Not cleaning the dirt and grease from your oven regularly could give your family food poisoning

It's all too easy to let grease and grime build up, but doing so could result in you and your family coming down with food poisoning.

Not only that, having a dirty oven can even affect the taste of your food.

It makes sense really; if the inside of your cooker is coated in a layer of grease and dirt, it stops it from working as efficiently.

This is because the grime interferes with the natural travel of hot air, meaning food may not be cooked as it should be.

If you're preparing something like chicken, scoffing it when it's under-cooked could put you at risk of food poisoning and infections like E.coli. Nasty.

Ralitsa Prodanova, of UK household sanitation firm Fantastic Services, told Metro: "When there’s too much grime, your food will not cook properly in the allotted time.

"That puts you and your loved ones at risk of potentially-deadly bacteria, like salmonella and E.coli, particularly if you’re reheating festive leftovers."

Even small amounts of grease can lead to smoke in your oven, which is a sign it's dirty and can affect the taste of your food, Ralitsa warned.

"Any food or grease that has been burnt on the inside of the oven continues to burn whenever it’s switched on," she said.

Old food spillages are also a fire hazard as they can set the oven alight if they begin to burn.

According to The British Lung Foundation, the smoke released from a dirty oven can be bad for you if you breathe it in as it usually contains harmful gases like carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxide and sulphur dioxide.

You don't have to spend a fortune on fancy products to get it spick and span.

Ralitsa recommends using a combination of household products like baking soda, vinegar and water.

She suggests starting with the oven racks, which can be soaked and scrubbed in the sink using soap and water.

Then combine baking soda and water until it makes a paste and coat the interior of your oven in the mixture, avoiding the heating elements.

Ralitsa said you will see it start to turn brown as it comes into contact with the grease, which indicates the paste is lifting the dirt. She suggests leaving it on overnight, giving it "12 hours to work its magic".

Use a damp cloth to wipe off the paste the following day and a spatula to loosen any stubborn grime.

For the next step, put some white vinegar in a spray bottle and coat the interior. The acid in the vinegar will help loosen any of the baking soda mix left behind, reducing it to foam.

Then give the oven a final once-over with a clean cloth before returning the racks and letting it air dry. If you're in a hurry, stick it on on a low setting for a few minutes.

The best way to keep your oven in good nick is giving it a wipe after every time you use it, preventing grease from building up.

You can also buy Teflon non-stick liners which sit at the bottom of your oven, stopping grime from building up and, in theory, lengthening the life of your cooker.

  • Heavy Duty Teflon Non Stick Oven Liner, £6.49 from Amazon – buy now

And to keep your hob clean, Mrs Hinch recommends this budget product from Poundsaver.

Most ovens come with a handy drawer underneath where most people store their pots and pans – but do you know it actually has a different purpose?

The space was designed to be a warming drawer, meaning food can be kept hot while you prepare the rest of your dinner.

However, some models are able to prove dough, defrost food, be used as a slow cooker and keep food warm.

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