Some of the best things you have in your home are those that have multiple uses. Many of these you keep mainly in the kitchen. Here’s a list of five ingredients that you can use for more than just cooking.
With the pandemic highlighting the need to practice good hygiene, we have seen herds of people buy gallons of disinfectant. If you’ve experienced going to a supermarket to buy disinfectant only to find they’ve sold out, don’t fret. Four of the items on this list also function as cleaners. The first of them is baking soda.
Baking soda is a leavener—it makes our baked goods rise in the oven. It also has other uses around the house that will have you storing it in other places, and not just your kitchen cupboard.
Apart from its uses in cooking and baking, baking soda is well-known for its odor-absorbing properties. When cleaning out your fridge, for example, you can leave a saucer filled with baking soda inside overnight to deodorize it.
People also use baking soda for their oral health. Studies have shown that toothpaste products containing baking soda whiten teeth and clean off plaque better than those without baking soda. It is also often mixed with a cup of water to use as a mouthwash or sore throat remedy.
To soothe irritated skin, you can also add one or two cups of baking soda to a lukewarm bath. You can also make a paste by mixing a teaspoon of baking soda with some water. Apply the paste to insect bites to soothe the itchiness.
Other uses of baking soda include disinfecting various surfaces and appliances such as stovetops, sinks, refrigerators, and washing machines.
While it doesn’t have the most pleasant smell, vinegar has many uses around the house apart from just the kitchen. Like baking soda, vinegar is also a popular deodorizer. A vinegar and water mixture can also clean multiple surfaces and appliances in your homes such as windows, bathroom surfaces, and microwaves. If you’d like to clean your showerhead, you could do so by soaking it in a plastic bag filled with vinegar. Leave it overnight, and then rinse it with water in the morning.
This is a thing of magic. When you were a child, you probably learned about how lemon juice could be used as invisible ink. Later on, you learn about its other uses such as in beauty and medicine.
Lemon juice is a form of vitamin C, an essential nutrient for the body. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps protect the body from disease-causing free radicals. It is essential in collagen production, so it aids in wound healing and maintaining skin elasticity. It also improves the body’s ability to absorb iron.
Around the house, lemon juice has multiple uses, particularly in cleaning. It is highly acidic and has a natural fragrant odor, so it can be used to clean and deodorize surfaces and appliances. It can also be used to remove stains and brighten white fabrics.
This is one of the most useful and essential compounds on Earth. It adds flavor to our food, and we use it to cook just about everything—even desserts. Beyond that, salt has many other uses.
One use for salt in the kitchen that doesn’t involve putting it on food is its ability to put out grease fires. Salt absorbs heat, which makes it great for both cooking and putting out small fires. Pour about a cup of salt into the fire to extinguish it. Keep in mind that this solution may not work for larger, more dangerous fires.
Salt has antibacterial properties because it absorbs water, which bacteria need to grow and reproduce. It is because of this that salt is a natural preservative.
But even mixed with water, salt can still be useful. Like with baking soda, you can gargle a salt-water mixture to reduce inflammation in your throat. Other uses for salt-water mixtures around the house include cleaning surfaces and appliances and extending the shelf life of your toothbrush. To remove wine stains, pour water over the stain, and then scrub it off with salt.
The sticky, sweet substance is a multifunctional kitchen staple. For its primary function as a sweetener, honey has a lower glycemic index compared to refined sugars, so it is less likely to disrupt your blood sugar levels.
Unlike the other items on this list, honey is not a disinfectant. But it still has antioxidant and antibacterial properties that make it a natural wound dressing. It’s also another natural remedy for sore throats and coughs. However, honey should not be fed to infants, as its bacteria may cause botulism, a rare and potentially fatal disease.
If natural and well-stored, honey will not spoil.
Many things around your house can offer a range of other uses apart from just their main purposes. Baking soda, lemon juice, vinegar, salt, and honey also serve as disinfectants, sore throat remedies, and skin balms, among many others.