There’s always so much going on in the kitchen that it seems near impossible to keep it clean and neat at all times. While this may be true, there is a lot more most homeowners can do to maintain a pristine kitchen when it is not in use. In fact, simple measures can be taken to ensure that the kitchen holds some degree of cleanliness and neatness even while being used.
The first step, however, is to devote some amount of time to clean different areas of your kitchen on a daily basis. This can be as little as 10 minutes of your time each day that goes into either cleaning or tidying up in the kitchen. Of course, bigger and more challenging tasks like deep cleaning appliances will require enough time to do a thorough and efficient job so it’s best to leave those for the weekend.
With that, let’s get right to our simple tips for keeping the kitchen pristine and tidy all the time!
1. Declutter Surfaces
The worst part about wiping down surfaces is that too many things get in the way and prolong what is otherwise the simplest and quickest task to do. Unfortunately, clutter finds its way into your kitchen in the form of random items, dirty or used dishes, and cooking ingredients lying around. So, how do you keep your kitchen clutter-free? Well, the easiest way to do that is by following the simple practices mentioned below:
- Discourage household members from bringing in things that don’t belong in the kitchen; if you have a kid-friendly kitchen, teach your children what is and isn’t appropriate for the space
- Put dirty dishes directly in the sink or rinse and put them in the dishwasher
- Put ingredients back in the fridge/pantry as soon as you are finished with them
- If you see anything lying out of place at any given time, put it back immediately
- Store as many items in drawers and cabinets to minimise clutter on counters and tables
- Follow these practices even when the kitchen is in use so that the cleanup afterward isn’t too big
2. Give it a Daily Wipe Down
By ‘it’ we mean various surfaces in the kitchen which include counters, appliances, and cabinet fronts. Again, this should take you no more than 10 minutes, and yet, will help keep these surfaces spotless. Pick a designated time in the day to do this, perhaps after you’ve prepared a meal or had breakfast assuming that you may have used a couple of kitchen appliances and encountered some spills.
A clean microfibre kitchen towel and all-purpose cleaner make for a fantastic combo to efficiently wipe down various surfaces in your kitchen on a daily basis. Start with kitchen cabinet fronts and handles/knobs; for unfinished wood, spray the product onto the towel and then wipe the surface. Next, spray and wipe down the exteriors of the microwave, oven, coffee maker, kettle, refrigerator, and toaster. For the stovetop, remove food bits or debris before spraying and wiping the surface. Also, be sure to clean the handles or pulls of every appliance. Finish off by wiping down the counters and tabletops.
TIP: It is advisable to use a disinfectant while cleaning handles/pulls and counters or tables where food is prepared.
3. Do the Dishes > Clean the Sink
When dirty dishes are left in the sink for too long, the surface gets real grimy. In fact, even rinsing out dishes or utensils can dirty the sink because of the oils and grease it encounters every day. Let’s not forget those grubby fingers that grease up the tap(s) and faucet too. The good news, however, is that if you clean the kitchen sink and fittings daily by wiping them down, you won’t need to deep clean your sink for a while! Moreover, after washing the dishes or rinsing them out and loading the dishwasher, all you need is a minute or two to clean the sink. Here’s how:
- Rinse the sink with water.
- Keep a designated sponge for cleaning the sink at hand.
- Pour a small amount of liquid dish soap on the sponge after dampening it.
- Wipe down the sink interiors, faucet/taps, and surrounding areas.
- Rinse off the cleaner.
TIP: To avoid hard water stains, dry the sink, and fittings with a clean kitchen towel.
4. Deep Clean on the Weekend
So far we’ve discussed daily cleaning tips, now let’s turn our attention to some deep cleaning tasks that should ideally be performed every other week or as and when required. The weekend is the best time to do this since deep cleaning requires more time than regular kitchen cleaning tasks.
NOTE: These tasks needn’t be done on a weekly basis; however, you should use some time on the weekend to deep clean as many areas/things in your kitchen as possible.
Here is a list of kitchen areas and appliances that require deep cleaning at least once a month if not sooner:
Depending on how much time you have to spare each weekend, your goal should be to deep clean 1-2 appliances on one day, and 2-3 areas on another day.
5. Use a Clever Approach to Floor Cleaning
If your kitchen floor cleaning routine involves a vacuum cleaner and a mop and bucket, you’ve been doing it the hard way! Yes, it gets the job done but you can do just as well a job at keeping your kitchen floor clean and spotless in half the amount of time. Here’s how:
- Use a broom to sweep the floor – it’s quicker than pulling out a vacuum cleaner from storage and also easier to clean corners, in between bar stools, and nooks and crannies.
- Make a floor cleaning solution in a squeezy bottle which can be stored away for long periods of time.
- Use this cleaner with a clean mop to quickly and efficiently remove stains and mop the floor.
Just like that, your kitchen floor will be clean and spotless! Best of all, you can spot clean stains in no time when you’ve got the mop and squeezy bottle nearby!
6. Wipe Up Spills When They Happen
The biggest mistake you can make is to allow spills to set because, when they do, they are harder and more time-consuming to remove. On the other hand, if you were to clean up a spill as and when it occurred, you will realise that it only takes a few seconds to do it!
Keep a kitchen roll handy in a convenient spot to quickly tear off a piece and wipe up spills. Similarly, a handheld mini broom/brush and dustpan are ideal for sweeping up crumbs or food bits in a jiffy.
If you want to maintain a pristine kitchen seven days a week, a little time and effort every day are all it takes to incorporate the tips above into your day-to-day schedule!