Preparing for Power: 5 Ways to Sanitize Your Kitchen After Sandy


According to the most recent reports, many of you will have your power restored by this weekend and will begin rebuilding your homes and lives.

Hopefully, you’ve already had a chance to asses any damage, as well as grab some belongings and clean up. In case you haven’t had that opportunity, here are 5 ways to sanitize your kitchen and fridge this Sunday.

What to Keep vs. What to Throw Out
By now, any existing meat, poultry, fish, eggs and soft cheese needs to be tossed. Also get rid of fresh cut fruits and vegetables, soups, any mayonnaise or mayo-based condiments, fish sauce, and deli meats. Bread, raw vegetables and un-peeled fruits should be okay, but it’s still a good idea to check any produce for mold.

Remove Dust
Unplug your fridge and vacuum or sweep away gathering dust. While this is generally a good hygiene practice, it’s especially important right now as corners of rooms might be damp and gathering mold.

Wipe Down Fridge Doors
Clean the door handles of your fridge with a damp cloth and some soap. If they’re stainless steel, a few sprays of disinfectant can help remove germs and sticky surfaces.

Clean Out Your Fridge and Cupboard
If food was rotting on your shelves or in your refrigerator, it is essential wipe down any areas that could’ve been affected by bacteria. Antibacterial spray is an option, but also try two tablespoons of baking soda with one quart of hot water and wipe down surfaces. Be sure to use a clean sponge, as older ones will continue to spread germs.

Get Rid of Smells
There are a number of methods for removing household smells, but I’ve generally found vinegar to be the most efficient and effective. Simply leave a small bowl of apple cider or white vinegar on your kitchen counter. The offensive odors should be absorbed in a few hours.