Usually made of stainless steel mesh, splatter guards are notorious for being easy to stain and hard to clean. Not only do they get clogged with cooking oil and food debris, but they can also be a magnet for dust if improperly stored in between uses. If you don't have a dishwasher, cleaning splatter guards can be a pain, but fortunately, there is an effective way to clean them without too much effort.
This method comes via Chef Girladee on YouTube, who demonstrates the process using the splatter screen of her indoor grill. First, get a large zip-top bag or layer two used plastic shopping bags inside each other that will fit your entire splatter guard. Place the splatter guard in the bag, and ready a spray can of fume-free oven cleaner. Generously spray the oven cleaner onto both sides of the splatter guard, making sure to spray the frame to reach all the crevices. Remove as much air as possible before sealing the zip-top bag or tying and folding the plastic shopping bags shut — this is to help ensure that the oven cleaner maintains contact with the splatter guard.
Now leave it alone for 24 hours. While this is a two-day process, a huge majority of that time is for the oven cleaner to work its magic on the caked-on grease.
Let The Oven Cleaner Work Its Magic
After 24 hours, bring the splatter guard (still in the plastic bag) to the kitchen sink. Wear a pair of kitchen gloves to protect your skin from the chemicals of the oven cleaner. Remove the splatter guard from the plastic bag. Use a stiff-bristle brush to scrub the mesh, and a scouring pad for the edges to get into all the nooks and crannies. Rinse the splatter guard thoroughly under running water, so that no oven-cleaning chemicals come into contact with the food you are cooking later. You may need to go over the splatter guard again with the brush and scouring pad if there is any trapped debris, but it is unlikely that you will need to exert a lot of extra effort. Once the splatter guard is sparkling clean, let it dry completely before using it. Voilà: Your previously greasy splatter guard is now as good as brand-new.This method can be used to clean many types of stainless steel mesh, from handheld splatter guards and range hood filters to splatter screen components of household appliances like indoor grills and air fryers. As long as both the mesh and the oven cleaner can be contained safely (like in a plastic bag), you are good to go. Other than the reason specified above, the plastic bag also helps ensure the oven cleaner's corrosive properties do not leak onto other surfaces, or accidentally come into contact with people or pets.
More Splatter Guard Hacks
If you do any amount of stovetop cooking with oil, or regularly cook soups, stews, or dishes with gravy, a splatter guard can be one of your best friends in the kitchen. While it is impossible to catch 100% of the oil and gravy splatter from cooking, using a splatter guard can help eliminate most of it. This comes in incredibly useful when cleaning up, as you will have much less mess to deal with than if you did not use a splatter guard.
There are additional ways to reduce splatter when cooking. One simple hack for shallow pan-frying (not deep-frying) is to sprinkle a pinch of salt into the hot oil. This is said to help absorb the moisture from your food, which many cooks know is the main cause of splatter when cooking with oil. Another hack is to simply cover any of the unused burners with sheets of aluminum foil to protect it from grease and cooking detritus. This makes cleanup especially easier afterward, and you can reuse the foil sheets over and over again so it does not go to waste.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.