Food & Drink

17 Surprising Things You Can Put In The Dishwasher

This kitchen appliance does a whole lot more than wash plates.

The dishwasher is the pride and joy of anyone who's lucky enough to have one. (And anyone who doesn't have one resents it each and every time they're faced with a sink full of dirty dishes.) If you're part of the "dishwasher-in" crowd, you'd better be sure you're treating this appliance right. There are a number of things you cannot put in the dishwasher -- be warned. But then there are a couple of unexpected items that you CAN put through a cycle for a deep clean.

If you're just putting dishes, cups and silverware in your dishwasher, you aren't getting the most out of this kitchen appliance. The dishwasher can help out with so much more than just kitchen items. It can clean clothes, shine up the car and can even help prep dinner.

Put these items in your dishwasher and make your life easier.

1
Potatoes
Flickr: graibeard
This will change your life. Put them through the rinse & hold cycle, without detergent of course.
2
Keyboard
Flickr: ericnvntr
Nothing gets the dirt out from under the keys like the dishwasher can. Don't even bother trying.
3
Shoes
Flickr: Sydney Lorichon
Yeah, it's a little gross to clean your shoes in the same place you wash your dishes, but it works really well. Just make sure the heat-dry setting is turned off because it could ruin any rubber on your shoes. And, if you run an empty cycle after you washed your shoes, that should get rid of any possible shoe to plate cross over.
4
Plastic Toys
Flickr: Horia Varlan
Plastic toys are handled by kids all day, which means they're full of germs. A quick wash in the dishwasher, storing them in the cutlery closure, gets them squeaky clean and looking like new.
5
Salmon
Flickr: gkdavie
Yep. That's right. You can cook salmon in your dishwasher. We're not saying that it'll taste amazing. We're not saying that it won't have a unpleasant affect on your dishwasher. We're not saying that it isn't a completely and totally questionable. We're just saying that it can be done. And if you're intrigued, the instructions can be found here.
6
Refrigerator Shelves
Flickr: The She-Creature
Cleaning out the refrigerator is one of the least enjoyable kitchen chores. Let the dishwasher make it easier.
7
Baseball Caps
Flickr: bobcat rock
Baseball caps get pretty sweaty, pretty fast -- especially during the hot days of summer. If you throw them in the washing machine they risk getting all bent out of shape. But you can clean them in the top rack of the dishwasher without any risk of damage.
8
Sports Gear
Flickr: r3v || cls
Just like baseball caps get sweaty, so do shin guards and knee pads. Every so often they need a deep clean. The dishwasher gets them cleaned up just like new. Just remember to keep them on the top rack.
9
Car Parts
Flickr: MinivanNinja
Yep, the dishwasher doubles as a car wash. You can put hubcaps, cup holders and change holders in the dishwasher and it'll get rid of all the grime.
10
AC Vents
Flickr: smlp.co.uk
Cleaning in between each grate of an AC vent is a tedious and daunting task, but it's one that has to be done. Rather than spending hours meticulously getting each grate, throw the vent in the dishwasher. At the end of the cycle, they'll look brand new.
11
Kitchen Brushes
Flickr: plasticrevolver
For those really tough dishes, the kitchen brush comes to the rescue. Which means that this brush has seen some serious dirt. Get it germ-free in the dishwasher.
12
Window Screens
Flickr: Strupey
Window screens are one of the toughest items in your house to keep clean. They are, after all, on the exterior of the house. You can wipe them down, but the best way to get them looking good again is the dishwasher -- so long as you can fit them in.
13
Bathroom Accessories
Flickr: Smabs Sputzer
After the kitchen, the bathroom is one of the most important rooms in the house to keep clean. And it is also one of the first rooms to get dirty. Look at the soap dish and toothbrush holder, those accessories become caked up with toothpaste and soap. Put them through a cycle and they'll come out like new.
14
Plastic Brushes, Combs And Hair Accessories
Flickr: weegeebored
Seriously. Do it. Just be sure to remove all hair from these items before being put in the dishwasher. If not, you could clog up the dishwasher's drain and damage it. Plus, it's gross.
15
Oven Knobs
Flickr: rebolyte
Between the dirt from your hands and the possible food splatters from the stovetop, oven knobs are dirty. And they're a pain to clean. But knobs come out spic and span after passing through the dishwasher, in the cutlery compartment.
16
Plastic Dustpan And A Handheld Broom
Flickr: OnTask
So long as they're made out of plastic, your dustpan and a handheld broom will be safely cleaned and disinfected in the dishwasher.
17
Ceramic Cabinet Knobs
Flickr: ewen and donabel
Guys, the dishwasher is SO helpful.

Want to read more from HuffPost Taste? Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Tumblr.

Don't Put These Things In The Dishwasher