Cooking Tips

How to Remove Stains from Coffee Mugs

Enjoy your morning joe without the stains.

Published May 30, 2019.

There’s nothing better than a morning coffee to get you ready for the day. However, there’s also nothing worse than coffee stains glaring back at you from the inside of your cup. Though these stains don’t affect the taste of your morning joe, they’re just plain ugly. Luckily we have a solution to remove these stains from your favorite mug, headache-free.

In this Kitchen Hacks segment from the Better Breakfast episode of America’s Test Kitchen TV, the Executive Food Editor of ATK Kids, Suzannah McFerran, shows you the simple trick we use to get those pesky stains off of our mugs, leaving them good as new. Here’s what we discovered:

An alkaline solution removes acidic stains: One tablespoon of baking powder mixed with 1½ teaspoons of water creates an effective alkaline stain-removal paste.

Use your sponge: The rough side of a sponge lets the paste cling to it, and it will remove the stains more quickly than a smooth surface. All it takes is a few firm wipes with the sponge and a quick rinse before you can admire your newly stain-free surface.

Watch the Video

The Best Kitchen Sponge

O-Cedar Scrunge Multi-Use Scrubber Sponge

This product looks like the classic blue sponge we've all used, but its plastic-based scrubbing side has ripples. These ripples added texture, which helped nudge off cooked-on food.  
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The Best Baking Powder

Argo Double Acting Baking Powder

This brand performed well in every test we threw at it. Its easy-to-use plastic tub helped it edge out the competition.  
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Want to see more of the America's Test Kitchen TV cast? To find out when and where the show airs in your area, enter your zip code into our station finder. And check out our Kitchen Smarts articles to learn more clever cooking tips.

What tricks do you use in the kitchen? Let us know in the comments!

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