Baking soda isn't just for cooking! There are loads of other weird and wonderful uses for this kitchen cupboard staple too.
Today we're sharing 13 unexpected uses for baking soda that you've probably never heard of - let alone tried - before.
Ready to have some fun? Then let's go.
What is baking soda?
Baking soda is a fine, white powder commonly used in cooking to raise soda bread, cookies, and gingerbread. Baking soda and bicarbonate of soda are the same product, just with different names.
It's a handy product to keep in your kitchen cupboard because it can be used for so many different thing - it's safe enough to use on the skin but powerful enough to work its cleaning magic in your household.
What's the difference between baking soda, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder?
Baking soda is also known as bicarbonate of soda. The name changes depending on where in the world you are. Baking soda and bicarbonate of soda are the same product, but baking powder is different. Baking powder is made up of baking soda and an acid. Normally the acidic ingredient is cream of tartar.
Uses for baking soda
1. DIY air freshener
Baking soda is seriously useful for deodorising sofas, bins, and even the air.
Making your own DIY air freshener is easy. All you need is baking soda, your favourite essential oils, a coffee filter and a jar - it's that simple!
Head over to Loving Essential Oils today to learn how to make yours and get your home smelling glorious today.
2. Crayon stain removal
Parents, this one is for you! Another tricky task baking soda can make easy is crayon removal.
To remove crayon marks left behind by overenthusiastic artists, make a paste from equal parts water and baking soda and scrub onto the marks in circular motions with a cloth or sponge.
3. Odourless litter boxes
Does your house always seem to reek of cat?
Sprinkle some baking soda on the bottom of litter trays before filling to keep them smelling fresh, whatever nasty surprises your cat leaves in them.
4. Neutralise gassy beans
Beans are really good for us. They're full of fibre and surprisingly high in protein - great for vegetarians and vegans.
However, beans are notorious for making us a little on the gassy side. Believe or not, this is easily avoided.
Add your beans to a pan of water on the stove, and heat until the liquid boils. Remove, rinse, then cover with cold water and 1 tsp baking soda. Leave overnight and use as normal.
5. Keep flowers fresh
Don't let those flowers droop! There are many ways to keep flowers fresher for longer, and one of them is hiding in your kitchen cupboard.
You guessed it - baking soda! Flowers that thrive in alkaline soil can really profit from a little dose of baking soda. Just pop a small amount into your watering can before giving plants a drink to reap the benefits.
6. Deter ants
Are ants threatening to take over your home? It's time to build a wall!
It's not a brick wall you need to deter ants though - a small trail of baking soda will do the trick. Draw lines with your bicarbonate of soda around entry points to keep those six-legged creatures out of your home.
7. Exercise supplement
There are loads of exercise supplements on the market, designed to give you a boost of energy and improve your performance.
These can be expensive, so if you want the effects without the price tag, give baking soda a go. Add about 0.2g of bicarbonate of soda to your water bottle an hour before you workout and you could experience more power and less lactic acid buildup - it's surely worth a try!
8. Homemade weedkiller
Weeds can be a real problem, especially if you let them get out of control.
It's time to act - grab some baking soda and sprinkle over weeds that have been wet with a hose and your garden will be looking great again in no time at all.
9. Make sun tea
Sun tea is a delicious treat to be enjoyed all Summer long. If you haven't tried it, now's your chance!
Sun tea is made by filling a large glass, jar or pitcher with cold water and tea bags (1 teabag per cup of water). The addition of baking soda (roughly 1/4 tsp per litre of water) will prevent tea from over-steeping and also becoming cloudy.
Once you've left it for 5 hours or so, serve over ice and add sugar syrup to taste.
10. Keep vegetables green
If your vegetables always end up looking rather sad, this clever tip is for you.
When boiling veg, add a pinch of baking soda to the water to make it slightly alkaline. This will preserve the break down of chlorophyll (the compound that makes plants green) and keep your greens green for longer.
11. Fluff up eggs
Eggs shouldn't be stodgy. If you're struggling to get light, fluffy omelettes and scrambled eggs, bicarbonate of soda could be a great addition to your mixture.
Eggs are naturally acidic, so adding a pinch of alkaline baking soda to the mixture will create a small reaction and cause bubbles to form.
Hey presto, the airiest, lightest eggs you could imagine!
12. Peel eggs easily
Another eggcellent way to use baking soda is when boiling eggs.
Add 1 tsp of baking soda to your pan of boiling water and it will make peeling eggs a breeze - they'll be no leftover shards of eggshell in sight.
13. Make a volcano
We're finishing on a fun note that the kids will no doubt love.
Making a 'volcano' is not only a fun way to entertain the little ones, but also to teach them some simple science.
Head over to Science Fun to learn how to make yours - just make sure you don't do it inside!
Where can I buy baking soda?
Baking soda or bicarbonate of soda will be available in most supermarkets and online. It costs approximately 40p-70p per 100g, making it a super cheap alternative for beauty products and treatments.
With so many uses for baking soda, it really should be a staple in every home. What's your favourite way to use it? Let us know in the comments below.