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If you’re having a hard time finding the motivation to deep-clean your home for Spring, or aren’t sure where to start, try these 13 quick and easy spring cleaning kitchen tasks to get yourself going.
In this post…
And if you missed Part One of the 5-minute Kitchen Spring Cleaning Tasks, where we cover 21 easy chores you can do in just a few minutes and would like to start from the beginning, click here.
How Does the 5-minute Challenge Work?
Since there are a lot of tasks to go over in the kitchen area, we decided two make a Part Two so that folks don’t feel overwhelmed. We explain this 5-minute cleaning method in more detail in Part One of our Spring Cleaning Challenge, Kitchen Edition post, 21 Easy 5-Minute Kitchen Chores.
We’ll be covering more 5-minute tasks throughout the rest of the home in the near future, so stay tuned!
What to Do:
What You’ll Need:
Tips to Get You Started
1. Make it entertaining!
Planning on doing several 5-minute spring cleaning kitchen tasks in a row? Make it fun by incorporating things you enjoy and can do at the same time. Just make sure it isn’t something you’ll want to stop and watch or might get distracted by.
Popular entertainment often includes podcasts, music, YouTube videos, the news, or audiobooks. You can even use songs, videos, or programs like Audible’s timer feature to time your sessions.
2. Pay Attention to How Long Things Take for Future Reference
The cool part about keeping track of your time is getting a more accurate idea of how long things really take to complete. More so since we often build chores up and how long they might take in our minds. This is why people who don’t like cleaning or who tend to procrastinate find it useful. Or even people who might only stall on specific cleaning chores.
3. Don’t Be Afraid to Combine Spring Cleaning Chores
If you find yourself finishing things sooner or don’t mind doing several sessions at once, consider stacking similar chores back-to-back. For example, if you clean the sink, try to clean the garbage disposal first to avoid a potential mess. If you’re going to run the dishwasher, why not toss those grates, microwave parts, or washable filters in there too? Get creative and have fun with it.
5-minute Spring Cleaning Tasks
Do these in whatever order works best for you, though we recommend going in an order that won’t cause you to have to redo something later. For instance, it’s often recommended to clean from the top and downward. Some people also find it useful to move around the room while going in the same direction.
Some of these tasks may also take longer than 5 minutes, depending on the environment, age of the home, and how often things are cleaned prior to the challenge. Be patient and do what works best for you, whether that’s breaking things down into even smaller chunks or working on it more the following day.
Don’t forget that you can expand and contract each task to see more or less information. Under each task, you’ll also spot helpful habits and spring cleaning tips about certain chores.
1. Clean or mop the walls (optional).
Mopping the walls? While it might sound nuts, it’s actually a pretty genius and time-saving method for cleaning the walls. Ever since trying it several years ago, I started cleaning ours a lot more often, which helps keep our paint looking new and makes the house look and feel cleaner and brighter.
It’s not an exact science, and no mop is perfect for the job (yet), but it’s still something that many people like to do. However, if mopping isn’t your thing or you’re unable to try it, you can try doing it by hand, too, and just touch-up spots as much as you can.
Note: Make sure the paint you have is washable. Always test in an inconspicuous location and do it at your own risk.
Gently and carefully clean your walls with a clean and slightly damp microfiber cloth, cleaning towel, sponge mop, a literal wall mop, or microfiber mop. I try to use floor mop products with a swivel function for easier maneuvering and reach.
We like to use our E-Cloth microfiber mop, but I’ve recently had my eye on the Mr. Siga Microfiber Mop due to the way the pads wrap around the mop head. It seems like it would be less likely to scratch the surface if the head were to flip on its head accidentally, which happens from time to time while cleaning walls. However, use whatever you feel comfortable using and always test first.
Note: Don’t get the paint too wet, and be careful of potential scratches, particularly when using mops with metal attachment heads.
2. Declutter a pantry shelf.
For those who’ve already read and worked on our post, 21 Spring Cleaning Kitchen Tasks You Can Do In 5 Minutes Or Less, Part 1, some of you may have already completed this step. However, we chose to leave it separate since it tends to require a little more detail and, therefore, might take a bit longer to do. So if you haven’t gotten to it yet, why not give it a shot?
Set the timer for 5 minutes and work on decluttering and at least cleaning off a pantry shelf. You can choose to organize at this stage or do it later since organizing may require more time to finish. This may depend on how much food you have to work with. Whatever you don’t finish, you can do for another session later in the day or whatever works best for you.
Try to have a trashcan close by so that you won’t waste time going back and forth.
If you have a lot of work to do, you can break it up and focus on one task at a time. For instance, you can make your first session(s) all about decluttering one shelf, if not several shelves, within the set timeframe. Once you’re finished with decluttering, you can move on to cleaning and wiping the shelves down.
