Thursday, November 14, 2013

Time-Saving Thanksgiving Cleanup Tips

Today's post is a guest post written by Nicole Rodriguez.  I'm sure these will help you on Thanksgiving I know they will help me. Enjoy :-)

You put a lot of time, thought and effort into making sure your Thanksgiving feast is a success. After a day of baking pies, peeling potatoes, basting the turkey and entertaining guests, you're ready to put your feet up and call it a day. Unfortunately, as you bid farewell to your last guest, you realize your job isn't done yet! You have a pile of dirty dishes, pots and pans and leftovers to contend with. To help make the daunting task of cleaning up after Thanksgiving dinner a bit less painful, we've compiled some tips and tricks with the help of, and that'll get you in and out of your kitchen so you can get some much-deserved rest.


A few days before Thanksgiving, clear out your refrigerator and freezer to make room for leftovers. Speaking of leftovers, make sure you have plenty of reusable storage containers (and matching lids) ready to hold the food.

  • Bake and cook as much as you can the day before, so you won't have as much to prepare and clean on the big day.
  • Spray pans and tins with a non-stick coating to help eliminate as much stuck-on food and grease as possible.
  • Use multitasking cookware that can go from oven to table. Doing so cuts down on using all those serving trays that have to be cleaned later.
  • Run your dishwasher and clear it out before guests arrive so it'll be ready to be loaded after dinner.
  • Triple-line your garbage container, so as you fill up and go, you'll have a new one ready.
  • Soaking dinnerware and serving trays while you entertain your guests will save you scrubbing time later. If you have a lot of guests, your sink will quickly fill up. Fill a large, plastic storage bin with hot, soapy water instead and hide it in your mudroom, pantry, or garage. If you have the space, put a medium-sized bin under your sink. Fill your turkey roaster with hot water and soap and let it soak hidden away in your oven.
  • While mingling with your guests is your top priority, try to sneak away whenever you can to keep on top of the mess, such as clearing the counters and storing food away.

Once the guests are all gone you have to deal with what's left to clean. You may be tempted to just turn out the lights, head to bed and deal with the mess in the morning. Don't! It'll feel worse facing the mess the next morning.

  • Food that needs to be refrigerated needs to be taken care of first. If perishable food has been left out for more than two hours (such as dairy-based dip) it should be tossed for safety reasons.
  • When clearing remaining dessert dishes, coffee cups and utensils, do as the pros do it - use an empty bin to load as many items at once. This saves you from having to make lots of trips from the kitchen to the dining area.
  • Load the dishwasher with as many small items as possible. It's easier to have to wash a few larger things, than dozens of smaller things such as utensils, glasses and dessert plates.
  • Let the turkey roaster soak overnight; it'll be even easier to clean the next day.
  • To get rid of lingering odors from cutting boards, rub the surfaces with slices of lemon.Those plastic storage containers are notorious for holding on to odors and stains. Get them clean and smelling fresh with a solution of baking soda and warm water to remove odors and stains. Rinse and dry.

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Article Source:  Time-Saving Thanksgiving Cleanup Tips

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