A food steamer is a device that cooks food by exposing it to steam. The heat is usually supplied by boiling water or another cooking source. It can cook vegetables, fruits, and many other foods.
Normally, it takes just a few minutes for the water in the device to boil and start cooking the food directly. However, one of the main benefits of using a food steamer is that it dries out the food because there is no need for oil or other liquid fat.
Food steaming helps preserve nutrients in fresh produce by removing excess moisture and enzymes, vitamins, and minerals. However, people often wonder if they need to clean their food steamer.
However, the most important thing to remember is that you should only clean it when it starts to smell bad. You should do this once a day and keep your food steamer clean at all times.
Don’t feel like keeping your food steamer clean; well, if you understand what this appliance is and how it works, you will realize the importance of keeping this unit clean all the time.
What Is A Food Steamer?
Food steamers are an essential kitchen appliance. It cooks food by first sealing it in a vacuum and then steaming it. They are most often used in Asian cuisines such as Chinese, Indian, or Thai cooking.
The best thing about it is that the steamer enables chefs to cook food faster and have them come out perfectly. It is an easy and convenient way to cook all types of food, such as vegetables, proteins, and grains.
Steaming food is a convenient way to cook food when you don’t have time or want to use too much energy. It does not use any heat, so it is perfect for trying to avoid the harmful effects of cooking.
The process of using a food steamer can be very easy and hassle-free. The water in the bottom of the pot boils and then condenses back into steam. This helps your food retain its moisture, making it easier to digest and softer on your teeth.
Why Clean Your Food Steamer?
A food steamer is an appliance used to cook food that uses steam instead of heat. It can cook any type of food with little to no oil or butter. There are many benefits of using a food steamer, and some people argue that it is a healthier way of cooking.
The benefits include the fact that the machine requires little to no oil, which can help reduce your cholesterol levels. There are also many health benefits, such as less time spent in the kitchen, reducing fat intake, and avoiding inflammation.
If you want to keep enjoying the benefits, you must keep the steamer clean. It’s safe to say that they should be cleaned after each use, but sometimes they might seem like too much work, and you can skip cleaning them.
When Should You Clean A Food Steamer?
Some people may be wondering if they need to clean their food steamer regularly. You must clean your food steamer as often as you use it. Otherwise, bacteria can build up and cause an infection.
If a steamer doesn’t have a self-clean button, the answer is yes! You will need to clean it regularly after each use. However, depending on the type of food you usually cook, you might not need to clean it that often.
The most important thing is that you should only do this when the steam starts to smell bad or when full of water. You should do this once a day and always keep your food steamer clean at all times.
Different Ways To Clean A Food Steamer – Step By Step
When it comes to carrying out a task in the kitchen, a few tasks are as tedious and time-consuming as cleaning a food steamer.
There are certain ways to clean a food steamer. You can use a cloth and water or use baking soda and vinegar. Cleaning a food steamer requires patience and a little elbow grease.
The process is not quick and straightforward, but if done properly, it can yield great results in terms of hygiene, time saved, and overall satisfaction with the machine’s performance.
Whichever method you prefer to use, the following pre-cleaning steps are necessary.
Cleaning a Food Steamer – Pre-Cleaning Steps
- Turn off the unit
- Remove all of the utensils from the steamer (use tongs, cleaning brush, or fingers)
- Take out any leftover contents from the container before cleaning.
- Clean out any remaining water by running it through a strainer or piece of cheesecloth into a bowl or sink if you have one.
- If not, gather up all of the excess water into a paper towel or piece of cloth and discard it in the trash can.
- You can also wipe down your countertops with paper towels if they are messy – be sure not to leave any drops of water inside.
Cleaning A Vegetable Food Steamer
Depending on the steamer you own, it can be difficult to clean. Knowing how to clean some of them will make the process easier. If you own a vegetable food steamer, here are some steps to follow to keep it clean.
- Wipe up any spills or splashes and ensure the cord is unplugged from the outlet. Let the equipment cool for a bit before cleaning. Don’t immerse the cord, the food steamer’s base, or the plug.
- Before cleaning the drip tray and water reservoir, make sure both are free of debris and water. This ensures that there is no standing water in the unit. Water will come out of the inlet if any water remains inside the unit after it has been turned upside down.
- Soapy water is the best way to clean your steamer parts. Cleaning your steamer components with soapy water can help eliminate bacteria and mold buildup. In a bowl of warm, soapy water, you can clean the drip tray, rice bowl, and steamer bowl all at once.
- Put all parts in the dishwasher on the rack after you have rinsed and dried them. Clean the reservoir with a damp cloth and soapy water.
- There are many reasons to avoid using abrasive products every day, including the fact that they can damage your hands, health, and home. However, some cleaning tasks require these tools for effective results. But for a steamer, you should avoid them.
- Lime scale build up is another problem you might face. Leaving scale on the surface could lead to the steam turning off before cooking.
- Add 3 cups of vinegar to the water reservoir after 7 to 10 uses, and then refill with water. You should not use a lid, steaming bowl, rice bowl, or drip tray.
