9 Quick Kitchen Cleaning Tips

Get quick tips for time-saving cleanup on your most-used kitchen tools.

By Reader's Digest Editors
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    A Blender Cleaning Secret

    1. Family physician and author Jill Grimes has a great tip to clean the blender. 'After you pour your drink, take the pitcher straight to the sink. Put in a little water and a drop of dish soap, put it back on the blender, and turn it on for 20 seconds. Rinse it out and you’re done.'

    From Best You

    2 Microwave Cleaning Shortcuts

    2. The quickest way to clean a microwave oven is to place a handful of wet paper towels inside and run it on High for 3-5 minutes. You don't need a science lesson to know that the steam from the towels will soften the grime. Once the paper towels cool down, use them to wipe the oven's interior.

    -- Amazing Home Problem Solver

    3. To deodorize, combine 1 cup of water with ½ cup of lemon juice in a measuring cup or bowl and heat it on high for 3–5 minutes. Let it stand in the microwave for 5–10 minutes before removing.

    -- How to Clean Just About Everything

    A Quick Coffee Pot Tip

    4. The glass jug that comes with a coffeemaker can quickly develop a brown, blotchy haze – especially when you leave it on for long periods of time. For the quickest cure, you will need some ice, salt and a lemon. Fill the empty jug a quarter full of ice. Cut the lemon into quarters and squeeze two of the quarters into the jug. Add 2 tablespoons of salt. Swirl the mixture in the jug for 2 minutes and the inside surface will quickly come clean. Rinse under the tap.

    -- Five Minute Fixes

    Clean a Cast-Iron Pan

    5. Most cooks know that you should never use liquid soap on a cast-iron pan and never scrub it with anything abrasive if you want to maintain its well-oiled nonstick surface. So how do you clean it? Use salt. If the pan will not rinse clean with water and a soft dishcloth, rub it with a few tablespoons of salt and a paper towel, and rinse. Then replenish the oil film by coating the inside surface with a dab of cooking oil.

    -- Five Minute Fixes

    A Coffee Grinder Trick

    6. Run a small handful of uncooked white rice through the coffee grinder, especially if you use it for grinding anything other than coffee beans. Most coffee experts advise against using your machine for grinding dry spices since the smells from grinding ingredients, such as cinnamon sticks and dried basil, are nearly always impossible to get out. -- How to Clean Just About Everything

    Cheese Grater Tip

    7. Keep a clean pastry brush handy for removing every last remnant of grated food left behind in the tiny grates. It works like a charm on both sides of the grater.

    -- How to Clean Just About Everything

    Disinfect the Garbage Disposal

    8. Deep clean and deodorize a waste disposal unit by grinding ice cubes made with half vinegar, half water.

    -- Amazing Home Problem Solver

    Coffee Cup Saver

    9. Remove coffee stains from china cups by scrubbing them with equal parts vinegar and salt.

    -- Amazing Home Problem Solver


    Your Comments

    • Umer Rehman

      Nice tips.

    • B_bgauer 56

      I have several cast-iron skillets, various sizes, that I have had for over fifty years.  Some of them were “heirlooms” when I was given them!  And I wash them with soap and water, and scrub them clean.  The next thing you do is towel dry the pan, and then place it on a hot burner for a few minutes, to dry out the “pores” (cast iron is porous).  While it is still warm (not hot) spray it with vegetable oil and wipe with a dry paper towel.

      Ever so often, I bake cornbread in my skillet…that will really restore the well-oiled surface:  Melt the shortening as you pre-heat the skillet (necessary when baking in cast iron) in the oven.  That is the one time I don’t scrub with soap!  Just wipe out with a paper towel.

    • Volleyballgranny

      I was hoping for something new.  Bummer!

    • Anne Hughes

      WD40 cleans shower doors and leaves them shining.  It was made to clean the tiles on shuttles and works wonderful on the shower doors.

      • Jim

        Yes it does.  And….using Rain-X (used for auto windshields) on the doors will help prevent water spots and soap scum buildup on shower doors. 

    • Justjanet1

      Where’s the ninth “Quick Kitchen Cleaning Secret”?  Heading says “9″…I only see 8.

    • B Hanke

      A few years ago a cleaning person used something called Toilet Duck ( no longer on the market ) in my powder room toilet and let it sit without flushing it.  When we returned a few days later from a trip, there was a permanent blue stain around the water line.  I have tried everything to get it out excluding bleach ( not good for septic tanks ) and nothing works.  That cleaning person is no longer with us but although lighter,  the blue stain is.  Any suggestions?      

      • Small P

        A pumice stone that you would use on callouses works great.  Get it wet and any marks or residue on toilet bowls just disappears.

      • Roseannschwartz@webtv.net

        Try a pumice stone

      • debw241

        I don’t know… but would suggest you try WD-40 and let it sit for a while before washing it off. THEN scrub with a mixture of vinegar and baking soda (which I use for everything)

    • Lwwhisnant

      Dissasemble your blender container after a few times using this tip, and you may find as I did, that there is gunk around the rubber gasket that doesn’t get cleaned. I have gone back to the old way of cleaning it.

    • Lenora

      You use a hand towel to mop around the toilet?  YUK.  Even if you wash it–yuk.  Paper towel for me.

    • Arleoct

      Or you can just put it in your dishwasher every so often…it will sparkle.

    • Lenora

      Another good way to clean the stains from coffee cups is to use baking soda.  It works great!