The Very Best Kitchen Cleaning Guide & Checklist

Does your kitchen looks like a culinary battlefield? Your grout has seen better days, the stains on your cabinets tell the tale of so many prepared meals, and it’s been so long since you cleaned your microwave, you’re afraid to even look inside of it. (You just throw your food in, press a button, and walk away, don’t you? It’s okay. We’ve all been there.) I can’t be the only one who wishes I had Merlin-like powers to command an orchestra of dancing broom and dust rags to do my bidding while I run errands.

If you feel that way too, you’ve come to the right place! We’re here to help you keep a clean home. Welcome to the ultimate kitchen cleaning checklist—a step-by-step guide to making your kitchen sparkle so bright, you’ll need sunglasses just to make breakfast. With just a little elbow grease (not too much, we promise), you can turn the heart of the home into a space so clean, you’ll be reluctant to leave it. (We just live in the kitchen now, and that’s okay.) 

And the best part is that you don’t need a cabinet full of fancy cleaning supplies. Just a few essentials and some good tunes! (Seriously, we recommend putting your favorite playlist on and making this to-do list a fun activity!) We’ve broken it down for you into categories that are easy to follow, from a daily routine, all the way to seasonal tasks and everything in between. 

Let’s jump right in, shall we? We’re starting with everything you’ll need for this endeavor:

Your Kitchen Cleaning Arsenal

  • All-Purpose Cleaner: Get a safe, eco-friendly all purpose cleaner. We love to use Method, as many of their cleaners are made with plants.
  • Paper Towels or Cleaning Rag: To aid in the counter clean-up.
  • Dish Soap: This is a must-have for any kitchen. Personally, I enjoy using Seventh Generation’s dish soap, as it doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals, and always has a lovely, mild scent.
  • Sponge and Scrub Brush: Another must-have, the sponge is your sink’s best friend. Well, unless you’re dealing with stuck-on food, then the scrubby brush is your kitchen bestie. 
  • Broom and Dustpan: The best way to keep dirt and crumbs at bay. And if you’re a pet parent (or you just shed a lot), THE HAIR. (Oh god, there’s always so much hair!😩)
  • Flat Mop: Like a Swiffer or Swiffer alternative, which are a lot easier and less messy than the ol’ shaggy mop and bucket.
  • Baking Soda & White Vinegar: A great way to clean your garbage disposal without harsh chemicals.
  • Cleaning Gloves: Protect your hands from hot water and any cleaning chemicals you do come in contact with.

Now, let’s dive into your daily, weekly, and monthly tasks to make cleaning your kitchen a breeze!

Daily Cleaning Tasks

  • Declutter Those Countertops: First thing first. If you’re anything like me, you definitely left some stuff out. Time to tidy up!
  • Dish Duty: If you have a dishwasher, start by unloading your clean dishes from it. Then wash any sink dishes and load the dishwasher to prevent dirty dishes from piling up.
  • Wipe Down the Sink: After washing dishes, give the kitchen sink a quick cleaning with soapy water. Wipe down any nearby splashes from its surface.
  • Sweep Those Floors: A quick sweep can keep your kitchen floors free of crumbs and minor spills. (Admittedly, I don’t do this every day, but a couple times a week.)
  • Wipe Down Surfaces: Use your all-purpose cleaner and paper towels or cleaning rag to disinfect your countertops.

Weekly Cleaning Tasks

  • Wipe Down Appliances: A quick wipe with a damn cloth can prevent dust and crumb buildup on your toaster, air fryer, and any other kitchen appliances you have.
  • Clean Your Microwave: It’s a daunting task. I know. But it must be done! Here’s the easiest way to do it that doesn’t take much time: Fill a microwave-safe bowl with a cup of water and add in about a tablespoon of vinegar and a tablespoon of lemon juice. Microwave that cleaning concoction for 2 to 5 minutes. DON’T grab the bowl right away. Let it steam and cool down on its own and then wipe down your microwave with a damp cloth. You’ll see that stuck-on food spatter wipe off with ease! And, while you’re add it, don’t forget to wash the turntable.
  • Deep Clean Your Sink: Let’s face it. The sink gets gunky, and hard water deposits can build up and make a beautiful sink look grimey. But scrubbing your sink down and disinfecting it (we like Bar Keeper’s Friend for this task) will ensure it stay sparkling clean!
  • Disinfect the Garbage Disposal: A mix of baking soda, vinegar and hot water can help keep unpleasant odors in check.
  • Replace Dish Towels: To maintain a hygienic kitchen, make sure to swap your dish towels for clean ones. I like to keep a multitude of clean dish towels handy, and just launder the dirty ones weekly in hot water.  
  • Wipe Down Stove: To maintain a clean stovetop, be sure to wipe down the surface weekly. This is also where that all-purpose cleaner comes in handy.
  • Sanitize Your Sponges: Don’t let your sponges get mucky. There are multiple easy way to keep them disinfected, including submerging them in vinegar for 5 minutes, microwaving a wet sponge for 1 minute, or running them in your dishwasher on the longest, hottest setting, as well as the dry cycle. And voila! A clean sponge!
  • Check Your Fridge for Old Leftovers and Produce: It’s good idea to take a peek in the fridge on a weekly basis to chuck any leftovers from the last few days. It’s also a great time to check on the produce in your crisper to make sure it’s still fresh. Throw out anything that looks or smells questionable, of course. 
  • Take out the Trash & Recycling: Trash day’s a-comin’! It’s time to take your bags of trash and recycling to the big can outside. 
  • Mop Floors: This is always the final step of weekly cleaning for me, as I’ll have to let it dry for a little while, AND I won’t be able to sully my floors with any of the prior steps cuz they’re already done! Sweep once more if you need to get up any hair, and then Swiffer your kitchen floor to keep it shining.

