Best Oven Cleaning – Products and Techniques

Oven cleaning is one of the most overlooked processes when it comes to keeping the kitchen looking its best. It’s something that a lot of people put off, but it’s a process that if you simply keep on top of it, is one that has huge benefits.

Best Oven Cleaning – Products and Techniques

The good news is that there are now loads of products that can help you get amazing results in a short period of time. The flip side is that there are also a lot of products that don’t work, so you need to be careful about what you buy.

Within this article, I’ll be looking at some of the best oven cleaning products and oven cleaning techniques that you can use at home. As ever, I like to save money where I can, so I’ll also include ways that you can use every day cleaning products as well.

Oven Pride Complete Oven Cleaning Kit

Oven Pride Complete Oven Cleaning Kit    

Oven Pride is the UK’s most popular oven cleaner for good reason. This economically priced product comes in a box that includes everything you need to get rid of burnt on food, cooking oil build up and accumulated grease and dirt in your oven.

Oven Pride is an excellent product for really deep cleaning your oven. Inside the pack is a 500 ml bottle of oven cleaner along with a plastic bag for your racks and grills. It even includes a pair of cleaning gloves which are essential for protecting your skin when dealing with heavy duty cleaners.

How to use Oven Pride


I don’t know about you, but I’m not a big fan of scrubbing and that’s what I like about this stuff.


  1. To get started, remove the racks from your oven and put them inside the plastic bag.
  2. Wearing your protective gloves, pour about half of the contents of the bottle into the bag and then gently tilt and move it so that the racks are completely coated in the cleaning product.
  3. Seal the bag and then set aside for at least four hours. The bag shouldn’t leak but just to be on the safe side, I recommend that you put it somewhere safe so that if it does, it won’t do any damage.
  4. Pour the remaining product into your oven and use a sponge to distribute it evenly over all surfaces. Don’t forget the oven roof!

The manufacturer recommends leaving the cleaner for at least 4 hours but I usually leave it overnight for maximum effectiveness. The really nice thing about Oven Pride is that there’s no horrible chemical odour so you don’t wake up to that throat catching caustic smell that you sometimes get with other heavy duty cleaning products.

  1. Wearing the protective gloves, take your racks out of the plastic bag and give them a good rinse in warm water and washing up liquid.
  2. Then clean out the residue from inside the oven. Depending on how dirty the oven was, you can use a sponge or a plastic scraper for this. Use an old sponge if you have one, as you’ll be putting this in the bin when you finish. I normally place a basin on the floor with a newspaper underneath to protect my floor and catch all the residue and dirty water.
  3. Give it a final rinse with warm soapy water and you’re done!

Your oven racks and interior should be looking brand new and even the toughest burnt on food will have disappeared.

Oven Pride’s cleaning kit contains very detailed instructions on how to clean your oven and the company website has this handy video showing you exactly how it works (above).

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HG Oven, Grill & Barbecue Cleaner

HG Oven, Grill & Barbecue CleanerHG’s range of cleaning products are consistently popular with professional cleaning companies and this product doesn’t disappoint. The spray-on oven cleaner will remove burnt on food and grease and conveniently, it’s suitable for use on the hob as well as barbecues, grills and kitchen appliances.

The nice thing about this product is that you only need to leave it on for about five minutes for it to take effect, so your oven isn’t out of use for long periods of time during cleaning.

To use HG’s Oven, Grill and Barbecue cleaner, first off make sure that you are wearing protective gloves. If you spill this stuff on your skin then you will end up with some nasty chemical burns.

The manufacturer advises customers to slightly heat up ovens before cleaning as this assists with the process. Be careful and don’t overdo it! A lukewarm temperature is all you need. You can also clean your oven not long after it has been in use and still warm.

  1. Spray generously into the oven and use a soft cloth to distribute the cleaner all over your oven surfaces.
  2. Leave the cleaner to do its work for about 5 minutes and then rinse clean with warm water and dry with a fresh cloth. A cautionary note though – if your oven is really dirty, you may have to repeat the process a couple of times to get a really good finish.

I use this cleaner on the barbecue as well as the oven and I find that I get excellent results. Usually, I spray it on when the grill is still warm, give it a quick rub with a cloth and rinse off the residue with a garden hose. HG Oven, Grill & Barbecue cleaner is available on Amazon and is shipped for free if you have Amazon Prime.

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Stardrops Pink Stuff Paste

Stardrops Pink Stuff PasteStardrops Pink Stuff is an all-round cleaning paste that works on tough stains and removes built-up grease and food debris from kitchen appliances, ovens, microwaves and utensils. The paste is ideal for cleaning small stains and spills although you can also use it on larger areas.

Sometimes your oven needs to be cleaned but it’s not dirty enough to merit a full-on deep clean and that’s where Stardrops comes in. It’s a great product to have in your home anyway as it’s so versatile and you really can use it anywhere.

What I like about Stardrops Pink Stuff is that although it is really effective, it isn’t harsh or caustic and you don’t need to worry about spilling it and ruining your carpet or worktop.

Pink Stuff Paste comes in a 500-gram container and unsurprisingly when you open it up, you’ll see that the paste is bubblegum pink.

  1. To remove dirt or grime from your oven, apply the paste to the area you want to clean and then rub it using a soft cloth for light soiling or a scrubbing sponge if you are dealing with grease or baked on food. The paste is slightly abrasive so you’ll want to wear gloves to protect your skin. You will need to use a bit of elbow grease but you should see immediate results.
  2. Rinse off the residue from your oven and dry with a clean cloth.

