Banish Onion Odor: Tips to Get Smell Out of House!

To get rid of onion odor in your home, simply simmer a pot of water with vinegar and citrus peels. Onion smell is one of the most difficult odors to remove from your living space.

Whether you’re cooking or chopping onions, the smell can linger for hours. It can adhere to your clothing, hair, and furniture, making it difficult to eliminate. Using air fresheners and chemical sprays can only mask the odor temporarily. Instead, you should use natural remedies to remove the smell from your home.

Vinegar and citrus peels, for example, have natural deodorizing properties that can absorb onion odor. In this article, we’ll explore how to use these items to get rid of onion smell in your living space.

Why Does Onion Odor Stick?

Onions have a distinct pungent odor that can cause an unpleasant smell in your house. This odor can be categorized as a gas, made up of sulfur compounds. Here are some explanations of the science behind the pungent odor of onions:

  • When you cut an onion, it releases an enzyme called alliinase.
  • Alliinase converts the sulfur-containing compounds in onions into sulfenic acids, which are unstable and quickly change into a volatile gas called syn-propanethial-s-oxide (pfos).
  • Pfos is the chemical responsible for causing the pungent odor of onions.
  • Pfos is an unstable gas that reacts with water in the air to form sulfuric acid.
  • The sulfuric acid will then combine with the water to form sulfuric acid droplets, which will then settle on surfaces and in the air, causing the onion smell to linger.

Factors That Contribute To The Odor Sticking Around

The onion odor can be challenging to eliminate because several factors contribute to it sticking around. Some of these factors include:

  • Porous surfaces: When you cut onions, the pfos gas settles on porous surfaces like curtains, carpets, and furniture, making it difficult to remove.
  • Humidity: High humidity levels in the air can cause the pfos gas to react with water, form sulfuric acid, and stick to surfaces.
  • Temperature: High temperatures can speed up the reaction between pfos and water, leading to more sulfuric acid in the air and on surfaces.
  • Airflow: When there is no proper airflow in a room, the sulfuric acid droplets can remain in the same area, leading to a stronger onion smell.
  • Length of onion exposure: The longer an onion is exposed, the more the smell will stick around.

How Long Onions Can Leave Their Smell In The Air And On Surfaces

Onion odors can last for various amounts of time on surfaces such as walls, ceilings, fabrics, and furniture. Several factors can affect how long the smell will stick around, such as humidity and airflow, as explained above. However, on average, here are some of the durations:

  • On hands: Up to 24 hours
  • On clothes: Up to 48 hours
  • On surfaces: Up to 7 days
  • In a room with no ventilation: Up to several weeks
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Remember these tips to help eliminate the strong onion smell: air out rooms, open windows, use vinegar, and baking soda. Don’t forget to regularly wash hands and clothes.

Natural Remedy To Banish Onion Odor

Natural Remedies That Can Be Used To Eliminate Onion Odor

Getting rid of the onion smell from your house can feel like an insurmountable task, especially if you love cooking with onions. While you may be tempted to reach for harsh chemicals, natural remedies can offer an effective solution. Not only are they less-toxic, but they also come in handy when you need a quick fix.

Ingredients That Can Be Used For Effective Odor Removal

  • White vinegar
  • Coffee grounds
  • Lemon juice
  • Vanilla extract
  • Activated charcoal

How The Natural Remedies Work And Their Benefits Over Harsh Chemicals

White Vinegar

White vinegar is a natural deodorizer that breaks down the odor and eliminates the source of the smell instead of just masking it. Its antibacterial properties can also destroy bacteria that are causing the odor.

Coffee Grounds

Coffee grounds are known for coffee aromas, but they’re also efficient at absorbing smells in the air. They can be used as an odor eliminator by placing them in a bowl or sachet in the room.

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is an effective natural remedy due to its acidic properties. It also has a refreshing scent that can add a lovely aroma to your home while eliminating the onion odor.

Vanilla Extract

Vanilla extract has an irresistible scent that can overpower any unpleasant odors in the house. Simply mix a teaspoon or two with a cup of water and leave it in the kitchen or other rooms.

Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal is a highly porous substance that can absorb a wide variety of toxins and odors. They’re perfect for using in the kitchen due to their ability to absorb humidity and other smells.

Using natural remedies can be beneficial as they’re safer to use around the house, have fewer side effects, and are eco-friendly. So, say goodbye to harsh chemicals and hello to natural remedies when it comes to eliminating onion odor.

