Common Uses of Sodium Bicarbonate

Sodium bicarbonate is also known as baking soda. You may already know how to use sodium bicarbonate in cooking and baking and that you can keep a box of it in your refrigerator to absorb odors. But did you know you can use it for household cleaning and deodorizing in almost every room of your house? Did you know it can relieve pain from rashes, sunburns and insect bites? Did you know it can put out most small household fires? Sodium bicarbonate has many common and helpful uses.


Adding baking soda and hot water to a drain keeps the drain clean.

Sodium bicarbonate can be scattered in handfuls on your stove to put out grease or electrical fires.  It can also be used to put out fires in fabrics, wood and fuel.

Baking soda can be sprinkled in water to soak and clean vegetables and fruits: They only need to be rinsed after soaking.  Dried beans soaked in water and sodium bicarbonate are easier to digest.

Sodium bicarbonate tenderizes raw meat when it is sprinkled on the meat.  You should use 1 tsp.

per pound of meat, rub it in and then rinse it off before cooking the meat.  A pinch of sodium bicarbonate added to coffee while it is brewing reduces the coffee's acidity.

A pinch of baking soda added to tomato sauce while it is cooking reduces the tomato sauce's acidity. 

Household Cleaning

Household Cleaning

You can keep drains clean by adding 4 tbsp.  sodium bicarbonate to sink and bathtub drains and flushing with hot water.

This process should be repeated every four weeks.  A barbecue grill can be cleaned by wetting it, sprinkling sodium bicarbonate onto it, letting it soak, then rinsing the sodium bicarbonate off the grill.

Porcelain surfaces and fixtures in your bathroom can be safely cleaned and scrubbed with a moist sponge with baking soda sprinkled on it.  Stains in coffee and tea pots and mugs can be removed with sodium bicarbonate and a plastic scrubbing sponge.

Crayon marks can be removed from walls with an old toothbrush and a paste of sodium bicarbonate and water. 



Washing garbage cans with sodium bicarbonate removes garbage odors.  An open box of sodium bicarbonate kept in the refrigerator or freezer absorbs odors.

The sodium bicarbonate should be stirred every few days to keep it fresh and should be replaced every two months.  Odors in insulated bottles and ice chests can be removed with a mix of baking soda and water.

Sprinkling sodium bicarbonate in the bottom of your dishwasher removes odors.  Sprinkling sodium bicarbonate in socks and shoes removes odors.

Soaking sour-smelling dish towels and sponges in sodium bicarbonate and water removes the sour odor. 



Rubbing insect bites with a paste of sodium bicarbonate and water relieves itching.  Sunburn pain can be reduced by adding 1/2 cup baking soda to lukewarm water in a bathtub, then soaking in the bathtub.

Sodium bicarbonate cools your skin and helps it keep in moisture.  Mixing sodium bicarbonate into water and using it as a mouthwash removes mouth odors and relieves canker sore pain.

Adding 2 tbsp.  sodium bicarbonate to your baby's bath water to relieve irritation from diaper rash.

About the Author

Kirk Pearson earned a B.S. degree in computer science and an English minor from Colorado State University in 1990. He owns and edits Distributedcomputing.info, a website to encourage the public to use its spare computing power to help advance science and medical research. He is also a regular participant in National Novel Writing Month.

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