When you’re cooking up a storm, your kitchen can start to look like a warzone. Flour is flying, sauce is spraying, and oil is oozing off the counters. It’s a madhouse! In moments like these, a stylish apron is your best defense.
Aprons are literal bodyguards, and it only makes sense to wash off all that food every once in a while. Here’s what you need to know about cleaning and caring for your aprons.
Can You Put an Apron in the Washing Machine?
Good news! You can put your kitchen apron in the washing machine. Just throw it in a mesh laundry bag or pillowcase first so the strings don’t get tangled during the cycle.
How Do You Keep an Apron From Tangling in the Wash?
If you don’t have a laundry bag or pillowcase, you can still prevent your aprons from tangling in the washer. Try tying the strings together into a bow beforehand. As long as it’s tight, the strings should stay tied during both the washing and drying cycles.
How to Wash an Apron
When washing an apron, make sure you’re cleaning it with a load of towels and not with nice clothing. The grease, crumbs, and stains could seep from the apron and onto your other garments.
Does your apron need a good washing? Follow these steps to make sure it looks fresh and clean!
- Read the care instructions to ensure your apron is machine-washable. If not, wash by hand.
- Put the apron in a pillowcase or mesh laundry bag so the strings don’t get tangled during the cycle.
- Pre-treat stains with a bleach-free stain remover.
- Wash aprons together or with a load of towels.
- Set the machine to a normal cycle. Use a mild dishwashing detergent and cool water.
- Add a cup of fabric softener and then start the cycle.
- Hang the aprons up to air dry, or if you’re pressed for time, throw them in the dryer.
Check the care tag on your apron to make sure it’s machine-washable. If it’s not, you’ll want to clean it by hand instead.
Before you throw your apron in the washing machine, put it in a pillowcase first so the strings don’t get tangled. You can also use a mesh laundry bag if you have one available.
Pre-treat your aprons ahead of time with a bleach-free stain remover. Let soak for about 30 minutes in warm water. This step is particularly important if your aprons are caked with food residue.
Wash colorful aprons in one load and white aprons in another. Are you only washing one apron? Throw it in with a load of towels!
Pour a mild detergent into the washer, and then set the machine to wash the aprons with cold water on a normal cycle. You may have to use a heavy cycle if your aprons are heavily soiled.
Who wants to wear a stiff apron around their waist? Add a cup of fabric softener into the machine, so your aprons will be soft and comfortable. You can then start the cycle.
Now it’s time to dry your aprons. You can either hang them up to air dry, or throw them in the dryer on a permanent-press setting.
Can You Put an Apron in the Dryer?
You can definitely put aprons in the dryer, but make sure they’re inside of a mesh laundry bag or pillowcase so the strings don’t get tangled. If your apron is made from cotton, it’s much better to hang it to air dry since cotton tends to shrink in the dryer.
How Do You Wash White Aprons?
A white apron or chef’s jacket can get easily stained. To treat, dab the stains with hot water and a bleach-free stain remover. Let sit for 15 minutes and rinse. Repeat until the apron is clean and then wash in a normal cycle.
How Do You Wash Black Aprons?
Black aprons can be washed on a normal cycle with cold water. Do you have flour stains on your apron? Put a few drops of a mild dishwashing detergent on a sponge, and gently blot the area.
How to Get Stains Out of an Apron
You don’t always have the time to do a full load of laundry. Luckily, there are quick, easy solutions for removing food stains from your kitchen apron.
Here’s a list of foods that are known to leave stains. Get them off your apron using the solutions below!
Whether you’re cooking bacon, frying chicken, or mixing dressings into your salads, grease might splatter onto your apron. Treat those stains by scrubbing a mixture of dish soap and baking soda onto the area using a toothbrush.
Did you have a pizza party? Get tomato-based stains out of your apron by mixing cold water, 2 tablespoons of white vinegar, and a tablespoon of dishwashing soap in a bowl. Let the apron soak for at least 30 minutes. You can also use this cleaning process for ketchup.
Are you cooking for a Fourth of July barbecue? Remove mustard stains from your chef’s apron by using a mix of warm water and a mild detergent. You can either blot the area with the solution, or apply it using a spray bottle.
When you’re baking first thing in the morning, coffee might be brewing on a counter near your work area. Get rid of any stains that fly onto your apron by spraying the area with a mix of white vinegar and lukewarm water. Clean off the solution using a damp cloth.
