How Dirty is Your Kitchen Sponge?

You wouldn’t clean your pots and pans in the toilet, but you might be surprised to learn that the average kitchen sponge actually has more bacteria than a toilet does. In fact, your kitchen sponge could be home to nearly five trillion bugs!

Recent studies have shown that kitchen sponges contain five different strains of bacteria including E. coli. While none of these bacterias are deadly, they could cause you to get sick and spread germs to your family or guests. Imagine wiping down your kitchen countertops with a bacteria laden sponge, only to later prepare food on the same surface.

It makes sense that using your sponge to wipe down nasty pots and pans leaves behind some serious bacteria. Some people opt to boil or microwave their sponges which has been found to reduce bacteria but only in a lab environment.

It turns out that cleaning your sponge doesn’t eliminate bacteria, it only changes the balance of them. This means that after you clean a sponge, certain times of bacteria may decrease, but others will increase. According to Michigan State University, there are still a few ways to effectively kill bacteria on a sponge including:

  • Running it through the dishwasher on the hottest and longest setting, plus the dry cycle

  • Dampening the sponge and microwaving it on high for one minute

  • Soaking the sponge in diluted bleach for one minute

The most effective way to eliminate bacteria on kitchen sponges is by replacing those sponges often, possibly as often as once per week depending on use.

Contact Blue Water Kitchens & More today for all your kitchen needs including design, cabinets, and countertops.