Monthly Cleaning Tasks

  • Wash Any Kitchen Rugs You Might Have: It’s a good call to throw any kitchen rugs into the wash each month so you’re not accumulating dust or crumbs (and potentially any bugs who enjoy feeding on such things).
  • Wipe Down Cabinet Doors & Drawers: Give your storage spaces a wipe-down with some all-purpose cleaner or magic erasers to keep your kitchen looking pristine.
  • Run the Clean Cycle on Your Dishwasher: Add some vinegar to your dishwasher’s soap dispenser and give it a run through on the hottest setting to sanitize it monthly.
  • Clean That Grout: Grout cleaner is great for getting into those crevices in your kitchen tiles. If you’re looking for a more natural solution, try a mix of baking soda, dish soap, and some hydrogen peroxide, and let it sit for a bit before you scrub.
  • Sanitize Your Trash Cans: You can use an all-purpose cleaner to wipe down the inside of your trash can and get rid of unpleasant odors. For extra stinky cans, add half a cup of baking soda as well and let sit for 10 minutes before cleaning up.
  • Dust Light Fixtures: Dust any light fixtures in your kitchen, as well as above the cabinets and fridge.

Seasonal Cleaning Tasks

Some tasks only require doing a few times a year. Once a season is a great way to keep track of those tasks. And don’t feel you need to get all of these done on the same day. Pick one a week each season to avoid overwhelming your workload.

  • Clean Your Oven: Depending on use, give your oven a good scrub or set it on self-clean on a seasonal basis. Don’t forget the oven racks!
  • Purge Your Fridge: It’s that time again. The seasonal fridge purge! But fear not, we have a whole system in place just for this step! Download your 5-Day Fridge Detox Guide here!
  • Check Your Freezer: Check your freezer each season to make sure you’re not hanging onto any expired or freezer-burned items. Throw out anything that’s past its prime.
  • Deep Clean Your Fridge: It’s time to wipe down those shelves, drawers and doors with a good deep clean!
  • Clean Drawers: Vacuum out any crumbs and wash any drawer dividers if necessary.
  • Pantry Purge and Organization: Go through your entire food inventory and check expiration dates. Throw out any expired and spoiled items. This is also a prime time to wipe down shelves, and reorganize what you have.

Boom! You’re A Kitchen Cleaning Master!

Keeping your kitchen clean might be a bit of a commitment, but it doesn’t have to be a daunting task. With our step-by-step guide, you’re equipped with an achievable strategy, and for those of you who live with others, a great way to divvy up responsibilities for optimal collaborative effort!

And now, we’d love to hear from you! Do you have any kitchen cleaning tips? Any favorite products or natural solutions? We’d love to hear about them! Leave us a comment below.

 

BISSELL 2252 CleanView Swivel Vacuum Giveaway

To make your cleaning experience more amazing, Steamy Kitchen is giving away one BISSELL 2252 CleanView Swivel Vacuum. Enter to win below.

 

1 Comment

  1. Need a vacumn

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Jaden Rae is the author of two best-selling cookbooks and the creative force behind Steamy Kitchen, a 20-year food blog where she teaches others how to cook meals, minimize food waste, and live mindfully. Jaden has been featured on The List, the Today Show, Oprah.com, Martha Stewart Living Radio, ABC’s Recipe Rehab and more. Read more about Jaden here. Did you make a Steamy Kitchen recipe? Tag @steamykitchen on Instagram for a chance to be featured!

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