Kitchen Cleaning 101: Here’s Your Daily, Weekly, And Monthly Checklist
We can all agree that a clean kitchen is a dream to work in. Here is a handy checklist of all the things you need to do to keep your kitchen clean – daily, weekly, monthly and annual tasks!
Our kitchens are one of the busiest places in the house that look like a battleground after we are done for the day. There is grease, grime, stains, peels, water, detergent splashes, and a massive pile of dirty dishes in the sink. With our busy, fast-paced schedules it can get overwhelming to remember your daily tasks.
We give you a handy checklist on kitchen cleaning with which you can easily segregate your daily, weekly, monthly, and annual kitchen cleaning tasks. Just pin it on your fridge with a magnet and you won’t forget when and how to start the cleaning process. The cleaning tips/checklist are written with an average urban Indian kitchen kept in mind.
Let the cleaning games begin!
Mishry’s Cleaning Checklist
Kitchen Cleaning – Daily Checklist
1. Utensils – This is a no brainer, of course. We all wash utensils every day ourselves, in a dishwasher or we have help coming in to do the job for us. Either way, this is a daily task and needs no explanation.
2. Slabs / Kitchen Counters – Wiping down the slabs with a regular kitchen cleaner is a must in every kitchen. The kitchen slabs go through a lot during the day and definitely need some wiping and cleaning at the end of the day. Doing this daily will ensure no dirt and grease gets accumulated providing a clean-healthy surface to make daily food preps. Also, keeps ants and insects away.
3. Floor – A regular broom and your trustworthy poccha (mop) are all it takes to do this daily task. We aren’t talking about deep cleaning-detergent level washing. A regular broom-mop ritual shall suffice.
4. Gas Top – If you have a stainless steel gas stove, cleaning it with your regular dish wash soap, scrubber, and a wet cloth, is more than sufficient. Pat down the knobs with a wet cloth. Parts around the burner and the steep drip trays or the pan holders must be cleaned daily too. If not daily, then at least cleaning it thrice a week is necessary to maintain the hygiene of the gas stove.
5. Sink – Cleaning the sink after finishing your daily utensils is a must. A sink can easily become a breeding ground for bacteria and foul odor, if not cleaned daily. If you have a stainless steel sink, regular scrubbing and washing of the sink will help you maintain it.
6. Chakla Belan – We are obsessed with our ‘breads‘. Rotis, naan, paranthas all need a heavy-based chakla and a rolling pin. Almost two meals per day primarily consist of making rotis or paranthas, which need a clean surface to roll out. Clean your chakla belan with regular dish soap and scrubber.
7. Kitchen Wipes / Kitchen Cloth – We suggest you keep kitchen cloths segregated into 3 categories always. One for wiping down the slabs, one for holding pans, etc, and one to wipe down your hands. Keep all these in sets of two or three so that you can wash one set each day and hygienically use the other set the next day.
8. Utensil Washing Sponges – Sponges are something we all ignore to wash. A sponge can absorb a lot of bacteria and leftover food particles that can be transferred easily on clean surfaces also. So, make sure you clean the sponges thoroughly with water and mild soap before you wind up your work in the kitchen.
9. Light Cleaning Under The Sink – Oh, the nastiest area! Washing this area every day is not possible owing to the tight work schedules. Emptying and cleaning the dustbin every day and removing any dry/solid waste is a must as a daily ritual.
The grease, the mess, the odors – All gone! Here are some easy and all-natural hacks to have the freshness and cleanliness back in your kitchen.
Kitchen Cleaning – Weekly Checklist
1. Microwave – Even of you do not use to for regular cooking, cleaning and deodorizing a microwave is essential. Cleaning a microwave is a weekly task or if you use it less than usual, once every 15 days is enough too. Make sure you wash the turntable (microwave glass plate) carefully.
A simple trick to clean a microwave is by putting a glass of water with a few lemon slices and ‘microwaving’ it for 5-7 minutes. Let it rest for the next 7-10 minutes. Open and clean with wet cloth. The grease and food stains will be all gone. The steam build-up helps in loosening all the stains. Clean and odorless microwave in under 15 minutes.
2. Shelves With High Usage – Shelves that hold oils, masala containers may need weekly wiping and cleaning. Nothing too intense, just a simple wet cloth-dry cloth wiping is enough.
3. Decluttering A Refrigerator – Leftovers, hidden sauces, and sneaky containers with a week old dal that has been pushed to the back need to be rearranged, discarded or reused. Declutter the refrigerator weekly, cleaning it down is a monthly procedure, which will be discussed later.
