How To Clean a Toaster Inside and Out
A pop-up toaster is a compact kitchen appliance that can deliver a satisfying crunch to just about any kind of bread, bagel and even some pastries. Using different settings, you can toast items to the shade and level of crispiness ideal for your taste. The heating coils inside the toaster slots can deliver an even level of cooking to both sides of your food. If crumbs and other food particles accumulate inside your toaster, this can affect proper function.
Similar to other countertop appliances, a toaster requires regular cleaning. Read on to learn how to clean a dirty toaster and get tips on regular maintenance and care.
How to clean a toaster
Cleaning your toaster can be easily accomplished with supplies that you probably already have at home. Whether you have a 2-slice or 4-slice toaster, follow these simple steps, as they can guide you on how to deep clean a toaster inside and out so it functions properly.
For a closer look at what toasters have to offer, explore types of toasters made to do more.
- Dish soap
- Sponge or dishcloth
- Microfiber cloth or towel
Step 1: Unplug toaster
Unplug your toaster and let it cool before cleaning.
Step 2: Clean the crumb tray
Most toasters have a slide out crumb tray on the bottom. Pull the tray out and shake the crumbs into a waste container. It’s recommended that the crumb tray be emptied after each use.
The crumb tray is hand-wash only and can be thoroughly cleaned with dish soap and a sponge or dishcloth. Dry with a soft cloth. Remember that the tray may be hot immediately following a toasting cycle.
Step 3: Wipe the exterior
Wipe the exterior of your toaster with a soft, damp cotton cloth. Dish soap can provide a thorough clean—just be sure to wash off any soapy residue. Then dry it with a microfiber cloth or soft towel. Keep in mind that using paper towels, abrasive cleansers or liquid cleaning products may leave scuff marks on the surface.
It’s important to not immerse your toaster in water as it may impede its function. If grease or oil splatters on the toaster, wipe splatters away immediately using a clean, damp cotton cloth.
Step 4: Insert the crumb tray
Return the crumb tray to your toaster. Press it in firmly until it clicks into position. Use the toaster only when the crumb tray is in the proper position.
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Toaster cleaning tips
While keeping your toaster clean inside and out is not only aesthetically appealing, it’s important for proper function.
Cleaning your toaster on a regular basis can prevent a buildup of crumbs and food particles that may interfere with the performance of internal components.
If you don’t have a toaster oven and want to toast or reheat items like sandwiches, pizza or french fries, you can use a toaster bag. It’s a parchment-like reusable bag that fits in a toaster slot and can prevent a mess, such as melted cheese.
Do not use parchment paper, plastic, styrofoam or aluminum in a pop-up toaster slot. Anything other than a toaster bag may not only cause a mess, but can also be a potential fire hazard or may damage your toaster.
Keep plastic bread or bagel bags away from a hot toaster or it may melt onto the surface. If this happens, use a damp sponge or toothbrush and a mixture of baking soda and water to gently remove the melted plastic. If the stain persists, you may want to try nail polish remover and a cotton ball to remove the plastic. It’s best not to use abrasive material to clean the exterior or it may scratch the surface.
For a stainless steel toaster, avoid using powders or any cleaning supplies that are acidic, vinegar or citrus-based, as it may stain or damage the coating of your appliance.
After cleaning your toaster, double check your toast settings, as they may have shifted while cleaning the exterior.
What happens if you don’t clean your toaster?
A delicious aroma in your kitchen may turn pungent, smelling something like burnt toast, when using a toaster that isn’t cleaned. These crumbs and food particles can build up over time and not only cause odor, but may also impede it from properly functioning or possibly lead to a fire hazard.
How do I clean a toaster oven?
If you’re wondering how to clean a toaster oven, the steps are similar to those of a toaster. The main difference is in cleaning the interior of a toaster oven.
Unplug your toaster oven and allow it to cool before cleaning.
Avoid using abrasive cleaners or metal scouring pads, as they can scratch the toaster oven inside and out and may interfere with proper function.
Wipe the exterior with a clean, damp cloth and dry thoroughly. A nonabrasive liquid cleaner, such as dish soap, can be used for stubborn stains. Rinse and dry thoroughly.
Remove the interior racks and pan. They are dishwasher safe, but hand washing them in hot, sudsy water is recommended. Rinse and dry thoroughly.
Slide the crumb tray out and brush off the food particles. Wipe with a damp cloth and dry thoroughly.
To clean baked-on stains, scrub with a paste made from baking soda and water. Rinse and dry thoroughly.
The walls on the inside of most toaster ovens have a nonstick coating for easy cleaning. Remove heavy spatter after use with a nylon or polyester mesh pad, sponge or cloth dampened with warm water. Dry with a soft, dry cloth.
For a more in-depth look at these two countertop appliances, visit toaster vs. toaster oven what is best for my kitchen?
Can you wet a toaster to clean it?
You can wet the exterior surface of a toaster with a damp cloth to clean it. Then dry thoroughly with a microfiber cloth or soft towel before using it. Avoid using water to clean the interior or submerging the toaster in water as this may cause damage to the internal components.
How do you clean the outside of a stainless steel toaster?
Simply use a soft, nonabrasive cloth and a mixture of dish soap and warm water to clean stainless steel. For stubborn grime, use a stainless steel cleaner like affresh® stainless steel cleaning spray and wipe clean in the direction of the grain. Learn how to clean stainless steel appliances.
How often should a toaster be cleaned?
Cleaning a toaster can depend on the frequency of use. If it’s used daily for quick and easy meals, it’s best to clean it more often. Consider cleaning the crumb tray after each use and a thorough cleaning inside and out, once a week. With less use, a deep cleaning once a month may be sufficient.
Explore KitchenAid® Toasters
A KitchenAid® toaster is easy to clean and can be a convenient appliance in making tasty meals, such as toasting artisan breads for sandwiches or heating scrumptious pastries. KitchenAid brand has a great selection of 4-slice and 2-slice toasters with features like unique toasting functions and extra-wide slots to toast a variety of shapes and sizes, including homemade or craft breads and bagels.
Learn more about toasters and toaster ovens with KitchenAid brand
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