When possible, consider storing things inside bins and food storage organizers. They can help contain messes and spills, help people put things back where they belong, and make for easy access. They’re also great for quickly removing items from the pantry or shelf, which is excellent for speeding up the cleaning process.
Helpful Habit #1
It can be extremely beneficial to clean out expired items at least once a month—or, at the very least, once every quarter/season. If you tend to forget, set a reminder on your devices or mark it on your monthly checklist or calendar.
I also like to “stack” this habit onto another, such as when I empty the fridge. And emptying the fridge usually happens either before Trash Day or before picking up groceries. Then it becomes more automatic.
Helpful Habit #2
It’s helpful to act as the grocery stores do by rotating your items. This means putting new duplicate products behind older ones. This way, you’ll grab older products before the new ones, ensuring they’ll get used before they go bad.
3. Clean the hinges and seals around the fridge and/or freezer door(s).
A super-easy task you could probably finish in under a minute, but it’s still something that needs attention throughout the year. If you’ve already finished the inside of the refrigerator, or have completed our 21 Spring Cleaning Kitchen Tasks in 5 Minutes Challenge, try giving your fridge door hinges, ledges, and rubber seals a good wipe down.
Quick-Tip: Items such as toothpicks, Q-Tips, microfiber cloths, and toothbrushes can be ideal for this type of job—especially if it’s been a while. Some people also use small brooms with stiff bristles or vacuums for severe cases around the rubber seals.
Helpful Habit #1
Fake it ’til you make it: Try to clean these areas at least once a month since it only takes seconds to do. Once every week or so, we like to clean out our fridge and lightly tackle any crumbs or spills, along with this step, and usually before or on trash or grocery days.
We don’t take anything out that’s not getting pitched but rather shuffle things in a nearly-empty fridge. It really only takes a few minutes, saves me from having to deep-clean the fridge except for every few months (roughly quarterly), and requires very little effort. Best of all, the fridge always looks sparkly fresh, making it look as though we actually slave away at it all of the time.
4. Pull out the refrigerator and clean around it.
Don’t worry! This isn’t nearly as painful as it might seem yet it’s also an important step a lot of people skip or forget about.
Luckily, the more often you do it, the easier it becomes each time. You also have the added benefit of reducing the potential of hidden kitchen odors and possible infestation of rodents, ants, cockroaches, and more.
Unlock the wheels of the refrigerator and pull it out from its place. Make sure to plan ahead if you need help so you can ask ahead of time.
Prep it up: Make sure to prep the area before you get started. Typical items that you’ll want to have on hand will include a duster, already-damp cleaning or microfiber cloths, a mop, as well as a vacuum or broom and dustpan. If you haven’t cleaned back there in years, you may want a trash can—more so if you have children and/or pets.
Be on the level: Ensure that you lock the wheels and, when you do so, make sure that the fridge is leveled in the appropriate position. This helps protect the cooling system and bits of the refrigerator. You can use a level at the top of the refrigerator to help ensure this is done correctly or ask for help from someone who has more experience.
It’s recommended to check with the manufacturer’s suggestion for leveling since each unit may vary. For instance, some units work more efficiently on a slope rather than perfectly balanced. Fortunately, once you get the hang of it, it’s pretty straightforward in the future.
Give it the all-around: Don’t forget to clean the walls and any cabinetry around the fridge, as well as clean the entire fridge itself.
If you clean it, they won’t come: Consider cleaning behind and around your fridge at least twice a year, if not every quarter. This keeps cleanup to a minimum, helps reduce odors and bug infestations, and further ensures that your kitchen stays as clean as possible.
I try to get behind our fridge every quarter (or season) just because we have pets, leave the windows open often, and live in a dust-prone area. It usually takes me about 3 minutes nowadays and there’s hardly any mess, which is kind of the point.
5. Clean under the sink.
Cleaning under the sinks isn’t something that most people like doing, but it usually only takes a few minutes if you prep, plan, and try to do it at least every season.
Take a few minutes to pull out the items under your sink, get rid of what you don’t need, clean the interior (including hinges) with your preferred tools or cleaning method, and reorganize the space.
If you have a lot of stuff under your sink or a big mess, it’s best to work in 5-minute increments, rather than try to get it all done in one go. Focus on decluttering and appropriately and safely getting rid of items you may not need or that could go elsewhere. Set about cleaning off items and inside the cabinet. Then reorganize at your pace.
Less is more: When it comes to under-the-sink cabinets, the 1st trick to keep them tidy is to not have so much stored down there. If you have cleaning products that you don’t really use, give them away or try to see if you can use them in other areas of the house, such as dish soap and spray cleaners. If not, you can contact your local waste company to find out the best way to dispose of them safely.
