Use these tips and cleaning hacks to set up a routine and keep your kitchen clean on the daily; no more messes!
Photo by Paul Hanaoka on Unsplash
I get it, life gets busy sometimes and cleaning or picking up your home can get put on the back burner. Whatever you have going on, there are always going to be obstacles that get in the way of having a clean home, especially a clean kitchen. After all, the kitchen is where so many of the messes are made.
With meals cooked, food pulled in and out of the fridge and pantry, dirty dishes, more dirty dishes, crumbs on the floor, sticky hands, burnt food left on the stove because you just don’t have the energy to scrub it, stinky garbage disposal, stinky trash… the kitchen can become mess central.
I don’t know about you, but when our kitchen is left with yucky messes in the evenings or in the morning before our day starts it will just about drive me crazy! With the kitchen being main the hub of our home and most likely of yours, its important to enact a few practices that will help you to have a clean kitchen every single day. Sure you will have messes come and things spilled and meals served, but if you practice these tips, the messes won’t stay and you will be able to confidently say that your kitchen is for the most part CLEAN.
In addition if you have unexpected guests, you need to leave the house in a rush, or you skip a deep cleaning task, you can be assured that your kitchen is still clean.
Keep in mind, these are not tips for deep cleaning your kitchen, they are just helpful reminders that you can do every day and throughout your day to keep the kitchen from building up with the days messes.
Related: Three Natural Alternatives to Bleach
How to Keep Your Kitchen Clean
Keep an all-purpose cleaner on hand for quick clean-up
An all-purpose spray cleaner can be so helpful in keeping your kitchen clean throughout the day. After you and your family have eaten, do a quick spray on your counters (just make sure its safe for your counters and also safe for kitchen use.
You can also use an all-purpose spray on your stove, on your children’s high chair (make sure its natural and safe to use in these areas), and on sticky messes that are hard to scrub. Let it soak in and when you are ready to wipe it clean, do so! Its much easier to clean up a mess that has been soaking in cleaner for a few minutes than to clean up something that’s been left to dry and harden.
In addition, you’ll usually feel more inclined to wipe down knowing that you already sprayed cleaner on your mess. You won’t want to waste any of what you sprayed by letting it dry, and you’ll know the mess will be that much easier to wipe away after its been soaking.
Rinse your dishes after meals
Even if you can’t get to washing them or loading them in the dishwasher right away, rinse your dishes in the sink right after your meals and set them aside until you can get to them. Put all of the dishes in one place after they have been rinsed; one side of the sink will work great.
You don’t want your dirty dishes to sit on the counter in the spots that your family ate in, and you also don’t want them to have old food stuck to them by the time you are able to get to them. It will just make your dish washing more difficult if you do.
If you like, you can spritz your all-purpose cleaner on the dishes while you are spraying down your counter, this will help them to rinse off easier. I like to keep a srubber pad handy and just quickly wipe each dish down before setting it aside if I’m not ready to really clean them or load them.
On a side note: in the past I used to wash our dishes and let them dry on a drying towel beside the sink. Instead of putting these dishes away right after I finished washing, I would sometimes leave them and just keep adding to the pile after more meals and dish washing. I would add and add until it was literally falling over. Even though they were clean dishes it didn’t help with making our kitchen look or feel clean. Now I try hard to put away the dishes as soon as I’m through washing them (drying them with a dry towel if they haven’t had enough time to air dry). This keeps our counters clean and lets our kitchen feel less cluttered.
Do a quick sweep every single day
There’s nothing worse than walking through your kitchen and getting crumbs and junk stuck to your feet. Sweeping your kitchen will usually take less than 5 minutes, a lot of times less than a couple of minutes. It is so worth it to keeping your kitchen clean daily. I like to give ours a quick sweep after every meal or so, and then use the vacuum to get everything about every other day.
Keep a sturdy broom and dust pan close by in the kitchen. If you have a pantry, you can store it to the side in your pantry. Vacuuming often will work as well, but i don’t like to have to unwind and plug in our vacuum so often (its not cordless) so I think sweeping seems to be more efficient for cleaning our floors throughout the day.
Take out the trash often
I say ‘often’ because there isn’t a set time or schedule that your trash should be taken out, as different families will build up trash at different rates. One thing you should try hard to never do is let your trash get to the point of over-flowing.
I am notorious for stacking our trash can like a Jenga game as high as it will go before I take it out. I think that my thought process behind this is that I want to get the most out of every single trash bag, and it seems wasteful to me to take out a trash bag that isn’t full to MAX capacity.
Honestly though, I can’t remember the last time I bought trash bags. I buy our trash bags in bulk from Costco; I spend around $15 and that lasts me long enough to not remember the last time I bought them. I would guess I am going on a year with the same bulk box of trash bags. I’ve realized its more worth it to me to have a clean kitchen every day than it is to save who knows how much (probably very little) on filling the trash bags more full.
If you are worried about being wasteful, there are eco-friendly trash bags, reusable trash bags, and the option to always go without a trash bag (this option would necessitate a different routine to make sure your kitchen is clean like taking the trash out more often and cleaning out your bin with an all-purpose cleaner). Go with one of these routes if you feel inclined to be less wasteful.
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Throw away old food, or don’t let it get to that point
As with any kitchen, the fridge and pantry are the main hub of your kitchen and you should always remember to keep them clean as well. One of the biggest culprits of a dirty refrigerator or pantry is old, rotten food. Don’t let this happen by taking account of what you have in your fridge and pantry every single day.
Make sure you know everything that is in your fridge. Clear, glass containers for food storage can help with this. If anything is pushed to the back of the fridge, pull it forward. When you are planning your meals throughout the day, try to use up food that is closer to going bad first. Be a smart shopper! Don’t buy anything that you will not be able to use up before it spoils.
If something gets spilled in the refrigerator or pantry try hard to clean it right away and don’t let it sit for too long. If you don’t you’ll end up forgetting about it and it will just lead to a dirtier kitchen.
Clean as you go
If you practice any of these tips, practice this one. Cleaning as you go will be one of the most helpful things you can do to keep your kitchen clean every single day. Throughout your day you should be picking up as you go and putting off as little of your cleaning as you can. When you wash your dishes, dry them and put them away right away. If something spills, wipe it up right then and there.
When you aren’t putting off cleaning up messes, you’ll be so surprised how little there is to clean up by the end of the day. Usually at the end of the day you are tired and will feel less inclined to do a lot of cleaning. You want to make it so that there is hardly any cleaning to do in the evening, and with a quick run through of your kitchen you will have it sparkling for the next morning.
Remember after each of your meals or after each time you use the kitchen to put it back to the way it was before. If you find yourself to be a messy cook, one thing you can try is to not get out another ingredient until you’ve put away the previous one. Also, keep a clean wash cloth on hand and nearby at all times so that you can quickly wipe as you go.
Keeping a clean kitchen will help you to make sure your cooking space is sanitary. You’ll be more efficient and have less of a headache when going to do every day tasks like make breakfast (no dirty dishes piled up to work around). And most importantly, it can help you to relax and enjoy good food and good company at every meal.
What do you do to keep your kitchen clean on the daily? Let us know in the comments below!