Raise your hand if you dread unloading your dishwasher. There’s no way around it; that appliance full of clean dishes must be emptied, and unfortunately, there aren’t any magic kitchen fairies to do it for us.
Unloading the dishwasher used to be a pretty haphazard process for me, involving a million trips back and forth from the dishwasher to various cabinets and drawers. There was no rhyme or reason to how I loaded the dishwasher, resulting in intermingling silverware, matching bowls and plates in different locations, and a random spatula thrown in there somewhere. It was chaos, and it would always take me FOREVER to put everything away.
Recently, I learned that the ultimate trick to an easy-breezy unloading process is simply thinking ahead a little! Thankfully, it’s not rocket science.
I compiled four simple tips and tricks that make unloading your dishwasher easy, fast, and even (dare I say it?) fun! Not to be dramatic, but these tips are truly life-changing and have helped me save so much time in the kitchen. So keep reading to learn how you can, too!
1. Start with the end in mind.
If your end goal is an organized, strategic unloading process, then your loading process must also be organized and strategic! It makes sense, right?
The easiest way to load your dishwasher in an organized fashion is to create “zones” for each type of dish that you load. Think of your dishwasher as a multi-story house with separate rooms, or “zones,” for your dishes. All the plates share a room, all the bowls bunk together, and the silverware gets cozy, too!
This way, all the similar items will already be grouped when it’s unloading time, saving you all those trips back and forth to the same cabinet or drawer!
So what’s the best zone for each type of dish? Here are some tips:
Place fragile, delicate, and glass items on the top shelf to keep them away from the powerful spray arm on the bottom of the dishwasher. This will include your wine glasses, coffee mugs, drinking glasses, and fragile bowls.
Did you know that you can lower the top shelf in your dishwasher to accommodate tall items like wine glasses? I learned this recently on TikTok, and it blew my mind. Simply press and hold the tabs on either side of the shelf and push down firmly. Just pull up on the shelf to raise it again!
Your larger items, like plates, large bowls, and pots and pans (if you don’t hand-wash them), should go on the bottom shelf. Face all these items towards the center of the dishwasher to ensure they get nice and clean.
Silverware basket/cutlery rack
If your dishwasher has a silverware basket, load the basket with tines and spoons facing up to ensure they get cleaned properly. Load all knives face-down to avoid hurting yourself! Group your spoons, forks, and knives separately to make for easy unloading, but make sure to spread your spoons out so they don’t nest together.
I love my Beko dishwasher because it has a third rack for my silverware in addition to a cutlery basket! I like using the third rack because it allows me to spread out my silverware to ensure an even clean while still allowing plenty of room in the adjustable middle rack for bowls and glasses.
2. Know your dishwasher and use it to your advantage.
Can you believe that people used to hand-wash everything? In our beautiful, modern-day world, thank goodness we have dishwashers to do most of the work for us. And dishwashing technology has come a long way!
I encourage you to learn about your dishwasher’s capabilities and unique technological features so you can use them to your advantage. For example, does your dishwasher have any special washing or drying capabilities? Taking advantage of these features will help you save time by ensuring that every dish is clean and dry when it’s time to unload.
My Beko dishwasher has some innovative features that make unloading a breeze. One feature I particularly love is Beko CornerIntense® technology.
You know how dishwashers have that rotating piece at the bottom that sprays water? That’s called the spray arm, which usually rotates on a fixed axis so that it makes a circular spray pattern. The problem with most spray arms is that they don’t get the corners of your dishwasher, resulting in not-so-clean dishes (ew).
Beko’s spray arm rotates on a moveable axis, spraying each corner of the appliance, so I can be confident that every single dish is getting clean!
Another pet peeve of mine is having to hand-dry my clean dishes, which slows down the unloading process. Thankfully, my Beko dishwasher has a SelfDry™ feature that solves this problem for me! When it’s done, the dishwasher unseals and opens the door to let in ambient air that dries the dishes naturally.
This innovative feature dries the dishes and does so without the use of extra energy! In fact, it uses 25% less energy than the average dishwasher. Win-win.
3. Use a two-tiered approach.
Another time-consuming aspect of the unloading process is the back and forth between the dishwasher and cabinets or drawers. To combat this tiring method, follow two easy steps: open all drawers and cabinets before you start unloading, and group items together before putting them away.
Opening your drawers and cabinets before you start unloading will not only save time but will prevent you from awkwardly fumbling with a handle or knob while holding fragile dishes. It also allows you to visualize where your clean dishes will go, so you can make room beforehand if necessary.
As I’m unloading each “zone” of my dishwasher, I like to group similar items on a clean counter before putting them away. For example, stack all your plates together on the counter and then carry them to the cabinet. Just be careful with heavy items, and carry them in smaller stacks if necessary.
4. Make it fun!
I know that unloading a dishwasher sounds anything but fun, but hear me out on this one. I always dread everyday tasks a little less if a fun game is involved. With just a little creativity, you may even find it enjoyable. Here are some ways you can make this mundane task just a bit more fun:
Set an alarm
I find that setting an alarm turns unloading the dishwasher into a fun little challenge that encourages me to work faster. Set an alarm for five minutes and see if you can empty the dishwasher in that time!
You can also use the stopwatch feature on your phone to see exactly how long it takes you to unload. Next time you unload, try to beat your own record!
Get the family involved
Here’s an opportunity to teach your kids (and husband) that chores can be fun! Challenge the kids to unload the dishwasher in a certain amount of time, or have them set their own personal record by using a stopwatch.
Depending on your kids’ ages, you could also make up a fun song to sing while emptying the dishwasher. Or, reward them with a special treat afterward for a job well done.
Play some music
Music always seems to make the time go by faster, so put on your favorite upbeat song while you unload. Songs with a fast tempo always make me work a little faster! You can also make it a challenge to empty the dishwasher by the end of a song or two.
Well, there you have it, four easy-to-incorporate steps that will help you save time, streamline the unloading process, and even have a little fun while you’re at it. If you enjoyed this article and want to learn more, be sure to check out Beko’s Healthy Kitchen Initiative.
This is the second part of our Beko series. If you enjoyed this post, be sure to check out our article on How To Clean As You Go While Cooking.
I found it intriguing that people actually stress about emptying their dishwasher. I find it satisfying to put everything back in its place.
Oh yeah? I can’t say that it is my favorite thing to do but when my husband and I do it together I quite enjoy it.
Love your recipes!
Thank you Sandra.