The Quick And Painless Way To Clean A Salad Spinner

If you've ever tried to make a salad using a salad spinner, then you know that cleaning those little bits of lettuce and vegetables out of the grooves seems to take forever. While you can rinse and scrub repeatedly, those little pieces of greens seem to cling tenaciously to the inner bowl. Instead of picking out the little remaining food shreds by hand to ensure you get all the leftover bits, there is a quick and painless way to clean a salad spinner.

In case you don't know, a salad spinner is a kitchen tool that chefs and home cooks use to wash salad greens. The contraption spins, using centrifugal force to remove excess water from the leaves. This helps salad dressing stick to the greens without getting watery.

Not everything escapes through the little slits. Along with the water, tiny bits of food can also wedge themselves firmly in its crevices, making cleaning your salad spinner a challenge. Don't fret; a quick and painless way to clean a salad spinner does exist.

Use this quick and painless method to clean your spinner

Once you've enjoyed a tasty salad recipe — perhaps a complex cobb salad or a simple salad with a basic vinegarette — it's time to start cleaning. Use a sponge to wipe out both bowls that make up the salad spinner with dish soap and water. Next, pour a good amount of grease-fighting dish soap into the salad spinner to remove leftover oils.

Add at least half a bowl of warm water. Attach the lid and push the pump down repeatedly to get a fast spin. Spinning the basket in warm, soapy water should loosen any food remnants, forcing them out of the basket.

For the lid and its spinner parts, dismantle them by hand, especially if the brand has enclosed parts on the cover that can trap water and get moldy. If that's the case, unscrew the tabs on the enclosed part and pull the pump off the lid. Clean the pump, lid, and spring with soapy water and dry thoroughly before reassembling.

If you still find it challenging to get all the food waste out, the easiest way to clean your salad spinner is to simply put it in the dishwasher. Because most salad spinners are plastic, they are likely dishwasher safe. However, be sure to read the product manual first because it is always better to be safe than sorry.

Cleaning a salad spinner is a must

Usually made from plastic, most salad spinners come with a removable inner bowl, much like a strainer basket, and an outer bowl that nestles over the inner piece. The real magic happens on the cover as it has a spinning tool that rotates the inside, driving water through the slits in the strainer basket into the outer bowl.

Little remains of greens and other vegetables can get stuck in those slits in the strainer basket, and while lettuce and vegetables are healthy, leaving those bits behind is not. According to the Centers for Disease Control, leafy greens and other vegetables and fruits can be contaminated with harmful germs like E. coli, norovirus, Salmonella, Listeria, and Cyclospora.

While food-borne illnesses are no fun for anyone, adults aged 65 and older, small children, those with weakened immune systems, and pregnant people run the greatest risk for serious illnesses from food poisoning. Thus, the reason salad spinners exist today.

However, if you don't clean your salad spinner correctly, all that washing and spinning is for naught, especially since rotting lettuce (or any food for that matter) is unpleasant and unhealthy. If you find you are wasting all those good leafy greens often, try these tips to get the most out of your lettuce and greens.