14 Ways to Get Rid of Pesky Cooking Odors

Unfortunately, not all of these smells are pleasant. If you find your food cooking is leaving behind an unpleasant smell in your kitchen or even outside on your deck, here are a few tips to get rid of it quickly and easily!

1) Cook a Citrus Scent

Acidic citrus scents like lemon and orange peel, as well as whole or cut fruit, can neutralize cooking odors that linger in your home. The acidity of the lemon or other acidic fruits will interact with the fat molecules left behind to leave your air smelling fresh and clean even after you’ve cooked foods with strong odors.

2) Utilize Your Oven’s Self-Cleaning Mode

If you’ve used your oven to cook up a delicious meal but now find the lingering smell is more than you can bear, start by turning it on to its self-cleaning mode. The high temperature of this setting will burn away the smells left behind from cooking up a storm, leaving you with a fresh oven and a pleasant scent.

3) Burn Bay Leaves

Bay leaves have been shown to absorb cooking odors, even those that linger hours after being cooked! Try placing them under or next to your stove as well as in any other rooms where you’ve noticed strong cooking scents. If using your oven, place the bay leaves on top of aluminum foil wrapped around racks at the bottom of your oven. Avoid putting them directly onto an open flame as this could cause the leaves to burn.

4) Use Citrus Peels or Wood Chips for a Pleasant Aroma

If you’re ready to move past burning bay leaves and want something with a more pleasant smell, try burning citrus peels or wood chips! Citrus peels have been shown to have a strong cologne-like scent that can cleanse your air of cooking odors. Keep in mind that these will produce the same scents as if you were using them in a simmer pot on your stove top or grill outside.

5) Try Incense

Burning incense is one of the easiest methods for getting rid of cooking smells. Most stores carry a wide variety of incense sticks and cones with different aromas, so choose something soothing like rose or lavender to help you relax after a long day of cooking. Using an incense holder will prevent ashes from falling onto your countertop, and make for a cleaner, more pleasant overall experience.

6) Utilize Your Oven’s Fan

In addition to burning bay leaves on top of aluminum foil, try placing them behind the fan in your oven. The fan will then circulate the scent into your kitchen or other rooms, eliminating cooking odors. Try mixing flavors like lemon and bay leaf together for a stronger effect.

7) Get a Degrease Hood

If you have a lot of fat buildup in your kitchen from cooking meat or grease splatter while frying foods, consider purchasing a degrease hood to help get rid of cooking smells over time. These hoods are powerful enough to extract smoke and strong-smelling vapors from cooking oil without venting outside, making them perfect for serious cooks!

8) Clean Smells Out of the Air

Once you’ve gotten rid of cooking odors from your kitchen, there are a few tips to keep in mind for next time! First, regularly cleaning out the inside of your oven will prevent scents from lingering after each use. Additionally, regularly wiping down surfaces with hot water and soap will help breakup fat molecules that create cooking smells. Finally, remember to open windows while cooking to allow fresh air in to circulate around your space.

9) Reduce Cooking Temperature

Cooking at a lower temperature will not only reduce overall cooking times but also reduce smoky conditions in your house. This can have a two-fold effect if you’re looking for both faster and better smelling food! If you cook regularly at high temperatures, try slightly reducing it in your oven.

10) Prevent Fumes from Entering Your Space

If you do not have the ability to adjust the temperature in your oven or are cooking in a shared space with others who may find low-temperature cooking smells unpleasant, be sure to keep food tightly covered while cooking. Covering foods will prevent oils and other particles from spraying into your space as well as prevent smells from entering through the cracks!

11) Stop Cooking Scented Foods

The easiest method for stopping odor is to avoid using strong smells during cooking entirely! Utilizing things like lemon peels, bay leaves, and incense will eliminate bad odors without leaving behind anything unsavory. Remember that, if your food is already cooked and on the table, covering it up with something like sliced onion will reduce the smell on your plate!

12) air purifier

Contains a carbon filter that absorbs and removes odors.

13) coffee beans

I’m sure you’ve all heard of the benefits of coffee before; it wakes you up and boosts brain function! Well, did you know that it’s also great at absorbing smells? Just leave a small bowl of whole coffee beans open in your kitchen overnight and the smell should be gone by morning!

14) Be Considerate of Those Around You

Finally, remember that you are not cooking in a vacuum. Other people live or work around you and may be bothered by strong smells in the air. Try avoiding frying foods too frequently, using baking soda in your oven to absorb odors before they hit the air, or hosting dinner parties outside when possible.


With effective and easy-to-use methods like these, your home can be smelling fresh in no time – and you won’t have to spend all day scrubbing the kitchen countertops!

Follow these tips and hopefully your home can be smelling fresh again soon! 

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