How to Make Orange Vinegar a Simple Homemade All Purpose Cleaner

We all want safe cleaning products without all the nasty chemicals and that's why green cleaning products are all the rage these days. But with this simple orange vinegar recipe you can take the Do it Yourself approach to green cleaning at a fraction of the cost.

Orange Vinegar: My Super Simple Homemade All Purpose Cleaner Recipe

In a pint size mason jar, I combined the peels of about 2 oranges and covered them with white vinegar. After letting them sit in a sunny windowsill for about a week, I removed some of the liquid when it was time to clean the bathroom counter tops. You can leave the rest to continue brewing for a few more weeks as it’ll continue to get stronger. Simply put some of your new homemade all purpose cleaner into a spray bottle and clean like normal.

For me, it worked as you would expect and had a pleasant citrus aroma that I really enjoyed, much better than the chemical smell of some harsh cleaners!
homemade all purpose cleaner
As more of us realize the need to pursue green cleaning products that are family safe, I find simple homemade cleaning recipes such as this very refreshing. You can save a lot of money over store prices, it is better for the environment, and they are effective. Plus citrus isn’t recommended in worm composting bins, so this is a great way to get a second life out of those pesky peels.

Although I have cleaned with vinegar in the past, and know it works, I rarely stick to it because of the objectionable smell. Adding citrus peels to the vinegar solves this little quirk in a fun way and actually gives you something to look forward to when you clean. I use this orange vinegar cleaner on counter tops, mirrors and the sink. I’m sure it has many additional uses as say a homemade toilet bowl cleaner or even homemade citrus degreaser. Plus watching the jar of citrus peels sunbathe on your windowsill is quite a beautiful spectacle. It is sure to get noticed when you have guests. Don’t be surprised when they go home and make some too!

Homemade All Purpose Cleaner Variations Using Vinegar

To add color and variation, next time I am planning to add a mixture of grapefruit, lemon, lime, and orange peels. I know lemons are great for cleaning as they have antiseptic properties, and are great for removing odors and grease. I imagine other citrus also shares these properties, to varying extents. Now if I could just get my hands on some pH litmus paper I could test it. But for now, I am quite happy just appreciating the scent and the results of this homemade orange vinegar cleaner with my own eyes. Happy cleaning!

Some of the best cleaning products are so simple you can make them yourself, but if you just don't have the time to make everything yourself here are some natural cleaning products we recommend from companies we trust. No harsh chemicals, toxins or phthalates in these green cleaning products - no way!

Pin This Simple Orange Vinegar Recipe for Later

make your own orange vinegar cleaner



  1. Hi Sandra! Thank you for sharing such a simply and amazing DIY recipe for a cleaning product! Now I want to replace all the chemicals products in our house for the sake of my little daughter and this recipe has come just in time.

  2. Thanks for this post! It’s really great to know how to do some homemade condiments. And this is the first time I heard about orange vinegar.

  3. I ‘ve never tried to make a Homemade All Purpose Cleaner before. But i would love to give this a try. Thanks for sharing this with us and keep up the good work!

  4. I love the smell of citrus and absolutely hate the strong odor of store bought cleaners! What a refreshing alternative it could be! But we don’t get oranges here this time of the year, can I work with lemon peels?

  5. Nicolle Olores

    This is really awesome and a good idea to make orange vinegar as a all purpose cleaner. I thought lemons can be as a cleaner and good thing to know that even lemons are usable.

  6. Really awsome , Your post give me some inspiration about alternative skin care and natural health.

  7. Its a nice alternative using a natural cleaner and it help also to save money..

  8. I will try this home made cleaner…Its cheap and safe to use..

  9. I want to replace all the chemicals products in our house for sake of a nice environment..

  10. Ambika Choudhary Mahajan

    Wonderful share yet again.
    While we all know that most cleaners, sprays and disinfectants we use at home can cause us some trouble, most people are not aware of the fact that they are deadly carcinogens as well!
    Great effort- you’re doing your bit to keep people and Mother Earth healthier by promoting healthier alternatives! 🙂

  11. Thanks for this cost-efficient, natural and effective DIY cleanser 🙂 I just tried my finished product today and I love the results!

  12. Orange and vinegar ? now that’s a tandem that’s definitely a show stopping partner for modern homemakers ! not to mention they ‘re effective cleaning agents as well!

  13. I guess it’s really a good idea to find alternatives to harsh and toxic cleaning products that are commercially available today and this is a great suggestion. I’m glad that more of us are now more inclined to developing environment-friendly and natural products that are more often than not just as effective as ones we normally use. Thanks!

  14. Now that’s what you call cleaning and fragrance at its finest ,orange and vineger?why not?

  15. What a great idea 🙂 Very resourceful, I will try this out sometime! Thanks a lot for the helpful share!

  16. A definite must-try! this cleaning combo is not only effective but is very popular with countless households as well.

  17. Right at the heart of house keeping! Thank you for sharing this. I’am not big fan of tangerines and oranges, glad i could use them for something else more productive than letting them rot in my kitchen counters’ fruit basket

  18. Not only are all these ingredients proven to be effective in cleaning, they smell really nice as well. Zesty! 🙂

  19. It’s great to see DIY green and safe products.
    This DIY product is safe and smells nice too. Why wouldn’t not try this one?

  20. All purpose cleaner cost a lot. I can create my homemade all-purpose cleaner then I will be saving a good amount of money and I would not worry about chemicals because my cleaner is earth-friendly.

  21. Hi
    I have used vinegar before for cleaning. But to add different things to it to change the aroma had never even thought about. I suppose the possibilities are quite varied depending on what you prefer.

    Really informative thanks lee

  22. I have been making just this concoction as of late for my household surface cleaning and I love it. Lemons, limes, oranges – all great. The only problem is, for some reason it seems to clog (somehow? although I see no pulp or build up?) the sprayer – I mean like, totally, no spray period. I have tired it in various spray bottles and always get the same result. Am I crazy? My friend uses the same recipe and an empty Method bottle (OK, mine are empty Honest Co bottles) and hers works just fine. Right now I just take the top off and pour but spraying is certainly ideal. Anything thoughts would be appreciated! TIA 🙂

    • Yeah I agree spraying is so much easier, that’s odd you are having so much trouble with it. Have you tried straining it first with a fine mesh strainer? It might be that the bottles you’ve tried have finer spray mechanisms so since your friend has had luck with Method bottles give those a try. Good luck. Sorry I don’t have the magic wave of the wand fix for you. 🙂

  23. Here’s a recipe that I use for cleaning glass that really works. Adding orange may cause streaking though…
    2 Cups Water
    1/4 C Vinegar
    1/2 tsp Dish Soap

  24. Yeh! Thank You. Very excited about this new way to make vinegar smell like citrus goodness!

  25. Hi, is there such a thing as using rosemary-infused vinegar and sweet orange essential oil as a household cleaner? I have dried rosemary galore and no oranges. Thanx for your response.

  26. In our household we are big fans of vinegar as a cleaning solution. This is a great idea for a product.

  27. I am all for using a cleaning product that makes me look forward to cleaning, Chris. I’m going to slowly introduce this product to my husband hoping he will start to enjoy using it. 😉

  28. We have a big mason jar of this at home, so I can attest to its usefulness and efficacy.

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