Help Us Design the Kitchen Clean-Up Products of Your Dreams

Five Two is back in action!

January 26, 2023

Hi there,

For those of you who may not know, we have a product line called Five Two made up of home essentials that we design and produce with help from all of you, the Food52 Community.

Our first product was this cutting board.

Two of our best sellers were this apron with built-in potholders (an idea that came from two separate Food52 members!) and this over-the-sink drying rack which rolls up when you don’t need it.

We’ve been quiet on the Five Two front over the past year and wanted to let you know that we’re firing up its engines again—and we want your help.

This time, we’re tackling kitchen clean up: that means everything from washing dishes to wiping your counters to storing your leftovers. Our first step is to get your feedback on what you want—and need—us to fix in your kitchen, and we’ll come back with some product ideas and sketches for our community to review.

First up: We want to know what needs improvement and why. We know you’ve got strong opinions on clean-up so we want to hear from you!

  • Can we improve upon the average soap dispenser?
  • Is there a better way to dry dishcloths?
  • What features do you wish your drying racks had? Should they be collapsable? Do you want them to hold your stemware, cutting boards, or knives?
  • What kinds of tools do you need to clean your dishes?
  • How about storage solutions for sponges and cleaning tools?
  • Under-the-sink storage solutions: What do you store under there? How can we help?
  • What materials, sizes, and features do you want to see in your containers for leftovers?
  • Air tight lids—what features matter to you?

Share your thoughts in the article comments below. We’ll be pouring over these in the next week and coming back to you soon with next steps.

Can’t wait to hear what you think—let your opinions fly!

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See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Adrianne Herzog
    Adrianne Herzog
  • Megan Taylor
    Megan Taylor
  • CincyContessa
  • jen
  • Susan Summers
    Susan Summers
Food52 (we cook 52 weeks a year, get it?) is a food and home brand, here to help you eat thoughtfully and live joyfully.


Adrianne H. March 10, 2023
Of course! @creatively_explained just solved my wanting eco-friendly baby wipes/disinfectant wipes (to clean literally my whole house for the rest of forever) dilemma :-D
Megan T. February 16, 2023
There are a million covered cake stands, but I've only found one company who makes a rectangle one and it's not very good quality and fully plastic. You could very easily improve upon it.
CincyContessa February 16, 2023
The bane of my existence is the drawer in my kitchen - the drawer where I have my extra spoons, beaters, measuring spoons, icing spatulas...Yes, I have a marble crock with the frequently used pieces but I have an entire drawer of clips to hold bags, etc...and all of the above...drawer dividers do not work because some of these are wider pieces...I organize it, it gets messy, I do an adjustable drawer divider so it could be used with various widths and lengths would be great...I have not seen any that would work online or in stores.
Lynn R. February 16, 2023
Try Container Store! Works for me!
jen February 13, 2023
I would love to have a better, more efficient way to clean my stove top. It is a gas stove w/ cast iron grates and I am a messy cook. I have used many different methods to clean it, stainless steel cleaning wipes, sprays, all purpose sprays with a sponge/ paper towels- all work, but are a huge pain. I would love a "genius" method to clean it all up.
Susan S. February 4, 2023
i'd like some knd of funnel device to make it easier to get peppercorns into a pepper grinder.
jane F. February 5, 2023
great idea!!
Maidli February 4, 2023
I'm involved with a Maine based company who offers a wood fiber cleaning cloth. I keep one at every sink in the house. Bacteria/germs don't adhere to wood fiber, which makes me comfortable knowing I'm not dragging germs around when cleaning counters. It's inexpensive (usually sold in multiples) and rinses stain free under the tap (when cleaning up coffee grounds or tomato sauce) This material could be used to create a custom 52 cleaning cloth!
Jennifer W. February 4, 2023
I would love a new dish drying rack. Currently I use a folding bamboo dish rack:, and I have to separately purchase a flatware holder. It actually fits a surprising amount of dishes and glasses. However it starts to mildew, especially the flatware holder, and eventually I have to throw it away. If you guys could make it out of the same stuff you use for your over the sink drying rack it would be great.

Also a good sponge holder that doesn't constantly fall down into the sink. Maybe it could even hang off the dish rack?

Pull out under the kitchen sink storage drawers . Two tiered and single tiered that fit around garbage disposal.

Food storage: No leak borosilicate containers that can nest with interchangeable and or nesting lids;
For dry foods:
-large borosilicate containers
-wide openings so you can use a scoop
-preferably with an airtight lid
-grooved on the side for no slip when handling the container
-chalk label on the side big enough to write the name of the contents and put an expiration date

I love the swedish dish towels but I don't have a great place for them to dry.

