No one wants a stinky kitchen. But between cooking, hosting, eating and congregating, kitchens are the busiest rooms in a home. With that kind of action, they’re bound to rack up a few unwanted smells.
Luckily, there are things you can do to prevent and eliminate unwanted odours. From cleaning hacks to actionable items, here are 14 ways to banish kitchen smells for good this year.
Clean Immediately After Cooking
Wafting smells can be enticing when you’re cooking. Once dinner is done, however, it’s another story. Anyone who has ever left dishes out for more than a few hours knows that pots and pans with food remnants begin to smell pretty quickly. To avoid pungent air, get into the habit of cleaning up as soon as you’re done eating.
Take Out the Trash
It seems simple, but taking out the trash, recycling and compost every night after dinner is another good way to ensure your kitchen is cleared of unwanted smells and odours. Otherwise, all of those scraps and remnants sit there, giving them time to waft through the kitchen and into the rest of your home.
Use Your Vented Hood Range
Your vented hood range is good for more than cute kitchen decor. Hood range fans and external vents suck up smoke and other odours from the kitchen. Then, they push them through the ducts and outside of your home, eliminating unwanted smells as they arise. In other words, flip yours on when you start cooking.
Put Out Coffee Grinds
There are many natural ways to soak up unwanted odours in the kitchen, like placing a bowl of coffee grinds on the counter overnight. White vinegar with lemon or baking soda also works, as these items help to absorb odours and eliminate unwanted smells.
Use a Ceiling Fan
If you’ve got one, turn on the fan when cooking. Kitchen fans can help to improve air circulation, pushing any unwanted smells outside. The result? Fresher air, faster.
Invest in an Air Purifier
Air purifiers do more than reduce the number of airborne allergens and viruses in your home; they also filter unwanted odours. If you notice your kitchen hasn’t been smelling its freshest lately, consider investing in an air purifier to help it get back to its best-smelling self again.
Deep Clean the Oven
To keep your cooking vessel as clean and fresh as possible, do a deep oven clean every three months. That means scrubbing the tough oven interior, but don’t forget to tidy up the burners and grates, too. In between deep cleans, wipe down and sanitize the oven every night after cooking to keep odours in check. Doing so may also make those big cleans slightly easier.
Strong odours don’t just stink up the kitchen; they can also settle onto nearby fabrics. If you have an open-concept home or an eat-in area with fabric covers on benches or chairs, consider spraying them with a deodorizer once a month. Not a fan of the store-bought kind? Sprinkle baking soda onto fabrics and carpets and let it sit for 15-20 minutes. Then vacuum it up for a fresher-smelling home.
Wash Window Treatments
Fabrics on window treatments may also collect gross smells. Be sure to wash drapes and clean blinds at least once every three to six months to help eliminate unwanted dust while also keeping your home smelling fresh and clean.
Fire Up the Oil Diffuser
Essential oils may not rid the home of bad smells, but they can help cover them up. If you want your kitchen to smell more pleasant, consider adding citrus essential oils to your diffuser. They’ll add a fresh, zesty smell to your kitchen space, and as a bonus, they may also help to boost your mood.
Clean the Garbage Disposal
If you have a garburator, remember to clean it out at least once weekly. In between, consider tossing in lemon and lime peels or other citrus bits to help break up the odours and give your kitchen that extra boost of zesty freshness.
Crack the Windows
One great way to help circulate the air in your house is to open a window. Pop kitchen windows while cooking or doing dishes (if weather permits) to help usher out those unwanted smells sooner.
Fill Up a Simmer Pot
Another great way to get the house smelling seasonal and fresh is by using a simmer pot. It’s a nice way to use leftover citrus peels or turning fruit, plus it’s more natural than candles and artificial scents. To concoct one, bring a saucepan of water to a boil, add ingredients (apples, oranges, cinnamon and cloves are a great base), then keep the water at a slow simmer to make your kitchen smell delicious.
Light a Scented Candle
If you’re looking for a quick odour-eliminating fix, lighting a candle is also a tried-and-true method. Scented candles are great for masking garlic, fish and other lingering post-dinner smells. Plus, they come in various kitchen-friendly and seasonal scents, like cinnamon, vanilla or freshly baked cookies. For an eco-friendly alternative, try lighting a 100 per cent beeswax candle, which are naturally scented and don’t contain harmful chemicals.