It’s a beautiful sunny, Sunday morning and you choose to do a full kitchen clean out. You clean your fridge, cabinets, sink, walls and counters. It must be such a relief that your kitchen is now as good as new, well almost. Unfortunately, you forgot to clean your kitchen sponge.
Think about the last time you decided to clean your kitchen sponge. Can’t remember?
Most people, including myself, tend to use a kitchen sponge day-in and day-out until it attracts a musty odor. After that we just toss it and move on to the next.
The most important question is, how long do we use our sponges before we replace them? Normal human behavior causes us to use our kitchen sponges up until it falls apart; however, as we try to save money and resources we tend to do a lot more damage in the long run.
As we continue to use our kitchen sponges multiple times a day, moisture will cling onto the tiny crevices in the sponge.
Although it may seem harmless, this opens up a window of opportunity for all types of pathogens such as yeast and molds.
Unfortunately, a simple run through hot water is not as effective of a cleaning method as we once thought. Hot water does not kill the bacteria living in your sponge.
This means that you’re wiping down your dishes with bacteria and potentially mold.
I know, the irony, right? The thing you use to clean your dishes is potentially dirtier than the actual dishes you’re cleaning.
As funny as it sounds, it’s a serious situation when mold and bacteria is involved. This could mean your dishes are consistently infected with bacteria. This can cause certain foodborne illnesses.
Although this all may make some people feel on edge, bacteria build up is very avoidable.
Follow one of the three simple methods below to take your sponge from nasty to new!
Lucky for you, it takes little to no time to clean your kitchen sponge! Out of the three methods stated below, the most prolonged method should take you about 15 minutes. This is great, especially for on-the-go people, it takes little time so you can do this chore multiple times throughout the week.
All three methods are extremely affordable! Although some of the equipment can seem a bit hefty if you don’t already have it, it is definitely beneficial as the equipment will do the job for you. If you choose to go the more affordable route, the cheapest products all together should cost no more than $20! That’s a steal for products you can use numerous times before you have to stock up again!
Materials Needed to Clean Your Kitchen Sponge
- Washer machine- Though this may seem a bit excessive, a washer machine is one of the easiest methods as it deeply cleans your sponge, and all you have to do is toss your kitchen sponge in there!
- Bleach based detergent– Buy this large bottle at an affordable price to skip those long grocery store lines!
- Bleach– This bottle gives you 64 loads at only 20 cents per load. What a steal!
- Dish soap– This 3-pack is sold at an affordable price and comes with two sponges! Not to mention, it smells fantastic!
- Microwave- Once again, it may seem excessive, but it does an exceptional job in little time.
Method #1: Spin Cycle!
This method should take around 15 minutes, though you need heavier equipment for this method, you are guaranteed a clean kitchen sponge. All you need to do for this method is to throw your kitchen sponge in the washer machine with your bleach based detergent. This method is excellent for someone who is on-the-go and doesn’t always have the time for some house chores. This method provides an exceptionally deep clean while all you have to do is toss it and wait! By the way, once you have a clean kitchen sponge, why stop there? A clean home is a happy home, which is why you should go ahead and clean your kitchen sink while you’re at it. Find a quick and easy way to do so HERE!
Method #2: Soak and Rinse!
This method utilizes the same concept as the first. The only difference is that you do not need a washer machine. Fill a bucket up with a gallon of water and ¾ cup of bleach. Let the sponge soak for about 5-10 minutes. Bleach is highly effective as it acts as a disinfectant. According to Info.gov.hk, its active ingredient, sodium hypochlorite, is effective in killing bacteria. It is very important to kill the bacteria of the sponge. Sometimes people may make the mistake of only removing surface stains and not getting a deep clean. This becomes a hazard because bacteria will continue to build up on your sponge, and you’ll continue to wipe the sponge all over your dishes; thus, your efforts to clean dishes become counterproductive.
Method #3: Make it to the Microwave!
This method is a two-step process being the fact that each step alone will not remove bacteria altogether. Make sure that you have a microwave, it is crucial! First off, soak your sponge in dishwashing detergent and hot water. This step is very beneficial as it cleans the surface of the sponge.
Next, place your wet sponge in your microwave on high for two minutes. Be sure that your sponge is wet when you put it in the microwave; if not, you run the risk of your kitchen sponge catching on fire. Although the risk of any danger is very small, you should stand near the microwave just in case. It is imperative that both steps are done in this method due to the fact that only the steps are not sufficient on their own. The first step removes all of the dirt from the surface, whereas the second step really gets deep into the sponge and removes all of the bacteria, making your sponge as good as new!
Frequently Asked Questions: How to Clean Kitchen Sponge
How often should I clean my kitchen sponge?
You should clean your kitchen sponge multiple times a week because you are constantly cleaning your dishes and bacteria is constantly building up.
How do I know when to toss my sponge out?
You should throw out your sponge the moment you smell a funky odor. This odor indicates that there is a lot of moisture and bacteria buildup in your sponge. You don’t want to continue to wash your dishes with this nasty buildup.