How to Get the Onion Smell Out of a Plastic Container

By A.J. Andrews

Onions, the timeless aromatic used to fragrance dishes in all cuisines, leaves you with something you don't soon forget: its timeless odor. Every plant in the allium family -- garlic, onions and shallots, to name a few -- get their pungency and telltale aroma from sulfenic acids. When sliced, torn or crushed, alliums' cell walls release allinases, which convert sulfenic acids to the less-than-desirable odor that permeates the interior of plastic food-storage containers. You have to battle the dreaded onion smell with equal firepower: a cleanup plan that starts organic, and, if necessary, moves on to the big guns -- all-purpose bleach.


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Step 1

Mix 2 parts baking soda and 1 part lemon juice together. Coat the inside of the container and the bottom of the lid with the paste. Add more lemon juice if needed to loosen the paste.


Step 2

Let the container sit for 48 hours; then wash it. Check for any additional odor. If you still detect an onion smell, mix together 1 capful of all-purpose bleach with 1 quart of water.


Step 3

Pour the bleach water in the container and seal. Shake the container and let it sit for 12 hours; then rinse.