How to make fragrant cleaning vinegar (and how to use it)

by Apr 2, 2021Cleaning


A few years back I wrote about a method of making fragrant vinegar that you can use for cleaning. I loved the finished product and it was nice to finally have a vinegar-based cleanser I could use without my boys complaining about “vinegar smell.”

Read more: 25 uses for lemon peels including homemade lemon vinegar

But what I did not love about this method was how long it took to make. Patience has never been my strong suit, the fact that it required me to wait two weeks until I could use it was simply more than my limited patience could bear.

But eventually I learned that there was a very simple way to make fragrant cleaning vinegar with a significantly shorter waiting time. The key is to heat the vinegar before combining it with the citrus peels (or whatever you use as your fragrant element.)

When I e.g. Producing my original lemon-scented cleaning vinegar, the hot vinegar causes the peels to express their oils and fragrance much faster than they would at room temperature. As a result, this new and improved process requires only a 24 hour waiting time before exertion rather than two weeks!

So today I am sharing the new and improved method of making fragrant cleaning vinegar with you along with tips on how to use it for use in the house. Because even though the original method still works just as well, it never hurts to have options! 🙂

How to make fragrant cleaning vinegar

fragrant vinegar

You will need:

  • White vinegar
  • Large glass jar or jug
  • Fresh herbs, citrus peels, dried flowers, etc. For fragrance
fragrant vinegar

Driving directions:

Start by adding a handful or two of what you use as the scent to your cleaning vinegar to your glass container. I used a handful of fresh mint leaves here, but in the past I have used lemon peel and sprig of fresh rosemary and it turned out well!

(This process is not an exact science, so do not worry too much about quantities. When in doubt, add more of the fragrant element instead of less, as the smell of vinegar is quite strong to start with!)

fragrant vinegar

Then heat up as much vinegar as you need to fill your container. You can either do this in a pot on the stove or in a bowl in your microwave. When the vinegar is good and hot, carefully pour it into the container.

fragrant vinegar

Seal the container and let it sit for 24 hours to allow time for the scent to penetrate the vinegar.

After 24 hours, pour the contents of the container through a sieve into another glass container for storage and dispose of herbs, peels or flowers. Store your finished cleaning vinegar in an airtight container.

cleaning hacks

How to use fragrant cleaning vinegar

There are all sorts of ways to use your fragrant cleaning vinegar for good use around the house. For some applications, dilute it with water before use, but for others it is better to use it “straight up” (or undiluted).

Here is an overview of the different ways you can use your fragrant vinegar and how to dilute it if necessary:

For daily cleaning

Dilute your fragrant vinegar by one 1: 2 ratio (1 part vinegar to 2 parts water) to clean your refrigerator, microwave, stains for pets and floors. This dilution also makes a good all-purpose cleaner – just pour it into a spray bottle and clean!

For glass surfaces or disinfection

Dilute your vinegar by one 1: 1 ratio to clean your windows, mirrors and other glass surfaces. You can also use it to clean and disinfect your recyclable water bottles.

For laundry, dishes and more

Use your cleaning vinegar undiluted to make the inside of your washing machine fresh (both standard and HE models). Empty the washing drum, pour 1 cup of your cleaning vinegar inside, and then run a wash with warm water.

You can also use undiluted cleaning vinegar as a rinse aid in your dishwasher to help combat hard water. To do this, simply add a small bowl of vinegar to the top rack of your dishwasher before running it.

Fragrant cleaning vinegar also makes a great natural rinse aid. Just pour 1 / 4-1 / 2 cup of your cleaning vinegar into the washing machine rinse aid dispenser before starting a wash cycle.

Other ways to use undiluted cleaning vinegar include descaling your coffee machine, removing coffee stains from mugs, and it even makes a great natural weed killer!

What kind of fragrance would you use in a batch of fragrant cleaning vinegar?

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Related post  14 brilliant cleaning hacks for hard-to-reach rooms
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