The kitchen is the center of your home, especially in the winter. Baking and cooking keep the kitchen warm, which you’re usually avoiding in the summer months. Be prepared for snow day bake offs and hot chocolate sampling by cleaning a few areas of your kitchen ahead of time.
Get your pantry ready for baking!
Even after the holiday season is over, baking is a favorite winter activity. The oven heats up your entire kitchen, and the smell of fresh baked goods keeps your whole home feeling cozy. Make sure your pantry is fully stocked when you need warm chocolate chip cookies or banana bread.
First, get rid of expired ingredients and canned goods. Chances are, you think you have bread flour for a project, but it’s actually three years past its prime. If you do throw away a pantry staple, add it to your grocery list so you remember to pick it up on the next trip.
While you’re emptying the pantry and taking inventory, grab some cleaner and deep clean the shelves.
Clean the oven
December is a great time to clean out your oven, too. Starting the season with a clean oven ensures you don’t have burnt leftovers ruining all the delicious smells. Before you start using it all the time to bake favorites for your friends and neighbors, learn if your oven is self-cleaning or find the best cleaner for the interior of your oven.
Deep clean your refrigerator
While you should be cleaning out your refrigerator more than once a year, this is another kitchen area you should prepare for the season ahead. Check expiration dates on all your condiments and throw away any old produce that was pushed to the back.
Now that your refrigerator is clean and up-to-date, you can stock up on healthy snacks and produce to help you achieve your New Year’s Resolutions.
Clean your cabinets
With the extra time indoors, many cleaning experts recommend using the winter months to clean the exterior of your cabinets. You’ll be surprised how much grease builds up from cooking throughout the year and feel great about starting the year with a fresh kitchen.
Inventory your freezer
This may be everyone’s least favorite task, but it saves you time throughout the rest of the year. You can also take advantage of the below-freezing temperatures outside to store freezer items while you work.
Make a list of all the meats you have in storage, so you can easily meal plan to use up what you have. Then start making room for all the soups you’ll be making to stay warm this winter!
Make room sprays for the whole house
Now that your kitchen is clean, help the rest of the house feel fresh with your first projects: DIY room sprays made with clean ingredients.
Start with glass bottles, distilled water, witch hazel (or Epsom salts), and your essential oils. One Essential Communityprovides a simple recipe, even if you can’t find witch hazel. You’ll need about 40-50 drops of essential oils to brighten your mood and make every room smell fresh throughout the season. Favorite winter oils include spearmint, frankincense, cedarwood, orange, bergamot, juniper, white fir, and others. Refer to this article for a few recipes to get you started.
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