How to Get Rid of Sticky Grease on Cabinets

Whether caused by tape, grease or food, sticky spots are unsightly and difficult to remove. If caught promptly, most can be removed with a bit of soap and water, but if left to accumulate, the residues can make cabinets look dingy and old. While a soapy wet cloth can work well on surfaces, cleaning the entire cabinet requires a more concentrated cleaner such as Goo Gone. While Goo Gone does wonders on wax, gum and oily makeup stains, it can leave a greasy residue that may be more difficult to remove than the original stain.


Adding vinegar to an already wet wash can cut through and dissolve oily residue on dishes, pots and pans. The acid in the vinegar can break down and emulsify the grease, making it more soluble when you wash away the dish or pan with hot soapy water. Vinegar can also be used on soft fabric such as linens to pretreat grease stains before washing them.

Applying cooking or salad oil to a sticky spot can help it break up and loosen, allowing you to scrape it off easily. You can even use a little bit of the oil on your fingers or a plastic scraper to get rid of a stubborn portion of the residue. If the splatter is still sticky after applying the oil, you can try sprinkling it with flour. The flour will absorb the excess grease, making it easier to wash away.

If a greasy mess has accumulated on a kitchen cabinet, spray the area with an all-purpose cleaner and wipe it down. If the grease is particularly tough, spray it again with WD-40 and let it sit for a few minutes before wiping it off. You can also wipe the cabinet down with a rag soaked in acetone, an ingredient found in nail polish remover. This can break down and emulsify grease, but it can leave a bitter odor on some surfaces.

Using white vinegar is a great way to get rid of grease on the stove or on the bottom of a pan. After washing the pan or sprinkling it with white vinegar, let the surface sit for about an hour. After that, you can just wash the pan as usual with hot soapy water. If the residue is really thick, you can soak it with salt or baking soda before trying to remove it. Adding the salt or baking soda helps to reduce the stickiness of the grease and prevent it from reappearing later. The vinegar should also help to loosen any burnt food on the bottom of the pan. You can also try using a degreaser such as trisodium phosphate powder mixed with hot water, following the instructions on the product label. This is more effective than just using a solvent such as acetone, but it can be expensive. If you can’t afford a commercial solvent, the best way to get rid of sticky greasy residue is with an all-purpose chemical such as Goo Gone.