Between those who indulge in daily cook-offs and those whose culinary skills are limited to boiling water for cup noodles, the kitchen is rather an important area for most of us. There’s also no doubt that it’s ground zero for dust, grime and grease.
If you’re constantly saddled with the chore of cleaning the kitchen, here are seven kitchen cleaning tips that’ll speed up the process and make your kitchen Masterchef ready.
1. Use vinegar to unclog dirt and grease inside the faucet heads
We use our kitchen faucets for everything from a casual hand-washing to filling our pots up with water for cooking. And while we’re used to cleaning around the base of our faucets, how many of us actually bother to deep clean their faucet heads?
Faucets do not stay clean forever, and eventually, bacteria and mould can form in and around the faucet head, contaminating your food and cutlery. To remedy this, fill a bag with diluted vinegar and tie it around your kitchen faucet and leave it to soak overnight.
Don’t be shocked when you come back to a bag of yellow water in the morning. This just means that all those nasties lurking on your faucet head are now gone.
Fun-fact: Vinegar also acts as a deodoriser and grease remover, so you can get rid of bacteria while tackling grease and stains in the kitchen
2. Make your sink look good as new with flour
We spend a good amount of time preparing raw foods at the sink. But even with thorough cleaning, you might not be able to get your sink to shine like it used to.
If you’re hoping to restore your scuffed sink to its former glory, clean the sink with any spray kitchen cleaner or hot soapy water. Then ensure the sink is dry before sprinkling some flour into the sink and drain and start buffing your way to shiny perfection.
3. Use lemon to naturally clean your microwave
On those extra busy days where we’ve used up every ounce of energy in our body, a good ol’ microwavable meal works just fine. But cleaning the microwave is something most of us neglect to do.
Chemical-laden cleaning sprays work, but if you’d have more peace of mind with an all-natural cleaner, your best bet would be this easy lemon-water concoction. Not only will it remove grease and grime like a charm, you’ll also be left with a pleasing citrus scent.
To get started, place a microwave-safe bowl with about 1½ cups of water and a few slices of fresh lemon into the microwave, then nuke it up on high power for three to five minutes. After the timer sets off, leave the door shut for another 10 minutes and let hot steam kick into gear by loosening every bit of grease so that you’ll be able to easily clean it up with a wipe down.
4. Soak your stove-top grates overnight with baking soda to make them shiny
Image credit: Smooth
While we reserve ziplock bags for our favourite leftovers and snacks, mixing your stove-top grates with Ammonia inside a large ziplock bag will work wonders to remove the stains and dust that have accumulated.
Image credit: @practicallyf
To clean, place the stove top grate into a gallon-sized Ziploc bag and add 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup of ammonia and leave it overnight. Afterwards, place the grate under warm water and watch the black and burnt food residue wash right off without all that scrubbing.
5. Make your burnt pans squeaky clean with baking soda
Besides stains, the sight of rusted kitchenware can break some of our hearts – especially when our expensive pots and pans are in question. If you’re struggling to clean burnt food off your pots, baking soda will do the trick to make them squeaky clean again without ruining the pan with harsh scrubbing.
You’ll require three spoons of baking soda and some boiling water to create a thick baking soda paste. Then spread the baking soda paste onto the pans and leave it for at least ten minutes. Thereafter, scrub it off and the grease and stains will be removed.
For extra heavy-duty cleaning, feel free to add white vinegar to the baking soda to further remove the burnt stains.
6. Use melamine foam sponges to clean hardened grease or burn marks on stoves or ovens
Image credit: The Smart Local
If sheer procrastination has resulted in a thick, formidable layer of grease on your backsplash or stove, a handy dandy melamine foam cleaning sponge will be just the thing you need to easily clean away any stain with only water.
Melamine sponges are made of melamine foam which means that while they feel like normal sponges, they actually work like sandpaper, getting into tiny grooves of the item you’re cleaning. The best part is, they’re just as affordable as normal sponges and you can purchase a pack at Daiso.
These are very versatile and gentle enough to be used on glass ceramic, stainless steel, aluminium, ceramic, tiles, wood, chrome and fibreglass. It can help remove cooking grease buildup on your kitchen lights, burn marks on pans and pots, and even fingerprint marks.
7. Use rubbing alcohol to combat stains on stone countertops
Image credit: The Smart Local
Stains in general present a world of problems in our daily lives. From food stains on our t-shirts to kitchenware, they’re inevitable. If your kitchen countertop is made of granite, marble or other kinds of natural stone, you’ll know that chemical cleaners are way too harsh to be used for regular cleaning.
A safer and more cost-effective way to clean your kitchen countertop can be made with a couple of ingredients you can pick up for cheap. You’ll need a 1:6 cup ratio of rubbing alcohol to water, a couple drops of dishwashing liquid – essential oil drops optional but come highly recommended for a nice smelling kitchen.
Use this daily after cooking or soak stubborn stains for a couple of hours before cleaning off, and you’ll be well on your way to a squeaky clean countertop.
Top kitchen cleaning tips to level up chore day
The kitchen is the centre of most homes and it’s often the hardest place to clean. But unless you’re someone who enjoys doing chores, cleaning the kitchen can be a long and tedious task. So to ease your kitchen cleaning experience, be sure to have these seven tips in mind.
Photography by Doreen Fan.