How to Clean for Your Kitchen Knives: Tips & Tricks

Last year, I wrote about how to sharpen your kitchen knives. But there is a lot more involved in proper knife care than keeping it sharp. Proper cleaning techniques will also extend the life of your cutlery.

Knife Rack

Clean Knives (Photo credit: bmann)

Knife Cleaning Rule #1: Don’t soak your knives in water

Do you soak your knives in the sink before washing them? I used to do this. After finishing with the knife, I would often drop in in a glass or bowl that was already in the sink and filled with water. This is a good way to develop rust spots on the blade. Also, if you’re not careful, you can easily cut yourself this way.

Instead, place the knives on the counter behind the sink. That way, it stays dry and visible.

Knife Cleaning Rule #2: Don’t put your knives in the dishwasher

One reason you should never put your knives in the dishwasher is the same why you shouldn’t soak them. Over time, the blade can start to rust, even if it’s stainless steel!

They will also get jostled around my the high pressure wash causing them to dull faster and the handles to loosen.

Knife Cleaning Rule #3: Hand-washing your knife

The best way to clean your knife is to hand-wash them. My preferred method is to use a sponge soaked in clean, soapy water. I fold the sponge over the spine (back) of the blade and rub back and forth a few times. For good measure, also slide the sponge down the heel (side) of the blade on each side, going from the spine to the edge. Rinse under running water and dry.

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4 Responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Kim@Eyesonthedollar on 12.09.12 at 10:00

    I had no idea not to put knives in the dishwasher. It makes sense though. Sharp knives and me don’t get along too well, so maybe I should keep putting them in there!

  2. Posted by Edward Antrobus on 12.09.12 at 10:00

    Haha. I’ve come close to loosing a finger from someone leaving a sharp knife in the sink and not knowing it was there when I stuck my hand in.

  3. Posted by Anis on 12.09.12 at 10:00

    Edward, I never thought like you. Your post makes me conscious about not to put & soak knives in the dishwasher & from now I will follow your tips. Thanks!

  4. [...] you buy a quality knife, and take the proper care in cleaning and sharpening it, you will find yourself never needing to buy another knife [...]

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