If you are venturing into the toaster cleaning world for the first time, it may seem daunting but we assure you that you can make that odd looking contraption sparkle again with just a little bit of TLC. Many people put off cleaning their toaster because the dirt buildup is on the inside and less noticeable. Sweeping dirt under the rug does not mean it isn’t there, people! We understand, though. It is an odd little device to clean, and it does take a few tricks to do properly so that is why we have made a list of the best cleaning tips we could find.
It is important to clean out toasters and toaster ovens because the crumb buildup can cause a safety hazard. Plus, nobody likes a smelly, smoking toaster! Letting those crumbs and baked on bits sit in your toaster will just smell up your kitchen and possibly even trigger the smoke alarm. You do not have time for that nonsense! So check out our super helpful toaster cleaning tips below.
Toaster Cleaning Tips
- Tap It Out
For those with new toasters or toasters that have a good crumb catching tray, this method is all that is needed. Simply dump out the tray like usual and then hold the toaster upside down over the trash can while tapping it to get the rest of the crumbs out. Sometimes this is all a toaster needs to get the crumbs out so why reinvent the wheel? Do it the simple way first!
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- Pastry Brush
Some crumbs are a little more stubborn and refuse to be tapped out. (They get really comfy in those cracks and crevices.) Have no fear. We have a solution for that, too! Grab a little pastry brush and use it to brush out the crumbs that accumulate inside your toaster – it is an easy and generally effective method to try. You will need a small sized pastry brush or if you do not have one, clean off a paintbrush really well and that works almost as well. After you use the brush to get the crumbs out, it is a lot easier to clean everything else after.
- Pencil & Paper Towel
The coils are a tricky part of the toaster to clean and many people, even the most OCD people, will skip this step. It is not hard though and works pretty darn well. Just take a pencil and wrap half of it multiple times with a paper towel and secure it with a rubber band. After that, stick the paper toweled side of the pencil into the toaster and run it back and forth to wipe off the coils. It should be thick enough to reach both sides of coils but if not you can do one side at a time. Do not rub too hard or violently because you could damage the coils. If the paper towel begins to rip, take it out and replace it since you do not want to leave pieces of paper floating around in your toaster.
- Hair Dryer
You never thought you would mix hair dryers and toasters right? Well, this is a great way to get the crumbs out quickly and gently. Make sure to remove the crumb tray first and get it out of the way. Then hold the toaster over the sink or trash can and use a hair dryer over it to blow the crumbs and odd bits out of the middle. How cool is that?
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Toaster Oven Cleaning Tips
- Warm Water Bowl
To loosen up the tricky baked-on additions to your toaster oven, simply fill a dish or bowl with water then heat up the oven to about 350 degrees. Let it sit for about 15 minutes and then it will have loosened up all of the hard to clean items.
- Vinegar & Hot Water
After removing all accessories such as racks and trays from the oven, spray the whole inside thoroughly with a hot water and vinegar solution. After letting it sit for 5-10 minutes, you can take a scrubbing sponge and more hot water to it and scrub away the scum.
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Cleaning Outer Surfaces
- Vinegar, Lemon & Salt
Now this method is for the OUTSIDE of the toaster because we realize that most toasters have their home on the counter and tend to get splattered by other food prep that goes on in the kitchen. The buildup may seem unnoticeable, but you will notice how pretty it looks when you are done cleaning. Just take half of a lemon and sprinkle salt on it then scrub the sides of the toaster with it. After that, you will wipe it off with a paper towel and then put vinegar on a cloth and polish it with that. The vinegar makes it shine beautifully after that!
Another method of cleaning the outside of a toaster or toaster oven that is stainless steel or metal of some sort is to mix cream of tarter with a little bit of water and use the pasty solution to clean nasty stains off and polish the surfaces.
Bar Keepers Friend is a great product for cleaning the outside of appliances as well. It is usually cheaper than cream of tarter especially if you use it a lot. It also will clean a larger variety of surface types. It literally makes appliances look brand new.
When cleaning toasters and toaster ovens, please be sure they are unplugged and fully cooled down before attempting to clean them. Being electrocuted or burnt is not a fun addition to your cleaning routine – trust us on this. You can also damage your toaster or toaster oven if you do not let them dry before using them so wipe them down and then give them some time to air dry if necessary before using again.
We know how difficult it can be to clean out odd items such as toasters and toaster ovens so we sincerely hope these tips will help you in your crumb-fighting endeavors!