1. Depending on how dirty the inside of your oven is, you will need to measure out ½ (dirty) to ¾ cup (dirtier than usual) of baking soda along with 3 to 5 tablespoons of water. The more baking soda you use, the more water you will need to make the paste. Mix everything into a paste in a small bowl or glass measuring cup.

2. Apply all the paste to the sides and bottom of your oven using a brush or damp rag. If you prefer, use rubber gloves when applying the paste.

Below you can see a video of me coating the inside of my oven with the baking soda paste.

3. Let the paste sit overnight or a minimum of 12 hours.

4. When the oven is ready to clean, prepare to clean it by getting a damp rag, a non-scratch sponge, plastic spatula, and vinegar. Start by using the damp rag to clean out the baking soda paste. Remove it and throw it away. Use a spatula or non-scratch sponge to clean the greasier and dirtier areas of the oven.

5. Use the vinegar (it’s easiest to put it in a spray bottle and spray it) to clean the baking soda paste residue.

6. Wipe out the vinegar and baking soda paste with the damp rag until it is all gone.

Once you are done cleaning out your oven, the mixture of both the baking soda and vinegar should leave the inside of your oven shiny like mine below.


Now put everything back including the oven racks.


As you can see, cleaning your oven naturally using baking soda and vinegar is simple, non-toxic, and it leaves the inside of your oven shiny and clean. To keep up that shiny oven interior, clean your oven every 3-6 months, depending on how often you use it or after you have another baking disaster.

Have you ever cleaned your oven naturally with baking soda and vinegar? Let us know in the comments below.

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12 thoughts on “How to Clean Your Oven Naturally after the Holidays”

  1. Until a couple of months ago we bought our cleaning products at the eco store in our village. But I am developing a resentment to plastic packaging. So I am really interested in making cleaning stuff myself.

    Your explanation is very clear and helpful. Thanks!

    I read some use lemon as well. Do you have experience with that and would you recommend it for the oven?

    • I am glad you find this post helpful. I have not used lemon to clean my oven, but I do know that it is a natural degreaser and contains citric acid, so it could help remove grease.

  2. Hi, what a great ideal, I need to try this after all the cooking for Christmas, I needed a good tip to clean my oven I have difficulty breathing if I take the oven spray cleaner you buy in the store.
    Thank you for sharing

  3. I love this method and will certainly give it a go. I usually use the self-clean feature on my oven but I really hate the way it tends to stink up the house leaving my throat and nose irritated. Being winter in Canada, opening the windows is not really an option this time of year. Thanks again. What other cleaning hacks do you have for baking soda and vinegar?

  4. This method looks much better than the one I did! I used chemicals, but it was on my Mom’s oven that hadn’t been cleaned in….forever. I had to use so much to get through all the grime and long time abuse in hers.
    Does this natural method work well on ovens that haven’t been cleaned in probably 10 years? I doubt I’ll wait that long to clean her oven again, but geez, it was bad!


  5. I like this tip. Very practical and above all it is natural. This is a tip not just over Xmas but for all occasions. Clean the oven is a nightmare. For sure will use it. The products are easy to find and make the mixture seems to be quicker. Althoug, I was wondering, can you make the mixture and leave it ready to use when you need or you should do it every time you need it? Thanks.

    • Hi. My experience has been that after you combine baking soda and water, the longer it sits, the more it starts to fall apart and crumble. It’s harder to spread in the oven this way, so I would suggest making a fresh mixture every time. Hope that helps!

  6. We’ve always used one of those foam sprays which as you point out seem pretty toxic in terms of the smell and obvious chemicals used. Our oven is well and truly overdue for a clean so thanks for the natural options tips – seems a lot easier and much healthier.


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