How To DIY Your Own All-Purpose Kitchen Cleaner

You could buy a lemon-scented all-purpose cleaner at the store, or you could make your own using real lemons and some white distilled vinegar. You see, thanks to its concentration of acetic acid, vinegar is a potent cleaner and it’s wildly useful around the kitchen for all sorts of tasks (think: windows, countertops, cabinet hardware, and more).

The only problem is that it, uh, smells like vinegar. That’s where the lemon rinds come in. The oils in the rinds help mask the harsh vinegar smell and they provide a bit of extra cleaning power. Hurray!

Why Bother?

It’s actually not all that complicated. Sure, it takes a couple of weeks to make, but most of the time is spent letting the rinds soak in vinegar. All you really have to do? Peel a bunch of rinds and put them in a jar. After a few weeks, you can strain the mixture and get to the cleaning.

But Will It Be Effective?

Yes! For a lot of jobs! Vinegar can lift stains, break down soap scum, clean wood cabinets, and more. Plus, various studies have found that vinegar can kill mold and inhibit the growth of some strains of E. coli. (Note: More studies are needed. While some people use vinegar as a disinfectant, we suggest this spray for cleaning.)