How to Get Rid of Kitchen Odor: 7 Homemade Options

No one likes to wake up and smell last night's salmon. Here's how to get rid of cooking smells and kitchen odor for good.

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Natural cleaning tools lemon and sodium bicarbonate

Baking soda

If odors are the probelm, baking soda is often the answer. To make your own deodorizers, put about 1/2 a cup of baking soda in several small mason jars. Poke holes in the lids and then place the jars around your kitchen and home. The baking soda will absorb the cooking smells left behind from your meal.

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White vinegar on the wooden table top
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As most know, vinegar is the star player when it comes to fighting bad smells. Next time you’re cooking something especially fragrant, like fried fish, try leaving out a small bowl of vinegar near the stove. When dinner is done, leave the vinegar out for several hours to absorb the leftover smells.

You can fight grease, grime and all sorts of dirty household issues with vinegar—find out how.

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Young Happy Woman Baking Fresh Cookies In Oven At Kitchen
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Baking something new

One easy way to get rid of a strong food smell is to cover them with more a pleasant food smell! The smell of baking and spices can overtake strong odors like garlic or onion. Baked goods containing nutmeg, ginger or cinnamon are especially effective. Try making these Cinnamon Chip Chai-Spiced Snickerdoodles or these Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies. And, if you do cook with garlic before pivoting to a new treat, here’s how to get the garlic smell off your hands.

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Table salt spilling from a measuring spoon
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To combat bad cooking smells, you must tackle oven spills quickly. A casserole bubbling over onto the oven floor is going to cause smoking and burning smells not only now, but the next time you use the oven as well. As soon as you notice the spill in your oven, pour a handful of salt over the stain. Let the salt sit for a few minutes and then use a spatula to scrape up the mess. Voila!

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Simmering potpourri
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Simmering potpourri

When dinner is over and you’re ready for the kitchen to smell fresh and clean again, try making your own simmering pot of potpourri. Bring a small pot of water to a simmer and then add lemon or orange peels, cloves, and a couple of cinnamon sticks. Let the mixture simmer for as long as you’d like, adding water as needed.

Check out these other stovetop simmer ideas, too!

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Rosemary essential oil in a bowl

Essential oils

Essential oils are a great way to deodorize a room. Lemon oil is especially effective. Put a few drops in an essential oil diffuser and let it do the work. If you have a variety of essential oils on hand, try this room freshening blend in your diffuser: five drops lavender, two drops peppermint, two drops rosemary and one drop lemon.

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Kitchen interior with large rustic white porcelain sink and granite stone countertop under sunny window
Shutterstock / Elena Elisseeva

Open a window

Ready for the simplest way to get rid of cooking odors? Open a window! Yep, good old fashioned ventilation is the best way to clear the air. If you don’t have a nearby window or the weather isn’t cooperating, get the air moving any way you can. Use the stove fan vent if you have one, or bring in a regular fan and blow those smells away.

Erica Young
Erica is a cleaning and home décor expert. She knows exactly how to tidy a filthy kitchen and straighten out a mixed-up pantry! When she's not writing you'll find her organizing a closet, buying more bins she doesn't need or bingeing her latest TV show obsession.