Hands down, the most important room in the house to keep clean is the kitchen. The kitchen is the heart of the house, meaning people gather in this one critical room to talk, relax — and eat. While it is important to maintain tidiness in a high-traffic area of the house, if the surfaces where you prepare food aren’t completely spotless, you could be asking for more than a little disarray. To be sure you’re getting all the grime, you need to trust your cleaning products. Here are the best cleaners on the market today to keep your kitchen clean.
These are what bear most of the brunt of kitchen activities. Over the course of a week your counters are slathered with sauces, drenched with meat juices, and dusted with flour and sugar, among myriad other experiences. Whatever you use them for, your counters get filthy, and if you aren’t cleaning them with the right products, you could be contaminating your food.
To make them completely sanitary, spray a cleaner with bleach over all of your counters — even the ones you think you don’t use, and especially on the counter areas around the sink. Just be sure you read the directions correctly. Some cleaners need to sit for a few minutes before being wiped down, and others need to be rinsed before you let food touch them again.
Once you know your counters are disinfected, you must make them shine. If your counters are granite, use a trustworthy brand of granite cleaner to keep the seal intact and allow your surfaces to sparkle. Granite is a finicky material, but if you keep up with the upkeep, your kitchen counters can be unbelievably beautiful for decades.
Some people think sinks are self-cleaning; you constantly fill them with hot, soapy water to clean other kitchen utensils, so why wouldn’t that water clean the sink itself? However, your sink is filled to the brim with filthy, greasy and food-filled water at least once a day, and if you don’t scrub it afterwards, grime can build up and subtract from all that scrubbing you’re putting into your daily dishes.
The truth is that dish soap can clean the sink itself, but you need to scrub the sink with clean water when the sink is empty of dishes. Use a detergent that is particularly good at cutting through built-up grease while preventing the skin on your hands and arms from drying out.
Stovetops come in all shapes and sizes, from electric glass to gas and iron. Different products will address messes on different stovetops, so before you start scrubbing, make sure your cleaner is appropriate for your particular stove.
If you have a glass stovetop, pick one that is specifically made for your stovetop. For gas burners, any ammonia-based cleaner will cause them to shed their caked grease covering. Simply fill a plastic sealable bag with cleaner and toss in the burner; after a few hours, take the burners out, dry them off, and place them back on the stove. Electric burners are more delicate and can’t take the harshness of the ammonia; bleach cleaners will work fine, but be careful not to crack the brittle covering with your srubbing.
While the goal is to keep drippings confined to the baking sheet, it doesn’t always happen. Grease, dough, and everything else you cook usually drops onto the grill racks and floor of your oven, bake rock hard, and smell, tainting your food and creating a fire hazard.
Even if you’ve never cleaned your oven, the right product can crack the exterior of food and wipe up puddles of grease. For tougher messes, you can leave the cleaner on overnight to soften old food. Plus, you don’t have to worry about the harsh chemical smell of most oven cleaners.
Of course, many sources will tell you that natural products you have on hand can clean your kitchen sufficiently. Simple ingredients like baking soda and lemon juice may be able to maintain a simple clean, but if it’s been a while since you’ve given the most important room a serious deep clean, you can make your task easier by utilizing the best products on the market. Plus, if you have specialty kitchen equipment or delicate materials around the room — like granite or stainless steel — you should use products specially designed to keep them, or else you might see tarnished appliances and stained counters. Your kitchen deserves your love; show it your appreciation by giving it a sparkle and shine.