How to Clean Kitchen Cabinets with Vinegar

Are your kitchen cabinets dirty and greasy and you’re wondering how you will get rid of all the grease and remain with undamaged sparkling clean cabinets? Cabinets endure all sorts of spills, dirt, dust and other food residues and sadly they don’t get the attention they deserve during regular cleaning.

Most people spend time cleaning other kitchen areas like the floors but when it comes to cabinets, they receive a simple wipe. Like many people, your cabinets may have some grime and grease on them and you’re wondering how they get greasy.

A busy home with a busy kitchen will in one way or the other have greasy cabinets. If you love making your family happy by cooking their delicious meals then your cabinets will obviously get some spills and grease.

While the cooking part and bits of food falling on the cabinets is normal, dirty and greasy cabinets are annoying. In this article, we are going to share with you some pro tips on how to clean kitchen cabinets in the most realistic and easy way without damaging the hardware.

Why Should I Clean The Kitchen Cabinets?

how to clean wood cabinets

You might be asking yourself “what’s the point of cleaning the kitchen cabinets” especially if you’re used to wiping them lightly when doing your regular day to day cleaning. The regular wipe can be great for removing light stains but you will need to do a deep cleaning in every kitchen cabinet to prevent a greasy kitchen.

The grime and food residue collected on the kitchen cabinets can also cause a build up of bacteria that can lead to contaminated knobs and handles. This buildup can pose a health risk to your loved ones if not taken care of early enough.

Cabinets are storage of foodstuffs and they need to be cleaned regularly so that the dirt will not contaminate the food and other items stored in them.

How To Clean?

best way to clean kitchen cabinets

Emptying the kitchen cabinets for a deep clean everyday can be an overwhelming task. Ideally, most people wipe the exterior of the cabinets like once or twice a week depending on their schedule. Cleaning the exterior once a week can be okay especially when you’re doing your thorough cleaning.

When it comes to the interior of the kitchen cabinets, you can schedule one or two days a month where you’ll do a deep clean.

How To Clean Cabinets

Now that you know the reason why you should clean your kitchen cabinets and how often they should be cleaned, we will go straight on the cabinets cleaning processes and tips.

However, before you start, there are some of the items you will need to put together for the cleaning of your cherry kitchen cabinets. You can use our checklist for some of the things you’re going to need for the cleaning. Here it is:

  • Old toothbrush
  • Cleaning towel
  • Vacuum
  • Vinegar
  • Warm water
  • Baking soda
  • Citrus multi-purpose cleaner
  • Cabinet cleaner
  • Dish soap
  • Lemon

What would you use to clean hardwood cabinets in the kitchen? 

There are many methods that you can use to clean your kitchen cabinets. What can work for you might not work for someone else. For that reason, we are going to share the different methods you can explore and use to clean your kitchen cabinets.

1. Cleaning Kitchen Cabinets Using Hot Water And White Vinegar

how to clean wooden kitchen cabinet

White vinegar is a trusted solution for cleaning especially when it comes to greased surfaces because of its acidity levels. Most people use white vinegar to clean up kitchen appliances like the microwave, oven and other appliances.

In this method, you will need the following items for cleaning the cabinets:

  • Warm water
  • White vinegar
  • Soft cloth or a towel
  • Spraying bottle
  • Dishwashing liquid


  1. Measure an equal amount of water and vinegar to make your cleaning solution and pour the solution in a clean spray bottle
  2. Shake the solution and spray it on the surfaces of your cabinets and leave it for a few minutes (avoid soaking the cabinets for long because the hardware can get damaged)
  3. Dip the clean cloth in warm water and rinse it thoroughly because you don’t want to damage the cabinets by wiping them with too much water
  4. Using the damp cloth, wipe off the grease and stains gently using a clean soft cloth or towel

What Happens If Stubborn Stains Remain On The Cabinets?

The above method of cleaning the kitchen cabinets works perfectly but it might not be effective on those few stubborn stains on/in your cabinet. In that case, you will need to use a paste of salt and vinegar.

Using an old toothbrush, scrub the stains with the salt and vinegar paste and then use a damp clean cloth to wipe off the stain.

2. Cleaning Kitchen Cabinets With Baking Soda And Lemon

cleaning cabinets with vinegar

This method is the best natural cleaning method for extremely greasy surfaces and cabinets. If your cabinets have layers of grease and grim then baking soda and lemon mixture can be your hero.

