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How to Clean Grease Off Kitchen Cabinets

The best way to clean grease off kitchen cabinets is with hot water and a gentle cleaning solution. This helps remove not only the grease, but also the dust, grime and other substances that the grease collects, making your kitchen cabinets look dingy and dull.

In this article, we’ll go over:

  • The best solutions for cleaning grease
  • How to remove grease from kitchen cabinets
  • Preventing future grease buildup on cabinets

What you’ll need:

  • Cleaning solution (see below for suggestions)
  • Sink or bucket
  • Hot water
  • Soft cloth or sponge for washing
  • Soft cloth for drying

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Best cleaning solutions to remove grease

Some of the best cleaning solutions for cleaning grease off kitchen cabinets can be found in your pantry:

  • Dish soap: Dish soap is formulated to cut through grease, making it a great solution to remove grease from cabinets.

Ratio: Mix a few drops of dish soap per gallon water.

  • Vinegar: Vinegar is an acidic solution, which means it dissolves dirt, dust and grime from whatever it’s applied to. Plus, it’s a natural disinfectant. That said, don’t use vinegar undiluted on wood or wood laminate cabinets—it can ruin the finish and even damage the wood. Always dilute vinegar with water before using it to clean wood cabinets. To be on the safe side, we recommend diluted dish soap or wood oil soap for wood cabinets.

Ratio: Mix 1 part vinegar and 1 part water

  • Oil soap:Murphy Oil Soap is designed to safely and effectively clean wood surfaces. It removes grease, grime and other buildup better than dish soap, without damaging the finish. While the oil soap is formulated for wood, it also works great for other cabinet types, including laminate and veneers.

Ratio: Mix ½ cup of Murphy Oil Soap per gallon of water

Steps for cleaning grease off cabinets

To remove grease buildup from cabinets:

  • Wipe down the cabinets with warm water to remove as much dust and food as you can. This acts like a pre-cleaning to help remove the grease. Make sure you tightly wring out your cloth or sponge to avoid soaking the cabinets, which can cause water damage.
  • Mix your cleaning solution. Mix one of the solutions mentioned in the section above with hot water in a sink or bucket. Heat helps soften the grease to make it easier to wipe off. Try to avoid spraying the solution onto your cabinets, as this can drench the cabinets.
  • Clean the cabinets. Dampen (don’t soak) a soft sponge or cloth to wipe down cabinet doors, drawers and face frames. Start at the top of the cabinets, so any food or dust will fall to the lower cabinets before you clean them. Avoid stainless steel scrubbing pads and scouring pads, as these can damage the cabinet finish.
  • Wash again if needed. If it’s been awhile since you’ve cleaned your cabinets, you may need to wipe them down a second time to fully remove the grease. If you notice you’re just smearing grease around the cabinets without removing it or the cleaning solution looks a little dingy, empty the solution and make a new batch.
  • Spot treat stubborn buildup. For stains or stuck-on food that won’t wipe away with the cleaning solution, try using a soft toothbrush with a paste of baking soda and water.
  • Dry the cabinets. Water can cause serious damage to cabinets. Dry the cabinets with a soft, dry cloth after washing to make sure you don’t leave any water sitting on the finish.

Preventing future grease buildup

To prevent grease from building up on your cabinets:

  • Wipe down your cabinets more frequently. You don’t have to deep clean your cabinets every day, but wiping them down once a week with warm water or a gentle multi-purpose solution helps prevent grease from building up.
  • Turn on the range hood (if you have one) when cooking. Range hoods have an exhaust fan that collects smoke, steam and airborne grease. To reduce the amount of grease that settles on your cabinets, turn on the fan before cooking and leave it on for a few minutes after you’re done.
  • Wash your hands often when cooking. Your hands carry a lot of grease when cooking. To prevent spreading the grease to your cabinets, wash your hands after working with food.

Think it’s time for new kitchen cabinets?

Contact us online or at (480) 641-9611 to schedule an appointment. One of our cabinet experts will give you an in-home or virtual consultation, during which they’ll go over your design options and give you a same-day, no-obligation quote to give your kitchen cabinets a brand new look.

Chuck Derouen