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10 Foods You Can Use to Clean Stuff

Clean up without the chemicals!

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Lemon is well revered for its many benefits in both the health food world as well as for cleaning. Its natural disinfectant qualities make it a great alternative to chemical-ridden sprays. You can simply squeeze half a lemon on your countertops and wipe down with a cloth, or squeeze into a spray bottle with some water. Check out these 10 unexpected ways to use lemon around the house.

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Rice isn’t just a pile of carbs on your plate! You can actually swish a scoop of uncooked grains with warm water and a little detergent in the bottom of bottles, vases and more to scrub hard-to-reach spots. You may also like these secret cleaning tips from the pros.

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They’re great on your grilled burger, but they’re also great for cleaning the grill, when the burgers are cooked! To use onions to get that tough grime off your grill, simply turn on your grill, chop an onion in half, stab it with a fork, and glide it along the grate. You won’t believe how much dirt and grease it picks up. Here are more crazy cleaning tips that actually work.

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You love it with your fries, but now it’s time to love it with your copper pots and pans. Ketchup and salt can liven up your dull copper in no time. Just squeeze a blob of ketchup onto a cleaning cloth, add a generous amount of salt, and rub in circles onto your tarnished copper.

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You already know it adds the perfect crunch to your salad, and even serves as a soothing eye mask, but what about its ability to clean off crayon marks? That’s right, you can actually peel off the skin of a cucumber and glide it along crayon stains on your walls left behind by your little ones. If you like using food for cleaning, you might also like these 11 ways to make your house greener.

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walnutgrey color/Shutterstock


When you notice a scuff or scratch on your wood furniture, don’t fret! Simply rub a walnut (with the shell removed) onto the blemish and watch as it disappears right before your eyes.

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grapefruitTim UR/Shutterstock


This delicious citrus fruit is full of acid that makes for a great alternative to strong chemical products. To use it, cut a grapefruit in half, sprinkle it liberally with salt, wet the surface you’re cleaning and rub your grapefruit all over.

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Family Handyman


Put that white vinegar, stored way back in your cooking cabinet, to good use, lifting stains from the carpet, brightening windows and so much more. It can also clean rusty tools! Here’s what you need to know about cleaning rusty tools with vinegar.

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If you have a jar of mayonnaise you know you’re never going to use, why not use it for cleaning? You can get rid of those water stains left on the table from your drinks by applying a blob of mayo on a small towel and wiping over the stain. Let it rest for half an hour, then wipe away! Follow it up by buffing the stain with a clean cloth. Cleaning doesn’t have to take forever. Here’s how to clean your bathroom faster and better.

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tartarMichelle Lee Photography/Shutterstock

Cream of Tartar

Use this baking ingredient to make your aluminum pans sparkle! You can remove the grayish residue that shows up after you run them through the dishwasher by filling the pan with water and adding 1 tablespoon of cream of tartar for each quart of water. Bring it to a boil, let simmer for 10 minutes, then pour out the water. Allow the pan to cool, wash and rinse. Did you know you can also use cream of tartar to clean your car?

Alexa Erickson
Alexa is an experienced lifestyle and news writer, currently working with Reader's Digest, Shape Magazine and various other publications. She loves writing about her travels, health, wellness, home decor, food and drink, fashion, beauty and scientific news. Follow her traveling adventures on Instagram: @living_by_lex, send her a message: [email protected] and check out her website: