Homemade lemon vinegar is a great all-purpose cleaner. Adding citrus peels cuts the harsh smell of vinegar replacing it with a fresher scent.
I use a fair amount of lemons when cooking and entertaining. I hate to see the peels or the fruit themselves go to waste so I try to use them in different ways.
In my mind, there's nothing like the scent of fresh lemons or any citrus for that matter.
So today I'm sharing a super simple way to use leftover citrus by making your own homemade lemon vinegar.
Simply place the peels, (no fruit) into a large mason jar, or any large clean jar, and cover with white vinegar.
I love lemon and lime peels but you could easily use peels from clementines and oranges which you are probably already eating during the winter. Don't throw them out. Instead, collect them and add them to a jar. Then pour white vinegar over top.
After about a week or so you can pour the scented vinegar into a spray bottle.
I like to use a mix of 1/2 vinegar to 1/2 water. You could use it straight without added water, or you could mix 1/3 vinegar to 2/3 water if you prefer it a little more diluted.
Why Homemade Lemon Vinegar?
- White vinegar contains acetic acid and does a great job of cutting through soap residue, and hard water/mineral deposits. It's strong enough to kill some germs but does not stand up to the big boys like salmonella.
- Adding the scent of lemon makes it smell so much better.
- Chances are you probably already have white vinegar in the pantry for cooking. I love it for pickled vegetables.
- Even if you don't an entire gallon of white vinegar costs around $2-3.00.
- You know exactly what's in it. No weird chemicals here.
- Cleaning windows and glass
- Wiping down chrome in kitchen and bathroom fixtures
- Cleaning the microwave
- Cleaning kitchen drains. Add a little baking soda first. Then pour in some vinegar and watch the reaction.
- Removing deposits on shower heads. Place some in a baggie and immerse a showerhead inside. Attach with a rubber band and leave on for a few hours.
- Removing glue and sticky labels.
Places to Avoid Using Vinegar
- Stone countertops and floors such as granite, marble, soapstone. I have a great recipe for a countertop cleaner that you can use instead.
- Wood furniture or floors.
- Tile grout.
The next time you are peeling a lemon, orange, lime or other citrus fruit, consider keeping the peels and making your own handy homemade scented vinegar cleaner.