Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Going Green: To Clean a Coffee Pot

If you already know how to clean your coffee pot, you have permission to go frolic in the nearest fields and feel fancy free that you are a wonder-person (I'm all inclusive here). If you do NOT, however, know how to properly clean a coffee pot, you should hang your head in shame, look at your sad pot, and tell it that you will soon be a much, much nicer owner.

Confession: I didn't learn this skill until about a year ago. I had always just stuck my pot in the dishwasher once a week. Okay... once a month. Okay... if I remembered.

Anyways, my mom, The Queen of All Things Green, taught me these two neat tricks that I now use once a week or once every 2 weeks. If you drink as much coffee as we do in the Preston house, your pot probably needs this TLC right away!

Next confession: This is my dirty coffee pot -

Gross! Stains, residue, blech! 

So here's what you'll need:

A dirty coffee pot
Salt (don't you love my homemade label? We're not fancy here, folks)
Distilled White Vinegar

First, I like to get the stains off the pot. To do that, I put about 1 Tablespoon of salt in the pot and some water. Just enough to get the salt moving freely in the pot. Swirl around.

Before with stains:

After... no stains!

See the difference? The salt acts as an exfoliant, if you will, to the stains and gently rubs them away.

Next, to clean the internal workings of the coffee maker, you'll need to pull out the trusty vinegar. I mix about 1/4 to 1/2 cup of vinegar to maybe 6 or 8 cups of water. It's not an exact science.

Pour into the water tank of the coffee maker and let it percolate. The vinegar runs through the maker and cleans out the pipes, so to speak. Make sure to run a second pot through of WATER ONLY as the last step. You want to make sure you get all of the vinegar taste out of the coffee maker before you brew coffee. Then wash the carafe as usual.

Happy Cleaning!

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