One thing we can always count on to follow a day of cooking is … cleaning up.
I know! Such a buzzkill, right? But washing dishes, wiping counters, and scrubbing pans go hand-in-hand with cooking, which is why good cleaning tools and supplies are just as important as good pots and pans! When you’re logging hundreds of hours in front of the sink, you deserve to be working with tools that’ll make the job a little bit easier and faster.
Here are our editors’ picks for the best cleaning tools and supplies for your kitchen.
I've been using Seventh Generation dish soap for years, even before they amped up the line to include the "ultra plus" and other super-powered cleaning lines they have now, and it's always done the job. It cuts grease, doesn't contain any synthetic fragrances, dyes, phosphates, or triclosan, and is overall gentler on skin and the planet.
Seventh Generation Dish Soap, $17 for pack of 6
Emma discovered this company and their line of natural abrasive kitchen scrubbers eons ago and has never looked back. "I use these heavy duty cleaning pads to tackle the most stubborn gunk on my pots and pans. I use them primarily for stainless steel and cast iron pans; you can use them on nonstick, but just be sure to scrub lightly to avoid scratching."
Goodbye Detergent Kitchen Cleaning Pad, $10.99
Swedish cloths are a combination sponge/wash cloth made of 70% cellulose and 30% cotton. They are super absorbent, great for cleaning everything from counters to casserole dishes, and (my favorite feature!) they're quick-drying, which means they don't get smelly like my old cotton dish rags.
Swedish Cellulose Dish Cloths, $22 for set of 10
If there's one cleaner to have on hand in the kitchen besides dish soap, it's Bar Keepers Friend. This mild but highly effective cleaner can be used to remove tough stains and brown spots on all your pots and pans, from your enameled cast iron Dutch oven to your stainless steel Instant Pot insert! Just squirt some on your pot (or sprinkle the powder version), add water, and scrub with a cloth or non-abrasive sponge.
It's a cheap miracle worker!
Bar Keepers Friend Liquid Cleaner, $2.50
What is a bench scraper doing in a cleaning tool roundup? It belongs, I promise! The bench scraper is a bit of a wonder tool. In addition to using it for all sorts of pastry and baking tasks, it's my secret to getting hard-to-clean gunk off my countertops and cutting boards. The blade is sharp enough to chisel off the dried stuff but not so sharp that it scratches the surface!
OXO Bench Scraper, $9.99
These towels won't win any awards for beauty, but they perform solidly as an all-purpose kitchen towel for handling spills, wiping down cutting boards, drying dishes, and keeping your hands clean while you cook. They're meant to be used and get dirty, so don't get too precious with them! You can buy them in bulk for about $1.50 a towel. They get more absorbent the more they're washed, too.
Zeppoli 100% Cotton Dish Towels, $22 for set of 15
I have nothing against standalone dish racks, but if you're short on countertop space, but have a double sink to work with, then a roll-up, over-the-sink dish drying rack is the way to go! I like this one, with its silicone-coated bars to prevent rust.
Bellemain Over-the-Sink Roll-Up Dish Drying Rack, $16.50