How To Clean a Casserole Dish with Burnt-On Foods
Whether I’m making an actual casserole or a lasagna, or just baking chicken, this time of year my casserole dishes are in heavy rotation. They usually clean up pretty well, but if I’ve overcooked something or I let something sit too long, they can get stubborn stains or crud that’s hard to remove. I’ve tried a few different ways of cleaning them (vinegar, Bar Keeper’s Friend, and even using a dryer sheet, which has worked but is not an every-time solution), and this process has been the easiest and most reliable to deal with the crusty stuff.
Here’s what I do to clean a casserole dish when I’ve done a number on it with burnt-on messes.
How To Clean a Casserole Dish
What You’ll Need
- Spatula (ideally, a plastic one)
- Baking soda
- Dish soap
- Hot water
- Scrubby sponge
- Get to work with a spatula: Scrape off as much food as you can with the spatula. Then, rinse the dish. (Note: We carefully used a metal spatula here, but a plastic one really is best so you don’t scratch the dish.)
- Add baking soda: Sprinkle a liberal amount of baking soda along the bottom of the casserole dish.
- Add dish soap: Add a couple squirts of dish soap, then fill the casserole dish with piping-hot water. Let it sit on a flat surface for at least 15 minutes, but as long as overnight.
- Bring back that spatula: With the baking soda mixture still in there, use your spatula again to scrape off any bits that have started to come loose. Dump out the dirty water.
- Add more baking soda: Sprinkle more baking soda onto the surface of the dish, focusing on any particularly bad spots.
- And more dish soap: Add a dot of dish soap to your scrubby sponge, turn on the hot water, and get scrubbing!
- Repeat as needed: Rinse out your scrub brush periodically as it fills with muck and reapply soap and baking soda as necessary.
- Let dry: Let your casserole dish dry fully before you put it away.
- If you’ve made a casserole and you know for sure that you’re not going to eat the whole thing in one sitting, scoop out any extra and put it in a storage container right away. I find that, when food cools in the dish, the burnt bits become even harder to get off.