Kitchen

Your kitchen needs to stay clean and healthy. It’s where you prep and cook your food. It’s the spot where you bake, munch on snacks and store your groceries. And, what you clean your kitchen with matters too. Many store-bought cleaning products contain toxic chemicals and unknown ingredients. Plus, the FDA doesn’t regulate claims on cleaning products labels, so it’s hard to decipher truth from greenwashing. Until now. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) recently released 10 top-scoring all-purpose and kitchen cleaning products from its database of cleaners. Find out what makes these kitchen cleaning products the best of the best.

1. Green Shield All-Purpose Cleaner Degreaser, Fresh

This all-purpose cleaner will get your kitchen spick and span without using toxic chemicals. It’s even USDA-certified organic. The ingredients in this cleaner include just acetic acid, vegetable glycerin, glycine soya (soybean) oil, citric acid, water, quillaja saponaria (soapbark), malic acid and citrus medica limonum (lemon) extract. It earned an A from the EWG.

2. Whole Foods Market Glass Cleaner, Unscented

Make the windows in your kitchen gleam with this glass cleaner from Whole Foods Market. It contains just four ingredients: water, ethanol, sodium lauryl sulfate and potassium sorbate. This cleaner earned an A overall from the EWG, but sodium lauryl sulfate, a detergent, and potassium sorbate, a preservative, did earn C ratings individually.

3. Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds Liquid Cleaner

This liquid cleaner from natural cleaning favorite, Dr. Bronner’s, does double and triple duty. You can use it to wash dishes, scrub your floors, clean countertops and more—it’s made for general household cleaning. You won’t find any synthetic dyes or fragrances in this cleaner. Spruce and fir essential oils offer fragrance and extra cleaning power. The ingredients in this cleaner include just water, alkyl polyglucoside (C10-16), sodium lauryl sulfate, coco betaine, abies (fir) needle oil and spruce oil. This cleaner earned an A from the EWG. For more information about each individual ingredient and why it was included in the formula, view the product information from Dr. Bronner’s.

4. Ecover Cream Scrub

This gentle abrasive scrub from Ecover will help you tackle those tough cleaning spots in the kitchen—cookers, enamel, chrome and refrigerators—without toxic chemicals. The scrub removes grime and grease using just vegetable glycerin, water, calcium carbonate, xanthan gum, phenoxyethanol, coco-glucoside and bentonite. All of these ingredients earned either an A or B rating individually, and overall the cleaner scored an A from the EWG. To top it off, this scrub comes packaged in Ecover’s PlantPlastic, a type of plastic made from sugarcane, not crude oil.

5. Green Shield Organic Glass Cleaner, Fresh

Shine your kitchen windows with this cleaner that earned an A from the EWG. It makes windows gleam with just five ingredients: acetic acid, glycine soja (soybean) oil, vegetable glycerin, water and peppermint (mentha piperita). All of the ingredients earned A ratings individually from the EWG, except peppermint (mentha piperita), a potential allergen that earned a C rating.

6. Method All-Purpose Surface Cleaner, Ginger Yuzu

Clean every surface in your kitchen with this all-purpose cleaner made of ingredients derived from corn and coconut. The mix includes potassium citrate, water, sodium carbonate, alkyl polyglucoside (C10-16), decyl glucoside, sodium gluconate, bixa orellana (annatto) seed extract, laureth-1 and fragrance. This cleaner earned a B rating from the EWG. It likely didn’t earn a higher rating because it contains fragrance, a non-specific ingredient. Also, laureth-1 earned a C rating individually from the EWG because it can contain impurities that are concerning health-wise.

7. Whole Foods Market Green MISSION Organic All-Purpose Spray Cleaner & Degreaser, Lemon Zest

This cleaner may have a long name, but it doesn’t have a long list of ingredients. It cleans your whole kitchen with just acetic acid, vegetable glycerin, glycine soja (soybean) oil, citric acid, water, quillaja saponaria (soapbark), malic acid and citrus medica limonum (lemon) extract. The only slightly concerning ingredient is citrus medica limonum (lemon) extract, which earned a C rating individually as a potential allergen. Overall, this cleaner from Whole Foods Market earned an A from the EWG.

8. Attitude Bathroom Mold and Mildew Cleaner

When you need to get rid of mold and mildew, it might seem like you have to turn to toxic cleaners to do it. Not with Attitude’s mold and mildew cleaner. This one scrubs through residues with just water, citric acid, ethanol, alkyl polyglucoside (C10-16), coco-glucoside, melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) leaf oil, essential oils and citrus aurantifolia (lime) oil. The tea tree and lime oils are naturally powerful against mold and mildew. This cleaner earned an A from the EWG.

9. Citra Solv Citra Clear Natural Window & Glass Cleaner

Remove smudges and streaks from windows, glass, counters, chrome and appliances with this cleaner from Citra Solv. It cleans with just acetic acid, vinegar, water, decyl glucoside and citrus aurantium dulcis (orange) peel oil. This product earned an A from the EWG. The only slightly concerning ingredient is the orange peel oil, which earned a C from the EWG as a potential allergen.

10. Bon Ami Powder Cleanser

Although this cleanser from Bon Ami has been around since 1886, it recently received an upgraded formula. The original formula included just feldspar and tallow soap. Today’s revamped cleanser includes the company’s trademark feldspar and limestone (calcium carbonate) as gentle abrasive cleaners, as well as sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), sodium carbonate, sodium tallowate, cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, alkyl polyglucosides, zea mays (corn) oil and elaeis guineensis (African oil palm) oil. This A-rated product from the EWG can clean all surfaces of your kitchen from stovetops to counters to sinks. It’s also packaged in a recyclable paper and steel container.

This is just a sampling of products in the Environmental Working Group’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning database. Visit the database for more information.

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image: jeremysalmon