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How To Clean A Kitchen Thoroughly – Complete Guide

Depending on how neat a cook you are, cleaning your kitchen can be a reasonably regular job. It doesn’t have to be a nightmare, though. Taking the proper steps and using the right tools every time can make it a breeze, or at least make your life a whole lot easier. Today, we’re going to look at a comprehensive guide to the job. So, how do you clean a kitchen thoroughly?

Here’s how a deep kitchen clean would look like step-by-step:

  • First, dust and empty all trash cans.
  • Afterward, wipe down the walls and kitchen windows.
  • Now you’ve completed this, you can then wipe the counter, fridge, sink, and floor, working yourself from up to down.

There’s no substitute for a good atmosphere, either. Put some music or a podcast on to listen to while you go—the job doesn’t have to be challenging, but it will take some time no matter who you are. If you’re like me, cleaning can be at least satisfying and at best even fun! So, read on below to learn how to clean your kitchen thoroughly.

Supplies Needed to Clean a Kitchen

The first thing you’ll want to do, as I said, is to get your supplies together. The worst thing you could do is get started and find out you don’t have everything you need. I promise you won’t feel like rushing out to get it.


The first thing you’ll need is some dusting tools. A simple cloth duster will do for most areas you can quickly get to, but you’ll want a dust mop on a long handle for those hard-to-reach areas. Dusting is really one of the essential jobs since leaving it out will mean dirt and grime from the ceiling, and walls can always float down into the spots you clean.

Vacuum, broom, and mop

Have the vacuum cleaner ready, too. Sweeping is excellent, but it won’t do the whole job. You’ll need some suction power for that. You will still need a broom, though. Depending on the size of your kitchen, a little dustpan and brush might work fine alongside your vacuum.

The mop is also essential for thoroughly cleaning your kitchen. A bucket is useful for the mop and storing all of your equipment; having everything in one place saves the headache of losing things when you want to clean.

Cloths and sponges

Cloths and sponges are also necessary. You’ll be wiping and scrubbing a lot, so you’ll want to have a few—sponges break down and get dirty quite quickly, so it’s best to have fresh ones in for the deep clean.

Again, you don’t want to spread dirt around that’s caught in your old sponge. Cloths are generally good for a long while, provided you wash them in the laundry machine beforehand.

Especially now, with how much water is being dispensed from refrigerators, it’s good to have clothes and sponges handy.

All-purpose cleaner/soap

With your tools covered, now you’ll need the cleaning products. All-purpose cleaner, or just any soap or mild cleaner of your choice, is essential, and you’ll be using it a lot. This is good for cleaning pretty much any room in your house, so it’s helpful to have around.

Oven cleaner

The job everyone dreads the most- the oven. Buying a specialized oven cleaner will make your life immeasurably easier, so be sure to pick one up.


Finally, you’ll need bleach. It would be best if you tried not to overuse it, even with the temptation of that lovely clean smell that it leaves behind. But there are a few places you will want some. Thick, drain bleach is handy, but bleach solutions in a spray bottle are excellent too.

Other things you might need include a glass cleaner, a multi-purpose surface polish, and a stepladder if your kitchen has some hard-to-reach areas. With all this to hand, you’re ready to clean your kitchen.

The Complete Guide to Cleaning a Kitchen

The first thing you’ll want to do before you start is tidy up and declutter. Try and get all the surfaces as bare as possible, and wash any dirty dishes lying around.

Empty the dishwasher and the dish drying rack. The only thing more annoying than a dirty kitchen is cleaning a dirty kitchen around mess and clutter. Move everything you can out of the way.

Below is a complete checklist of everything you should do to clean a kitchen.

1. Dust everywhere

Start by dusting from the top down. Take your dust mop and clean the ceilings and corners of the walls, doing your best to get into all the nooks and crannies.

Most importantly, make sure to get the tops of the fridge and the cabinets. Don’t forget to dust any smaller appliances like microwaves. They won’t need to be cleaned all that thoroughly, but make sure to get them.

If you have any framed photos or art on the wall, be careful to dust those too, be gentle, so they don’t break. Don’t use any liquid here, as you might damage the picture.

Don’t leave out the door, the handle, or the frame either. Door handles are dirt magnets. If you have a ceiling fan, get that too. They will attract and repel dust simultaneously.

Once you’re satisfied, the ceiling and walls are free of dust, turn to surfaces. Wipe all your upper cupboard doors first, then the countertops, then the lower cupboard doors. Make sure you do this as thoroughly as possible.

Otherwise, you will end up with wet clumps of dirt later on that are much harder to deal with. For best possible results, give everything another dust over. Anything that stays permanently on the counter will need to be dusted.

2. Empty trash can

No one’s favorite job, but it has to be done. Take the full trash bag out of the garbage can and replace it with a fresh one. Clear out any recycling, too. You might also want to wipe the bin lid. Depending on what type of lid your bin has, it is likely to get pretty messy.

If you have ants in your kitchen, this could be a major reason if you let it get too full.