I like to keep this on hand for my saucepans when things get burnt on. Pink Stuff also does a lovely job of removing rust stains, limescale and it makes stainless steel look brand new. It’s free of nasty chemicals, has a pleasant fragrance and let’s not forget the super girlie pink packaging and Bubblegum paste.

Stardrops Pink Stuff Paste is inexpensive and available from Amazon where you’ll get free shipping if you are a Prime member.

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Spares2go Universal Teflon Oven Cooker Liner

Spares2go Universal Teflon Oven Cooker Liner

If you really hate cleaning your cooker and want to avoid doing so for as long as possible, then an oven liner might be the answer. These protect the base of your oven catching any drips and spills and the liners can be washed by hand or in the dishwasher. You can use them in both gas and electric fan assisted cookers and they will tolerate temperatures of up to 260°C.

Spares2go liners come in a pack of 4 so if you are really lazy, you can just throw them out when they are dirty and put in a replacement. Please note that if you have an oven with a bottom element, this product is not suitable.

Spares2go would have you believe that these liners will save you from ever having to clean your oven again. However, although I think they are great for minimising the amount of cleaning you do, I don’t believe they can replace regular (or in my case semi-regular) cleaning. For starters, they don’t protect your oven racks and you’ll still get grease and build up on other surfaces and the interior of your oven door.

I use a liner in my oven which I remove and wash whenever something spills over. That’s a pretty regular occurrence in my house and if I had to clean my entire oven every time it happened, then I’d be doing it every weekend. I find it really handy to just chuck the liner in the dishwasher and put it back in the next day. Spares2go liners come in a standard size of 40 x 50 cm. That’s 16 x 20 inches. If your oven is smaller, you can cut them down to size.

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The Verdict

It’s difficult to just pick one best product here because each the four that I’ve reviewed have quite different purposes. I love the convenience of Oven Pride’s Complete Oven kit and the fact that you can just apply and leave it overnight without scrubbing. However, I do find that single-use products are often false economy and I have concerns about the environmental impact of all that packaging for something you just use once.

A 500ml bottle of the HG oven cleaner, by contrast, will last you for months, even if you clean your oven every couple of weeks. It’s also much quicker and cleaner to use and your oven isn’t out of action for hours while the product does it work. For this reason, when it comes to cleaning ovens, my gold star goes to the HG spray.

A close second prize goes to Stardrops Pink Stuff Paste for its sheer versatility around the home. If you had to have a separate product for every individual cleaning job around the house, can you imagine how much space you’d need in your home? That’s why I always appreciate multiple use products. Stardrops Pink Stuff will do everything from saucepans to sinks to skirting boards. On top of that, it’s non-toxic, smells good and it’s pink!

General Advice for Maintaining Your Oven

With so many different types of ovens and oven cleaners out there, it can be difficult to know what’s best for your particular model. Opinions differ greatly on how often you should deep clean your cooker and with the advent of self-cleaning cookers, people are even more confused.

The need for cleaning your oven is influenced most by how often and in what manner you use it. If you cook meat and fish on a regular basis then you’ll have a far higher build up of fat on your appliance than somebody who just heats up frozen pizzas. Casseroles and cheesy bakes like Lasagnes are also responsible for lots of mess, so if that’s your cooking style, chances are you need to clean your oven quite frequently.

If you notice a bad smell from your oven or smoke when you are baking then it’s definitely time for a deep clean. I try to thoroughly clean mine roughly every two months but there are times when it is more like three or four months between cleans, particularly in summertime when I tend to use it less. Between deep cleans, I use a more gentle, topical cleaner like Pink Stuff paste to spot clean areas where food has been spilt.

More and more kitchen appliance manufacturers are producing self-cleaning ovens which can remove much of the heavy work from cleaning your cooker. However, a lot of people are confused about the different varieties and how they work.

There are two main types of self-cleaning cookers:

Catalytic liners

Catalytic ovens have special liners on the interior of the oven which absorb grease and fat. If you have one of these, you can run a special cleaning cycle which heats the oven to above 200ºC for about half an hour, burning off the collected grease and debris on the liners.

After the cleaning cycle, all you need to do is rinse away the residue with soap and water. For this type of cleaning to work properly, you need to do it regularly – at least once a month. If you do this, your oven will always be clean and hygienic and you’ll never have to replace the liners.


Pyrolytic ovens are the most effective of the self-cleaning cookers. These don’t rely on liners. Instead, the cleaning program runs at more than 400ºC for several hours. This burns away all food residue, grease deposits and debris. Once the cycle is complete, you’ll just be left with ash which you can easily sweep away. Simple!

Final Thoughts

Unfortunately, my cooker is an old-fashioned one but I’m pretty happy with it and I don’t have any plans to change it in the near future. I guess that means I’ll be donning the rubber gloves for some time yet. I hope this article has been useful and cleared up any questions you might have had about the best products and techniques for cleaning your oven. Enjoy!

Claire has been in the cleaning industry for over 15 years. She's worked numerous jobs including both domestic and industrial cleaning. Her most recent role has been head of product testing for a major cleaning supplier. Following the birth of her second child, Layla, Claire has set up Cleaning Mentor to help people become better at cleaning, saving time and money.

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