Baking is fun, but do you know what isn’t? The sticky oven tray left after the cooking adventure. Unlike other cookware, oven trays have the nasty habit of collecting numerous types of stains: greasy, sticky, rusty ones, and let’s not forget those burnt spots. What a “pleasant” sight, right? 

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In this article, we are going to discuss the best ways to take care of all of the above-described types of oven tray stains the fast and easy way. Without further ado, let’s start with… 

Types of oven trays

Before we get into the actual “How-to” part of the article, first we must talk about the types of oven trays. The material of your tray will determine the cleaning method you’ll use.

  • Stainless steel. Stainless steel is your best bet when it comes to high-quality cookware. If you’ve ever cooked in this type of material, you know what we mean. Besides making adventures in the kitchen easier, stainless steel is also very sturdy. Still, the above-described qualities don’t make the metal invincible – stainless steel gets dirty and will form rust over time. 
  • Aluminium. If we have to compare aluminium kitchen utensils to stainless steel ones, we can describe the whole experience in one sentence – It still works. However, the material isn’t as sturdy as the pricier option and it rusts a lot quicker, too. 
  • Glass. Basically, glass cookware looks good when it’s new. After a couple of uses, the material forms a brown tint and greasy gunk starts building up. In terms of durability, we don’t need to tell you what is going to happen if you drop a glass, well, anything on the ground.

How to clean oven trays from grease

So, your last cooking attempt went a bit out of hand and now you are wondering how to remove baked-on grease from oven trays. Fear not, we’ve got the answer right here:

  1. First, with the use of a paper towel, remove as much of the grease from the tray as possible. 
  2. Prepare a little bath for the tray in your kitchen sink, by filling it with hot water and dishwashing liquid. 
  3. Dunk the tray into the soapy water and leave it there for a good hour. If the water doesn’t cover the whole thing, make sure to turn it over from time to time. 
  4. Get a sponge and start scrubbing. Depending on the type of tray you are working on, you’ll use a different sponge – a soft one for non-stick materials and a little more abrasive type for other surfaces. 
  5. Give your tray a final wash with cold water and inspect the results. If you can still see grease spots, repeat the last step or place it in your dishwasher. 

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How to clean oven trays from rust

Ah, rust – every metal kitchen tool’s nemesis. Many people think that there is no way to restore the initial state of their favourite, expensive stainless steel oven tray. The good news is that this is not true and the bad, well, – you are in for a lot of scrubbing. Here a few rust removal methods that you can try out :

Take care of rust with an ordinary steel wool

Get yourself some steel wool and carefully start removing any rust from the surface of the tray. Lubricate the area your working on with dish soap to avoid scratches. If you happen to be working with a more capricious type of material, scour the tray with fine steel wool. 

Combine lemon juice and… cream of Tartar 

This solution may sound a little weird, but a lot of people swear by it. Basically, when you mix equal parts of lemon juice and cream of Tartar, you create an exfoliant for your tray. Whip up a good amount of the paste and smear it onto the piece of cookware. Work the mixture into the rust spots. After a while, you should see the oxidation flaking off. Once you’ve removed every single bit of rust, rinse the tray with cold water. 

Cover a potato in baking soda

Get a potato. Any potato. Slice it in half and cover the cut part of the vegetable in baking soda. You can prepare a plate with more baking soda on it to dip the potato when needed. Now, take your potato and start rubbing it onto the rusty areas of your tray. Note that this method is suitable for thin rust layers. After all of the rust bits are gone, rinse the tray with water and you are done. 

Related: How to Clean a Freezer Without Turning it Off

How to clean oven trays from burn marks

Burn spots can make any kitchen tool look, well, dirty. To remove them from your oven tray if you’ve recently used it, first, get a paper towel and wipe as much of the grease off as possible. After that, boil some water, pour it into your kitchen sink and add one cup of baking soda. Soak the dirty tray for an hour or until the burnt spots have softened up. Drain the dirty water and with an old cloth, try to wipe away the crusties. If the burnt bits refuse to come off, repeat the whole cleaning process. Once you’ve removed them, rinse the tray with clean water and you are done. 

How to maintain oven trays

After all of that soaking and scrubbing of nasty oven trays, you’ve probably started thinking about how to avoid such scenarios in the future. Here are a few oven tray maintenance tips that will definitely help you out:

  • Protect your oven from burnt-on stains by lining it with baking paper or aluminium foil when using it.
  • Remove as much of the leftover grease from the tray right after transferring the food. 
  • Place all of your cookware in hot soapy water after each use to loosen up the grease. This will make washing them a lot easier afterwards.
  • Avoid the use of harsh abrasive tools like wire scourers if your tray is prone to scratching. Such materials can damage the surface of the tray you are trying to clean, making cooking a nightmare later.

Get your oven professionally cleaned

You’ve probably gathered by now, that oven cleaning, in any form for that matter, is a major pain. The whole endeavour is greasy, sticky, smelly, and on top of all that – time-consuming. With that being said, why not get a professional to complete the troublesome task for you?

Fantastic Services offers expert oven cleaning solutions that can transform even the greasiest cooker out there, as well as its accessories like the oven tray. Our services are performed by trained cleaning experts, who work with industry-grade cleaning products and materials. The service is suitable for all types of ovens and you can even schedule a cleaning session for your barbecue, too!

Make your appointment with us in a matter of minutes for a time and day most convenient for your busy schedule. Restore your oven with the help of Fantastic Services today!

Visit the main website for price rates on our professional oven cleaners!



  • The key to removing most types of cooking stains from your oven tray is soaking the item into hot and soapy water for a long period of time.
  • Avoid using abrasive steel wool if your cookware is made from stainless steel, so you don’t damage the items. 
  • You can avoid rust from forming by patting dry your oven tray after each wash. This applies to any sort of metal cookware in your kitchen. 
  • Save yourself the hassle of scrubbing your oven tray by using baking paper or aluminium foil when cooking in it.

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  • Last update: November 28, 2019

Posted in Oven Cleaning

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