How to Clean & Sanitize a Kitchen

A clean kitchen and a sanitized kitchen are two different things. Whether you serve food at home or for a business, cleaning and sanitizing kitchen premises ensures food safety. Experts have this down to a science, with specific procedures and products.

After an area is rinsed, you must remove all food soil with detergent chemicals. You can use over-the-counter products, but commercial kitchens have to use approved cleaners that meet government standards. You can clean countertops as they are, while appliances like blenders have to be partially or fully disassembled for cleaning. You can place pieces in dishwashers for a thorough clean, or you may carefully clean them manually.

There are no real shortcuts to cleaning and sanitizing a kitchen. Proven methods based on science can help you to stay safe, however. The University of Florida Extension reports that commercial kitchens should maintain detailed procedures for every surface that comes in contact with a food product, including equipment and utensils, plus procedures for non-food product equipment like walls, HVAC systems and lighting. The all-important guiding rule is to rinse, clean, rinse and then sanitize. This specific process also applies to home kitchens.

There are two schools of thought when sanitizing kitchen tools and surfaces: to bleach or not to bleach. These two ways to sanitize kitchen tools may be overridden by your state or local laws, however. The writers for NC State Extension recommend bleach to wash and sanitize. Remove all detachable parts, including handles and blades, then wash them in hot, soapy water with a cleaning brush. You should then rinse these items with clean water. Make a sanitizing solution with 1 gallon of warm (not hot) water and 1 tablespoon of unscented chlorine bleach.

Place the cleaned items in a wire basket or similar container and immerse them in the bleach solution. Finally, remove them from the basket and allow them to air dry. Do not use hot water, which weakens the bleach’s effectiveness, and never dry sanitized items with a towel.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked*