Baking Soda Uses: 17 of the Most Brilliant Ways to Fix Things With Baking Soda

Baking soda is one of the most versatile home remedies in your pantry. Here’s how to use baking soda to clean your home, improve your health, and more.

Previous
1/18 View as List
Next

Make fluffier omelets

Sjo/iStock

For restaurant-quality "puffiness," add a scant one-quarter teaspoon of baking soda to every three eggs you beat. The omelet will be light and fluffy. You can also use this trick to make big fluffy curds when scrambling eggs. Don't add too much or your eggs will taste bland, and be careful not to oversalt since the soda adds a slightly salty taste.

Soften beans

EasyBuy4u/iStock

Afraid those dry beans have been on the shelf too long? Help soften them by adding a pinch of baking soda to the soaking water.

Get rid of fishy odors

jonas unruh/iStock

Been chopping something pungent? The smell of garlic or fish can linger on your fingers long after the food is gone. To avoid that, scrub your wet hands with baking soda (as if it were soap), then rinse in warm water. Your hands will smell sweet (and feel softer too).

Make a rainy day activity for kids

joannawnuk/iStock

Avoid hearing another whiny, "I'm boooored." Boil 2 cups of baking soda with one cup cornstarch and 1¼ cups water until thickened. Remove from the heat and cool. It makes a fun, pliable modeling clay that's good for a day.

Deep-clean a funky-smelling dishwasher

JimmiLarsen/iStock

Sort out the stink with a baking soda wash. Put 1 cup of baking soda in the bottom of the dishwasher and run it on a rinse cycle. If the smell persists, sprinkle a few tablespoons on the bottom of the washer to sit there between loads. There's no need to rinse it out before running the next load.

Salvage a burned pot

RyersonClark/iStock

By the time you've thought, "What's that smell?" and then remembered you left the stove on, it's often too late. The bottom of the pot is a blackened mess. You can save it, though. Scrape out as much food as you can and then fill the pan a quarter full with water. Pour in a half cup of baking soda and bring the water to a boil. Turn it off and let it sit overnight. In the morning, you can clean off the black stuff with ease.

Make tomatoes taste sweeter

Hakan Yeşil/iStock

If last year's garden tomatoes tasted dull, the action this year to ensure your garden harvest is as good as it can be. Sprinkle baking soda lightly on the soil around the base of your tomato plants; the resulting bounty will taste sweeter.

Save a mildewed book

claudio.arnese/iStock

Found mildew around the edge of a childhood classic you adored? If it's a mild case, sprinkle baking soda lightly between the pages, then put the book in a paper bag and dust the outside with more baking soda. Let it sit for several days, then remove, shake out, and dust off the baking soda, and let the book get a shot of bright sunlight. It doesn't remove mildew marks, but if you store it in a dry place, no more mildew will grow.

Take the sting out of sunburn

stevecoleimages/iStock

Pour a cup of baking soda into a lukewarm bath, then soak and relax. It will help lessen the pain more quickly. Don't miss these other home remedies for sunburn.

Control cradle cap

Evelin Elmest/iStock

The flaky scalp on infants known as cradle cap is harmless and will usually go away on its own, but most parents can't stand to look at it. Make a paste in your palm of a couple of tablespoons baking soda and a teaspoon of water. Rub gently on the affected area, being careful not to get near the eyes, then wipe off with a damp washcloth, using no soap or baby shampoo. Repeat for two to three days until the flakiness lessens. (If the baby's head is very red after this treatment, try rubbing in baby oil instead; the soda could be too abrasive).

Previous
1/18 View as List
Next

Want to stay smart and healthy?

how we use your e-mail
We will use your email address to send you this newsletter. For more information please read our privacy policy.