You spend hour after hour every day in your kitchen cooking, eating, and cleaning. It’s the center of your home, and where you feed your family. You wash the pots and pan, put up all of the silverware, and wipe down the countertops–but those aren’t the only things in your kitchen that should be cleaned. We use our appliances day in and day out, and they need a little love too.
1. Microwave: When you clean your kitchen, you rarely think about opening the microwave to wipe it down. If you let it go too long, it can get gross fast. A splattered and dirty microwave is one of the most unappetizing things. You don’t want to put the food you’re about to eat in a container that is covered in gunk. The good news is, you don’t have to spend tons of time and elbow grease to get it clean again.
Put a half-full cup of water in the microwave and set it for 2-3 minutes. When the timer goes off, keep the door closed to keep the steam inside. After letting it sit for another 2 minutes, open the door, and carefully remove the cup of water. Take a washcloth and wipe the microwave down with ease. Everything should lift right up.
2. Stovetop: Nothing makes a kitchen look dirtier than a messy stovetop. That burned-on, grease-splattered mess can look like a chore to keep clean. First, make sure that the eyes are cool. If you have electric appliances with coils, you can remove the coils to clean the drip pans. Let the pans soak in boiling hot water for about 10 minutes. Combine baking soda and some dish soap to create a course scrub, and buff the surface clean.
If you have an electric stove with a glass top, then you can use baking soda in a different way. Wipe down the glasstop before beginning. Take the baking soda and sprinkle generously over the entire glass top. Then, take a large washcloth and soak it in hot, soapy water. Lay the wet rag over the entire face of the stovetop. After waiting for 15 minutes, take the cloth and wipe down the stove top in circular motions to scrub away burn on messes. To buff, take a clean cloth and wipe it down.
3. Refrigerator: This one can look like a massive chore, but it can be done in 20 minutes or less. The trick is organization. To clean the refrigerator, you’ll have to remove all of its contents. Make 2 sections on your countertop. One for things that need to be thrown out, and the other for things going back into the fridge. As you remove the items to keep, wipe down jars and jugs before you put them on your countertop. Chances are, that if the bottom of the fridge is dirty, so are the things in it.
After everything is removed, take out the drawers and shelves, and spray them down with 2 parts water, 1 part white vinegar and let the soak. Spray down the rest of the fridge, and start wiping it down. Go back to the shelves, and wash them clean with warm soapy water. After a quick dry, put the shelves back in as well as all of the refrigerator contents. Done!
4. Stainless Steel Doors: Those beautiful, modern looking appliance doors are excellent–until someone touches them, and leaves them with smudged fingerprints all over. A kitchen doesn’t look completely clean unless the fronts of the doors are clean. The store-bought cleaners are expensive and highly toxic. There are natural alternatives to have smudge-free doors.
There are a few cleaning options. When cleaning, it’s best to go in the direction of the steel’s grain. It won’t hurt it if you don’t, but you won’t get the best clean if you don’t go with the grain. You can use white vinegar, club soda, or water and dish soap to wipe down the doors to remove any dirt and grime. Then, to polish and add a shiny protective layer, you can use a microfiber cloth to apply mineral oil, baby oil, or even lemon-oil furniture polish. Put the oil on the cloth first, and wipe in the direction of the grain. Spraying directly on the door will leave extra oily spots, making the door look splotchy.
A weekly once over of all of the appliances will keep your kitchen sparkling for years and years. By keeping up with it, it won’t be as big of a chore. Rest easy knowing that your family is eating in a clean and healthy environment.