How to Clean Inside Kitchen Cabinets

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When it comes to kitchen cabinets, there’s a high probability that the inside of them is not as clean and pretty as the outside. I’m sure we can all relate to this problem because it's difficult to keep your kitchen up-to-date with new appliances and fashionable decor while at the same time keeping everything else looking good too.

In this article, I’ll be taking you through the steps in achieving flawless kitchen cabinets – let's get right into it.

Steps to cleaning inside your kitchen cabinets

Step 1: Remove all items from your cabinets.

This step only applies if you have lots of items in your cabinets, otherwise, I recommend just cleaning around them during this first step.

Keeping Cabinets Clean Inside And Out
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Using a vacuum, remove any dust or small debris that might still be sitting around inside the cabinets. You'll want to do this before any cleaning so that you don't accidentally spread it around while cleaning.

Step 2. Remove all shelves and drawers from inside cabinets

Now that everything is out of your cabinets, it's time to get rid of all the tough stuff. Take a damp rag or a sponge and wipe down the insides of each cabinet. Be sure to use plenty of elbow grease when wiping off anything caked on or stuck on.

Replace whatever items were in your way during step 1 and move onto step 3 after finishing all of them.

Moreover, you can also opt for vinegar in Step 2. Vinegar, when mixed with water, is great at cutting through the grease and grime that have built up on your kitchen cabinets over time. It's an environmentally-friendly option without requiring lots of elbow grease or expensive products.

Remove all shelves and drawers from inside kitchencabinets
Image Credit: Kitchen Infinity Photo

Step 3: Cleaning the outside of cabinets

At this point, your cabinets should be relatively clean inside and out; but before we move onto the next step, there might still be a few things left to do on the outside. If you want to achieve flawless-looking kitchen cabinets that are spotless from top to bottom then this is something you would want to cover.

Steps include:

  • Wash down unit doors with a damp rag and/or sponge (to clean off surface dirt)
  • Clean out the inside of your cabinets and wipe down shelves, drawers, and any visible areas on the outside.

(Be sure to do this with either a vacuum or some sort of duster for smaller spaces.)

If needed, be sure to use additional cleaners like vinegar to remove stubborn dirt. You may want to make sure that you wipe away all excess cleaner after using it so that there are no streaks left behind when you're done. Finally, apply your favorite sealer to prevent future smudges from appearing over time.

cleaning dirt from inside kitchencabinets
Image Credit: Kitchen Infinity Photo

Step 4. Wash all removable parts 

This includes knobs, handles, hinges – in hot soapy water with mild dish soap or detergent.

Step 5. Polish all wood parts

Be sure to use some sort of polish on your wood pieces, whether it's furniture polish, lemon oil or vinegar, and olive oil.

clean inside kitchen cabinets
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Wood oils are best at giving any blemish a shiny sheen, while also protecting the wood from future damage. When polishing, it's important to use a lint-free cloth, preferably microfiber.

Step 6: Let everything dry before putting it back together again

This is especially important for the last step (polishing) because you don't want to get any polish on everything else.

Letting things dry fully before putting everything back together again will also prevent any smears or streaks from appearing on your freshly cleaned cabinets.

Step 7: Apply silicone sealant around cracks where dirt can get through (optional) 

This is completely optional and depends on whether or not you'd like to seal up any small cracks in your cabinets.

By sealing these small cracks, you can help keep dirt and grime from building up inside your cabinets over time.

I recommend doing this if you want a clean kitchen that's free from dirt but if it isn't really necessary, then don't worry about it.

Should you paint inside kitchen cabinets? 

It's not a given that you should paint the inside of your kitchen cabinets – it all depends on what your goals are. If you're unsure about painting, then just wait until the cabinets need to be painted and do it then instead – or start with one small area if it seems urgent.

When you do so, make sure you clean these painted kitchen cabinets as well.

Paint is durable but dirt can discolor it over time, sometimes making the cabinet door panels look dirty even when they're clean. This may be more noticeable in light colors than dark ones so use that as a factor in your decision too.

There's another consideration: Painting can darken a room (depending on color) will influence its mood and overall feel for years to come – so another thing to consider is whether or not you want to paint.

But if you do decide that painting is for you, prepping with sandpaper makes quick work of dirt and old layers, then priming before the topcoat can help minimize color change.

How do you clean the inside of a kitchen drawer?

You can use a cloth to clean the inside of your kitchen drawer, or you could mix warm water with soap and scrub the inside. You can also buy a commercial cleaning product that's meant for this type of thing if you want it to be easier. Just make sure not to let any residue stay on the surfaces after cleaning so that your drawer stays clean and doesn't smell bad when you close it.

How do I wipe down my kitchen table?

You'll need some cleaning wipes (or paper towels) as well as a damp, soapy rag.

For worn spots or stains: Sprinkle some baking soda onto them first. Wet up the rag with some bleach (and just wipe once). Lift all corners of the rag to get all the residue.

How do I wipe down my kitchen counter?

First, start with a clean sink and empty dishwasher then lay your cleaning clothes out on the counter so that you can wash them immediately after. Use some warm water to spray down the counters or use some cleaning wipes if they're available.

Pour some soap onto your damp rag (dish soap works well) and use it to scrub off any stuck-on foods/grime/etc. You can also mix in a little vinegar for stubborn things like sticky areas or dried food particles but don't overdo it. Vinegar is acidic which makes it very strong so use it carefully.

If you have a stubborn spot that won't go away, use some baking soda moistened with water and scrub it off and then rinse.

For appliances: If they're stainless steel, polish them with your damp rag after using a sponge inside to get rid of any stuck-on foods/grime/etc.

Use warm water or cleaning wipes to clean the outside of your refrigerator (especially around the edges).

Final thoughts on how to clean inside kitchen cabinets

In conclusion, one of the best ways to deal with this problem is by tackling it on a one-by-one basis and picking out areas that need cleaning. 

By having clean kitchen cabinets (from both the inside and the outside), you will ensure that you have a visually pleasing looking kitchen that is also healthy and free from any unwanted bacteria that might arise.

If you’re interested in more kitchen related articles, check out the post about how to fillet a bluegill with an electric knife.


Kevin Farrugia

Kevin Farrugia

Kevin is a household and appliance enthusiast and loves to follow the latest trends in kitchen and house decoration. He also loves to walk the isles of Home Depot and Lowes to review products and materials in person. Before joining Kitchen Infinity, Kevin owned a handyman company.

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