Kitchen Cleaning Hacks You Need To Know

Cleaning the kitchen is so much more than just loading the dishwasher and wrapping up leftovers. It's the one room that's constantly in use, and full of specialty items to clean. But if you've been putting off deep-cleaning, now's a great time to start. With our roundup of simple cleaning hacks, your kitchen is going to be the cleanest on the block.

Use Kool-aid to clean the dishwasher

If the dishwasher cleans dishes, what cleans the dishwasher? Lemonade Kool-aid, and no, that's not a typo. This tip is super simple, and Mrs. Happy Homemaker explains it all. Just add a packet of unsweetened lemonade Kool-aid to the soap holder in the dishwasher, and run a cycle. The citric acid in the unsweetened packet deep cleans the dishwasher, leaving it sparkling, and ready to tackle whatever dirty dishes you load next.

Dryer sheets for baking pans

You know that one pan that has an excess of gunk on it that won't come off no matter how hard you try? Next time, try this tip from Apartment Therapy. Leave a dryer sheet (used or new) in the pan and cover with water overnight. By morning, it'll take no more than a wipe to finish cleaning the pan. This tip requires a trip to the laundry room but it's definitely worth it.

Washing hands with stainless steel

Garlic, salmon, onions are delicious but the lingering scent isn't quite as appealing. When you need to wash your hands—the two most important tools in your kitchen—try this tip from Huffington Post. Stainless steel is the ideal way to deodorize your hands and the chemical reaction transfers the scent from your hands to the steel, leaving you smelling fresh. There are many options to choose from including stainless steel "soap," a stainless steel spoon, or the easiest, rubbing your hands on the stainless steel faucet and just like magic, the scent is gone!

Get a squeaky-clean microwave

The microwave is the heart of many kitchens, but it's also one of the most neglected in terms of cleaning. Good Housekeeping helps to simplify this oft-forgotten chore. All it takes is some water combined with citrus or vinegar that's boiled in the microwave, allowing the steam to build up. Once it's finished boiling, let stand for 15 minutes, and wipe down the now loosened grime...success!

Refrigerator clean-up hacks

Whether it's a little spilled milk or a bundle of forgotten celery, the refrigerator is harboring a lot more than your perishables. Thankfully, there are plenty of hacks for getting the refrigerator to a like-new cleanliness. From removing dust bunnies with a pantyhose covered yardstick to eliminating lingering odors in the veggie bins, following these tips from HGTV will get your fridge in tip-top shape.

Chemical-free oven cleaning

I don't have the luxury of a self-cleaning oven, and I prefer to not use harsh chemicals to clean it. So what's a girl to do? I followed the great instructions from The Kitchn and began cleaning my oven with a mixture of baking soda and vinegar —, no cleaner fumes here. It does require leaving the paste to set anywhere from 12 hours to overnight, but to me that's just an excuse to take a night off from cooking (wink).

Shining stainless steel appliances

We've learned how stainless steel can help clean your hands, but what will help clean the stainless steel? Home repair legend Bob Villa and team have some great advice when it comes to the most common of kitchen surfaces.

To eliminate scratches, spots, and stains, and restore your appliances' original shine, start with a quick wash with dish soap, and follow up with a scrub down of baking soda, followed by its partner-in-crime, vinegar. After a thorough rinse, the final touch is a light coating of olive oil to let the appliances really sparkle.

Get wooden cutting boards really clean

My wooden cutting board is one of my most used kitchen items. From chopping onions, to carving meat, or acting as a cheese board, I use it all the time. And even though I clean it, I always wonder if it's really clean. Food Network takes away my fears, and yours too, with their easy cleaning tips designed specifically for a wooden cutting board. It begins with sanitizing with peroxide and cleaning stains with baking soda. A final spritz of vinegar deodorizes the board while preparing it for it's next kitchen adventure.

Clean up broken glass with ease

Eliminate the fear of getting broken glass in your feet. From a wet paper towel to a slice of bread, The Kitchn has several tips to help you clean up broken glass, no matter where it breaks.  

But what if you open the dishwasher and the stemware is broken? It happens to the best of us and RealSimple's tip for getting the dishwasher free of glass is genius. Rub a cut potato over the shards of glass and the potato will attract them like a magnet. Finally, just run an empty cycle to flush out any super tiny pieces.

Ditch those counter top stains

Does your beautiful counter have a coffee stain that just won't go away no matter how hard you scrub? Whatever type of counter top you have, there's a special way to clean it. If you have a natural stone counter use a mix of hydrogen peroxide with a small amount of ammonia, and for laminate countertops, a mild detergent and baking soda is the way to go.