Holiday Prep: Keeping the Kitchen Clean and Natural

boy helping mother make pumpkin pie

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If you’re in charge of a holiday meal, you’re focused on menu-planning, gathering quality ingredients, and creating a festive atmosphere. You also want your kitchen to be as clean as possible and your celebration to be super-wholesome and eco-friendly. That includes making safe and natural cleaning choices as you prep — and while you cook.

Cooking can be natural and a foundational step in the recycling and composting process, if you follow a few simple rules to reduce food waste and toxins related to kitchen cleaning, it can make a big difference for the planet.

Set Up

Make sure your cooking tools and surfaces are clean and gleaming with ThreeMain’s biodegradable, non-toxic products. ThreeMain’s dish soap, multi-surface cleaner, and bathroom cleaner come in refillable aluminum bottles. The refill pouches use less plastic than traditional bottles and can be recycled through ThreeMain’s zero-waste program. Plus, they donate 3 percent of their profits to the Rozalia Project to clean and protect our oceans.

For a thorough kitchen prep, you could wipe down all your surfaces with VEO Active-Probiotic Surface Cleaner. The cleaner is 99 percent biodegradable and comes in a bottle made of 95 percent recycled plastic. The appealing apple jasmine scent will produce sweet-smelling and thoroughly clean kitchen surfaces. The product is advertised as having “cutting-edge biotechnology and the power of nature to deliver a microscopic level of clean” that leaves surfaces deeply hygienic for up to three days.

Sanitize

Holiday prep can be chaotic, especially if you’re putting together a feast for a crowd or working in a small kitchen. Cleaning while you cook is the ideal formula to avoid major clean-up later.

Earmark a reusable cloth towel or cleaning cloth made of renewable bamboo for every counter so you can wipe off your hands whenever you need them for another task without racking up the paper towels or napkins.

If you’re working with eggs or raw meats, spritz your hands with CleanWell natural hand sanitizer. These pocket-sized sprays are chemical-free, moisturizing, and have a pleasant citrus herb scent. Stash them on your counters or in your apron without hogging precious prep space, and without worrying about what substances could be invading your food.

Mop

Don’t have time to do a thorough clean of your kitchen’s wood, tile, stone, or laminate floors? Do a quick once-over to pick up the crumbs, hair, lint, and dust that have collected. NatureZway floor wipes are rayon made from bamboo cellulose and can be used dry or wet. They work with any mop that lets you tuck wipes into the grippers on the head.

Wipe

Avoid breaking out the cleaning wipes and sprays until you’ve wrapped up your cooking duties. The Nano Glove requires only water to cleanse any surface — kitchen counter, cutting board, fridge handles, and beyond. This handy tool makes it so much easier to clean pesky food or debris out of corners and crevices.

NatureZway offers perforated towels made of sustainable bamboo that are reusable — they claim that each sheet can be rinsed up to 100 times or more. Though these multi-surface cloths are an elevated version of the paper towel and save trees; however, the rolls are packaged in plastic.

Clean Up

You can feel good about your post-meal cleanup when you wash dirty plates, flatware, and glasses with a natural wood and tampico brush. Or opt for a brush with a stainless steel handle and replaceable brush head. Scrub pots and pans naturally with a stainless steel or biodegradable natural loofah dish scrubber.

You could soap up your dirty dishes with your ThreeMain liquid dish soap in the refillable aluminum bottle, or try True Green’s Sparkle Clean 100 percent organic dishwashing liquid. Sparkle Clean is safe for your dishwasher as well as hand washing dishes. And it’s concentrated, so you need just a few drops in the sink or a teaspoon or less in your dishwasher.

Finally, make sure you have your stainless steel bento boxes at the ready for leftovers and post-holiday lunches!

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Elizabeth Weiss

Elizabeth Weiss is a freelance writer who specializes in web content development and lifestyle articles. Her work has appeared in a variety of mainstream and niche publications, including Forbes, Playboy, Marie Claire and Tales of the Cocktail. She has an MFA in creative writing and resides in horse farm country in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., where she can usually be found eating chocolate and seeking peaceful moments to read a book. Learn more about Elizabeth at Weiss Words.

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