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Drip Pan Cleaning Using Household Ammonia -Keep Those Burner Pans Clean

Clean up an ugly stove by using just three common household ingredients. This drip pan cleaning works over night to give you sparkling burner pans easily without a lot of elbow grease.

24 hours, three ingredients and very little elbow grease took my grungy burner drip pans from ugly to super clean the easy way. Find out how at

One of my pet peeves is seeing my electric stove drip pans and knowing I have to make a trip to the store and shell out $16 for four drip pans. 

The burner drip pans on your range can get really messy while you are cooking. No matter how often you watch items cooking on the stove, some do spill over.

Once the spills burn onto the burner drips pans, you will  have a challenging cleaning job ahead of you.

Cleaning stove drip pans in the past was a hit and miss project. I first cleaned them the best way I could but eventually, bit they would still look horrible and I’d have to pay for new ones.  I had been doing this several times a year.

Until today that is.  I’ve heard about cleaning the stove drip pans with household ammonia but the fumes always got to me and I never could do it for long. 

The good news is that you don’t have to whip out any toxic chemicals! Here’s how to clean stove top drip pans with hyst a few common household items and a (little) bit of elbow grease. In no time at all, you’ll have sparkling burners pans with very little effort. 

The trick is to let the fumes work for you, not against you.  And this takes a bit of time, so it is a project for when you won’t be cooking on the stove top for about a day.

(You can do the same sort of process with your microwave and a lemon.  Check out this tutorial for cleaning a microwave here.

Drip Pan Cleaning – How to get sparkling burner pans

Household tips like this one are some of my most popular posts. See some more home and kitchen tips here.

You are likely to have everything that you need for this drip pan cleaning project at home right now. All you need are three common household supplies.

Use ammonia, scotch brite pads and a ziplock bag for easy drip pan burner cleaningThat’s right.  Some ammonia, a gallon zip lock bag for each drip pan and a Scotch bright sponge with a non stick pad on the back are all you need. 

If you do a lot of cooking like I do, your burners will probably look something like mine before I started. The drip pans were caked with spilled over water, oil and what not. They were a real mess!

It’s easy to see which burners I use the most, isn’t it?

Dirty drip pansI use two main burners the most often but all of them were bad.  These were the worst two (right side of the stove front and back.)

dirty burner drip pans

How to clean stove drip pans with ammonia

I placed each of the burner drip pans in a large gallon plastic bag, and added 1/4 cup of ammonia to each bag, and then sealed the bag. 

I left them for about 24 hours.  When I opened up the first bag, I was VERY disappointed. I thought there would be some overnight magic.

But this is what I saw:

dirty burner drip panNot a lot of difference, right?  I almost tossed the stove burner pans in the trash can in disgust.  But then I took the next step with my scotch bright pad and wiped over it. 

The dirtiest spots on the oven drip pans needed the scourer but not with any real elbow grease.  The lighter spots just wiped off with the sponge and removed the grime.  I was amazed.

This is the clean stove drip pan after wiping and a bit of scouring:

clean burner.Totally amazing!    I simply could not believe it.  Three of the four cleaned up extremely easily with just some easy wiping and a few scrubs with the plastic sponge back.

Why do some burners need more scrubbing?

The worst one took a bit more scouring but it was still night and day compared to the work that I put into cleaning them on previous attempts using steel wool and a scouring cleanser.

The reason the fourth burner drip pan was hard to clean was because the it had been previously cleaned with steel wool, so the surface had been damaged and gave the gunk a key to hold on to.

I’ll probably replace it so that the ammonia will work more easily on it next time.

My clean stove top after is like night and day from the before picture above.

Burners and drip pans after cleaning with ammonia.And a close up of the drip pans:

Burner dip pans after cleaning with ammonia.I know it is hard to believe, but try it and see for yourself.  I will update this article once I have cleaned them a few times to see how easily it is after they’ve been cleaned several times. 