4. Aprons – The layer of protection between our clothes and the tomato-oil splatter, our good old apron must be washed every week. Most aprons are machine washable, which will get rid of all the hard stains and grime.
5. Masala Daani / Spice Box – No Indian kitchen is complete without a masala daani or a spice box. We are talking about the good old steel masala daani with our band of trustworthy spices like turmeric, red chili powder, jeera, mustard seeds, and coriander seed powder amongst others. When we are cooking, there is a considerable amount of spillage that needs to be cleaned thoroughly at least once a week.
6. Cutlery Holder and Drawer – We all clean up the cutlery, but often forget the holder itself. Add it to your checklist now!
7. Deep Cleaning Under The Sink – The main source of foul odor is usually traced back to the nasty stuff going on under the sink. You can use a detergent-water mix to scrub down the area or if the stains are harder, a bathroom cleaner shall do the trick. Make sure you unclog the drains too. A handy tip to unclog the drain is to use baking soda and vinegar.
8. Table Mats – If they are cotton mats, a machine wash will bring it back to its original self, if they are plastic, wiping it down with a wet cloth should be enough. If the stains are hard, a mild soapy mixture should help you with that.
Kitchen Cleaning – Monthly Checklist
1. Walls – The walls go through a lot during cooking. There are layers of food splatter. The oily-masalas that stick to the walls are easy to remove with a light scrubbing with soapy water. Do this monthly for a stain-free kitchen.
2. Dishwasher – Most Indian homes do not have a dishwasher. But if you do, clean the dishwasher with a dishwashing liquid every month.
3. Chimney – A chimney can only work properly when cleaned and maintained regularly. It is advisable to clean the chimney filter once a month to prevent hard deposits. These filters can easily be cleaned right at home with regular home supplies. Know more.
4. Exhaust Fan – Indian cooking collects a lot of oily grime that gets stuck on the exhaust fan. Make sure you switch off the buttons before cleaning the exhaust fan.
5. Storage Boxes – Dal, sugar, tea, and coffee containers, all need to be washed, sun-dried, or air-dried once a month to help prevent the accumulation of moisture and the musty smell.
6. Shelves With Low Usage – These include the dal shelves or pantry shelves which aren’t used every day, but do require monthly cleaning and decluttering.
7. Freezer – A freezer isn’t something that we use as often as the fridge itself and we also forget the contents stored there quiet easily. Organize, declutter, and wipe clean with a damp cloth. Need some more? 10 Tips To Better Freezer Storage And Cleanliness.
8. Oil And Ghee Storage Bottles – Cleaning these on the outside is as important as cleaning them on the outside. The bottles or jars can get a little slippery to hold so make sure you wipe them down every now and then.
9. Salt And Pepper Shakers – How often do you think of cleaning them up? Almost never! Add this to the checklist now.
10. Appliance Covers – Most homes like to cover the top of the appliances with a plastic sheet which we often forget to clean. Do this every month for a sparkling clean kitchen.
11. Toaster – Crumbs everywhere? Empty all the crumbs from inside the toaster for a clean appliance shelf.
Kitchen Cleaning – Biannual / Annual Checklist
1. Outer surfaces of the cupboards – Even though we call it as ‘Diwali cleaning’, the outer surfaces of the kitchen cupboards need lots of love while cleaning. Do check for cleaners that are compatible with your surface type. Wooden, veneers, sun mica, glass, laminates are some common types of materials used for making the outer surface of the cupboards.
2. Big Atta And Rice Storage Drums – These are usually stainless steel or aluminum vessels that can hold up to 10-30 kilos of grains or atta. These aren’t easy to wash and will need assistance. Make sure you sun-dry them to avoid any moisture being left in the drums.
3. Kitchen Lights – Wipe with a dry cloth to remove all the dry dirt. For sticky dirt, you may have to use a wet cloth, sponge to wipe off external surfaces. For a deeper cleaning of any other electrical objects – please seek the help of experts, with an electrician.
Voila! A clean kitchen that looks straight out of an interior magazine! Have we missed out on some important in the checklist? Let us know in the comment section.
About The Author
Nishtha Asrani Sethi, born and brought up in Delhi, is a content writer who has previously worked with NDTV and Resolver. Her roots are deep within the food industry, thanks to her family business and a keen interest in contemporary food products. Nishtha loves to serve her articles with a side of humor. Her Bachelor’s degree in Home Science comes in handy while researching the science behind the food. When she is not trying to win a battle of fries vs fruit with her daughter, she is busy experimenting with her huge joint family with crazy recipes.