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How to Microwave to Make Your House Smell Good

Katherine Harder

Pleasant food and spice smells can lift your mood and make your home a more inviting place for family and guests. While you can buy strong aromatic candles, oils and potpourri to sweeten your home’s air, you can also create microwaved home scent recipes.

Make your kitchen a source of good smells, even when you have no time for home cooking.

Use ingredients you already have on-hand for a powerful, lingering and customizable home scent.

Microwave Liquid Potpourri: Faster Recipe

  1. Combine 2 cups of water and several teaspoons of your spice into the microwave-safe container.

  2. Stir well to combine the ingredients, and leave the stick inside the container. Place the container inside your microwave and set the appliance to cook on high for eight minutes. The wooden stir-stick is a cautionary measure to prevent the water from superheating in the microwave, but don’t worry too much about the phenomenon: Water usually only superheats when no contaminants, such as the spices you used, are present.

  3. Watch the microwave’s window while it heats the mixture. Once the mixture begins to boil, count down 3 minutes and turn off the microwave. Your home’s air should now be saturated with the spice scents you used.

  4. Remove the container by its handle after a few minutes pass. Discard the liquid.

Another Microwave Home Scent Recipe

  1. Lay out a 6-inch square section of cheesecloth and heap a teaspoon of ground cinnamon and allspice into the center of the square. Add another ½-tsp to ¼-tsp of complimentary spices, such as nutmeg, cardamom, cloves, pumpkin pie spice or mace.

  2. Grasp the corners of the cheesecloth square and pull them up over the spices, creating a spice sack. Tie the corners together in a bunch with a length of twine.

  3. Fill the container with 2 cups of water, and place the spice satchet inside the water, and microwave the container for 3 minutes past boiling.

  4. Remove the container after several minutes of cooling. Set aside the satchet for a couple more uses.

  5. Tip

    To remove the scents from your microwave, clean the interior of the appliance with a watery baking soda paste and wipe away the paste with a damp sponge. If the microwave still smells like the scents you used, add a tablespoon of baking soda into a cup of water in a large, microwave-safe bowl. Heat this mixture in the microwave for about 5 minutes; allow the mixture to cool for several minutes before removing the bowl.


    Your homemade aromatherapy’s scent might stick to the insides of plastic cookware. Use glass or ceramic cookware if possible.

    Again, don’t worry too much about “superheating” the water in the microwave. The phenomenon only occurs with water in a completely clean, smooth container; other ingredients in the scent recipes remove the risk.