This mama was MIA for two weeks due to this darn respiratory virus going around and thank goodness my wonderful in-laws arrived just in time to take care of everything and keep the house from falling apart! This past weekend I finally returned from zombieland and the first thing I did was clean my kitchen sponge. I am sort of a fanatic about this, but those things are nasty. Don’t mess with kitchen sponge germs. I am actually pretty crazy about how I do my dishes – cleaning a lot of them by hand if there are raw food bits stuck on them and making sure certain dishes don’t touch any other dishes in the sink for fear of cross-contamination.
I actually used to use paper towels to wash my dishes that had raw meat on them, but of course that is VERY wasteful. Shame on me. I love using homemade cloths for cleaning the house and surfaces, so I can just throw them in the wash and use again. But for my dishes, I just can’t give up the sponge.
Did You Know?
According to a study in the Journal of Environmental Health, researchers showed that cooking a sponge for 2 minutes in the microwave kills more than 99% of all the living germs and the bacterial spores, including E. coli.
A kitchen sponge can have more germs than a toilet seat.
How to clean your sponge
- Wet the sponge completely and wring out excess water, leaving the sponge quite damp.
- Put it into the microwave, and set it for at least one minute.
- It’s a good idea to place at least a half-cup of water in the microwave with the sponge to be cleaned, to protect your microwave emitter.
- Remove and let cool before using. Caution: Squeezing the sponge before cooling can cause severe burns.
When finished using the sponge, squeeze it thoroughly and allow to air dry completely between uses. Bacteria will die in a dried sponge. You can alternate between two sponges to allow for longer drying time and you can lean the moist sponge against backsplash or dish liquid bottle to allow for better venting/drying.
Also, make sure you replace the sponge every few weeks!
Do you use a sponge, brush or washcloth to clean your dishes by hand? Do you use those items to clean your counters or appliances? Do you have any other tips for keeping safe in the kitchen?