Dena K. February 3, 2023
Practical way to dry and store dishwashing gloves (combined with sponges and soap would be great). Something I can leave out on a countertop would be ideal.
janie B. February 3, 2023
Hi I love everything that I have ever purchased from Food 52 including the cutting board. My clean up challenge is getting stove top grill pans clean. I have a non-stick one as well as a Staub heavy duty one. No matter what I cook on them, I am left with a gross residue. I have tried Barkeepers' Friend, Baking Powder, etc with non-abrasive cleaning pads. I really enjoy using these pans but am reluctant to do so because the clean up is so unsatisfying. Not sure if this should be addressed through the cleanser or the utensil to get into the grooves. Good luck and thanks!
Gloriebee February 3, 2023
I love my stainless appliances, but also live in an extremely hard water state which equals a ridiculous amount of time scrubbing off water deposits. Something like a spray and buff would be lovely. At least something that didn't leave streaks that I then have to buff out.

Under the sink is an utter disaster. I have a lazy susan and bins to corral the mess, but it continues to be a disaster, partly due to having four different adults with completely different ideas about what needs to go where....

Better food storage bins/organizers for the fridge and freezer. I have repurposed freezer bins from those that have been carted off the premises to roughly corral the odd frozen stuff (mainly all those odds an ends that end up going into stock) from cascading all over the floor when the door is open. Actually....thinking of that, I would love a gliding top shelf with a guard rail across the top so I could actually grab the frozen loaf of bread or the ice cream bucket without having to unload the whole thing?

And please? A potato scrubbing brush that doesn't fall apart within six months? The Irish is showing here....this family are huge fans of baked potatoes. And, as we know, potatoes tend to be filthy little buggers.

finally, a way to clean "green" bags. I know they aren't supposed to last forever, but they do work well for a very long period of time. It would be nice to know when they died and have a better way of cleaning them. Currently, I turn them inside out, rinse them and drape them over the drying rack.

Drying Rack! Grooves to hold the freshly washed knives so they can air dry. Open ends so I can slide the fat cutting board into a space where air can get to all parts. That would also work nicely once they were oiled up.

Finally, how about some nice rendered fat containers? Bacon is the most used, but I also render just about every protein source there is. I would be happy with Duck and Bacon ones though....
Dionne G. February 3, 2023
Food Cleanup: My nemesis are kitchen sink scrubbers / sponges / cloths. I can’t stand even the slightest smell on a dishcloth so we tend to go through 1 a day if not more. We have an open farmhouse sink (from 1900) on metal legs so I keep a pretty metal bucket under the sink to collect rags. I also use the Food52 Uashmama bags for clean recycling (glass, plastic, aluminum) under our exposed sink. So the issue is we have never found a good, sturdy, long living, sustainable dish brush. I love the idea of the Zero Waste product line, especially the bamboo brush with the replaceable head, but the handle is way to narrow and the metal hook and metal ring on the head bend out of place before the actual head can even be replaced. I loath the wastefulness of plastic scrubbers but they are the most effective for my dish/pot/pan type and so we are replacing them monthly. If I could have a beautiful effective sustainable dish management system (brush with bristles, cloths, sponge - optional) I would be in love!
maggie February 3, 2023
One more request: I have a fantastic Boos wood cutting board. It needs sanding to remove deep knife marks. Any easy sanding equipment for the kitchen?
maggie February 3, 2023
fragrance-free EFFECTIVE laundry wash sheets. Many contenders out there but few actually clean clothes.
maggie February 3, 2023
Kitchen cleanup: my silicone measuring cups and silicone storage bags get stained so easily. Even a paste of baking soda and white vinegar do not work. How about a solution?
maggie February 3, 2023
Glass and silicone food storage (No Plastic), maybe with a rubber ring?
hell23 February 2, 2023
Eco friendly hand soap, cabinet storage and reusable food storage
Pamela L. February 2, 2023
Wish it was easier to get the water/salt deposits off of my drying rack. This is the mostly likely reason they end up in the trash.
mary February 2, 2023
Produce storage bags!!
rbrock1225 February 2, 2023
I'm a _huge_ fan of the Bluapple balls to extend produce life. The same company started selling a produce bag/liner:
The liner is basically an oversized thick paper towel. I wrote the company and suggested that they should sell refills of just the liners but they didn't leap on that. Oh well. I ended up buying these bamboo paper towels:
In theory, they can be washed & reused. I've been using the same plastic bags since 2020.
Two other comments: The Bluapple site has a great link where you can find the optimal way to store your produce:
(sometimes w/wet toweling, otherwise dry.)
I also use the lightweight mesh bags when I shop for produce:
I keep them in a shopping bag and just find the right size for the item at the grocery store. If the get dirty, I simply turn them inside out & throw them in the laundry
Diana S. February 2, 2023
Food storage that's completely plastic free, no o-ring!

Unpaper towels made from natural or recycled materials with prints to distract from staining!

Green Pan collaboration sheet pan!
Meganjoys February 1, 2023
I would love more Swedish dish cloths - they are the best! I also like rectangular glass storage containers with airtight lids. Lastly - do many dish towels stay damp way to long. Definitely like cute, but absorbent and quick drying towels