How to Wash Dishes the Smart Way

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Are you constantly dealing with a pile of dirty dishes? Tired of spending an hour after each meal struggling to clean up? Those days are over.

In this post, we’ll walk you through the simplest, fastest, smartest way to do your dishes. With this method, post-meal cleanup becomes a breeze, leaving you more time to relax and enjoy your food.

Tackle the Big Pots and Pans First

Our method for washing dishes goes from big to small. That means you’ll take care of the largest cookware first – pots and pans – and wrap up with the silverware. Big dishes often need to be hand-washed, and they also take up a lot of space on your counter and stove top. Clearing them out first can help take some of the stress out of the cleanup process, making it a bit more bearable to tackle a messy kitchen!

To quickly and effectively scrub off a big pot or pan, you’ll want to assemble a powerful arsenal of scrubbers and scouring tools. These include:

After the Pots and Pans, Scale Down by Size

Using the big-to-small method for washing dishes, you can eliminate the stress and confusion of digging through the sink, fumbling through a sea of dirty plates and forks. After your pots and pans, move on to washing the next tier of dishes. This usually means bowls, plates, and anything else that you’ve used to serve a meal. Save the cups and silverware for later!

Separating your dishes into categories keeps things simple, but that’s just one of the benefits of this dishwashing method. It also speeds up the process of putting dry dishes away. By washing your dishes in tiers, you can eliminate the need for organizing the washed dishes before putting them back in their proper places. Use that extra time after the dishes are done to enjoy a glass of wine or to make a simple dessert, like this Coconut Rice Pudding. 

Use a Brush With a Handle for Cups

Cups are some of the toughest dishes to wash thoroughly. They’ve got hard-to-reach bottoms, which often collect debris and residue after a meal. 

That’s why we recommend washing your cups with a brush on a handle. That way, you won’t have to reach into each cup and squish your sponge around, potentially missing a spot along the way.

Use Super-Hot Water

The hottest water possible is always ideal for washing dishes. High temperatures can help to break down chunks of leftover food, which speeds up the cleaning process. In addition, hot water is better for killing germs and bacteria, which will leave you with a safer kitchen.

Time to Pull Out The Yellow Gloves!

When washing your dishes in hot water, a good, strong pair of rubber gloves helps to protect your hands from burns. The classic pair of yellow gloves is a dishwashing staple, and with good reason! On top of keeping your hands safe, these gloves can also keep irritation and dryness at bay.

Rinse With Cold Water

After using hot water to wash your dishes, it’s a great idea to switch the temperature to cold for rinsing. Cold water is better at breaking down soap, which is essential for a complete clean.

When rinsing, you can either run each individual dish under a stream of cold water or fill up the entire sink and dunk dishes as you go. We’re fans of the dunking method – it’ll save you time and potentially save water as well!

Pro Tip: Rinse Dishes Before Loading the Dishwasher

If you’re lucky enough to own a dishwasher, you’re probably used to a much shorter cleanup time after you eat. A dishwasher can handle tons of plates, cups, silverware, and other dishes with ease – but it’s not perfect. To make sure that you’re not left with half-washed plates after each run, you’ll need to give your dishwasher a hand.

Before loading up your dishwasher with dirty dishes, make sure to examine each one for heavier gunk. Bits of food, crispy burned spots, and condiment residue can all make it hard for your dishwasher to clean thoroughly. Instead of tempting fate and potentially ending up with dishes that are still dirty, it’s best to take care of the big messes by hand.

To save yourself time, it can be a huge help to recruit one member of your household to rinse dishes while the other loads the dishwasher. The person on rinsing duty can pass off dishes to the loader, cutting the process in half. It’s a great way to get the kiddos involved in the cleaning process.

Washing Dishes Doesn’t Have to Be Hard

With our big-to-small dishwashing method, you can wrap up your kitchen-cleaning duties as fast as possible. That way, you’ll get to spend more time enjoying our delicious recipes and less time scrubbing pots and pans!

You can also expedite the cleaning process by choosing one-pot recipes that make cleanup a breeze. Consider this Primavera Poke Bowl or this Mexican Soup the next time you’re looking for an easy, delicious meal. 

For more cooking tips and other helpful advice for at-home chefs, make sure to visit the JOW blog. It’s the perfect resource for anyone who loves to cook!