Weeknight Meal Tip: Clean As You Go

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

The food service industry has one principle that applies very well to personal kitchens; Clean As You Go. The idea is that you clean up immediately after every task, and instead of standing around waiting for water to boil, you busy yourself with cleaning something.

We follow the Clean As You Go principle each night in our kitchens as we cook dinner after a busy day. For one thing, it helps us to reduce the amount of cleanup we’ll have to do after dinner, when we’re really dog tired and just want to go to bed. Who doesn’t know that feeling? We aim to make as little a mess as possible. Not only is it more efficient to clean up right after finishing a task, but also keeping ourselves busy finding something to clean while waiting for food to cook means we have much less house chores to do on the weekend. This frees up our time for more fun things, such as going oyster hunting!

Some of our favorite Clean As You Go tips are:

  • Fill the sink (or dishpan) with hot, soapy water. As you finish using a cooking tool or utensil, drop it in. You’ll use less water and spend less time scrubbing things up later on.
  • Check the fridge and cupboards for expired items to toss.
  • Wipe down all surfaces – counters, stove tops, etc. immediately to prevent cross contamination or food buildup.
  • Take out the trash, recycling, or compost if any of the bins are full.
  • Sweep the floor to prevent buildup and to keep from attracting unwelcome critters.

Did we miss anything in that list? Let us know!

Also look at all the other good tips we learned from our mothers (along with Clean As You Go) in this post: Kitchen Keeping – Most Memorable Advice?.