Procrastination is the biggest obstacle to maintaining a clean kitchen oven, and it's easy to see why. Making your hardest-working kitchen appliance sparkle usually requires you to scrub away old, crusty remains that once resembled the delicious sauces we generously slathered over our food. But although it's a taxing chore, cleaning your oven thoroughly is a necessary task that shouldn't be taken lightly.
According to Kitchen Aid, wiping away grease and fat residue every three months is essential in preventing food contamination and maintaining a clear view through the glass door. However, because countless homeowners dread this kitchen chore, thousands of hacks have been posted on TikTok to make this responsibility less of a burden.
A TikTok post showcasing an oven cleaning tip by content creator Gia Pendergast has garnered over 215,000 likes, 1,000 comments, and 81,000 shares. Due to its popularity, House Digest decided to test out this hack to reveal whether it's something you should try, or if it's simply more trouble than it's worth.
We decided to try out the viral cleaning hack on an oven that hasn't been cleaned for at least three months. We followed Gia Pendergast's instructions and obtained and mixed three ingredients: 1/2 cup of baking soda, 1/2 cup of Dawn dish soap, and 1/2 cup of distilled white vinegar. To apply the cleaning solution, we used the rough end of a Sponge Daddy, which has a similar texture to the Brillo pad that Pendergast used.
One of the reasons we were excited to try out this technique is its use of distilled white vinegar, which has become a popular ingredient in many viral cleaning videos. The acid in vinegar has long been known to break down grease and grime, making it invaluable in any kitchen. However, we'll see how well it works when combined with the other ingredients and if this hack is truly worth all the excitement.
After mixing the ingredients, the cleaning solution quickly rose, dripped over the edge of our bowl, and created a soapy mess. To handle this, we placed a towel underneath before we began to stir. In the video, Gia Pendergast said to mix the solution until it turned into a paste. Unfortunately, after stirring until our wrists were sore, we didn't end up with a paste. Instead, we achieved the consistency of a runny glob, which we dipped our sponge into before thoroughly applying it all over the interior of our oven. However, we had plenty of cleaning solution left over, which we stored away and saved for another day.
Pendergast advised waiting for two to three hours — allowing us enough time to watch the season two finale of "Ginny and Georgia." After about two hours, the mixture dried up and became transparent and gritty. We used our Sponge Daddy to loosen it up, then wiped down the oven with a microfiber cloth. There was still a little soap residue left, so we ran a rag under warm water before wiping it clean.
Although creating the cleaning solution was a pain, we still achieved stellar results. Almost all the grease, grime, and burnt pieces spotted along the oven's interior were gone, giving the appliance a refreshed look. But even though this cleaning hack delivers, we've taken note of one major flaw: the cleaning solution ratio. A 1/2 cup of baking soda, Dawn dish soap, and distilled white vinegar is way too much for almost any imaginable application. Before cleaning the oven, we first had to wipe down our countertop after the solution spilled over the bowl — which was big enough to hold a few cups of water.
So, like quite a few commentators, we advise using different measurements if you're hoping to try this hack. One TikTok user known as Dujour1 advised: "[I used] different ratios: 3/4 cup baking soda, 1/4 cup Dawn, 1/8 cup vinegar... Fantastic!" Since all three ingredients have fantastic cleaning potential, a more balanced mixture is bound to achieve similar results without causing a mess or costing an arm and a leg.