How to Clean Stained Teaspoons

How to Clean Stained Teaspoons

A teaspoon is one of those little gadgets that we use every day! Whether we’re eating cereal, stirring a pot of gravy, or making an obligatory brew, we need a teaspoon.

So, it’s no wonder that teaspoons get so dirty and stained, they’re literally being pounded with dirt every single day.

But how do you clean stained teaspoons? I’ve been brewing up some ideas for you, so keep on reading to find out what you need to do to revive your tarnished teaspoons! 

How To Clean Stained Teaspoons

There are a few different ways you can try to remove marks from your teaspoons, and luckily most methods use ingredients found at home and are very easy to follow.

Important: 100% stainless steel teaspoons can be cleaned with all of the methods listed below. But if you have teaspoons that have plastic/other material handles you should not soak this part of the teaspoon in the mixtures listed below. Doing so may damage the teaspoons.

Pick one or more of the methods below to try:

White vinegar and hot water 

clean teaspoon with white vinegar

White vinegar is non-toxic and environmentally friendly. Plus, it’s the perfect cleaning agent to use when trying to remove troublesome stains from teaspoons.

Because of its acetic acid content, white vinegar can take out grease, kill bacteria, and best of all it can break down mineral deposits. Which is exactly what you need when you’re trying to remove solid stains.

What you need:

Here are the steps you need to take:

  1. Pour one part of white vinegar into a cup.
  2. Pop one part of hot water from the kettle into the same cup.
  3. Put the stained teaspoons in the cup. 
  4. Stir them around. 
  5. Allow them to soak for about 15/20 minutes – do not leave them overnight. 
  6. Pull the teaspoons out and rinse them under the hot water tap. 
  7. Clean with washing up liquid as you would normally.

Additional steps to take if you do not see the desired end result:

  1. Grab some bicarbonate of soda.
  2. Pop a small amount of bicarb onto a damp cloth.
  3. Rub the bicarbonate of soda into the teaspoons – do one at a time. 
  4. Wait a couple of minutes.
  5. Wash the teaspoon under hot water and with washing up liquid. 

Bicarbonate of soda and washing up liquid

clean teaspoon with Bicarbonate of soda and washing up liquid

Bicarbonate of soda is excellent at removing solid deposits and bacteria from surfaces. Plus, it’s very easy to get hold of and it’s nice and cheap.

What you need:

  • Cup/mug
  • Bicarbonate of soda
  • Washing up liquid
  • Hot water
  • Cloth
  • Tablespoon

Here are the steps you need to take:

  1. Grab your mug and pop in one tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda into it.
  2. Squirt a generous amount of washing up liquid into the mug too – there is no need to go over the top!
  3. Add boiling hot water to the mug.
  4. The mixture will bubble. 
  5. Pop the stained teaspoons in. 
  6. Allow the teaspoons to soak for about 15 minutes. 
  7. Pull them out and wipe them with a cloth. 
  8. Repeat steps, if need be. 
  9. Wash as usual when you’re done. 


clean teaspoon with bleach

Bleach is an exceptionally strong chemical that will remove the colour from your teaspoons, so you should only use this method if your cutlery is made from stainless steel. If you have a fancy, colourful handle on your teaspoon, the bleach will eat away at it and ruin the design.

What you need:

  • Bleach
  • Water 
  • Bowl
  • Gloves

Here are the steps you need to take:

  1. Pop your gloves on and make sure kids/pets are out of the way when you work with the bleach.
  2. Pour a small amount of bleach into a bleach-safe bowl.
  3. Dilute this tiny amount of bleach with hot water. 
  4. Add your stained teaspoons to the bowl.
  5. Allow the teaspoons to soak in the diluted bleach for a few hours. 
  6. Remove the teaspoons carefully and wash them with hot water and soap. 
  7. Make sure that the teaspoons are bleach-free before you use them to make your next cuppa. 

Washing powder 

This option will work well if you actually have washing powder at home. If you don’t use washing powder, and you use tablets instead, don’t even consider exchanging one for the other and continuing with the method below – it won’t work.

You can usually pick washing powder up fairly cheaply, but be careful to check that you’re not allergic to the powder before you use it.

What you need:

  • Washing powder
  • Gloves
  • Cup/mug
  • Tablespoon
  • Hot water

Here are the steps you need to take:

  1. Pop some gloves on before handling the washing powder.
  2. Pour about a tablespoons’ worth of washing powder into a cup. 
  3. Add in boiling hot water. 
  4. Put your stained teaspoons into the water. 
  5. Mix them around a little. 
  6. Allow the teaspoons to rest in the washing powdered water for 30 minutes. 
  7. Remove the teaspoons and clean them thoroughly.


Milton Sterilising Fluid or Denture Cleaning Tablets

Milton Sterilising Fluid is occasionally used to remove stains from teaspoons. It does have mixed results, and end results are usually dependent on how stained the spoons are to begin with.

You can purchase Milton Sterilising Fluid in most supermarkets as well as Boots and Amazon.

Denture cleaning tablets work in a similar way, and also have mixed results. They can also be picked up in most shops, and there are various brands to pick from as well.

Both options come with instructions on their packaging that advise you on how much product to use. Generally, you pop your chosen product in a cup/mug, add some water, then you pop your stained teaspoons into the cup and wait.

Remember to clean your teaspoons when you’re done. 

Scrub teaspoons with Brillo pads

While the methods listed above yield great results, you sometimes can’t beat a bit of elbow grease!

From time to time you just need to grab a Brillo pad and just scrub at your teaspoons to dislodge the aged dirt. You can buy Brillo pads in most supermarkets in the UK or online from Amazon.


How to Keep Your Teaspoons Clean

wiping teaspoon dry

Once you’ve restored your teaspoons to their former glory the last thing you want to do is to go and dirty them again. But as a nation of tea and coffee drinkers, it’s inevitable that these little spoons are going to get mucky again.

So, here are a handful of tips to keep those pesky stains at bay:

  • Wash your teaspoons as soon as you’ve used them.
  • Wash your teaspoons with soap and hot water frequently. 
  • Dry your teaspoons after you’ve washed them.
  • Deep clean your teaspoons every few weeks to stop the spread of stains.