By Kelly O’Roark
Your dinner party is tonight, and you’ve been doing so much multitasking that you’re now in desperate need of a homemade kitchen drain cleaner. (This is definitely a “don’t ask” kind of moment). Yep, I’ve been there too. It’s a face-palm moment for sure when you’re quickly trying to clean up the pots and pans, and out of habit, you dump whatever happens to be in said pots and pans down the drain. It’s usually fine, but this time it was bacon grease (a lot of it).
Since you’re having a bunch of people over tonight to enjoy delicious food while admiring your beautiful kitchen (especially your stunning lemon and lime centerpiece!), you don’t want them to get distracted (or nauseated) by the standing water in your kitchen sink. You don’t have time to run to the store to pick up a drain concoction (and the thought of using chemicals in an area where you prepare food isn’t exactly appetizing), so what do you do? Run to your pantry!
You can make a homemade kitchen drain cleaner in just a few minutes with a few simple ingredients and four easy steps. You’ll need the following to remove that grungy grease from your pipes:
- A half-cup of baking soda
- A half-cup of salt
- 1 cup of lemon juice
- A tea kettle full of boiling water
- Measuring cups
- A stainless-steel mixing bowl
- A spoon
Step 1: Boil the Water
Fill your tea kettle with as much tap water as it can safely hold, and put it on the stove so that it comes to a full boil. It should only take about 20 minutes, which is the perfect amount of time to make and integrate your drain cleaner.
Step 2: Prepare the Grease-Fighting Solution
Take your mixing bowl and pour the baking soda and salt into it. Then mix everything with the spoon.
Then add the lemon juice and carefully stir the mixture together until the juice is fully incorporated. It’ll start to foam, so pour it slowly so that it doesn’t overflow (and yes, this will conjure up your fifth-grade memories of doing that volcano science project – except this smells a million times better)!
The lemon juice not only provides a great foaming action, but also helps to attack the odors that come with food grease. When you’re done stirring, your mixture should look like this. (It’ll still have tons of bubbles.)
Step 3: Start Cutting the Grease
While you’re still patiently waiting for your water to boil, slowly pour your homemade kitchen drain cleaner into the kitchen drain opening until the bowl is empty, and let it sit for 15 minutes.
Step 4: Flush it Out!
Your water should be at a full boil now (if it’s not, it’s OK to let the solution sit a few minutes longer.) Now slowly and carefully pour the entire kettle of hot water down the drain. It’s important to do this slowly to avoid boiling water from splashing out and burning your skin. It’s always best to wear an oven mitt and do this at arm’s length so that your face isn’t directly over the drain opening.
After another 15 minutes, turn on the spigot and allow hot tap water to run for about a minute to get any stubborn remaining grease to slide out.
And you’re done! Now you can focus on your itinerary for the evening, and get to the fun stuff. Your guests can enjoy their bacon-wrapped dates, and you can rest assured that your dinner party will go off without a hitch.
Have you ever accidentally poured something down your kitchen drain that’s a major no-no? Since you can laugh about it now, we’d love to hear your story in the comments below!
Images used with permission, courtesy of Kelly O'Roark