Smart Non-Toxic Hacks for a Squeaky Clean Kitchen

Here are the top hacks to keep your kitchen clean

Joyoti Mahanta

When life throws you lemons, clean your kitchen with them! Surprised? Don’t be. Lemon is a natural disinfectant and has been conferred with the title of CEO by domestic goddesses. And boiling hot water is a very deserving MD. Together, they fight germs in your kitchen, leaving it fresh as new. Whether it is appliances, tools or kitchen tops, here’s a non-toxic cleaning guide on how you can keep your kitchen spick-and-span.

1. Microwave: A single lemon is all that you need—it doesn’t get simpler and safer to get the job done without using any chemicals.
Kick the dirt: Merely squeeze some lemon juice into a bowl of water, drop the peels into the bowl, and microwave for at least three minutes and don’t open the door for an additional five minutes. As the liquid simmers, the steam condenses on the sides of the microwave, loosening all the slime and muck. Just use a clean towel or tissue to wipe the interiors spotless.

2. The sink: Unfortunately, a sink strainer or keeping the tap running does not ensure that your sink is clean and not foul-smelling.
Kick the dirt: Lemon, baking soda, vinegar, dish soap and hot water are your powerful cleaning tools. Make a combination of these ingredients, minus the hot water, and pour it into the sink. Let it sit for 15 minutes, all the while hearing the fizz and pops. Flush it down with a kettle full of very hot (the hotter the water, the more bacteria it kills) ­and voila!

3. The stove: While there are plenty of kitchen cleaning sprays available in the market, nothing kicks dirt to the curb like a sponge or cleaning cloth, dish soap or lemon, and a scrub brush.
Kick the dirt: Once you have removed the covers, knobs and grates, pour out a minute drop of dishwashing liquid and a few drops of lemon onto a sponge or cloth. Wet it minimally and ensure to squeeze out most of the water because you only need some soap to loosen the grease, but you don't want water seeping into the stove. Wipe and scrub away the grease. Repeat as necessary. Rinse the sponge clean and squeeze it out, and then wipe away the soap residue from the stove. Finish off with a dry kitchen towel. Use a soapy scrub brush to clean the grates, knobs and covers.

4. Exhaust chimney: Since the job of the hood is to collect grease, it can get quite icky and sticky if it’s not cleaned regularly. So clean it regularly before it loses its effectiveness.
Kick the dirt: Take some boiling hot water in a bucket or in the sink, and get it nice and soapy with a squirt of dishwashing liquid, squeezing of a lemon and a dollop of baking soda. Submerge the greasy exhaust fan filters into the water and let it rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Then, scrub the filters with a soft brush, rinse in hot water and dry it out.

5. Countertops: While chemicals disinfect your stone/granite kitchen worktops, too much of it can weaken the sealant making it penetrable to bacteria.
Kick the dirt: For daily cleaning, simply mix a mild or gentle soap in some warm lemon water, dip a clean cloth in it and wipe down the kitchen counter top. Dry the tops with a clean and dry microfiber cloth. For weekly disinfecting cleaning, mix together a solution of water and 91 per cent isopropyl alcohol in equal proportions. Pour the solution onto the granite, allow it to sit for five minutes, then rinse with water and dry with a clean cloth.

6. Fridge: Every now and then, it's nice to give your entire fridge a scrub down in order to de-stick and de-ick all the nooks and crannies.
Kick the dirt: Firstly, empty the food from the fridge and remove the shelves. Mix some dishwashing liquid, a shot of lemon juice and a pinch of baking soda with warm water. Soak a clean towel or sponge, with the mixture and wipe the interiors, and the shelves separately.



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