clean kitchen sink
clean kitchen sink

3 Natural Ways to De-Stink Your Garbage Disposal

They’re called “garbage” disposals for a reason, and every once in a while they need to be cleaned and deodorized. How? Try these natural solutions first!

1. Fight the rot

Many plumbers say it’s best to use cold water—not hot water—when running your disposal. If food particles do remain, they can rot and cause odors. Once a week, put a combination of ice cubes and lemon peel down your disposal, run for about 30 seconds and then turn on the cold water tap. To melt sticky grease, regularly pour boiling water down your drain.

2. Use what you have on hand

Ice cubes and lemon peels aren’t the only readily available kitchen items that can help keep your disposal odor-free. Other citrus peels, such as orange rinds, or an easy vinegar/baking soda solution can all make your disposal smell clean and fresh in no time.

Citrus peel

Rough peels break up buildup, and natural oils leave a fresh scent.

Ice cubes

Degunk the blades and remove odor-causing particles.

Vinegar + baking soda

Degunk the blades and remove odor-causing particles.

3 ways to destink garbage disposal infographic

3. Freshen up

These DIY disposal refreshers make a great gift for housewarmings:


  • ¾ cup baking soda

  • ½ cup salt

  • ½ teaspoon liquid dish soap

  • 1 lemon


  1. Mix together the baking soda, salt and liquid dish soap.

  2. Grate the lemon peel into the mixture, then cut in half and squeeze to add the juice.

  3. Form into rounds with a small ice cream scoop or melon baller.

DIY disposal freshener
  1. Arrange on a baking pan covered with wax or parchment paper and place someplace safe to dry overnight.

DIY disposal freshener steps
  1. Package in a sealable jar and tie with a bow for a personalized gift!

disposal fresheners in jar with bow