Give it a home: The 2nd trick for keeping under-the-sink cabinets clean and tidy is to make sure everything you do keep under there has a home. Bins and under-the-sink organizers are great for this, and they also help to contain any messes and spills, which in turn will help you later on when it comes time to clean the cabinet again. I even found that we stopped wasting so much money on products we didn’t need, once we organized the space.
No-fuss, no-muss: Liner mats and inserts are awesome, whether for containing spills and messes, protecting your cabinetry or home, and when it comes to cleanup. Best of all, you can easily remove some mats or liners to hose off and wash any mess directly in the kitchen sink.
6. Wash towels, aprons, placemats, and other fabric items.
Porous materials can trap household odors, not to mention hold dirt, dust, and bacteria if not cleaned regularly. This is more so the case with fabrics such as towels, oven mitts, curtains, and other textiles we might keep in the kitchen.
Give your fabric-based items a good clean and consider decluttering what you don’t need to have sitting out in the open or to have at all. We covered some items, such as rugs, doormats, and window treatments, in our Part 1 post, 21 Spring Cleaning Kitchen Tasks, Part 1. Other items might include aprons, kitchen towels, microfiber and cleaning cloths, oven mitts and pads, and placemats.
Waste not, want not: If you find that you aren’t using certain items, such as dishtowels, aprons, or placemats, it may be time to donate them, give them to a friend, or repurposing them. The same goes for any items that you might have too many of or can’t seem to keep organized.
One area where I had trouble with this, like many, was the kitchen towels. But I eventually donated good ones that I never used and turned others into cleaning cloths or used them for other tasks. I only kept the ones I truly loved and used. Anything else is just taking up space and often causing more mess than necessary.
Make it purdy: To keep clutter at bay and keep items such as kitchen towels and cleaning cloths organized, consider putting them inside a basket or bin. However, rather than stacking them on top of each other, folding them in a similar fashion to the KonMari method (external YouTube link).
It looks neater, and your items will be easier to access, considering things are neatly folded and in their own little home. They’ll stay that way longer vs. when sitting stacked in a drawer since towels can be retrieved similar to grabbing a file from a file cabinet. And it will help you from housing more than you need or will ever likely use.
7. Dust and clean light fixtures.
Well, this one’s pretty easy, isn’t it? Lucky you! It only means you get to beat that 5-minute timer sooner and gloat over your accomplishments for the day. Or you could be even more awesome by seeing if you can tackle another task while the clock’s still ticking. Or…see if you can get one of the light fixtures in a neighboring room and get it over with sooner. #ChooseWisely
Clean any light fixtures in the room. And, yes, if you are unlucky enough to have bugs in yours, you should get to that part too. It’s okay. You’ll thank us later.
It’s a dirty job, but someone’s gotta do it: If your fixtures are extra dusty, we suggest dusting them first to avoid the dreaded wet lint mess. Or use a vacuum if things are looking really interesting in there.
8. Replace worn or missing drawer or cabinet door bumper pads.
Replacing worn or missing bumper pads isn’t a high-priority thing, but it can help soften sounds within your home as well as protect your cabinetry. It’s also something that’s super quick and easy to do and you likely won’t have to do it again for a long while. Your ears and any potential neighbors with shared walls will thank you!
If you think you’ll have extra time left on the timer, consider working on other items in your home such as placing felt feet on dining chairs or the dining room table. Or check out our post on 5 Ways to Use Leftover Rubber & Felt Furniture Feet Pads for more ideas of useful hacks you can do with leftover rubber or felt pads in just a few minutes.
Take a few minutes to replace worn-down felt or missing rubber pads on your cabinet doors and drawers. Pay special attention to any doors or drawers that tend to make a lot of noise when shut or that tend to get slammed often.
9. De-mark or touch up any worn spots on cabinet surfaces with stain or paint (optional).
If possible, de-mark your painted or foiled cabinets, or touchup any small, worn-down spots in cabinets with stained finishes, such as around the edges of doors and drawers.
However, the proper way to de-mark or repair worn-down surfaces may vary on the surface or materials involved. Make sure to research or speak with a professional if you’re unsure how to treat your particular cabinets. Always ask the property owner if you’re renting and do repairs at your own risk.
Common Tools Used:
- Magic Erasers: Can sometimes be used on painted or foiled surfaces to treat scuff marks.
- A damp towel or microfiber cloth: Always the first thing to try for de-marking scruffs on painted or foiled surfaces (MDF).
- Paint pens and stain markers: Aside from matching paint or stains at a professional paint retail or hardware store, these are awesome for tiny touchups for worn-down areas and can be found at hardware stores or online stores like Amazon. They aren’t going to be an exact match, such as with stain markers, but you may be able to find something close enough, as we were able to at a previous home that had stained cabinets.
10. Clean up your spice rack.
Like many people, this is one task I often overlooked or just never thought about. Even so, cleaning off your spice bottles and other seasoning products should be done ever so often to clean off bacteria, as well as cleaning up whatever storage solution they might be on.
