What Are the Dirtiest Items in a Commercial Kitchen?

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Have you ever wondered what the dirtiest items are in a commercial kitchen? Well, you’re not alone. Restaurant workers and managers should be aware of what the dirtiest items in their commercial kitchens are to be proactive in preventing the spread of germs and bacteria. Let’s investigate and discuss the five dirtiest items you need to keep an eye on.

Kitchen Sponge

The kitchen sponge may seem innocent, but it’s a breeding ground for bacteria. Workers consider many kitchen areas “sponge worthy,” especially when cleaning up spills, washing dishes, and wiping the countertops. All these tasks result in bits of food and moisture finding their way into the crevices of the sponge, which eventually leads to contamination. To avoid the spread of germs, replace sponges consistently and sanitize them regularly. Never assume that a sponge is clean simply because you’re using soap and hot water.

Cutting Boards

Cutting boards encounter various foods, from raw meat to vegetables, which can lead to cross-contamination. If a cutting board doesn’t get a thorough cleaning between uses, it can transfer bacteria to other food items that were otherwise clean.

Have separate cutting boards for different foods, and clean them thoroughly with hot, soapy water after each use. The last thing you want to do is to chop vegetables on a cutting board that just had raw chicken on it.


There are many items we use that we don’t think about how dirty they are. A kitchen refrigerator is one item we toss things in, shut the door, and go on our merry way. However, the fridge can be a hotbed of germs.

We use it to store raw meat, dairy products, and other perishable items, which can become a haven for bacteria to thrive. Clean the refrigerator regularly and throw out any expired or spoiled food.

Kitchen Equipment

There’s a cornucopia of items in commercial kitchens that chefs and cooks will use during a service. For example, blenders, mixers, and food processors can also harbor bacteria if not cleaned properly. Many kitchens prefer stainless steel equipment because it’s easier to clean, assuming they follow the right steps for properly cleaning their stainless steel equipment.

Kitchen Floors

Most spills, food debris, and foot traffic can make a mess of the kitchen floor, resulting in bacteria buildup. While workers should always sweep and mop the floors after each day, they should always use a clean mop and water. Wiping a floor with a dirty mop and water only worsens the problem.

After learning the dirtiest items of a commercial kitchen, you can spot the red flags that could negatively affect your establishment. Restaurant workers and managers must be aware of these items and take proactive steps to prevent contamination. Otherwise, food poisoning will be the least of their worries.