When’s the last time your cleaned your stainless steel sink? Like, really made it shine? If all of those spots and stains are grossing you out but you keep putting them off, you’ve come to the right place.

Your sink is probably coated in a layer of grime — whether you know it or not — and the longer you let it linger, the harder it’s going to be to get clean. But the good news is that you can ditch the dangerous chemicals and get your sink super clean by scrubbing it with baking soda and lemon. It’s an inexpensive cleaning trick that will make your sink shine like new, and you don’t have to worry about inhaling anything harmful.

Sure, it’s still cleaning — and no one likes to do that — but at least being green about it makes the job a little more tolerable. And it works really well on most stubborn marks, too. So you won’t have to worry about wasting your time and effort. Just muster up a little elbow grease and get to it!

How to clean your stainless steel sink

What you need:

  • Baking soda
  • Sponge
  • Lemon
  • White vinegar
  • Olive oil

Let’s get to it: 

Step 1: Before getting started, take care of any dirty dishes in the sink. Run hot tap water into the drain for a few minutes to help remove any bad odors or gunk stunk in the drain.

Garbage disposal? Don’t dump these items down the drain.

Step 2: Rinse away any whole food scraps from the sink basin. You sink’s hose can come in handy to get all the sides and angles.

Step 3: Sprinkle a thin layer of baking soda over the entire surface of your sink. Be sure to cover it all, including the walls.

Step 4: Take your sponge and start to buff the stainless steel going in the direction of the metal grain. Baking soda is a mild abrasive agent, so it works great for lifting stains, but it won’t scratch your stainless.

Step 5: Take a lemon and slice it in half. Squeeze one half of the lemon over the sink (Or for more even application, put juice in a spray bottle). Use the other side to buff the surface in a circular motion again. Lemon will rid of any unwanted smells and also polish the metal.

Step 6: Pour white vinegar over the baking soda to create a fizzy reaction. This means your sink is getting really clean! Make sure you pour enough to dissolve the baking soda, but not so much that you wash the baking soda away immediately.

Step 7: Rinse your sink thoroughly.

Step 8: You can stop if you’ve had enough, but if you’re really looking for a shine (say for the holidays or if you’re showing your home), dry your sink thoroughly. Then take a small cloth towel, dab it with olive oil and buff the sink one more time, in a circular motion. When you’re done, take a dry corner of the towel, gently wipe the sink down, and voila! A sink prettier than you ever knew you wanted.

Also see, 10 foods that can substitute as cleaning supplies. 

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Meghan is a full-time writer exploring the fun facts behind food. She lives a healthy lifestyle but lives for breakfast, dessert and anything with marinara. She’s thrown away just as many meals as she’s proud of.