How To Clean Baked-On Gunk from Pans with Dryer Sheets

updated Jul 23, 2020
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Okay, I’ll be honest…I haven’t bought dryer sheets in years. But, for whatever reason, there is still a nearly full box of them on the shelf in the laundry room. I keep them around for one use and one use alone: getting baked-on gunk off of baking pans and cookie sheets.

I learned this little trick years ago from Martha Stewart. I’m not sure if it was her tv show or magazine (it’s nowhere to be found on her website), but the incredibly useful idea has stuck in my noggin all this time.

For those who still use dryer sheets for their intended purpose, I’ve heard this trick still works with used sheets. I’d probably try doubling up though…just to make sure there’s enough of the “non sticky-ness” to do the job.

It’s as simple as putting warm water into the dirty pan or cookie sheet (works best if the cookie sheet has edges…if it doesn’t, you’ll want to soak in the sink or wash pan), laying the dryer sheet (or sheets) flat in the water and leaving it to sit overnight. In the morning, the baked-on stuff will either have lifted off, or will be very easy to slough off with a spatula or other flat object. It has always worked for me…especially if you do it right after you’ve used the pan.

Depending on the dryer sheets used, this can be a really green solution, especially if using used biodegradable dryer sheets. In my case, they serve no other purpose, so putting them to use feels like the right thing to do.

Have you tried this, as well? Tell us about it in the comments below.

(Image: Michelle Chin)