The kitchen is very often the heart of the home. It’s where people gather, it’s where meals are cooked, and it’s a room in the house that is designed to be highly functional and always used. But, this high-traffic area is always bound to accumulate dirt, dust, and grime that sometimes needs a good deep cleaning to keep it in tip-top shape. Especially in the kitchen, which is a place for storing and preparing food, you want to be sure that your space is squeaky clean and sanitary. While it doesn’t necessarily need to be sterilized, it does need to be clean.
With food bits and scraps always around, it’s easy for bacteria or mold to grow if the area isn’t deep cleaned every so often — especially in the deep corners of your kitchen appliances. Depending on the kitchen traffic in your home and your appliances, you should plan to deep clean your kitchen appliances every one to six months. Each appliance has a slightly different cleaning routine, so we’ve compiled a guide on how to deep clean many of your kitchen appliances to be sure that your kitchen stays clean and tidy.
Your refrigerator is your main food storage. It houses both cooked and raw foods, as well as drinks, sauces, and condiments. Keeping your fridge hygienic is very important to ensure that nothing unwanted decides to grow. The first step to deep cleaning your fridge is to totally empty it. This may sound like a whole lot of work, but you may be surprised and even terrified with what you find. Take this opportunity to throw out expired foods, old foods, or those mysterious forgotten jars that you can’t even identify anymore. Put everything on the counter and organize what you are planning to put back in the fridge. Take out any drawers or removable shelves from the refrigerator and put them in the sink or run them on a gentle setting through the dishwasher. If you handwash them, use a bowl of warm water with a generous splash of vinegar and a dishcloth to scrub the drawers and shelving. Rinse afterward with warm water and let air dry. Do the same to the fridge's interior using a bowl of warm water with white vinegar to scrub every surface. Also, take the time to vacuum under or around the back of your fridge if you have a stand-alone fridge, as dust can really collect in those hard-to-reach places. Replace your shelves, drawer, and food, and voila! Finally, the fridge is deep cleaned. We recommend deep cleaning the fridge every three to six months.
An oven is another part of the kitchen that will easily accumulate food and grease. Chances are the inside of your oven is filled with charred bits and sticky grease that makes the idea of cooking something you’re going to eat in there a little unsettling. Some ovens have a built-in setting that self-cleans the oven using extremely high temperatures. To do this, remove all the racks from the oven and set the oven to "clean." Wash the racks in the sink by hand with water and vinegar or in the dishwasher. Once the oven is done cleaning and cooled down, use a clean wet cloth to wipe down the oven's interior to get any remaining debris. If you don’t have a self-cleaning oven, you’re going to be the one doing the cleaning. Remove the racks and wash the same way. Take a bowl of warm water with white vinegar and a clean rag or cloth and scrub the inside of the oven. This may take a few bowls and cloths to be sure that it’s really sparkling clean. Feel free to use the hose of a vacuum to scoop up any big bits of debris in the oven. Let it dry and replace the racks for your squeaky clean oven.
The stove is the appliance that needs a deep cleaning most often. This is because it’s very easy for food and grease to accumulate on or under burners. Cleaning will also be slightly different depending on if you have a gas or electric stove. Wipe down the stove surfaces and knobs with a mixture of water and vinegar. For gas stoves, remove grates and soak them in soapy water or run them through the dishwasher. Also, remove burner caps and hand wash them. If you have an electric stove, disconnect burner coils and hand clean them with a sponge without getting electrical connections wet. Stovetops are a hot spot for spills, drips, and grease, so be sure to wash yours often to keep your cooking area sanitary.
Microwaves are pretty easy to deep clean but can get totally messy. Things often explode, leak, and spill in the microwave, making it a hot spot for unwanted things to grow. Give your microwave a deep clean every few months, depending on how often you use it, to ensure that your food prep space stays hygienic. Wipe down all surfaces on the outside with a wet cloth soaked in water and vinegar mixture. Take out the tray or plate on the inside of the microwave and either wash by hand or run through the dishwasher. Use a water and vinegar mixture and a sponge to scrub the inside of the microwave. Replace the plate when everything is dry. Don’t neglect under, behind, or on top of your microwave, where crumbs and dust can easily accumulate.
Your dishwasher does a lot of dirty work, so chances are it can get a little dirty itself. Every 3-6 months or so, you will want to give your dishwasher a good clean to ensure that it keeps cleaning well and doesn’t emit any odors. Some dishwashers have a self-clean setting, but you can also clean it yourself manually. Take out racks and soak them in the sink in a mixture of water and vinegar for 20 minutes. Check the drains and filters to be sure that you remove any food or scraps stuck there and could cause clogging or odors in the future. Use a sponge and a water-vinegar mixture to wipe down the gaskets, door, and inside of your dishwasher. If your dishwasher has a manual filter, you will want to clean it about once a month by soaking it in the sink with vinegar and water and scrubbing it down. As with other appliances, be sure to clean under, behind, and around to pick up any dust.
Make it a part of your cleaning routine to integrate an occasional deep clean of your kitchen appliances every so often for a super-sparkling and hygienic kitchen.