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 / Updated  / Source: TODAY
By Anna De Souza

You know you're in for a grueling triceps workout when the faint odor of burnt Brussels sprouts is in the air. For scorched pots, burned pans and glass bakeware, it can be a challenge to get rid of that brown, broiled-in gunk.

But you can put down the elbow grease and pull out a dryer sheet instead! Who knew a laundry staple could rescue you from those epic kitchen disasters?

Donna Smallin Kuper, author of "Cleaning Plain & Simple," told TODAY that it's likely the conditioning properties of the dryer sheet being released into the water that help to remove the gunk. Don't have a dryer sheet handy? Smallin Kuper recommends simply adding some dish soap and hot water to your icky pan and letting it simmer while you do the other dishes.

TODAY Home put the dryer sheet method to the test — and we were shocked by the results! Not only did the sheet cut through grease, it basically eliminated the need to scrub. Consider this your ultimate cheat sheet.

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How to clean pots, pans and baking dishes

Supplies:

  • Dryer sheet
  • Warm water
  • Sponge

Instructions:

1. Pour warm water into the dirty dish.

Pour some warm water in the dish to start.Anna De Souza

2. Place a dryer sheet on the surface of the water. Let it sit for 10-15 minutes, or even overnight for really baked-in messes.

The conditioners in the dryer sheet help de-grease your dirtiest dishes and pans.Anna De Souza

3. Wipe dish with a wet sponge. Any caked-on grease and food should lift easily with the soft side of the sponge.

Now go ahead and bounce to your next activity!

This story was originally published on Jan. 25, 2018.