Sometimes it seems like the kitchen can be the most germ-filled room in the house, and no matter how hard you work to keep it clean, it will never be the bacteria-free sanctuary you hope for.
To make matters worse, harsh chemical cleaners are filled with toxic chemicals that can cause more harm than help when it comes to keeping your kitchen clean and your family safe. So, from our family to yours, we're offering up our favorite ways to keep the dirtiest places in your kitchen clean.
Sinks are notoriously dirty, and it's easy to see why! They're constantly filled with half-eaten bits of food and the bacteria that grow on top of that food. Ever experience random attacks of fruit flies in your house? Odds are, those flies didn't come to eat your fruit, but came because of the built-up old food stuck inside your sink's drain.
How to Clean it:
To keep your sink germ-free and make sure nothing is stuck and rotting inside your drain, periodically wipe down your sink with white distilled vinegar. Whether your sink is stainless steel, solid surface Corian or another material, vinegar is a natural disinfectant, and will help keep its surface clean.
To clean out the drain, we recommend using something a bit stronger. Pour half a cup of bleach down the drain, and then let your water run for a few minutes to clear up anything that might be lodged and rotting inside.
Your countertops are faced with dirt, bacteria, and grime on a daily basis. Whether you're preparing chicken to be cooked and unknowingly contaminating your whole countertop space with salmonella, or your children decided to help you with dinner and most of the preparation ended up off of the cutting board, your countertops will end up dirty.
To keep from cross-contamination, our first suggestion is to always use separate cutting boards for different food items. This way, everything can stay organized and you can be sure that you're not preparing vegetables with the same cutting board on which you prepared your steak.
How to Clean it:
Whether you have solid surface, laminate, granite or quartz countertops, the best way to regularly clean your counters is to wipe the surface down with a soft, clean cloth and some soapy water. For tougher stains or periodic disinfecting, you can wipe the counters down with a mixture of one part white distilled vinegar and two parts water. For cleaning tips specific to your countertop material, check out our care page.
3. Cabinets and Hardware
You may not believe your cabinets are dirty, but just think about how often they are opened during your cooking process and how close your cabinets are to your cooking appliances.
When you cook, any splashes could quickly stain the surface of your cabinets. What's worse--many of the stains are not visible, and will pack on top of one another until you have a layer of oil and grime on top of the cabinets.
How to Clean Them:
To easily clean both wood and maintenance-free cabinets, regularly wipe the surfaces down with a clean, soft cloth and some soapy water. Homeowners forget how often their knobs and pulls are being used, especially while they're cooking.
Have you ever cleaned off a piece of chicken, and then opened up your spice rack without even thinking to wash your hands? We all forget to clean the smaller surfaces like knobs and pulls, but they're often the parts of the kitchen that get used the most.