Clean Up Your Act in the Kitchen

Learn about the latest creative ways to make cleanup easier in the kitchen.

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An efficient cleanup area is a top priority for homeowners and kitchen designers. A kitchen's floor plan can create a chain of events that make cleanup easier. When the table is close to the counter and dishwasher, steps can be saved. Additionally, the space can be sized so that it is large enough to accommodate two people at the same time.

In most kitchens the primary area for cleanup is the kitchen sink. It makes sense to locate the dishwasher to one side and perhaps the trash or recycling area on the other. If the sink also doubles as a preparation sink, then it's important for it to be near the cooking area.

An innovative sink design has a cutting board that sits directly on top of the sink so that scraps can be channeled directly to the disposal. Note the draining container layered underneath the cutting board.

To make island cleanup easy, a hole in the counter for scrap removal is fitted underneath with a stainless-steel bin.

It used to be that the garbage disposal was located in the smaller bowl of a two-bowl sink but often required that scraps be removed from the large sink to the smaller. The trend is for the disposal to be in the large sink, which is often a single oversized bowl.

Lazy-Susan style bins that fit into a corner can be used for recycling.

Choice of materials in cleaning areas is critical. Nonporous surfaces, like stainless steel, are easiest to maintain and sanitize.

Options in dishwashers include two smaller units that use half the water — one located near the table, one in the preparation area. Another choice is a dishwasher in the butler's pantry designed especially for fine china.

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