You will need the following products for this method:

  • Baking soda
  • Lemon juice
  • Warm water
  • Clean spray bottle
  • Cleaning sponge


  1. Make a mixture of lemon juice (you only need one lemon), baking soda and warm water
  2. Pour the cleaning solution in a spray bottle and spray the cabinets with the solution
  3. Leave the solution on the surfaces for about two to three minutes
  4. Using the sponge, gently scrub the grease
  5. Rinse the sponge and repeat the step until the cabinets are totally clean
  6. Buff your kitchen cabinets using a clean soft cloth

3. Cleaning Kitchen Cabinets Using Dish washing Liquid

If you don’t have white vinegar you can use this alternative to remove grease from your kitchen cabinets. Dish washing liquid does a great job in removing grease and grime on utensils and thus it can be a great solution for removing grease on the cabinets.

For this method, you will need the following:

  • Dish washing liquid
  • Clean dry towel/ piece of cloth
  • Warm water
  • Cleaning sponge
  • Bowl


  1. Make your cleaning solution by pouring warm water in a bowl and adding a few drops of dish washing liquid
  2. Dip the cleaning sponge in the mixture to soak the water and then squeeze it well
  3. Scrub the surfaces of the cabinet with a back and forth motion following the grain of the cabinets with the sponge
  4. Use a clean towel or cloth to remove the grease and soap residue

How Do You Remove Tough Stains On Your Cabinets Using Dish washing Liquid?

Some stains can be tough and the dish washing liquid and warm water might not clean the stains well. For those stains, apply the dish washing liquid to the stain directly and wipe the stain using a clean cloth.

Repeat the process until the tough stains are completely removed.

4. Cleaning Kitchen Cabinets Using Citrus Multipurpose Soap/ Cleaner

Cleaning with baking soda

Citrus multipurpose cleaner is a great de-greaser. Almost all multipurpose cleaners contain citric oil and  they are really good when it comes to cleaning kitchen greased surfaces. If you don’t have a citrus multipurpose cleaner, you should consider buying one.

You will need other things apart from the citric multipurpose soap to clean greasy cabinets:

  • Citrus multipurpose soap/ cleaner
  • Warm water
  • Clean soft cloth


  1. Spray the citric multipurpose cleaner on the wood cabinets and let it sit for a few minutes
  2. Use a damp cloth to wipe the grease from the cabinets
  3. Clean the cloth and squeeze it thoroughly then clean the remaining grease and grime
  4. Use a dry cloth to dry the cabinet surfaces

5. How To Clean Cabinet Glass Surfaces

There are cabinets that are made of glass and they also need to be well cleaned else they will sicken your eyes. If your kitchen cabinet has a glass surface then you need to clean it well to remove grease that makes it look awful.

You will need to purchase a glass cleaner and get a lint free cloth. Spray the glass cleaner on the soft cloth or paper towel and wipe the grease away.

6. How To Clean Cabinets Knobs And Handles

Now you’re done with the wood and glass part and you want to know how you can clean your cabinets handles and knobs. Just the way other cabinet surfaces get greased, the handles and knobs get dirty too and they are dangerous to your health if not cleaned regularly.

For the knobs and handles, you will need a cleaning solution too. A mixture of warm water and vinegar does work wonders on these parts of your cabinets.


  1. Make a 50/50 mixture of  water and white vinegar
  2. Dip an old toothbrush in the cleaning solution and scrub the knobs and handles
  3. Scrub the surrounding wood and the crevices on the cabinets with the old toothbrush to remove any particles hidden in the spaces.

If you find it difficult to clean the cabinet knobs and handles while they’re attached on the cabinets, you can remove, clean and dry the handles and knobs then put them back.

How To Prevent Buildup and Keep The Kitchen Cabinets Clean

You have completed the tough part which was cleaning the cabinets and now you want to know how you will be able to maintain their current state.

Wood cabinets need attention when it comes to cleaning. You will need to clean your cabinets regularly at least once a week (light cleaning) and once a month for deep cleaning for them to stay clean.

The grease buildup you just cleaned up acted as a wood protection for your cabinets so you might need beeswax based protection products so that your wood cabinets will not dry out and will also help to repel the grease.

Things To Avoid When Cleaning Kitchen Cabinets

1. Avoid getting the hinges wet

Although all the cleaning solutions we have suggested are completely safe on painted wood cabinets and laminate wood, they might not be good for your cabinet hinges. Most liquids cause rust and that’s exactly what the cleaning solutions can do. Clean the hinges using a microfiber cloth to wipe away dust and grime from the hinges.

2. Don’t use abrasive things on glass surfaces

Glass surfaces on the cabinets are easy to clean. Avoid anything abrasive when cleaning glass and use a soft cloth to dry the panels completely.

Bottom Line

Now you have a sparkling cabinet all thanks to expert tips above. Don’t forget to schedule a deep cleaning day to help you get rid of the grease before it builds up. Dust the cabinets regularly and try your best to wipe spills immediately they happen on cabinet surfaces

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.