February 8, 2023
By Katie Bandurski
We’ll tell you how often you should be cleaning each of these common kitchen tools, plus useful, clever tips for getting rid of harmful bacteria and germs.
Whether it’s for heating a cup of soup or defrosting dinner, chances are you use your microwave every day. Over time, food spills and splatters can lead to funky smells and unsanitary conditions. Stay ahead of future problems by cleaning your microwave once a week and wiping up any spills as soon as they happen. To clean your microwave, simply heat a combination of water, vinegar, and lemon slices for a few minutes. The steam will loosen any stuck-on gunk, making it easier to scrub off. Finish the job by washing the turntable with a wet sponge.
Frequency: Wipe up spills as they happen; deep clean once a week
Although a dishwasher is designed to clean other items, the appliance itself still needs to be cleaned every few weeks. Aim for a monthly schedule that includes wiping down the door, sanitizing the tub, and washing any accessories. Dishwasher maintenance is important not only for sanitary purposes but also to keep the appliance running smoothly. A buildup of food debris, rust stains, and other grime could compromise your dishwasher’s performance.
Frequency: Clean once a month.
Nothing’s worse than heating your oven to cook dinner, only to be met with the stinky fumes and trace of smoke that signify burned-on food. Prevent this smelly situation by regularly cleaning your oven. After each use, look for food remnants on the oven floor, sides, and grates. Always use a baking sheet, and be especially careful when cooking drip-prone foods, such as pies. To deep clean your oven, use heat to loosen up the debris. Then attack the remains with baking soda, vinegar, and soapy water.
Frequency: Wipe up spills as they happen; deep clean every 6 months.
Your refrigerator might be the most important appliance in your kitchen. Keep it in tip-top shape with frequent cleanings. Aim for weekly wipe-downs of both the interior and exterior, then give it a deep clean every month. To make the job easier, focus on preventative measures. Don’t leave sticky, leaking, or sloppy containers in your fridge. Wrap raw meats and produce in plastic wrap. And keep odor under control with a box of baking soda.
Frequency: Wipe down every week; deep clean once a month.