3. Wipe the walls

With the dust gone, get a damp cloth and wipe the walls. It’s not always easy to notice, but stuff tends to get splattered on the walls quite a lot in the kitchen. Unfortunately, I’m a really messy cook, so it’s handy that I don’t mind this job so much. In particular, you’ll want to wipe the wall behind your stove and, if you have a blender or food processor, check the walls there too, as goop can easily get thrown out of there onto the walls.

If you don’t have walls, make sure you clean the kitchen backsplash entirely.

4. Clean the windows

Using your special glass cleaner, turn to the windows now. Make sure to use a glass cleaner, or you will leave streaks. Taking a cloth, preferably a microfiber cloth, spray the window with a good amount of cleaning fluid and wipe it top to bottom in small, circular motions. This also helps to prevent streaks. If possible, get the insides and outsides too.

Takedown your drapes and wash them, too. How best to do this will vary depending on the drapes, so try and find out what’s best for yours—most can be thrown in the laundry machine.

Suppose you have blinds, dust and wipe them. You can take them down for this to make it a bit easier, but it’s up to you. You may not need to. Finally, dust and wipe the windowsill, getting into the corners as best you can.

5. Wipe down the counters

Now that you’ve tackled all the dust, washed all the dishes, and cleared away any clutter, it’s time to give the counters a good soak.

Move everything off, or, better yet, leave it where it is if you haven’t already put it back. Make sure to be aware of what material your countertops are made of.

Different materials may need different cleaning products, like granite which usually needs specialized granite cleaner.

Taking an appropriate cleaning fluid, spray it all over your countertop and wipe it with a clean cloth or sponge. Use a credit card or scraper to get crumbs out of those spaces between counters.

It can be helpful to bring a waste bin over to brush crumbs and debris into once you’ve covered every inch, buff dry with a clean towel.

While you’re at this, you might also want to wipe the cupboard doors; as I said, lots of liquids splatter around in the kitchen, and dirt might reach areas you wouldn’t think to clean. If they are filthy, do this before you wipe the counters. That way, you can still get anything that drops down.

6. Clean the fridge

Deep cleaning the fridge can be a job in and of itself, but you should always pay some attention to it while cleaning the kitchen. Clear it out of anything expired. You know you aren’t going to use the last tiny bit of that pesto. Just get rid of it.

Wipe down the shelves and clean any spills, and arrange everything properly. You’ll thank yourself for this—looking at a dirty, disorganized fridge whenever you want a snack is not nice.

Wipe it on the outside, too. Like any part of the kitchen, things are likely to spill or get splattered on the fridge door, and dirty hands constantly touch the handles.

Again, depending on the material of your fridge, you might need to take a specific approach to this. Stainless steel, for example. Read up on your fridge type. Your dishwasher might also be stainless steel, so try and get this simultaneously if you have one.

7. Clean the sink

You might think of the sink as a self-cleaning device, but it will need some attention too. Scrub the faucet, and you can even polish it for an extra shine, too.

Clean any peripherals like sponge dishes as well. Then use a scrubbing pad and all-purpose cleaner and wipe the inside, ensuring it’s been rinsed of any debris first. You won’t need to do this all that thoroughly; it will clean pretty quickly.

Finally, fill it with steaming hot water and mix some bleach in. Let it sit for ten or fifteen minutes, and then drain and rinse again.

We highly recommend you clean every few days, as kitchen sinks can be expensive.

8. Clean the floor

We’ve reached the bottom rung, now. Turn your attention to the floor. First, do a preliminary sweep with a broom, getting under any appliances like the fridge.

Gather all the large crumbs you can into a pile, collect with a dustpan, brush, and put in the garbage. Then, take the vacuum and give every inch of the floor a good once or twice over. A handheld vacuum can be convenient for getting into more challenging to reach areas, but a regular vacuum will do just fine.

Once the floor looks clean of dust, dirt, and crumbs, fill your bucket up with warm, soapy water and finish off with a thorough mopping, again making sure to get behind anything that moves like your trash can.

Putting a little bit of bleach in the bucket will give it the final clean kick and fill the room with that lovely clean smell.

Entirely optional, though. Make sure you don’t walk on it when it’s wet, or you’ll make the floor dirty again.

9. Final touches

Your kitchen is now about as clean as it can be; there are some deeper cleaning tasks you might want to do more occasionally, like cleaning inside the pantry. But now is the time to get the kitchen looking how you want it to look.

Organize everything efficiently, and try to keep it free of the clutter you removed. Nothing makes your kitchen feel cleaner than having it free of clutter. Maybe add light to a scented candle or add some flowers?

We recommend you clean that first if you have a kitchen island, as it tends to get the messiest with papers, food stains, and water stains.

So that covers everything you need to know about cleaning your kitchen. It’s a big job however you look at it, but if you follow the steps laid out here, you’ll suddenly find it is so much easier than ever before.

Next Steps

We’ve compiled a complete list of frequently asked kitchen questions for new and experienced homeowners.

Our team of experts answers these questions to help assist you through DIY projects and home repairs.