How to Sanitize Cooking Utensils With Bleach

by Louise Balle ; Updated September 28, 2017

Simply scrubbing your cooking utensils in dish water does not remove the germs—that only loosens and lifts the dirt. You have to kill the germs by sanitizing the tools as well. You can sanitize your utensils with basic household bleach. Bleach is a simple yet effective sanitizing agent that can be used in a wide variety of places in your home, particularly in the kitchen where germs tend to thrive.

Clean the utensils first. Sanitizing an item is not truly effective unless all of the food is removed from the surface first. So soak the utensils in a sink full of hot soapy water (dish detergent is fine). Use a scrub brush to thoroughly remove the particles.

Drain the sink and refill it will warm water. Add a tablespoon of bleach to every gallon of water (an average kitchen sink will hold about two to three gallons of water).

Drop the utensils into the bleach solution in the sink and allow them to sit for 20 minutes.

Remove the utensils from the sink and allow them to dry for a few hours on a rack. The bleach and water will evaporate from the surface. You can also rinse them with steaming hot water first and then allow them to dry.


  • If you need to sanitize cooking utensils frequently, keep a small open jar of the bleach solution (about a teaspoon of bleach to a quart of water) next to your sink. After washing, drop the utensils into the solution for 20 minutes. Remember to refresh the bleach solution every day because the bleach loses its sanitizing power over time. Leave the bleach solution in your sink for a few hours to sanitize the sink as well. The kitchen sink and drain is a hot spot for germs.

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About the Author

Louise Balle has been writing Web articles since 2004, covering everything from business promotion to topics on beauty. Her work can be found on various websites. She has a small-business background and experience as a layout and graphics designer for Web and book projects.