Each year, Americans spend a lot of money buying cleaning products that promise to remove tough stains and leave your home smelling lemony fresh. Although many of these products are in competition with each other to earn the name as the next must-have cleaner, some of these expensive (and toxic) solutions pollute our environment. In advance of Earth Day this year, we wanted to share a few alternatives that are made from ingredients found in your kitchen!

 Make use of what you can find in your fridge or pantry to create cleaning solutions out of cooking ingredients. Here are a few healthier and environment-friendly options that are inexpensive, natural and safe to use on any household furniture.

  • White Distilled Vinegar: There are thousands of ways that white distilled vinegar can be used for cleaning due to its high level of acidity. From deodorizing your trash cans to cleaning tarnished brass and copper, vinegar is a staple ingredient that kills mold, bacteria and germs.
  • Baking Soda: While baking soda is more commonly used to remove odors, creating a paste with it can actually help to remove stubborn stains from kitchen counters and bathtubs.
  • Cornstarch: Household cornstarch is also known to work wonders! Not only can it be used to remove ink stains when mixed with milk, but sprinkling it over the carpet can remove any odors before vacuuming.
  • Salt: Salt is no longer just a dietary mineral used to flavor your meals or for food preservation – it’s also a great way to remove burnt-on food and to clean pots, pans and cooking trays. Sprinkling a few teaspoons over dirty areas can help lift stains, making the whole cleaning process trouble-free.
  • Beer: Believe it or not, leftover beer is another stain fighter. Flat or old beer can be used to clean wooden furniture, while a touch of spirited beer is ideal for removing coffee or tea stains from your carpet!
  • Tea: Lastly, you can also preserve the look of beautiful hardwood floors by cleaning with a homemade black tea solution. After washing the floor with mild soap and water, wipe down the floor using damp rags with the tea solution for a brilliant shine.

With these food-based cleaning solutions, you can rid toxins from your home and save money! So this Earth Day, do yourself (and our planet) a favor and consider re-purposing inexpensive, edible goods to remove unwanted stains. Without worrying about harming the environment, you’ll have a home that’s spic and span!