In many households, the toaster oven is the quiet workhorse of the kitchen. From basic morning toast to small pizzas, from refrigerator biscuits to reheated casseroles, your toaster oven is a versatile, space-saving appliance that can get things done easily and quickly. Daily use takes its toll, however, and before you know it, the toaster oven is looking messy and giving off a slightly burned odor. Restore your toaster oven's appearance and keep it in top working condition with a good cleaning.
Before you begin, unplug the toaster oven. Slide the crumb tray out of the bottom, knock loose debris into the garbage can, and wash the tray in warm, soapy water. Rinse it well and allow it to air-dry while you continue cleaning the toaster oven.
If the rack is removable, take it out of the toaster oven and clean it by the same method as the crumb tray. Use a scrubbing pad to remove any stubborn deposits from the rack. If your toaster oven rack is non-removable, wash and scrub it in place, wiping it down afterward with clear water. Carefully wipe the heating elements with soapy water and a soft cloth, then rinse off the suds.
Clean the outer surfaces of the toaster oven with soapy water, finishing with an all-over spray with a 50-50 vinegar-and-water solution, and wipe with a soft, dry cloth. Use the same vinegar solution to clean the glass window, inside and out.
For stubborn, greasy residue, use baking soda on any toaster oven surfaces that need it. Apply it with a damp cloth, and rinse and repeat as needed. With patience and persistence, you can get that toaster oven sparkling-clean and sweet smelling once again.
A final safety note: make sure all parts of the toaster oven -- inside and out, removable and non-removable – are completely dry before you plug the appliance back in and turn it on.