Classic baking paper or reusable baking foil protects a baking tray from the worst – but does not protect it from liquids (such as hot oil or melted cheese), which can run over the edge of the baking pan when heated and spread in the oven. If there is more smoke than usual in the oven, it is a sure sign of burnt-on grease or food residue that is charring. Then at the latest it will be time to clean the baking tray. How does this work best? We’ll tell you.

The oven cleaner is an extremely effective remedy for stubborn incrustations and burnt-on food in the oven and on the baking tray. This is due to its chemical composition, which is effective but bad for the environment. In addition, the ingredients can cause allergic reactions that can irritate your eyes and skin. For this reason, you should always wear protective gloves when using it, ventilate the room well – and not use the chemical cleaning agent too often. How to use an oven cleaner correctly is clearly explained on the packaging.

As an alternative to oven cleaner, you can use dishwasher tablets to clean the baking tray – without a dishwasher. All you have to do is boil some water, place a tab in the middle of the tray and pour hot water over it. It is best to ensure that the entire area is completely covered but not overflowing. Wait until the tab has dissolved and then gently whisk it with the water. It is best to leave the mixture to work overnight before rinsing the baking tray with clean water and wiping it clean with a dishwashing brush or cleaning sponge.

Natural home remedies that are also suitable for cleaning a baking tray are much more environmentally friendly than chemical cleaning agents:

Commercially available saltTo remove stubborn incrustations and burnt-on food from the baking tray, a popular home remedy has proven itself: salt. Spread this generously on the tray, ideally so that all affected areas are covered. The tray then goes into the 50 degree oven and stays there for 30 to a maximum of 60 minutes – depending on the degree of dirt. If the salt turns brown, the tray is taken out of the oven again and the salt and any incrustations are removed. Then clean the baking tray with a regular sponge, a little dishwashing liquid and clean, warm water.

Baking powder or baking sodaAn equally proven home remedy for cleaning the baking tray is ordinary baking powder. Take a packet (or 15 grams of loose powder) and mix it with warm water. Pour the paste onto the tray and let it sit for 30 minutes. You can then remove the residue with clear water and wipe the sheet clean with a dishwashing brush or sponge. If the incrustations are particularly stubborn, you can leave the mixture to work overnight. And another tip: If you don’t have baking powder at home, baking soda powder works just as well.

Vinegar or citric acidAs an alternative to salt and baking soda, vinegar can be used as a natural cleaning agent – or citric acid. To do this, cover the entire surface with the home remedy of your choice and place the tray in the oven at 200 degrees for a maximum of 20 minutes. In the final step, the baking tray must then be rinsed with clean water and wiped with a sponge or cloth. And another tip: The strong smell of vinegar can bite your nose and burn your eyes, so you should ventilate the kitchen well while cleaning.

As mentioned at the beginning, burnt food cannot be completely avoided – not even by using baking paper or baking foil. However, you can influence how difficult it is to remove the incrustations afterwards. The fact is: the longer you wait and the less frequently you clean the baking tray, the more difficult it will be to remove burnt-in food. It is therefore advisable to soak the tray immediately after use: preferably with warm water and a splash of detergent.

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