How to Wash, Sanitize & Store Used Kitchen Equipment

Restaurant kitchens are the perfect location for bacteria and germs to form, which is why it is vital to wash and sanitize any kitchen equipment you have. Taking take of your equipment will make it safe to use and will help keep your kitchen safe for your customers. Also, if you do not wash, sanitize, and store used kitchen equipment properly, it may become unusable. 

Here are some steps to help you properly wash, sanitize, and store your used kitchen equipment. 


All kitchen equipment and surfaces should be washed daily with warm water, dish detergent, and a sponge. This includes all used pots, pans, utensils, cutting boards, and countertops. Make sure to remove any food debris and if necessary, remove detachable parts from your cookware to ensure that every crevice is cleaned. 

While some people let their kitchen equipment air-dry after washing, it is a good idea to dry everything thoroughly with a clean dishtowel. Some kitchen equipment is susceptible to limescale and rust, and to avoid damage to your cooking equipment, you should dry it right away. 

Pay special attention to areas where raw meat is prepared. Raw meat has tons of bacteria in it which can be very harmful if ingested. You must wash and sanitize these cutting boards and countertops every time you prepare raw meat. They must be washed, rinsed, and then bleached. Let them air-dry so the bleaching chemicals can destroy all bacteria. 


Sanitizing kitchen equipment is essential because it removes harmful microorganisms that can build up from food and regular use. Washing kitchen equipment with soap and water just doesn’t do the trick - you must sanitize everything daily to maintain a clean, safe kitchen. 

To do some basic sanitizing, you should combine one tablespoon of bleach and one gallon of warm water and soak all equipment in the solution for at least two minutes. This will greatly reduce harmful bacteria. After soaking, rinse equipment in hot water and dry it off. To protect your skin during this process, wear rubber gloves. Breathing in bleach can also be harmful, so feel free to wear a face mask as well. 

Do You Need to Use Bleach? 

Being exposed to bleach can be harmful to your health and also to the environment. You may want to switch over to a sanitizing solution that is milder, like vinegar or hydrogen peroxide. These natural chemicals are just as strong as bleach but are less harmful. Simply heat vinegar or hydrogen peroxide in a saucepan and transfer it to a spray bottle, so you can coat your kitchen equipment. Then, rinse and dry everything. Do not mix vinegar and hydrogen peroxide, though, as the combination of the two will have opposite effects. 


It is vital to store kitchen equipment in closed cabinets and drawers where they will not be exposed to dust and grime. Before putting the equipment away, make sure to disinfect your storage areas. You can use the same sanitizing method as you would for kitchen equipment – one tablespoon of bleach for a gallon of warm water. Or, use vinegar or hydrogen peroxide. Spray all storage spaces and dry them off to ensure that they are ready to use. You can also use rubber shelf-lining paper to have a perfect spot to put your kitchen equipment. Placing equipment directly on metal and wood can sometimes cause inconvenience, while rubber is the perfect material. 

Before storing kitchen equipment, make sure all equipment is clean and dry. This will prevent mold and mildew from building up in cabinets and drawers. Also, avoid storing any equipment directly over a heated area, like over a stove or griddle. Excessive heat could damage kitchen equipment over time, which will be costly for you. 

If you use these tips to wash, sanitize, and store your kitchen equipment properly, you will have a clean, safe kitchen that will benefit both you and your customers.