You can’t whip up homemade cookies without plenty of butter! If you happen to get butter on your apron, don’t worry! You just need to scrub the area with hot water and a mild dishwashing detergent. For a persistent stain, use stain remover as well. Repeat until it’s gone.
Chocolate is tasty, but it’s also very messy! When it ends up on your apron, just use a mixture of warm water with a tablespoon of dishwashing soap. You can also use a little bit of laundry detergent on the area for a really stubborn stain.
It’s Thanksgiving, and your chef apron will probably get dirty faster than you can say “turkey!” To deal with gravy stains, rub the area with a liquid dishwashing soap and rinse it with cold water. You’ll likely need to use a stain remover afterward to really get rid of the grease.
Purple berry stains are brutal to clean! Your best bet is to treat them right away with a mix of dishwashing soap and white vinegar. Rub it into the stain, and let it sit for 15 to 20 minutes. Rinse with warm water and repeat until it’s gone.
No one blames you for sipping some red wine while you cook! If you accidentally spill some on your apron, remove the stain by letting baking soda soak into the area for about 20 minutes. Remove with a damp cloth and let dry.
Cold water is your best friend when washing soy sauce out of fabric. Let it run against your apron until the stain is gone. You shouldn’t use soap in this case since it will make the stain even worse.
You love peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, but you don’t want it on your apron! To remove the stain, first scrape away the glob using a paper towel. Next, soak the area using warm water and a mild dishwashing detergent. Treat with a stain remover if needed.
How to Get the Smell Out of an Apron
Did you wear an apron to cook garlic pasta, hummus, or a delicious onion omelet? The smell might have seeped into the fabric, making it kind of stinky!
Remove the smell from a kitchen apron by following these steps:
- Spray the area with warm water and white vinegar.
- Let sit for 15 minutes.
- Soak in warm water using a few drops of lemon juice with a pinch of salt.
- Let sit for 20 minutes.
- Wash apron normally in the machine.
- Hang outside to dry in the sun.
Cut down on smells in the future by regularly washing your aprons. Fabric tends to accumulate odors over time, but a good cleaning should do the trick!
How Often Should Aprons Be Washed?
Do you wear an apron to cook at home? Aim to throw it in the washer every 1 to 2 uses. If you work in a kitchen, you should clean your apron after every shift.
When Should You Change Your Apron?
While you can technically wear an apron more than once, it’s not always the most sanitary option. Be sure to change your apron after any of the following:
- Handling raw meat
- Using the bathroom
- Spilling on the apron
- Going on a lunch break
- Taking out the trash
- Stepping outside for a breather
- Being around secondhand smoke
- Coming into contact with an unsanitary surface
- Getting the apron wet
The more mindful you are about sanitation, the less likely you are to get a foodborne illness. You should not only wash your hands before making a meal, but you should also change your apron if its cleanliness is at all compromised.
Why You Should Wear an Apron While Cooking
After a long day, your clothes have probably come into contact with all kinds of germs and debris. For that reason, you should wear a cooking apron for every big meal.
Here are all the reasons why you should wear a kitchen apron while cooking:
Protects Your Clothes
Nobody wants to ruin a nice dress or fancy shirt. Slip an apron on before you start making a meal to protect your clothing.
People love to post cooking pics on Instagram. You’ll get so many more “likes” and look like a pro chef at the same time if you wear a stylish apron.
Cooking should always be a sanitary process. A clean apron prevents your dirty clothes from coming into contact with the food, which is important in preventing cross contamination.
It’s more efficient to store cooking utensils, like tongs and spatulas, in an apron pocket. You can also keep oven mitts in there if you have a busy day of baking ahead of you.
Portable Dish Towel
There’s a lot of hustle and bustle in a busy kitchen, and you might not have time to wipe your hands. An apron is basically a wearable kitchen towel when you’re in a pinch.
Keeps You Safe
Some splatter may fly out when you’re mixing a pot on the stove. An apron will take the heat, protecting you from getting burned.
Inspires You to Take Risks
Cooking can be intimidating, but you may just tackle the tough recipes with an apron around your waist. You will worry less about the mess and focus more on making a tasty meal.
Do you have fond memories of your mom wearing an apron while she grilled? Maybe you remember your grandpa whipping up his specialty chocolate chip cookies. We always look back fondly at special moments in the kitchen.
The Bottom Line
Even if you’re not an expert chef, you’ll at least look the part by wearing an apron. Get a special one for the holidays, or one printed with a funny message on the front. And remember to wash your aprons regularly!
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