HOME > Chowhound > Not About Food >

Discussion

Burnt Popcorn In Microwave-House Still Smells!

I badly burned a bag of microwave popcorn in the microwave three days ago...lots of smoke in the kitchen! Luckily, nothing caught on fire, but my house still smells of burnt popcorn. This is not exactly the "holiday smell" I was going for!

I've completely scrubbed the microwave with baking soda & water, foodsafe disenfectant spray, then I boiled a cup of water with lemon in the micro.

Does anyone have any idea to get the burnt smell out of my house completely? Opening the windows are not an option...it's about 20 degrees outside.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. Outside of FeBreeze, Orange disinfectant spray or Lysol type products......consider the Real Estate method....bake apples and cinnamon in your oven.

    1 Reply
    1. re: fourunder

      i hate that smell - it happened to me awhile ago and the only way to combat it is to spray, scent, burn and cook. it sucks.

    2. I suggest putting lots of fresh ground (not grinds) coffee on several paper plates and put one or two plates in the microwave; as well as others throughout your home. So long as you like the smell of coffee, it should do the trick within a day or so. I learned this from our local power company after we had left town for a week; only to return to a long term power outage while we were gone and the corresponding dead body smell that came from my frig. Nothing else I've ever tried (kitty litter, baking soda, etc.) works; but the coffee seems to do the trick.

      1. My father caught a bag of popcorn on FIRE in my microwave. The house smelled to holy hell for days. I tossed the popcorn, obviously, sprayed the inside of the microwave with Clorox Clean Up and wiped it out several different times and boiled a bowl of plain white vinegar in it once every couple of hours for a day or so. I did not add any water to the vinegar. When I was bored with the vinegar smell, I boiled water with cinnamon, nutmeg and apple pie spice with a shot of cheap vanilla. You may have to bite the bullet and put on a hoodie, crack the windows and kick the ceiling fans to high for 20 or so minutes.

        1. I've done this --- and other smelly things. I've found that putting a pot of water on the stove and adding cinnamon and using the fan, it cleared the air in the entire house of the offending smell, replacing it with one of "something baking in the oven" aroma.

          2 Replies
          1. re: eartha

            Haven't tried it, but I read that hollowing out half an orange and filling it with salt makes a good deodorizer.

            1. re: Wiley

              Thanks for all the great suggestions...I've never heard of the coffee one before! Well, it's almost five days later, and the smell has finally subsided. I used lemon juice in the microwave, then vinegar (at different times). I've also heated up a lot of food in the micro. to try to get a better food smell in there. Lysol spray in the kitchen & the rest of the house also helped a lot.

          2. Light lots of candles throughout the house and burn matches. Shake out any drapes and raise blinds, then use a fan. Odors tend to hide in undisturbed areas, so make sure you air them out. For fabric surfaces that may have absorbed the odor and be feeding it back to you, as someone else has suggested, Febreze may help.

            As for your microwave, it's not the interior that may be the problem. It's the fans and air intake/output. If the lemon juiice didn't deodorize it, try some cinnamon in the water and pray!

            Bet you never leave a bag of popcorn unattended again! '-)

            But everybody seems to do it at least once...

            1. Unfortunately no matter how you try and get rid of the odor in the house unless you treat the source from which it eminates, it will continue to smell for an inordinate amount of time. And the source of that odor could be the microwave in which the popcorn was burnt if its interior is made of plastic. Click on link below to find out more and for several hints on cleaning the source so you can eliminate the odor continuing to permiate your house from that microwave.

              http://www.associatedcontent.com/arti...

              1. I burned up a head of garlic and had to replace the microwave. You can probably get a good deal now with all the Christmas sales. And the house odor will fade.

                2 Replies
                1. re: SweetPea

                  There's no way I'm going to replace my microwave, since it was not ruined, and it's only about a year old. The burnt smell is starting to lessen, so there's hope.

                  1. re: ctflowers

                    Mine was ruined. I guess 40 minutes VS 4 minutes for garlic is deadly. (yeah, I fell asleep) NOTHING would relieve that plastic of the smell. Try a long slow simmer of baking soda and water after the vinegar thing.

                2. Happened to me... Do I feel sorry for you. I had to get rid of my brand new microwave. There was no way I could have cleaned it and the smell lingered in the house for days on.

                  1. Had the same issue. I tried heating a bowl of vinegar in the microwave that seemed to help. I will say that eventually the smell dose lessen.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Withnail42

                      I've recently found Febreze Air Effects. Cooked Mom some scrapple Christmas eve morning, and it was still hanging around in the bedrooms Christmas Eve evening. Having learned from cooking Thanksgiving dinner that the food smell could linger for several days I had bought some Febreze Air Effects. I sprayed it throughout the house. When we came home from a party later that night the odor was totally gone. Actually both the odor of the food and the Febreze were gone. Just like I like it, no smell at all. I've always felt that using one smell to mask another one never works well.