15 Remarkable Uses For That Flour In Your Cupboard

15 Remarkable Uses For That Flour In Your Cupboard

You'll often find a bag of flour somewhere at the back of your cupboard. Whether you use it regularly to bake, thicken up gravy or only used it two months ago in that cake attempt, you'll be truly surprised at what else it can do.

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1. Clean up oil spills

spilt oil

Dropped and smashed your bottle of olive oil? Don't worry, flour to the rescue! Sprinkle your trusty flour all over the floor and watch it absorb all that oil, then sweep it all up.

2. Polish a stainless steel sink

Wash, then thoroughly dry your kitchen sink with a clean towel. Sprinkle flour all over the sink and then buff the stainless steel with a soft cloth. It will start to get shiny, so just keep buffing and remove excess flour.

3. Stop insects eating your plants

Put your flour into a salt shaker and jiggle your plants to get the insects moving. Dust the insects and leaves with flour. Leave them for 2 days, then rinse off the flour using a fine spray. Thanks to Todayshomeowner.com for the tip!

4. Make galaxy playdough for the kids


If you want your kids to play, then why not make them an easy, no-bake play dough to get creative with? Check out this easy recipe from Fairydustteaching.com and enjoy watching the kids have fun while you sit back with a cuppa... or get involved too!

5. Make an anti-stress ball

I remember making one of these as a child and it was SO much fun. Here's an amazing video from IdunnGoddess which shows you how to make your own.

6. Loosen a jar lid

honey jar

If you find that a lid is difficult to remove because it's too tight, then dip the edge in flour to prevent it sticking in future. This is an easy trick for that pesky jam jar that keeps getting stuck!

7. Dry shampoo

I have lots of friends who use dry shampoo but it can be very expensive. Try out plain white flour instead but remember to test it first. If you have dark hair then it may be worth using oat flour instead.

8. Remove oil from silk

Oh no, you've spilt oil all over your silk dress! Hurry, grab some cornflour out of the cupboard and gently rub it into the area. Brush it away and then add some more, leaving the garment to sit for a two hours. Brush off the flour and then hand wash the item, using soap.

9. Make paper mache glue


All you need is flour, water, a mixing bowl and a spoon to make your own paper mache glue. Follow the seriously easy instructions at Kidspot.com.au They can try all kinds of craft projects with paper mache, and now they have to glue to do it!

10. Clean playing cards

playing cards
Shiny and clean!

If you've had a fun game of poker but your cards have got sticky from beer and snacks, grab a paper bag and put a few tablespoons of flour into it. Drop your playing cards into the bag and give them a good shake. Wipe off every card with a paper towel and they'll look brand new!

11. Make moon sand

If you want something a little different to play dough, then make yourself some moon sand by following the instructions by CraftBYChoppA! This is a great sensory experience for children aged 2 years and up. Make sure you have a sheet down, as it can get a little messy.

12. Clean brass

Abeatifulmess.com tells you how to make a paste for cleaning all your special brass treasures. Mix 1/2 cup of vinegar with a teaspoon of salt and add flour until the liquid becomes a paste. Spread it all over your brass and let the mixture sit for up to an hour. Rinse and buff.

13. Wash your hair

If you're one of many people looking for natural shampoo alternatives, then why not try using rye flour? Get some fine-ground organic rye flour and mix it into 2 tablespoons of water. Pour it over different sections of the hair and then rub gently, allowing it to soak for a few minutes. Rinse well and allow the hair to dry. If there are any extra bits still in your hair then comb them out.

14. Clean mussels & clams

If you have a hankering for mussels, then you'll want to know how to clean them correctly. Did you know you can use flour and water to clean them? Follow the instructions from Thekitchn.com.

15. Rainbow flour paint

Get painting!
Get painting!

Jazz up painting time fun by adding flour to it. This will give it an exciting new texture that the kids will love. Check out Learnplayimagine.com for the paint recipe. Remember to experiment with thickness levels to discover different textures that will make your artwork better! To learn more about the effects of flour in paint, check out our article on how to make chalk paint

Do you have any other uses for flour? Let me know in the commments below!

Colleen B


Lifelong biscuit addict. Obsessed with recipes, cooking & eating. Slightly lazier than the average bear, so likes writing about life hacks & discovering the quickest / easiest way to do things.

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  1. Author Audrey Naylor on April 26, 2016 at 1:09 pm

    Hi, My grand daughter, put some flour into her laundry tub, and then she stripped down my great grand daughter who was 5 months old little Eva. Then my grand daughter put Eva into the laundry tub, do you know it kept her occupied for ages, she was picking bits up and rubbing it between her fingertips, it was on her face and at one time she had a foot over the top of the tub, with a big bow headband on her head, and she looks gorgeous all on my FB.

    1. Author Colleen B on April 26, 2016 at 2:35 pm

      What a fun time Eva had! Hope you enjoyed the blog post Audrey. :)

  2. Author PETER on April 26, 2016 at 2:26 pm

    Hi Colleen B, I understand that using flour on unwashed dry fresh mushrooms is a good way of getting the dirt off them before peeling. I heard the tip given on a German TV programme recently but have not tried it myself yet !! Hope this is a new one for you !! Regards, Peter M- valentine681

    1. Author Colleen B on April 26, 2016 at 2:57 pm

      That's a superb tip Peter, thank you! I will definitely be trying that one out.

  3. Author susan bowden on April 26, 2016 at 10:01 pm

    I remember making playdough with flour, water and oil about 25 years ago when my kids were little. I added a few drops of food colouring and it kept them busy for ages! Much safer for little ones than the bought kind.

    1. Author Colleen B on April 27, 2016 at 8:46 am

      I bet they had lots of fun with their playdough Susan! Hope you enjoyed the blog post.

  4. Author dave on April 27, 2016 at 6:08 am

    Bake bread or make a pie etc. sorry I had to say it.

    1. Author Colleen B on April 27, 2016 at 8:37 am

      Ha, thanks Dave. Feel free to send us a pic of your bread or pie...!

  5. Author Sarah on July 11, 2020 at 3:55 pm

    If you bought meat and it's bit bloody dust some flour about couple of spoons ful and leave it for while it will absorb all the blood and strong meat smell then wash thoroughly .use it for curries or stew best results ever

    1. Author Joanne A on July 20, 2020 at 5:13 pm

      Very smart!

  6. Author Simon Cryer on April 16, 2021 at 7:32 pm

    When you're rolling out pastry, could you use it for dusting the surface and your rolling pin instead of wasting fresh flour?

    1. Author Joanne A on February 3, 2023 at 11:15 am

      It's best to use fresh flour if possible, as old flour can sometimes absorb moisture and become clumpy, making it difficult to achieve an even, smooth surface for your pastry dough.

  7. Author susan bowden on May 9, 2022 at 1:36 pm

    Frying pan or roasting tin with fat or oil in it? Never pour it down the sink - it blocks the pipes! Cover the fat with flour and leave it - when all the fat is absorbed you can just scrape it into your food bin (if you have one). I keep flour that's past it's use by date for this.

    1. Author Joanne A on September 9, 2022 at 3:32 pm

      That's a great idea!


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