You can clean kitchen sponges by either dropping them into boiling water or leaving them in the dishwasher, but these inexpensive and brittle items quickly lose their shape and effectiveness.
We suggest using kitchen scrapers -- easy cleaning plastic pieces that can knock all food remnants off dishes, pots, and pans. Then, replace your primary kitchen 'finishing sponge' once a week for items not going directly into the dishwasher.
Researchers in Germany found that icky RG2-related bacteria (the kind that can cause foodborne disease) stays on your sponge even if you clean it in the microwave or in boiling water.
“From a long-term perspective, sponge sanitation methods appear not sufficient to effectively reduce the bacterial load in kitchen sponges and might even increase the shares of RG2-related bacteria,” the researchers wrote in the paper.
They went on to suggest we should be changing our sponges every week, adding that it’s an easily affordable option for staying hygienic. We do as well.