Normally we love funk, but not THIS kind of funk

Dear Home-Ec 101,

Say one had a habit of boiling things over on the gas stove top. Say one had been lazy about cleaning such things. Say one’s husband has a liking for splattery meat and a strong aversion for cleaning. What toxic substance would be necessary to get the black gas stove top clean again?


Sloppy Stovetop

retrochick.JPGIvy says:

We have a running family joke that we’re not just functional, we’re funky! That kind of funk is awesome, but stovetop funk, not so much.  The good news is, it won’t take horribly toxic chemicals to remove the funk. I’d use Bar Keeper’s Friend and elbow grease.

I’d sprinkle some Bar Keeper’s Friend onto the stovetop and then take a damp rag and start scrubbing. Anything that is really stuck-on, I’d use a nylon pan scraper to  scrape it up. This may take several different cleanings and a whole lot of elbow grease to get completely clean. Take heart- once it’s finally clean, you can keep up with cleaning it and you’ll never face this much funk again.


  1. claudia at 'cook eat FRET' on February 29, 2008 at 1:27 pm

    funk alla that… if chemicals are not an option, you’re gonna most likely need an impliment of destruction such as a razor – or metal scraper – like a spatula. i know that mine is also a black enamel, and stands up to the cleaning abuse. but i agree with ivy. avoid the poison and clean often.

  2. themomhalf on February 27, 2008 at 1:00 pm

    Since it’s a flat surface, I would put the Bar Keeper’s Friend on it, then a few paper towels (about 4), and then pour some boiling water on the paper towels, careful to only pour enough water that the paper towels will hold, and let it sit for about 15 min, then wipe it off, and repeat as necessary. — good luck

    Usually if it’s a small spot I’d just fold a paper towel in fourths.

  3. Kendra on February 27, 2008 at 11:04 am

    I’ve had the normal gas and glass top, vinegar worked well with both.

  4. Badbadivy on February 27, 2008 at 10:02 am

    Margaret- I’d try steel wool on a small area first. You’re talking about the grates that hold your pans up on a gas stove right? I think steel wool would be okay on those.

  5. Milehimama on February 26, 2008 at 10:54 pm

    I use vinegar spray for everything from the kids’ plastic table to the flattop stove.

    If it’s really bad, use dishwasher powder straight from the box as scouring powder. Use hot water and a nylon scrubbie.

  6. Margaret on February 26, 2008 at 10:24 pm

    Kendra, are you recommending vinegar spray for all cooktops or specifically the glass ones?
    NOT that my stovetop is dirty or anything, ahem.
    What I find hardest to clean are the grates that sit over the burner (not sure if they have a specific name – you know, the thing the pans sit on). I’ve soaked and scrubbed, but I guess I didn’t actually use B-K Friend. Could I use steel wool??

  7. Kendra on February 26, 2008 at 6:19 pm

    I find that a razor blade kit made for glass tops work well too. No elbow grease involved. A daily wipe up with vinegar spray and it stays looking new.

  8. Mrs.W on February 26, 2008 at 6:08 pm

    You can also clean that up with a paste made from baking soda & water. Will definitely need some elbow grease and several applications, but it will come up.

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