The 15 Best Kitchen Cleaning Tools of 2023

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The 16 Best Kitchen Cleaning Tools of 2022


When I was a private chef teaching people how to cook in their homes, my initial questions centered around the client’s kitchen rather than their culinary skills. That’s because the key to becoming a successful cook goes far beyond just how well you can sauté or steam: It begins with a functional kitchen setup and ends with a proper cleaning routine.  

Below, we’ve highlighted the best kitchen cleaning tools based on their ease of use, ergonomics, durability, versatility, and overall value. These items will help you tackle large and small tasks, from wiping spills to scrubbing grime, and most of them cost less than $10. Read on to see what cleaning tools you’re missing in your kitchen.

Dish Towels

Organic Waffle Kitchen Towels


Available at Coyuchi

Highly absorbent thanks to their waffled texture, these Coyuchi organic kitchen towels are our best overall pick for kitchen towels. They come from an eco-conscious factory in a set of six, in which you can choose to be all one color or a variety. The material is 100% cotton, and the yarn is dyed rather than printed, keeping the color vibrant for longer. We love that it has a loop so you can hang it to dry quickly, as no one wants to wipe their hands on a damp towel. While they may appear delicate, these towels are machine washable and will hold up nicely to continued use.

Price at time of publish: $58

Swedish Dishcloths

Swedish Dishcloths


Available at Amazon

Swedish dishcloths are reusable towels that bridge the gap between cloth and paper. With over 45,000 reviews, this editor-loved 10-pack will keep you going for some time. Each Swedish dishcloth is equivalent to about 15 paper towels, enabling you to lower your carbon footprint every time you wipe up a spill or stain. They can be reused up to 100 times, depending on how heavily you use them. Once wet, the texture of a Swedish dishcloth is soft and highly absorbent, but you can use them dry as scrubbers, too.  

Price at time of publish: $25

Scrub Brush

Scotch-Brite Pot and Pan Brush


Available at Amazon

As someone who gets easily grossed out by sponges, this Scotch-Brite pot and pan brush is one that I buy in bulk. I use them for everything dish- and sink-related because they work perfectly for rinsing out a cereal bowl as they do for scrubbing a grimy pot. The handle is long enough to keep your hands away from scalding hot water and food bits, and the line of extra-firm bristle on the backside tackles any stuck-on grit. I also appreciate the ergonomic handle, which I find much more comfortable than most straight-handled scrub brushes.

Price at time of publish: $14

Sponge Holder

stusgo Sponge Holder


Available at Amazon

Store your sponge and scrub brush together in this sponge holder, and you’ll never have to worry about trapped water getting mildewy. Unlike solid sponge holders, this one’s wire structure allows the sponge to dry completely between uses, and that’s crucial for preventing the growth of harmful bacteria that can accumulate on sponges. There’s also a larger version that you can use to store your sink drain stopper and a small towel, enabling you to keep all your kitchen items in one area with optimal space between each. For less than $15, this stainless steel tool holder is a valuable tool for a small price. 

Price at time of publish: $14

Dish Drying Rack

Yamazaki Home Steel and Wood Dish Rack


Available at Amazon

Dish drying racks aren’t always the most attractive countertop addition. Luckily, we found one that is equal parts functional and stylish, so you can feel good about leaving it out at all times. Sure, you could put a towel down next to your sink, but that is a recipe for mold growth and not a good look overall. This rack has a deep draining tray and wood handles, so once your dishes are dry, you can easily pick up the tray and pour any water collected on the bottom into the sink. It has a convenient cutlery holder and can hold cups, bowls, plates, knives, cutting boards, and more. 

Price at time of publish: $88

Scouring Pads

Scotch-Brite Extreme Scrub Scour Pad


Available at Amazon

For pots and pans with stuck-on food, a strong scouring pad is essential to get them in tip-top shape. These “extreme scrub” scour pads work similarly to steel wool but with numerous benefits steel wool can’t offer. First, they have an antimicrobial surface that resists odor and prevents bacteria from growing. Additionally, they won’t rust and are twice as strong, making them even more powerful. You can use these pads on dirty pots without any presoaking if you’re lacking on time. As with any strong scouring pads, these aren’t safe for nonstick cookware or China dishes, so be sure to use them on suitable surfaces. 

Price at time of publish: $6


OXO Good Grips Upright Sweep Set


Available at Amazon

There’s no quicker way to clean your kitchen floors than with a broom, and this OXO Good Grips broom and dustpan set is the best option on the market. Its most unique feature is that the dustpan has teeth built into it. The teeth clean the bristles of the broom, which ultimately frees up anything stuck in it and prevents you from having to deal with anything messy with your own hands. It combs out dirt and dust directly into the pan, so with every sweep of the floor, you can clean up the debris rather than just moving it around. Like all OXO Good Grips products, the broom handle is designed for comfort.

Price at time of publish: $28

Crumb Scraper

Restaurant Crumb Sweepers


Available at Amazon

Clearing messy breadcrumbs from your dining table shouldn’t be limited to a fine dining experience: You can perform this restaurant-inspired step at home with this stainless steel crumb scraper. It’s the ideal shape for gathering crumbs into a pile and then scooping them up from the table, unlike some scrapers that require your hand to catch and toss the scraps. The blade is lightweight and easy to clean but not so sharp that you’re likely to hurt yourself. It’s portable enough to fit in a pocket, or you can use the clip to stick it to your clothing or tablecloth. 

