How to Clean a Coffee Mug and Ditch Those Stains

Don't love the dark rings in your coffee cups? Learn how to clean a coffee mug with stain-fighting secrets that work every time.

It’s happened to the best of us. You go to fill up your favorite mug with your morning brew, only to see gross coffee rings staring back at you. If your mugs are starting to look permanently dirty, no matter how often you wash them; don’t give up hope. Reader’s Digest has a way to get just about any stain out of just about any material.

Best DIY way to clean a coffee mug

If you’re familiar with DIY cleaning, then you won’t be surprised by the secret ingredient for cleaning coffee mugs: baking soda. Yep, it seems the magic of baking soda knows no bounds. Your stained drinkware is no exception! Sprinkle a bit of baking soda directly into the mug, and scrub with a damp cloth. The abrasiveness and cleaning power of the baking soda should wipe away the stains without much effort. Rinse thoroughly.

Best store-bought mug cleaner

According to happy Amazon reviewers, Astonish Cup Clean works wonders on coffee stains. The product is made with sodium percarbonate, also known as oxygen bleach. Here’s how it works: You add one teaspoon of Astonish to your stained mug, fill with hot water, and let cool. Then, rinse with cool water. No scrubbing needed!

One Astonish reviewer said, “I’ve got a coffee travel mug I’ve never really cleaned well, it’s over a year old. Hadn’t really noticed how bad it had become. Used this Astonish cleaner, wow! Within 10 seconds of putting the hot water in the mug with the powder already in there, old coffee slime was bubbling out in the foam. Mug came out spotless with one use.”

The most surprising mug cleaner

This mug-cleaning idea involves dental care; specifically denture tablets! It makes sense if you think about it, dentures are commonly made from the same material as your coffee mugs—porcelain.

Here’s how to clean a mug with a denture tablet:

  • Fill the mug with warm water and add a denture tablet.
  • The tablet will fizz as the cleaning action begins.
  • Wait until the fizzing stops and then rinse clean.

If these methods aren’t you’re cup of tea, no worries, there are more ways to clean coffee stains from many things.

Taste of Home
Originally Published on Taste of Home

Erica Young
Erica Young is a freelance writer and content creator, specializing in home and lifestyle pieces. She loves writing about home decor, organization, relationships, and pop culture. She holds a bachelor's degree in Journalism and Mass Communication.