Burnt On Grease: Best Cleaning Agents and How to Clean it

Dirty pans

Of course, cleaning grease stains as soon as they impact the surface should get most of them off right away. Leaving them on will eventually create a much tougher version, known as “burnt on grease”

That’s why we leave the job to cleaning agents and other methods after you’re done with the cooking process. And luckily, there are a few methods that can work for you!

What Are Burnt On Greases and How Do They Form?

They say to “beat your enemy, you have to know your enemy”, and that’s exactly what we’ll do!

High temperatures cause the fats used in cooking to loosen and easily blend.

This allows the fats to combine with microscopic food bits and create greases forming a highly cohesive matter with exceptional sticking properties.

As the droplets of grease fall on surfaces, such as stovetops and counters, the grease sticks to it.  As the temperature goes down, it starts hardening and creating the burnt on stain that is very difficult to clean.

What Is the Best Kind of Cleaning Agent to Use for Cleaning Burnt On Grease?

As a rule of thumb, kitchen degreasers are the best type of cleaning agent that you can use for cleaning charred grease.

Much like a laundry detergent, a kitchen degreaser is usually made of a powerful blend of emulsifiers and surface-active agents, also known as surfactants.

In some cases, these degreasers might also have organic or petroleum solvents. However, you should reserve those solvents for degreasers that aren’t intended for kitchen utensils.

These ingredients bind to the hardened greases either chemically or physically to break them down and turn them into a softer matter that you can scrub away.

While there are tons of degreasers on the market, some of them have better recipes, and therefore, work much better with stubborn kinds of grime.

We’ve scoured the market looking for the most powerful cleaners that can remove burnt on grease, here’s a brief overview of each one of them:

1. Goo Gone Kitchen Degreaser

The Goo Gone Kitchen Degreaser is one of the most popular options out there because it does work!

The degreaser contains a powerful formula without being abrasive. It generates some foam that helps in spreading the formula and infiltrates the grease particles to break them down.

It can work on a wide variety of surfaces where you’ll find tough and stubborn greases, such as ovens, stovetops, pans, sealed stone, and more.

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2. Rejuvenate Glass and Ceramic Cooktop and Oven Cleaner and Restorer

Rejuvenate is also a great cleaner that you can use for this type of grease. The cleaner is a great value for money because it comes with a free applicator pad that’s specifically designed for scraping scorched greases away.

What makes rejuvenate special is that it leaves a non-stick barrier on the cleaned surface. This makes for an easier cleaning process in the future. This barrier also gives off a brilliant shine that a lot of people love!

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3. Stanley Home Products Original Degreaser

Stanley’s original degreaser is a budget-friendly and cost-effective option that offers decent cleaning power without being too costly. It comes in a large bottle and has a multipurpose formula that can clean a variety of surfaces.

For example, it’s one of the few formulas on the market that you can use on cookware grills, woodworks, and even laundry!

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3 Effective Home Remedies to Remove Burnt on Grease

If you prefer to steer away from chemical detergents but you still need the tough greases off, this section is for you!

Luckily, various household items have enough cleaning power to remove tough stains off your pans. Let’s have a deeper look at them:

1. Using Boiling Water

Pouring hot water into a pot to remove burnt on grease

As previously mentioned, these greases solidify as the temperature goes down. By turning the heat up again, the greases will start to soften again, making them very easy to remove with a sponge.

It’s also one of the easiest methods to clean without using any kind of detergents or degreasers. Simply fill the pan with water and make sure that you cover all the challenging grease stains.

After that, put the pan on the stove or in the oven and bring the water to a boil. Leave the boiling water go for a couple of minutes then turn off the heat and let the water cool down a little until it’s warm enough to touch.

Using your non-abrasive cleaning sponge or brush, clean off the softened grease stains and they should clear off right away in most cases.

You shouldn’t try this method if the pan you are using isn’t intended for high stove heat. Instead, just pour some very hot to boiling hot water into the pan and let it sit for anywhere between 1 to 2 hours.

Use your brush to scrub the softened grease away. Then rinse and repeat the step if some grime stays untreated.

To make up for the lack of boiling power, you can add a small amount of dish soap or kitchen degreasers to the boiling water. However, this is optional.

3. Using White Vinegar

A lot of people suggest using white vinegar to remove difficult greases. Scientifically speaking, this should work because mild acid, such as the acetic acid in the vinegar does break down these greases and widen their pores.

This makes it much easier for water to sweep them away with simple scrubbing brushes. Keep in mind that apple cider vinegar contains the same active ingredient and will only cost you more.

To clean with vinegar, spray a decent amount of white vinegar to coat the greases and let them sit for 15 to 20 minutes. When it’s time, scrub them with a brush, then rinse and repeat if necessary.

Can You Use White Vinegar with Baking Soda for Cleaning Burnt Greases?

You might’ve heard some people suggesting mixing baking soda and white vinegar while cleaning.

Unfortunately, that cleaning myth doesn’t work because baking soda is a base, which reacts with the acid in vinegar, forming a much less effective salt (sodium acetate).

Instead, you can sprinkle some baking soda after cleaning the greases away with vinegar to restore the stainless steel pans shine!

How to Get Burnt on Grease Off Stove Tops

Stovetops are, in fact, the number one victim of these greases because they always have to wait until you’re ready to clean them off.

Clean gas stovetop

Although the stainless steel surface is much tougher to clean, combining the previous methods will get you excellent results! Here’s how to do it:

  1. Start by removing all the stove accessories and pans, then unplug the stove.
  2. Carefully add boiling hot water to the sticking greases (barely enough to cover the greases without flooding the stove).
  3. Let the water cool off, press some dry paper towel on the grease, and repeat if necessary.
  4. Spray white vinegar on the still-warm greases and let them sit for 10 minutes.
  5. Using a non-abrasive brush or steel wool, scrub the stuck greases.
  6. Optional: spray kitchen degreaser on the stovetop and let it sit for a while.  Then scrub it for the toughest stains.
  7. Repeat as necessary.

Wrap Up

There you have it. A complete guide with everything you need to know about burnt on grease.  Hope you learned a few more ways to get rid of it!