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If you’ve ever read the ingredients list on a bottle of oven cleaner (or, worse, suffered the after effects in a poorly ventilated kitchen) you’ll know that it can be made up of some pretty nasty stuff. Luckily, there is a natural alternative that will give you the same result without any dangerous chemicals. It’s a win for you and for the environment. Here’s how to do it.

1. Remove everything from the inside of the oven, like the racks, thermometer or any baking trays.

2. Make up your cleaning paste. Mix half a cup of baking soda with a few tablespoons of water until you have a thick paste.

3. Spread the past all over the inside of the oven (avoiding the heating elements). Don’t worry when the paste turns brown – that means it’s working.

4. Leave the oven coated in the paste overnight.

5. In the meantime, clean the oven racks. Line the bottom of your bathtub with old towels, put the racks on top and fill halfway with very hot water. Add half a cup of liquid or powder detergent and leave to soak overnight.

6. In the morning, wipe out as much of the paste from the inside of the oven as you can. Use a damp cloth or a spatula for the hard spots.

7. Put some white vinegar in a spray bottle and spritz the inside of the oven. The vinegar will react with the remaining baking soda to form a foam. Wipe out the foam with a damp cloth.

8. With a clean damp cloth, wipe any baking soda residue from the oven until it is clean and shiny. You can use a little more vinegar if need be.

9. In the bath, the racks should wipe clean easily. Then put them back into the clean oven.

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