Stovetop simmer for a natural air freshener


Last week over on Instagram stories I shared about this natural way I sometimes use to get rid of cooking smells. Living with open layout kitchens and cooking our desi meals often, the smells are a huge problem for all of us and I got so many questions about it. I thought it would be a good idea to do this quick post to share more about it. The basic idea is that you use a combination of natural ingredients, add them to a stovetop pot filled with water and leave it to simmer on your stove on low heat (links to a few ‘recipes’ below).

I think this is where I read about this idea for the first time . This was also around the time when I had become aware of all the toxic ingredients present in most household products including the candles we love burning in our homes (more about that here. I know most of us are ignorant about the fact that candles can be toxic. I definitely was!). And since then I do this on and off and especially love doing it when we’re entertaining.

My favorite part is the ‘just baked something’ kind of smells that fills up the entire home. Isn’t there just something so cozy about walking into a home with that in the air? I do think so! Sharing a little inspiration + ideas if you are interested in trying this out.


// Read more about the idea here and get a few ‘recipes’ for cozy scents via TheKitchn.  //

//  Here’s a fall specific recipe  //

// This one for the holidays that includes evergreen trimmings too //



– I always try to save lemon/orange peels for these. Just put them in a jar with a lid with enough water so they’re completely covered and store them in the fridge for when needed. They easily stay fine for months.

– A few drops of vanilla essence added to any simmer just makes it smell SO good, as do cinnamon sticks. I’ve even used leftover eucalyptus branches from bouquets.

– Make sure to simmer on low heat and to keep refilling the water or you’ll have to deal with the opposite problem (burnt smells and all. one guess if it has happened to me multiple times or not. lol).

– Fruit that is going bad is perfect to use in these instead of throwing it away. I just used apple slices that were leftover. You can also use apple cores.

– I haven’t tried yet but I hear you can do this in a slow cooker too and have it running on low.

– These are such a great replacement for candles, even though I still love them (I do try to use them sparingly now and also try to buy soy wax candles and ones with essential oils instead of fragrance).

Let me know if you’ve ever done this or what you think if you try this out.

Lots of love,