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Salt as an Effective Way To Clean Your Baking Sheet

how to clean cookie sheets
Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pixabay – Ponce_Photography

Have you been wondering how to get your baking and cookie sheets clean again without using aggressive substances? Many common household products will do the trick without damaging your wallet or the environment. In this article, we’ll show you four easy methods for cleaning your baking sheets naturally.

How To Clean Baking Sheets With Salt

using salt to clean baking sheets
Using salt to clean cookie sheets is a cheap and effective household solution. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pixabay – Onefox)

A simple and inexpensive household product that can be used very effectively as a cleaning agent is salt. Here’s how to clean your baking sheets and remove even the most stubborn bits of burnt food:

  1. Sprinkle the salt onto the baking sheet so that all the burnt areas are well-covered. 
  2. Place the cookie sheet in the oven for 30-50 minutes at 125°F until the salt becomes lightly browned. 
  3. Finally, shake off the salt and wipe the cookie sheet with a sponge with soap and water. It’s that easy.  

How to Clean a Baking Sheets with Baking Powder

how to clean cookie sheets with baking powder
Mix baking powder with water to make a mild cleaning agent for baking sheets. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pixabay – Evita Ochel)

If your baking sheet is dirty but not too dirty, you could also clean it using baking powder. For this method, you won’t need to turn on the oven, making it a more energy-efficient option. Here’s what to do:

  1. Mix three to four teaspoons of baking powder with a bit of water until a slightly runny paste is formed. It may start to foam a bit.
  2. Smear the paste onto the affected areas and allow it to sit overnight.
  3. The next day, all residue will be easily removable. 

One component of baking powder is natron, which reacts with water to create carbon dioxide bubbles. It is this bubbling effect that loosens and separates the burnt residue or grease. 

how to clean baking sheet
The acidity of the vinegar is what makes it such a potent cleaning agent. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pixabay – FlyerBine)

The acidity of vinegar makes it a great weapon against your burnt and dirty cookie sheets. For the best results (and if you want to do the environment a favor), choose organic and, if possible, locally produced apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar. Follow this method to get your baking sheets looking like new:

  1. Cover the cookie sheet with a thin layer of vinegar. This works best if your baking sheet is rimmed.
  2. Place in an oven preheated to 400° F for 20 minutes. 
  3. Pour off the vinegar and use water and a sponge to easily remove the residue. 

Tip: Vinegar can have a very penetrating aroma. But the chemical property responsible for the smell is also the one that makes it an effective cleaning agent. If you do not want to deal with the smell while cleaning the cookie sheet, you can neutralize it by mixing the vinegar 1:1 with lemon juice. Lemon juice can also remove dirt because of its acidity. 

Baking Soda as a Cleaning Agent for Your Baking Sheets

how to clean baking sheet
Baking soda easily cuts through grease and residual fats on your dirty baking sheets. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pixabay – Werbefabrik)

Baking soda is perfect for cleaning grease and fat from dirty baking sheets. Just follow these steps:

  1. Sprinkle about three heaping tablespoons of baking soda evenly onto your baking sheet. Add just enough water so that the sheet is covered.
  2. Allow to work in for several hours until any buildup has loosened.
  3. Rinse well with water. 

If your baking sheet is filthy, place it in the oven at around 220° F for about 20 minutes until the water starts to steam. Allow it to cool before rinsing. 

Tip: If enough baking soda has evaporated, you can also wipe out your oven after it has cooled down: two for one!

It’s Important to Clean Your Baking Sheets Right Away

Here are a few more tips to prevent things from getting ugly:

  • Use baking paper to stop burnt residue before it starts. Baking paper can also often be reused if it isn’t too dirty, be sure to use it for baking something with similar flavors. For example, if you’ve made oatmeal cookies, you use the paper again to make gingerbread cookies, but maybe not for roasting onions or other vegetables. Or you can try out a more long-lasting and reusable parchment paper instead.
  • Clean your baking sheets after each use: don’t let grease and burnt crust build up. 
  • Don’t clean your cookie sheets with rough sponges or brillo pads: the scratches will lose their nonstick coating and become even more prone to burning. 
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