- Plug in the timer and set it for 20 minutes. Turn off the electrical outlet when the timer goes off. After the unit has cooled, remove the water reservoir. Rinse it several times with cold water and let it dry.
Cleaning Using A Mixture Of Water And Vinegar
When dealing with any kind of contamination on a food item that has been exposed to steam, an ideal solution would be using a mixture of water and vinegar. This solution can kill bacteria and mold that could have easily grown into the food if left untreated for too long.
In order to clean a food steamer, you will need water and vinegar. You can use either one of these or use a mixture of both. However, water can evaporate, leaving residue in the steam vents, and it is advised that you use vinegar instead.
- Drain and fill the pot with hot water and vinegar
- Scrub the inside of the pot with a scrubber brush or toothbrush
- Wipe down the lid using a damp cloth
- Fill both containers of your steamer with water and vinegar.
- The solution should reach at least two inches below the bottom of your pot.
- Fill a small bowl with vinegar and place it on top of one container so that it sits on top of the liquid without touching or spilling over the edges.
- Turn your food steamer on at medium to high settings.
- Let it run for a while. Ten minutes should be enough.
- The vinegar will dissolve any leftover food bits, while the water helps to remove any marks that would otherwise leave behind stains.
The best way to clean a food steamer is to use a mixture of water and vinegar. This will remove all the grease that has been left behind from cooking or baked dishes.
In order to keep it safe for further usage, take out all the parts and put them in a bowl filled with soapy water. After cleaning, dry it thoroughly before you store it away again.
Removing & Cleaning Calcium Buildup From a Food Steamer
Calcium buildup can occur in a food steamer when it has leftovers that have been sitting in the water for a long time. Since calcium is a “heavy” metal, it stays near the water’s surface and often results in clumps.
Calcium buildup in food steamers can be caused by a number of factors. The most common cause is poor water quality and improper maintenance. Let me show you what you can do to remove the calcium buildup from your food steamer.
- Wait for the appliance to cool down and disconnect it from the power source before attempting to clean.
- Next, take the steamer apart. To disassemble the steamer, all you have to do is pop off the bowls, drip tray, and other components. This will save you a lot of time during the whole cleaning process. Take them to a hot, soapy sink and wash them thoroughly.
- You should rinse and dry steamer parts after they have been soaked in water with a towel to remove any potential residue or other particles that could cause cross-contamination.
- One quart of vinegar should be added to the base. Steam the water for 20 minutes after plugging the steamer into the power outlet.
- When using a steamer, it is important to let the water circulate for 20 minutes after plugging it in. This will ensure that the steam is able to reach all surfaces of the machine and there is no buildup of condensation.
- After you have turned off the steamer, disconnect the power and empty the vinegar. Clean the inside of the steamer with a soft brush around the heating element.
- To remove vinegar residue from the steamer’s interior, dab a clean, damp cloth across the interior.
Tips For Keeping Your Food Steamer Clean
A food steamer is an appliance that can be used to cook food in the traditional way by steaming. It is a kitchen appliance that is commonly found in Asian culture.
It can be a hassle to clean this appliance, especially if you are cooking for a large family or friends daily. However, if you are planning on buying one, we recommend picking up a cleaning brush; it will make your work easy and quick.
Cleaning it regularly allows you to maintain the quality and performance of this appliance. Here are some tips that will help you keep your steamer cleaner and healthier.
- Keep the water level in the reservoir below the fill line.
- Use a kitchen brush to remove any food particles that might have accumulated on the inside of your steamer’s lid and other parts of your appliance.
- Before storing, wash out your steamer with soap and warm water to ensure that it is good for next time use.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Should I clean my food steamer regularly?
A food steamer is the best way to cook vegetables and other food. However, people often forget to clean the steamer after use, which leads to a bad smell and even food poisoning. To avoid this, we suggest you clean your steamer regularly.
It’s important to keep the machine clean at all times, so you don’t have bad experiences from having food poisoning from a forgotten meal or an item going bad because it was left in the same place too long.
2. What is calcium buildup in a food steamer?
Calcium buildup can happen in different food steamers – from electric to microwaves. The buildup is that a lot of foods contain calcium which reacts with water and creates a chemical reaction when it comes into contact with high heat and moisture.
Calcium builds up on the heating element in these food steamers, causing them to malfunction or even burn out completely.
We all know that calcium is good for our bones and teeth, but too much of it in our diet can also cause problems. Calcium builds upon the walls of appliances like steamers, leaving a hard white or brown deposit.
It occurs when the water used to fill the steamer is not as pure as it should be, which causes a buildup of minerals in the boiler. This will cause mineral deposits on your food, leading to other problems like fire.
3. Can I use abrasive cleaners to clean any steamer part?
Some manufacturers of food steamers manufacture their products with parts that are a bit more abrasive than others.
While cleaning any part of your food steamer is possible, avoid using abrasive cleaners as these may damage the machine. They may also get stuck in places on the device and cause problems.
You don’t need necessarily need a food steamer to cook healthy meals for your family. It is possible to cook without one by using alternative methods like cooking on the stovetop or microwave.
But if you want convenience, then they can be a great investment because they save time and energy while cooking. Just make sure to keep them clean, and they will last a lifetime.