The convenience of having your small kitchen appliances right on our countertop makes cooking a breeze. However, food particles, grease and residue can build up causing them to not only not look so good on display for all who enter your kitchen, but also it can affect how efficiently they work and how long they will last.
Here are some tips and tricks for keeping your countertop appliances sparkling and working hard.
In addition to wiping the outside surface with a warm soapy cloth, you will want to ensure the inside parts of your coffee maker are regularly cleaned as well to keep oily residue, mineral build-up and bacteria from affecting the flavor of your coffee. Just add several tablespoons of baking soda to your pot, fill it with water, and run it as usual. Then repeat using only water. You can also use a denture-cleaning tablet instead of baking soda.
Whether built in to your coffee maker or a stand-alone appliance, your coffee grinder needs a good clean every now and then as well. Uncooked rice can do the job. Simply mill a handful of rice as you normally do to your coffee beans. The chopped rice cleans out the stuck coffee grounds and oils from the blades and the sides, and absorbs the
stale odors to boot. Afterward, throw away the rice and wipe the grinder clean with a paper towel or dry cloth.
The easiest and quickest way to clean the blender is to fill it half way with very hot water and a few drops of dish washing liquid. Now run it for thirty seconds and rinse thoroughly. The outside needs a good wipe after each use. You can use an old toothbrush to clean around the control buttons to keep them free from stickiness or food particles.
Much like the blender, your food processor blade and bowl can be run with hot water and soap, or vinegar and baking soda if there is odor or build up on the sides of the bowl. Make sure to rinse and dry all parts before reassembly.
Microwave and Toaster Oven
With all their cooked-on grime, microwaves and toaster ovens can be some of the trickiest appliances to keep clean. Fill a small dish (oven-safe if you’re cleaning a toaster oven) and place it in the middle of the microwave or toaster oven. Heat it for two minutes on high (microwave) or 10–15 minutes at 350ºF (for the toaster oven). The water will convert to steam, helping to soften the crumbs and burnt-on foods, so that you can easily wipe it down. Adding a half a lemon to the water bowl will help to eliminate odor as well. To clean the smudged, greasy, food-flecked window of your microwave or toaster oven, you can use this formula: 4 parts white vinegar with 4 parts hydrogen peroxide and 2 parts dish washing liquid. Spray or wipe onto the surface, then let sit an hour before wiping clean. Try crumpling up a piece of tin foil to use as a scrubber for any areas of your toaster oven where burnt on food has left black or brown marks.
Electric Can Opener
To clean your electric can opener, run a piece of paper towel or wax paper through it. This will pick up the grease and most of the gunk. Use a toothbrush with dish washing detergent to further clean out the cracks and crevices in the blade mechanism.