How to Get a Stinky Smell Out of a Bottle, Jar or Other Container

If leftovers in resealable containers have turned into a science experiment in the back of your refrigerator, the extra gravy stored in the mason jar has gone off or you've just unearthed a used, half empty formula bottle from under the car seat, it's a debate what's worse: the mess or the smell. Hot water and dishwashing soap will handle the mess, but the smell may take more effort to remove.

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A baby bottle can look clean but still harbor a milk or formula smell.

Step 1

Fill the sink with very hot water so the material expands, allowing for better cleaning. Add a few drops of liquid dish soap. Add containers and jars for an extended soak that may remove some odors. Soak for one to two hours. Use a bottle brush or stiff scrub brush to work into corners and seams. Rinse with hot water.

Step 2

Fill the sink with warm water and add 4 tablespoons of baking soda, if the smell remains. Shake vigorously to mix the baking soda and water. Soak the bottles and jars overnight to clean and deodorize. Rinse and wash.

Step 3

Fill the container with one part white distilled vinegar to three parts hot water to tackle tough smells. Soak for one to two hours so the acid in the vinegar has time to work. Rinse and wash. The vinegar smell will dissipate as the container dries.