Now that school’s back in session it’s time to clean house and transition from the lazy days of summer to the fall season. While we’re all busy cleaning the big things; bathrooms, kitchens, windows, and more we tend to forget about the the small stuff.
It’s a good time to check all your small kitchen appliances and give them some TLC too, after all you invested lots of hard earned money purchasing them and we tend to use them more in the months ahead. Here’s some tips on cleaning and maintaining your small kitchen appliances; mixers, blenders, toasters, etc.
Before you begin, a couple of safety tips:
1. Never submerge your small appliance in water.
2. Unplug appliance before you start cleaning, except when you descale a coffee maker or electric kettle, clean blender blades, coffee grinders and other appliances you actually have to run to get them cleaned. But do unplug them when you are cleaning the exterior.
3. Remember to clean UNDER your small appliances that are on your counter tops, you’ll be surprised what’s hiding under them. Unplug the appliance, move it, clean the counter, and replace it after you’ve cleaned it.
Standing mixers like a Kitchen Aid, cost a pretty penny. Protect your investment and keep the mixer functioning smoothly by keeping it clean and greased.
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You can use this same method to clean your food processor.
Drip coffee makers, including single serve ones like the Keurig need to be cleaned every few months specially if you have hard water.
The hard water leaves limescale deposits and will clog the tube and holes the water goes thru. The cleaning process to un-clog the hose and holes is called de-scaling.
It’s quite simple really, fill the reservoir with white vinegar and run the machine until the reservoir is empty. You may want to repeat this process one or two more times to make sure it’s clean.
If the reservoir is removable like in the Keurig, rinse the reservoir in clean water to get rid of the vinegar, if not then continue to the next step; fill the reservoir with fresh water and run it until it’s empty; repeat with fresh water one or two more times to rinse out the vinegar in the reservoir and the tube.
Clean the filter holder or for single serve machines like the Keurig the k-cup compartment with warm soapy water. Be careful cleaning the k-cup compartment, it has a very sharp spike that pierces the k-cup to brew the coffee.
Wipe the entire machine, including the electric cord, with warm soapy water. Dry with clean paper towels or microfiber cloth to make it look like new.
For a picture tutorial check out A Few Shortcuts’ post “How to Clean Your Keurig”
Clean electric kettles to get rid of limescale.
1. Fill kettle with white vinegar; bring to boil.
2. Dump contents and rinse with fresh water to get rid of the vinegar
This handy appliance is great for grinding coffee beans and spices but grinds can gather along the edges and affect the taste of future grinds, so clean them as needed. It might be a good idea to have a grinder just for coffee and another for spices.
To clean grind up a slice of plain white bread with a teaspoon of baking soda, or you can use uncooked white rice & baking soda. When it’s done, dump the contents and wipe the interior clean.
Toasters can get really dirty, specially when you pop in sugary foods like pop-tarts; the sugar or filling ooze out and get on the racks and heating element, not to mention the bottom pan fills up with crumbs that get toasted every time you use the toaster; that’s the burning odor you smell in morning.
Here are great step-by-step instructions for cleaning your toaster from Clean My Space.
We all love the smell of fresh baked bread and bread machines make baking them easy. Keep your bread maker in tip top shape by cleaning them after each use to keep dough from hardening.
Be aware that not all of the bread maker’s removable parts are dishwasher safe, consult manufacturer’s instructions to see which are.
Don’t clean the machine right after baking, wait for it to cool down. Wash not dishwasher safe parts in warm soapy water, dry before replacing. Wipe the inside with warm soapy water to get clean off any spilled dough. Wipe the outside with an all purpose cleaner to make it sparkle like new.
At our house an electric rice cooker is a must have, we eat rice almost daily.
The inner pot must be washed each time it’s used, but the lid and inside of this handy appliance can get pretty nasty and needs a thorough cleaning every month or so.
Open the pot, turn upside down and shake off any dried up rice and other debris. Wipe the inside wall and bottom with warm soapy water. Wipe inside the lid and in the seals. If it has a small clear plastic cup on the outside, pull that out and wash in warm soapy water.
If your model has vent holes on the outer lid use a soft brush to clean it. Wipe down the outside with warm soapy water. Dry the cooker inside and out before you plug it back in.
Electric can openers can get sticky and crusty, specially the small blade, arm, and gear. Lift the arm, or remove if possible, wipe with warm soapy water. Wipe the gear and blade carefully, the blade is sharp, after all it opens metal cans.
For pantry organizing tips click here!