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Deep Cleaning Tips To Banish Onion Odor

Importance Of Deep Cleaning To Get Rid Of The Pungent Smell

Onions are flavorful and a staple in many dishes, but sometimes their smell lingers in the house, making it unpleasant. The smell of onions is strong and pungent, and it tends to cling to surfaces and fabrics. To get rid of onion odor, deep cleaning is crucial.

It might take a little effort, but with the right techniques, you can eliminate the smell and enjoy a fresh and pleasant environment.

How To Properly Clean The Kitchen, Utensils, And Areas Affected By Onion Odor

If onions were chopped on a cutting board or cooked in a pan, these items tend to absorb their smell. Therefore, it is essential to properly clean them to remove the odor. Here’s how to do it:

  • Wash the utensils or cooking items with hot water, soap, and vinegar
  • Use baking soda to scrub the surface of the utensil or pan before rinsing with water
  • Wipe down surfaces of the kitchen with vinegar or a mixture of baking soda and water
  • To remove the smell from the dishwasher, run a cycle with vinegar or baking soda

Cleaning Tips For Carpets, Drapes, And Upholstered Furniture To Remove The Smell

Onion odor can also penetrate carpets, drapes, and upholstered furniture. Here’s how to remove the smell from these surfaces:

  • Sprinkle baking soda on the surface and let it sit for 15-30 minutes before vacuuming it up
  • Use a fabric freshener that contains enzymes to eliminate the odor from carpets and furniture
  • Spray vinegar or vodka onto the surface and let it dry to remove the smell
  • Wash cushions and covers with hot water and vinegar to get rid of the odor

By following these deep cleaning tips, you can remove the onion smell from your house, making it a more pleasant and inviting environment.

Other Effective Tips To Banish Onion Odor

Cooking with onions is an art, but getting rid of their odors is a science. No matter how hard you try, it can be challenging to eliminate the smell of onions after cooking. Fortunately, there are a variety of tips and tricks you can use to get rid of that strong onion smell in your house.

Keep reading for additional tips and techniques to banish onion odor for good.

Additional Tips For Removing Onion Odor

  • Place bowls of vinegar around the house: Vinegar is an excellent odor absorber. Place bowls filled with vinegar around the kitchen and other parts of the house to help remove onion odors.
  • Baking soda: Baking soda is another odor absorber that works well for onion smells. Scatter some baking soda on your kitchen surfaces before cooking onions to absorb the odors.
  • Boil cinnamon: Boil some cinnamon sticks in water for a pleasant aroma that can help to mask onion odor.
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Techniques For Preventing Residual Onion Smell After Cooking

  • Use a kitchen exhaust fan: Turn on your kitchen exhaust fan while cooking with onions to help filter out odors. This will help to prevent residual smells from wafting throughout the house after you’ve finished cooking.
  • Simmer a pot of water with lemon slices: After cooking with onions, boil a pot of water and add lemon slices. The lemon scent will help neutralize the onion smell.

How To Keep Your Kitchen Odor-Free After Cooking With Onions

  • Clean as you go: Cleaning up as you cook can help reduce onion odor after cooking. Use hot, soapy water to wipe kitchen surfaces, clean utensils and wash your hands frequently.
  • Use an air purifier: Air purifiers can help to remove odors from the air. Place one in your kitchen or other parts of the house to improve air quality and reduce onion odor.
  • Open windows and doors: After cooking with onions, open your windows and doors to help air out the house. Letting in fresh air can help disperse the odor and leave your kitchen smelling fresh.

These simple tips and tricks can help you remove onion odor from your house and keep your kitchen smelling fresh. Use them regularly and enjoy cooking with onions without worrying about the lingering odors.


After all the hard work done in removing onion smell from your house, it is important to remember some preventive measures to avoid the culprit from spreading the smell again. Proper ventilation, using candles or air fresheners, and cleaning your kitchen appliances after each use can help to keep onion and other unpleasant odors away.

In case of another onion odor emergency, you can always refer to the tips shared in this guide. The key is to act fast, and choose the method that suits your preferences and resources. Remember that, even though onion smell can be annoying and persistent, there is always a solution within your reach.

Don’t let this odor ruin your mood or peace, apply the tips, and enjoy a fresh and clean home environment.

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