Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Some of my favorite Vinegar Fridays tips (from the upcoming book)

I shared some of these tips at the Allegheny Green & Innovation Festival this past weekend. These are from some of the chapters from Vinegar Fridays. The book will be released this fall.


Vinegar belongs in the kitchen! From cleaning to cooking, and lots of places in between, no kitchen is complete without at least a couple different kinds of vinegar, starting with DWV (distilled white vinegar). Use it to clean and disinfect your countertops and other surfaces (and pitch the bleach-infused cleansers!).

Get rid of pesticide residue and bacteria from your fruits and vegetables by washing them in a solution of 3 TBSP of DWV in a quart of water.

Fluff up your rice by adding a TBSP of vinegar to the water while cooking.

Get rid of fruit flies by placing a small bowl of vinegar (any kind will do) near the source.

Add organic balsamic vinegar to your recipes for an added boast of flavor and health benefits (from potassium and polyphenols).


Running neck-in-neck with the kitchen for the spot of ‘favorite place to use vinegar.’ No laundry room should be without a gallon or two of DWV. Period!

Why? Well, for one thing, fabric softeners are loaded with toxins linked to, headaches, respiratory ailments, brain and nervous system disorders, and even pancreatic and other kinds of cancer. Absolutely no one should ever use fabric softeners, in my opinion. It’s just not worth it. Simply fill your fabric softener dispenser with DWV and let it do its magic.

Have you ever noticed how black clothing fades after a few washes? Stop the fade with vinegar! Really. Adding it to the wash will help maintain the color of your clothes, not to mention brightening them as well.


From toilet bowls to sinks, DWV is the answer for disinfecting!

Disinfect your loofahs, sponges and germ-clinging little poufs by soaking them overnight in a bucket of DWV and water (3 parts to 1 part). You might want to add your bath pillow and tub stopper as well.

Need an eco-friendly air freshener? Fill a spray bottle with 1 tsp. baking soda, 1 tsp. DWV and a cup of water. Spritz away odors in a flash!


You just bought a used car and there’s an old political bumper sticker on it. Quite frankly, you wouldn’t be caught dead driving around with that on your car. Simply drench a cloth with some DWV and cover the sticker with it for a couple of hours. It should peel right off.


Before you put away your fountain, or pond pump, soak the pump in undiluted DWV to rid it of any mineral deposits that may have accumulated over the summer. This will keep your pump working more efficiently when it’s time to welcome spring back to the area again.

When it’s time to bring your potted plants in, they may need some repotting. Get the stains and white mineral crusts out of your clay, glazed and plastic pots by soaking them for a couple of hours in a sink of water and DWV (50/50 solution).


Did you pick up any garage sale or flea market bargains this summer? Well, if you bought some toys for the little ones, you want to make sure they’re safely disinfected, in a non-toxic way. There’s an easy solution! Just spritz off plastic and wooden toys with a 50/50 solution of vinegar and water.

Crayon on the walls? Uh oh. Don’t fret. Simply apply undiluted DWV to the wax scribbling and then erase t
hem by scrubbing with an old toothbrush sprinkled with baking soda. Voila! Artwork gone, paint unmarred.

Hot Tubs

A breeding ground for nasty germs!! Dump a gallon of DWV in the water and turn on the jets. Let them run for a couple of hours. After draining, wipe down the tub with a sponge saturated with full strength vinegar. No need to rinse. Repeat every couple of weeks for ultimate germ-killing.


This is one of my favorites! Soften your feet (and I mean really soften your feet) by soaking them in a footbath of warm water with 1 cup of ACV (apple cider vinegar) added. After 5 minutes or so, you’ll be amazed at how soft your formerly rough heels are!

If you suffer from acne, chances are you don’t need to spend a fortune on those infomercial ‘miracles.’ Simply mix 2 tsp of ACV in a cup of water and apply twice a day after washing your face. Your skin will clear up in no time!


Flea problem? Add a few drops of DWV to the water dish, which will help to keep fleas at bay. Too late? Well, here’s what I do. After that soothing footbath (see above), I simply dump the water over my cats (or dog, if I had one). The result? Super soft fur and a bunch of dead fleas.


Get rid of scratches on your wood furniture by applying a 50/50 blend of vinegar (DWV for light wood, ACV for dark) and iodine. A thin craft paintbrush is ideal for this.

Keeping it green with vinegar,


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