The Ultimate Baking Sheet Hacks You Need to Know

If you spend a lot of time baking, your sheet pans can get dingy and stained fast. But you can use a few simple cleaning hacks to give your baking sheets that brand-new look.

First, plug up the sink and fill it with hot water. Then, add baking soda and vinegar. The chemicals will react and bubble up, making scrubbing any grease easy.

Baking Soda and Vinegar

After countless roasted vegetables, cookies, and sheet-pan dinners, well-used baking sheets can lose that bright, shiny look they started with. They may even have that mottled blend of black and brown that many people have accepted as the pan’s new look. You can try baking soda to break down stuck-on foods without heavy or abrasive scrubbing for these hard-to-clean pans.

To clean a stained baking sheet, Maria Acuna of Keeping It Simple recommends placing the pan in your sink to avoid spillage. Then, pour a shallow layer of vinegar into the pan and sprinkle a heap of baking soda. The slight acidity of the vinegar breaks down the baking soda, producing bubbles of gas that help lift grime from the pan.

Let the pan soak for one hour overnight and then scrub away with a nylon pad or sponge. This method is especially effective for nonstick baking sheets since you can skip the abrasive scrubbing.

Ketchup

Ketchup isn’t exactly known for being a kitchen miracle, but it can make your baking sheets look (almost) new again. Its acid can help break down burnt-on grease and grime. Liberally squirt the condiment on the stained areas of your pan, then let it sit overnight. The following day, scrub the gunk with a stiff scrubber and some elbow grease.

If you use baking sheets often, you know they can develop a patina over time, especially in the corners and edges. And if you’re not careful, you can end up with a dark brown or black sheen that no scrubbing can remove. Enter this simple hack from TikToker Miss Scruboholic: Squirt some ketchup on your dirty baking sheet, let it sit, and then scrub it clean. This works especially well on stains from baked fries and other oily foods. The results may not get rid of every last scorch mark, but they’ll certainly brighten up your kitchen.

Parchment Paper

It’s a kitchen workhorse that saves time, prevents mess and elevates the appearance of baked goods. Parchment paper is pliable, grease-resistant and can withstand high heat. It is often used to line baking sheets and pans to provide a nonstick surface between the food and vessel, which makes removing food from the tray stress-free and vessel clean-up effortless. It is also commonly used to wrap foods stored in the refrigerator or freezer, such as cheeses and sandwiches.

If you’re out of parchment, try using a piece of foil to line your baking pans. You can also use wax paper as an alternative, but keep it away from high heat as it melts at relatively low temperatures. To make your kitchen even more efficient, invest in a set of reusable silicone baking mats. They are available in a range of sizes and are dishwasher safe. They also greatly replace parchment, wax and foil in most situations.

Dryer Sheets

If you type “how to clean baking sheets” into your search engine, you’ll be flooded with articles and videos swearing by one cleaning hack or another. Using ketchup, a dishwasher tablet or dryer sheets will help you easily eliminate stuck-on grease and gunk.

Dryer sheets are a household staple, but we often overlook their uses outside of laundry. The fabric softening and fragrance chemicals in dryer sheets can be used for non-laundry-related tasks such as buffing water spots off chrome surfaces or eliminating odors from shoes and gym bags.

Use a dryer sheet to remove scorch marks from baking pans without much scrubbing. The sheet will also remove any baked-on food residue, leaving your baking pans looking as good as new. Suppose you’re concerned about the amount of synthetic fragrances and VOCs (volatile organic compounds) in dryer sheets. In that case, there are alternatives to using them, such as adding vinegar to your wash cycle or purchasing reusable wool dryer balls that can be used for years.

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