The increased incidence of foodborne illness and the growing use of chemical sanitizers in the food industry led the authors to an investigation of alternative, chemical-free methods of sanitizing surfaces using fiber cloths with hot water. The sanitizing performance of kitchen fiber cloths and all-purpose fiber cloths sanitized with hot water at 167 degrees F (75 degrees C) was compared with that of generic cloths such as antibacterial cloths and cleaning cloths sanitized with hot water at 167 degrees F (75 degrees C) or chemical sanitizers--quaternary ammonium compound (QAC) and hypochlorite. The QAC sanitizer resulted in the lowest overall concentrations of Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. The sanitizing performance of the kitchen fiber cloths was similar to that of the antibacterial cloths (S. aureus: p = .144; E. coli: p = .120) and cleaning cloths (S. aureus: p = .297; E. coli: p = .062) sanitized with QAC. Use of the fiber cloths resulted in lower concentrations of bacteria on stainless-steel kitchen surfaces, compared with the use of the generic cloths sanitized with hot water at 167 degrees F (75 degrees C). Concentrations of bacteria on the surfaces after use of the all-purpose fiber cloths were similar to concentrations of bacteria after use of the generic cloths sanitized with hypochlorite.