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How to Clean Your Kitchen after Cooking Messy Meals

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July 29 is National Lasagna Day, and it's sure to be a holiday your family will want to get into the hang of celebrating. Expect plates to be totally empty, leftovers to be minimal and the kitchen to be rather messy. After all, anytime tomato sauce is involved, things are bound to get dirty. Have no fear, though. Cleanup is simple when you know a few important hacks. Follow this guide to cleaning your kitchen after a messy meal like lasagna.

You can use the self-cleaning feature on the oven, or you can use natural substances.You can use the self-cleaning feature on the oven, or you can use natural substances.

Tackle the Oven
You'll want to clean your oven about once every six months. While you can just opt for the self-cleaning feature that most ovens come equipped with, you can also skip the chemicals and create your own cleaning concoction for a more natural approach. Mix together 1/2 cup baking soda and several tablespoons of water until it forms a pasty mixture that you can spread all over the dirtiest spots inside your oven. Be sure not to get it on the heating elements. Let it sit overnight and wipe it down the next morning with a damp cloth. Remove any stubborn spots that remain by spraying vinegar directly on the greasy area and wiping it away with another damp cloth. That should take care of any sauce and food that got left behind after your celebrations.

Wipe Down Counter Tops 
There's bound to be some rogue sauce that got left behind on the counters and stovetop while you were preparing your messy, delicious meal. After clearing away all of the dirty pots, pans and plates, spray the counters and stovetop down with vinegar and tackle it all in one swoop. The substance is powerful enough to get rid of germs but gentle enough that it won't leave any harmful residue behind. People looking for natural cleaning agents often choose vinegar for its strong cleaning power.

"Soaking your casserole dish isn't always enough."

Clean Casserole Dishes Without the Fuss
Sometimes, simply soaking your casserole dish in warm soapy water isn't enough. You'll either need to let it sit overnight, take a steel wool brush to it or possibly a combination of the two. If that doesn't work, turn to some helpful ingredients that you probably already have lying around the house. Lemon juice can cut through grease and help with the removal of crusty buildup on pans. Baking soda and hydrogen peroxide can also cut through stubborn residue. Mix them with water and apply the solution to the dish and let it sit for a few minutes. When you wipe it down with a damp cloth, the crust should come right off.


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