Price at time of publish: $9

Motion Sensor Trash Can

iTouchless 13 Gallon Touchless Sensor Trash Can


Available at Amazon

Not only does this touchless trash can allow you to toss waste without making physical contact with the lid, but it also prevents you from having to deal with the unfortunate odor of kitchen trash thanks to its built-in filtration system. That doesn’t mean there will be a perfume-like scent in your home by any means — this system is completely free of strong smells, good or bad. The motion sensor is just the right amount of sensitivity, and I’ve owned it for years now without having had to replace the battery. 

Price at time of publish: $95

Kitchen Gloves

Mr. Clean Ultra Grip Gloves


Available at Amazon

Mr. Clean has been a household name for ages, and these nonslip, heat-resistant kitchen gloves remind us there's a good reason for that. They’re highly resistant to slipping with texturing inside the rubber, meaning that even the soapiest dishes are safe in your hands. The lining is soft cotton, so you’ll avoid that odd, sticky feel of some kitchen gloves, and they’re more than long enough to prevent any water drips from seeping inside. Because they are made of latex, anyone with a latex allergy should avoid them.

Price at time of publish: $8

Knife Cleaner

Joseph Joseph BladeBrush Knife and Cutlery Cleaner Brush Bristle Scrub


Available at Amazon

Cleaning a long knife blade can be daunting. Reduce your risk of injury by using this knife cleaner, which enables you to get into every groove, nook, and cranny without putting your hands too close to sharp edges. It has two sets of bristles and can also be used to clean cutlery. That’s particularly useful if you have forks or spoons with stuck-on food. It sits easily in your hand, protecting you from a blade while simultaneously washing both sides of it, and then can be hung over the sink or in a sponge holder to dry before its next use. 

Price at time of publish: $9

Cast Iron Care Kit

Lodge Cast Iron Care Kit with Chainmail Scrubbing Pad

Williams Sonoma

Available at Williams

There’s nothing quite like cooking in cast iron, as the sear it can achieve is rivaled only by a grill. But caretaking is crucial to keep cast iron pans at their best. This kit has everything you need to do that: a scraper to get off bits of food that aren’t clinging too firmly, a chainmail scrubber that removes stubborn food scraps, a handle cover so you don’t burn yourself when cooking, and a seasoning spray so your pan is always in tip-top shape. Lodge has been making cast iron for over a century, so it’s safe to say the brand has nailed down its care. 

Price at time of publish: $40

Steam Mop

 Bissell Power Fresh Steam Mop


Available at Amazon

Prevent dirty floors by tackling them thoroughly with our favorite steam mop. It features three steam settings and a flip-down scrubber for extra-sticky spots. It’s ideal for any wet spills, and because it eliminates 99.9% of bacteria and germs, it’s a good tool to get in the habit of using even if you haven’t spilled recently. You can add a scented disc that will emanate as you use it, but this can be omitted for anyone sensitive to chemicals. It cleans any hard flooring, so you may end up using it in more rooms than the kitchen. 

Price at time of publish: $93


Rubbermaid Commercial Products 2.5 Gallon Brute Heavy-Duty Bucket


Available at Amazon

Whether you use an old-fashioned mop or need to lug a large amount of water to and from your kitchen sink to scrub down windows, a quality bucket is a must-have in every household. This Rubbermaid bucket resists corrosion and has a wide pour spout that will make removing the contents much easier than you likely remember. It holds more than two gallons of water, which should be sufficient for most cleaning work. Heavy duty and long-lasting, this is the type of purchase that only needs to be made on rare occasions, as it should last for years. 

Price at time of publish: $18

Compost Bin

Natural Home Stainless Steel Compost Bin


Available at Target

Composting is becoming more and more popular for home cooks and gardeners. If the environmentally-friendly practice seems intimidating, we recommend starting with a small compost bin, like our top pick by Natural Home. This one-gallon stainless steel compost bin is large enough that you won’t be emptying it frequently yet compact in size, so it can sit on your counter or under your sink without co-opting excessive space. You can place anything inside it that’s compostable, from food waste to packaging, and the two inner filters will keep it all from growing odors as you wait for it to fill. 

Price at time of publish: $30


What is the most basic cleaning tool you should have in your kitchen?

The most basic cleaning tool you should keep on hand is a sponge or a dish brush. Cleaning your dishes is a very basic culinary task, and it can’t be done well without something to help remove food particles. A sponge is less expensive but may grow bacteria, while a dish brush is slightly more expensive but will last longer. 

What type of cleaning tool is best for cleaning counters and tables?

A Swedish dishcloth is an ideal choice for cleaning counters and tables. You can also use a regular dishcloth, and wash it once it’s grown dirty. With either tool, you’ll want to use a cleaning spray to disinfect your surfaces, as water alone will give the appearance of cleanliness but won’t actually remove germs and bacteria. 

Our Expertise

Contributor Ariane Resnick is a special diet chef, certified nutritionist, and bestselling author. She is proud of keeping a sparkling clean kitchen; she cleans her kitchen before and after and encourages the same of the clients she has taught to cook.

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