You Missed a Spot: 10 Kitchen Items Everyone Forgets to Clean

It happens to the best of us.

You have company coming over. It’s go time. And you’re not ready.

Perhaps you caught wind of some last-minute guests. Maybe you made plans weeks ago, but work left you no time to clean during the week. Whatever the reason, your kitchen is a mess, and you need to make it *somewhat* presentable in time.

Of course, that’s when we start to cut corners.

We focus our effort on the big-ticket items – the counter tops, the stove, the stainless steel fridge that holds fingerprints like an old-fashioned fridge holds magnets – and forget the little details.

But that’s alright! You’ll get it next time. Just keep these kitchen cleaning tips in mind when you tidy up and you’ll never miss a problem spot again.

10. Ceilings and Corners

In your kitchen, the walls and ceilings get dirty faster than the rest of your home. All those splashes of oil from the stovetop or bits from the blender can get grimy if you leave them alone.

Take time to clean crease, grime, and spilled food from those nooks and crannies.

9. Wall Art

Just as the walls in your kitchen get dirtier, so do the things that adorn them. Smudged glass and dusty frames take away from the beauty of your carefully-selected pieces. Dust off the tops and sides of your frames, then take them down to give the glass a good clean.

Be sure not to spray water or cleaner directly onto the frame, as liquid can seep behind the glass and damage your precious art. Instead, wipe it with a slightly damp cloth.

8. Drapes, Curtains and Blinds

Of course you remember to Windex your windows, but when was the last time the drapes got some attention? Though they may look clean, curtains and other hanging upholstery can trap everything from pollen to dust mites and bacteria.

The next time you clean your windows, take down the coverings and wash them according to the label. You can save time by vacuuming them regularly.

7. Cutting Boards

Whether you use them a little or a lot, it’s very important to sanitize your cutting boards. Both wood and plastic cutting boards can be a major source of cross-contamination.

It’s best to sanitize them with a chlorine bleach solution after each use, but if you can’t find time for that, use a different cutting board for your meats, fruits and vegetables, and other foods.

6. Sponges

Sponges are a haven for bacteria. Washing them with soap and water isn’t enough.

You can kill most of it by heating a moist sponge in a microwave for one minute, or popping them in the dishwasher with a drying cycle. But you should still replace your kitchen sponge frequently, especially if it starts to smell.

5. Ceiling Fans

Ceiling fans usually sit idle during the winter months. That’s when they accumulate mountains of dust bunnies on the upper side of the blades. If you don’t clean them often, you’ll end up with a shower of dust the next time you turn on the fan.

You can easily remove the dust with a warm, soapy cloth. Just be sure to use a stable stepladder to reach those high places.

4. Cabinet Handles and Doors

Kitchen cabinets tend to get grabbed by dirty hands, becoming a hot spot for – you guessed it – bacteria.

You can thwart these tiny pests by disinfecting knobs and handles every so often. If the cabinet hides something messy, like a garbage bin or dog food, you should wipe down the inside of the doors as well.

3. Garbage Can

Sure, you take out the trash every week. You know not to leave dirty bits and pieces on the bottom of the can. But your kitchen garbage can will still accumulate grime.

If you garbage can smells bad even when empty, it’s time to give it a thorough clean with a disinfectant and odour cleaner.

2. Dishwasher

Who washes the dishwasher? You do – or at least you’re supposed to. The filter gets clogged with food debris and soap scum, and the sides are marred by hard water deposits. Neglect it for too long and you’ll have mold.

Luckily, cleaning the dishwasher is a fairly simple process.

1. Small Appliances

Perhaps the most neglected corners of our kitchens lay with our humble appliances. We love our toaster, blender, and coffee maker, but rarely do we remember to clean them inside-out.

To keep your food tasting fresh (not funky), be sure to clean your little appliances when you clean the oven and stove top.