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Why You Should Microwave an Orange

A person holds up two oranges in front of a microwave.
Shea Simmons / LifeSavvy

When most of us finish eating an orange, we toss the orange peel into the trash or place it in a compost bin. But before you discard that leftover bit of orange, you might want to throw it in your microwave first—yes, really.

Microwaving orange peels can help clean your appliance.

You’ve probably heard of this hack before and didn’t realize it. Often, it’s lemon slices or lemon peels you’ll be told to microwave. But if you don’t make fresh lemonade or often use fresh lemon juice as a garnish, you might not have any lemons lying around. Oranges might be more common for your home (because hello, they’re a way better snack than a lemon, but to each their own), and they work the same way.

Spardar Angry Mama Microwave Oven Steam Cleaner

You can always use this clever little steam cleaner.

Like lemons, oranges contain an abundance of citric acid. When you pair orange peels or orange slices with water and then microwave it, you get a slightly acidic steam bath for your microwave. You’ll place the peels or whole slices in a bowl of water and microwave it for 30-45 seconds. Carefully, remove the bowl.

You’ll still need to wipe down the inside of your microwave with a sponge or microfiber cloth, but the blend of steam and acid should have loosened up the stuck-on bits. You should now have a clean microwave.

If you’ve had a few too many foods pop in the microwave, this handy trick can take care of those splatters.

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is the Assignments Editor at LifeSavvy. Previously, she worked as a freelance writer with a focus on beauty and lifestyle content. Her work has appeared in Bustle, Allure, and Hello Giggles. Read Full Bio »
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