How to Clean Grout in Your Kitchen with a Surprising (and Cheap) Ingredient

From your floor to your backsplash, removing gunky buildup between tiles is easier than you think with this trick.

The time you spend in the kitchen isn’t always glamorous. For every Instagram-worthy dish you make, there are about five labor-intensive chores required to keep your kitchen looking brand-spankin’ new. There are counters to wipe down, ovens to clean and dirty sponges to throw away. But our least favorite chore has to be cleaning the grout between our kitchen tiles.

What if we told you it was easy and that all you needed was an old-fashioned secret ingredient: baking soda? Intrigued? Read on.

Why Baking Soda?

Baking soda does just about everything, from filling out your batter for breads, pancakes and cakes to cleaning between those pesky kitchen tiles. In fact, it can actually be more effective than your dish soap.

You see, soap and baking soda are both basic (i.e., they have higher pH levels), but soap contains fat molecules that make it gentler. Baking soda, on the other hand, is tough enough to handle the most stubborn stains in your home. Just make sure you’re not confusing your baking soda with baking powder—there is a difference.

So…What’s the Recipe?

We’re glad you asked. For best results, we recommend using baking soda and vinegar. When the acidic vinegar is combined with basic baking soda, the concoction fizzes up like a science fair project, but really works into all the grime on your grout.

The first thing you want to do is clean the area around the grout, by vacuuming, dry mopping or wiping down.

Next, apply a paste made of water and baking soda to those dirty areas, then pour equal parts warm water and vinegar (another great cleaner you already have at home) into a spray bottle. Once you spritz the vinegar-water mix on the paste, you’ll want to scrub the solution-coated grout to remove stubborn dirt and grime. Clean off the vinegar, baking soda and water with a damp paper towel and voila! Your tiles will look like new.

That’s Not All You Can Do

If you’re not already equipped with vinegar and a spray bottle, there’s an even easier way to clean out that grout. TikTok user @maandrews showed us the simple solution to grubby grout—hydrogen peroxide (which you’ll likely have under your bathroom sink), baking soda and dish soap. Combine these ingredients into a bowl, then use a toothbrush to remove dirt buildup from those tile floors.

@maandrewsHow to clean tile floors 😁☝️ ##cleaning ##lifehack ##tilefloors ##fyp ##foryou ##tips♬ Buttercup – MixAndMash

To save some time, you can also opt for a broom or a drill brush, though toothbrushes are just as effective. Either way, you’ll be dazzling everyone in the house with your sparkling grout lickety-split!

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Kelsey Mulvey
Kelsey Mulvey is a freelance writer and editor based in New York. Her hobbies include wine, nachos and the occasional hibachi dinner.