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Simple Cleaning

For the recipe today I wanted to talk about simple cleaning.  I clean almost exclusively with baking soda and vinegar.  I love the fact that they are both cheap and safe to use around the kids.

  1. Vinegar (mixed with water about 1:3) cleans mirrors, counter tops, sinks, floors
  2. Baking soda sprinkled on and then vinegar spray cleans the tougher stuff – inside toilet bowl, bathtubs, and oven.

I found both these articles had great tips:

Happy cleaning 🙂

Also, now that I have gone through my vegan meal series this spring I am not sure if I will be posting as regularly in this area.  As I find good ideas I will add them 🙂


  1. Kim Kim

    Thanks for the post and the links this morning. I’ve always known, and sometimes used the vinegar and baking soda combo. However, for some reason I always end up buying other cleaners when I get into my “cleaning mode”. Yesterday was one of those moments when I digging through my cleaning cupboard, everything was falling out, I was sooooo irritated. April is my month of kitchen elimination, each day I am going through a few cupboards & drawers, getting it back down to the basics. Great timing on the post – Thanks 🙂 Have a terrific day!

    • Yes, cleaning products seem to collect more than necessary sometimes. Hope you have a great day too 🙂

  2. Can washing soda be substituted for baking soda? I use washing soda in my laundry soap recipe and it comes in a bigger box than most baking soda boxes!

    • Teresa, not sure on that one. Washing soda is sodium carbonate and baking soda is sodium bicarbonate. …but I dropped out of chemistry and am not sure what the difference means to cleaning. I know that the washing soda has warnings not to consume and may irritate eyes. For me baking soda is easier to get and cheaper. The uses on the box of washing soda seem the same.

  3. Karen Karen

    Have I told you lately that you are my new favorite minimalist blogger?:) I have made my cleaning products for years. You can clean anything well with baking soda and vinegar!! Keep up the good work!:)

    • Thanks so much! 🙂

  4. I like the fact that baking soda is a food product, washing soda isn’t. That does it for me! I do like to add essential oils to the water and vinegar solutions to disinfect. Then I’m not tempted to buy chemical based cleaners. Clove, cinnamon, rosemary and tea tree oils are powerful disinfectants. I love simple cleaning!

    • Kim Kim

      I love the idea of adding essential oils to the vinegar and water, I’m sure that would keep me from even bothering with commercial products. How much do you add, just a few drops per spray bottle???? Thanks for the great idea 🙂

      • For a gallon size bucket to clean a floor I would add 4-5 drops of essential oil depending on the job I need to do, more for disinfecting a bathroom floor & toilets (more like 8-10 drops) less for just freshening up surfaces (2-3 drops) I make my own air freshener or hand soap I’ll add 6-8 drops to an 8 ounce bottle.

    • Yes, I have heard about that but never done it either. Do you have a post on this?

  5. I just found your site and adore it! It’s so wonderful to find someone that’s into minimalism and veganism. I’ll be a regular visitor! 🙂

    • Yay! Good to meet you 🙂

  6. Jody Jody

    I use water/vinegar for 90% of my cleaning. My two holdouts are the toilet bowls and tub/tiles. I used baking soda/vinegar in the toilet bowls for a while and they seemed to smell within a day or two of cleaning them. Have you had success on tile with vinegar? Any thoughts?

    • Tile I haven’t had much success on, tried different things. Right now I have a green cleaner that I got concentrated I have been trying for some of the harder cleaning like this but it hasn’t worked great. I use baking soda for the toilets.

    • Using essential oils with the water and vinegar seems to freshen the areas around the toilet because they are purifying the air as well as disinfecting surfaces. I’ve had luck with hydrogen peroxide and baking soda: mix it into a paste and scrub around tough to clean areas. Let it dry overnight, then rinse away the dried scrub. The peroxide actually neutralizes the dirt so the odor is dissolved with the dirt. You might have to repeat if the area is heavily soiled.
      Another favorite “green” product I use in toilets is OXY-BOOST by Natural Choices. This whitens and cleans without chlorine bleach. I pour a pitcher of hot water into the toilet to empty the bowl, pour in a scoop (2 scoops for really dirty toilets) and swish around with brush. Leave mixture in toilet overnight. Next morning bowl is bright & clean! Flush and use as usual 🙂

      • Susan, thanks so much for adding all this! I haven’t tried the peroxide before but with a little boy in the house I could use some neutralization…

        • Susan Susan

          LOL! We have five boys including Dad so we undergo lots of neutralizing in our house !. Essential oils add a feminine touch and put a little Spa into your everyday routine 🙂

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