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looking in the rerfigeratorThe dilemma: You have a nasty, dirty refrigerator from spills and old food. How do you clean it? With spray bottle cleaner its artificial smells and colors? Those aren't exactly something you want near your food. How about soap and water? That could work but how do you be sure you get the soap off without hosing it down? Again not something you want near food.

Where does this leave you? Soap and spray bottle cleaner are out so what can you use? There is one thing that most people have in their kitchen that works wonders. Look in the very back of your pantry. Behind the flour and oil and you'll find it.

What is this magical item? Baking soda. Yes, baking soda. Add about 1/2 cup to a bucket of hot water and you have the perfect refrigerator cleaner that is safe to have around food, easy to rinse off and is funky color and smell free.

Pull out the shelves and drawers and wash them in the sink with soap and hot water where you know you can get them well rinsed. Then wipe down the entire inside of your fridge with the baking soda water. Use a clean rag and clean water to wipe off the baking soda and you have a chemical free sparkling clean fridge.

Baking soda works so well because it is mildly abrasive so it removes stains easily. Baking soda also naturally removes odors so any food smells should be removed as well. Another benefit here is that when you dump the water down the drain you will be cleaning and deodorizing you garbage disposal a little too.

This is also very good for a freezer in that the hot water doesn't freeze to the inside right away. Just work quickly.

  • Jon

    I just used baking soda not even 10 minutes ago before I saw this hack... great tip!

  • Lou

    We buy raw milk from a dairy in NH. This has to be kept pretty cold, as you can imagine. Unfortunately, it comes in old fashioned glass bottles, which often get banged around in transport. last week, a bottle decided to give in and dropped an entire half gallon of non-pasteurized milk (complete with separated cream) all over my beautiful refrigerator.

    Not a happy time.

    It required removing every shelf and drawer to clean them separately, but the refrigerator itself required a lot of work too. I used a spray cleaner my wife makes with about 3 tablespoons of white vinegar and 8 or 10 drops of lavender essential oil in a 1 liter spray bottle, filled to the top with water. The vinegar kills germs more effectively than most people realize, and is non-toxic. The lavender is of course optional, but sets off the vinegar smell until it dissipates. Cleanup is a simple wipe up with a dry cloth.

    One week later, no bad smells, either from milk or vinegar, and the refrigerator is actually cleaner than before the milk bottle broke.


  • Fletcher

    I've done the open box (mixed results; apparently our choice of foods can overpower even the largest box); am trying this method this weekend.

  • 3 Comments / 1 Pages

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