The ease with which they cleaned up makes me believe I may not be shelling out for new burner drip pans in future!

These three ingredients are all you need for effortless burner drip pan cleaning. Find out how at cost to me was about $1.25.  Far cry from $14 for four burner drip pans!

NOTES on the burner dip pan burner cleaning process:  

  1. These burners pans were new and had never been cleaned before.
  2. Subsequent cleaning worked okay but not as well as the first time especially in the drip area.
  3. The dirtier the pans are, the more you may need to scrub, so I would recommend doing this fairly often, so as not to get them too dirty
  4. If you use a metal scourer, it will leave grooves in the metal which will make subsequent cleaning far less effective.

So my recommendation is to do the cleaning fairly often, and if they pans have been cleaned and scoured previously and are really dirty, it is time to get a new set, as this will not work well.

But for the first cleaning on moderate dirt, even baked on, it worked just as I showed above.

Would you like a reminder of this post for drip pan cleaning?  Just pin this image to one of your Pinterest Household boards so that you can easily find it later.Drip pan cleaning tips. Clean your burner drip pans easily with just three common ingredients. Click through to find out how easy it is.

Admin note: This post for drip pan burner cleaning first appeared on the blog in July of 2014. I have updated the post to include some new photos, a printable project card and a video for you to enjoy.

Yield: 4 clean burner pans

How to Clean Drip Pans with Just 3 Ingredients

clean burner drip pans easily with ammonia

Clean your burner drip pans easily with just three household ingredients and a little bit of time.

Prep Time 2 minutes
Active Time 1 day
Additional Time 5 minutes
Total Time 1 day 7 minutes
Difficulty easy
Estimated Cost $1.25


  • 1/4 cup Household ammonia
  • 4 gallon zip lock bags (1 fir for each drip pan)
  • A Scotch brite sponge with a non stick pad on the back.


  • A bit of elbow grease


  1. Pour 1/4 cup of ammonia into each bag in the well of the drip pan.
  2. Seal the bag and leave for 24 hours
  3. Use the Scotch brite pad to rub over the surface of the drip pans.
  4. Presto! Like new!


.This process works best with drip pans that have not been cleaned before. If you have used steel wool, this allows the gunk to build up more and is difficult to remove it.

As long as you clean this way each time they need it, you will find that it continues to work although not as well as the first time..

The dirtier the pans are, the more you may need to scrub, so I would recommend doing this fairly often, so as not to get them too dirty.

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Sunday 12th of June 2022

Sadly, I just went to the store to buy said needed items and the cost here in Hawai'i to buy new drip pans is cheaper than buying the necessary products as I don't normally have ammonia, gallon zip bags or scour sponges.


Monday 22nd of August 2022

This is not to any particular person. But I saw a comment a while back about putting aluminum foil over drip pans. No, no and no. I highly recommend that nobody should do this method. It can create a fire hazard and actually damage the stove or heating element. Thanks. P.S. I have black drip pans and I use barkeeper's friend. This stuff is magic. No fumes either. Stuff comes right off and keeps the black glossy.


Friday 3rd of June 2022

I buy disposable aluminum burner liners at Walmart. They fit my large and small drip pans nicely. These liners are similar to disposable aluminum baking pans. They generally keep the chrome or steel drip pans stain-free. When the liners look bad, I simply throw them out and replace them with new liners.


Tuesday 14th of July 2020

I tried this on my dripped pans and it worked like a charm😊


Wednesday 25th of December 2019

I have some cheap electric drip pans that are discolored and rusty. I am hoping this works on them.

Carol Speake

Monday 30th of December 2019

I had best luck with drip pans that had not been previously scratched too much from use. Hope this works well for you.


Tuesday 12th of March 2019

I use windex to clean my refrigerator let set and wipe with paper towels or cloth and any kitchen appliances like toaster, top of stove, front of dishwasher and refrigerator

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive a small commission from the sale, but the price is the same for you. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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