And while it might seem like a big task for those who have a lot of bottles, it really only takes a few minutes and a warm, slightly damp microfiber cloth or towel.
Wipe off any spice or seasoning bottles, sprayers, and the organizers that they’re house in using a slightly damp microfiber cloth. This should also include any oils or other like-items you regularly use to cook. And, if you haven’t done so already, make sure to clean off the shelf or surface and any liners they might be sitting on.
Pitch and switch: Take a few moments to clear out any overly-expired items or seasonings you’ve had for ages but never use. This is also a great time to make a list of any items you might need to replace on your next trip to the store.
Get ahead of the game: Try to wipe off spice bottles before putting them away whenever you cook. Not only is it more sanitary as you handle food, but it will help save you time later on when it comes to cleaning out your cabinets or spice rack later.
11. Deep clean the counters.
If you haven’t done so already from following Part One of our post on 21 spring cleaning 5-minute kitchen tasks, focus your session on giving your counters a good, thorough cleaning. Don’t forget to clean things like knickknacks, caulking, grout, and around and underneath items.
Shrink it down: Don’t be afraid to do this in smaller sections or increments, depending on the size of your kitchen or the amount of work you might have to do.
12. Clean the inside of your oven.
Depending on how long it’s been since you’ve cleaned the mess that’s inside there, more often than not, you can typically get the oven cleaned in 5 minutes or less. However, in the event that there’s a lot to do, it might be beneficial to break the job down into sessions that will be more manageable for you.
If you have a lot of stuck-on mess, you may want to run a self-clean cycle first. And if you plan to set a timer for 5 minutes, make sure to prep in advance. Keep a bowl of warm water nearby for rinsing or a damp sponge or cleaning cloth. Scrub and then wipe clean several times.
Great rack: Make sure to take the racks out prior to self-cleaning unless they’re specifically designed to be clean inside the oven. Most older oven model racks are not meant to be cleaned in the oven and need to be washed separately. Some people find it useful to do this outside or in the bathtub or shower.
Stuck on you: If you want to avoid chemicals, try using a baking soda mixture to fight tough stains and stuck-on messes. Some folks like to mix baking soda with warm water until it forms a paste. Others prefer to mix Dawn Platinum and baking soda into a paste, which is great for fighting grease and pretty much anything else. Go-Go, Dawn!
The Mother of All Oven Cleaners: Not in the mood to prance about, or feel your oven looks more like an archaeological site instead of a kitchen appliance and you just want the big guns? No worries, we all have those days. Give No Fumes Heavy Duty Easy-Off Oven Cleaner a try. Then unleash on it like Al Pacino in Scarface. Say hello to my LITTLE friend!!!!! It’s very therapeutic.
Our Current Favorite: Our current favorite product to use for scrubbing-type messes is none other than Mrs. Meyers Baking Soda Cream Cleaner. And for calcification-type stains, such as commonly found in some steam-cleaning units, we like to use Mrs. Meyers Vinegar Cleaning Gel. We hope to do a more in-depth product review on both and some comparisons in the future.
Steam away, steam away, steam away: Try harnessing the power of steam cleaning before the actual scrubbing for really tough jobs. If your oven doesn’t have a steam-cleaning feature (ooh, you missing out…). Fill a baking dish with water and place it inside; set the range to 400 or 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Allow things to steam for at least 20 minutes to an hour, depending on how messy your oven is.
Gettin’ zesty with it: If you really want to go Zen, try adding the power of lemon juice to your water. The citric acid can help with clean-up as the scent of lemon tantalizes your smell receptors while deodorizing your humble abode.
Want more Dawn Dish Soap cleaning hacks to help get your clean on? Then you might love our post on Top 10 Helpful Tricks for Using Dawn Dish Soap.
13. Clean the coffeemaker or kettle.
Few things complement a beautiful spring morning more than a fresh cup of coffee or tea. So why not take a few minutes to give them a good cleaning?
Descale your coffeemaker or kettle using water and vinegar, food-safe descaling solution, or whatever is recommended by the manufacturer. Also, make sure to clean the outside properly as well as wash any removable parts.
Coffeemakers and kettles should be regularly cleaned if you use them consistently. Manufacturers typically recommend doing so at least once a month.
Cleaning your machine not only keeps your device running properly and for longer, but it prevents calcification and potential mold growth. Above all, it helps ensure that your coffee or tea will taste great year-round.
In the end, getting your spring cleaning chores done in the kitchen can feel relatively painless and a whole lot more manageable when you break things down into smaller chunks. You can do all that and more by trying the following:
We hope you’ll join us in getting these thirteen 5-minute kitchen tasks done, along with the ones listed before in Part One of our kitchen series, where we cover 21 other spring cleaning kitchen chores you can also get done in 5 minutes or less. You can find that post here.