If you’re a toaster oven enthusiast, you know how wonderfully convenient and surprisingly flexible these small appliances can be. You can cook up bacon for breakfast, reheat last night’s leftovers, and even roast a chicken in these versatile little ovens. While a toaster oven doesn’t take on heavy-duty cooking like your regular oven, it often ends up with its fair share of grease and buildup. That’s why everyone needs to know how to clean a toaster oven inside and out.
While the manufacturer likely gave you a book on how to clean a toaster oven, if you’re like many of us, your toaster oven manual is long gone and you may not know where to turn. That’s why we put together a guide to help you learn the correct way to clean inside and outside your favorite little kitchen appliance. Go ahead and add your toaster oven to your routine kitchen cleaning list and let’s get started.
Here’s what you need:
- Liquid dish soap
- Distilled white vinegar
- Baking soda
- Mr. Clean Magic Eraser
- Cleaning cloths
- Non-abrasive sponge
Gather up your supplies, unplug your toaster oven, and get a clean toaster oven just in time for cooking up your next snack.
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How to Clean a Toaster Oven Inside
To begin, slide some newspaper or a paper grocery bag under your toaster oven to catch crumbs and debris as you clean. Remove the cooking tray, rack, and crumb tray and head to the kitchen sink. Use warm water and dish soap to scrub the parts, and don’t be shy — feel free to get in there and scrub to remove the buildup. If it’s been a while (if ever) since you’ve cleaned your toaster oven, a good soaking might be in order. Meanwhile, let’s head back to the oven.
- Dip a non-abrasive sponge in the bowl and start scrubbing the inside of your toaster oven.
- Don’t overdo the scrubbing, or you could damage the finish of a nonstick interior.
- Be careful not to get things too wet and avoid the burners.
- Scrub the ceiling of your toaster interior. It’s rarely nonstick, so you might have to squat down (or turn it over) to see in there and scrub it clean.
- Wipe the interior with a clean, damp cloth to remove residue.
How to Clean Toaster Oven Heating Elements
Yes, the heating elements need to be cleaned. Do you know all that smoke that bellows out when you cook cheese toast? That’s baked on grime cooking along with your food.
- Double-check that you’ve unplugged the toaster oven.
- Grab a damp cloth, some baking soda, and a toothbrush.
- Wipe the heating elements with a damp cloth.
- Use the baking soda and toothbrush to scrub off the buildup gently.
- Rinse your cloth and wipe away any residue left on the heating elements.
How to Clean Toaster Oven Glass
The glass on your toaster oven gets dirty on the inside from grease splatters and food debris, and the outside has to contend with messy hands. To loosen the baked-on grime on your toaster oven glass, you’ll just need baking soda, water, a cleaning cloth, and a magic eraser.
- Mix a few tsp. of baking soda with enough water to make a thick paste in a bowl.
- Dampen a cleaning cloth, dip it into the cleaning paste, and slather the paste all over the glass.
- Wait two hours to let the baking soda work on the grime.
- Rinse your cleaning cloth and wipe away the baking soda paste.
- Dampen a magic eraser and scrub away stubborn stains and buildup gently.
- Finish up with a clean, damp cloth to wipe away the residue.
Now’s a good time to finish up with your trays and racks. Head back to the sink and scrub away the rest of the grime with dish soap and water. Use baking soda to remove any remaining buildup or stains, rinse the parts, and put them aside to air dry.
How to Clean a Toaster Oven Exterior
Now that the inside of the toaster oven is sparkling clean, it’s time to make the outside shine from top to bottom. You’ll need your toothbrush, soap, water, vinegar, and paper towels.
- Wipe down the top, sides, front, and door edges with a cloth dampened with dish soap and water.
- Use a toothbrush dipped in your cleaning solution to get into nooks and crannies.
- Dampen a clean cloth with water and wipe away the soapy residue.
- Dry the exterior, knobs, and buttons with paper towels.
- Finish the job by wiping down high-touch areas with vinegar to minimize the spread of germs.
The Best Way to Clean a Toaster Oven
Learning the best way to clean a toaster oven was pretty easy, wasn’t it? All you need is some basic supplies, the correct instructions, and a bit of elbow grease. But you don’t want to do it more than you have to, and a little routine cleaning goes a long way. Now that you know how to clean a toaster oven, here’s how to keep it that way longer.
- Contrary to what you may have heard, lining the bottom with foil to keep a clean toaster oven is a fire hazard. Don’t do it.
- Every time you use the toaster oven, brush out crumbs and food debris with a paper towel.
- Wipe down the inside (don’t forget the ceiling) and outside of the toaster oven with a damp cloth weekly.
- Lift your toaster oven once in a while and brush out crumbs and debris underneath.
Doesn’t it feel good to know how to clean your toaster oven and keep it that way? If you want that feeling more often, check out our other cleaning guides for all kinds of things in your home. And when you need help cleaning your big oven, your kitchen, or even your entire home, The Maids can get it done with one of our popular cleaning services. Why not get your free estimate today and find out what a difference we can make in your home week after week.