DIY Fridge Freshener – Natural and Easy!

A recipe to make an easy and effective fridge freshener! Perfect for a real-food household that buys a lot of produce. It’s also frugal and 100% pure and natural!

DIY Easy Fridge Freshener - All Natural!

Real Food Fridges Can Have a STANK

What is that smell?  Where is it coming from?

You know what I’m talking about.  That funky, musty odor that can sometimes permeate your nose when you open the fridge.  As a real food household my fridge sees everything from sauteed kale leftovers, thawing shrimp, sauerkraut to bone broth.  Needless to say, things can start to smell pretty icky after awhile.

Recently, I was so fed up with this mystery funk that I broke down and did a deep clean in my fridge and freezer.  It was definitely long overdue, something I realized once I removed the contents and saw the residue, sticky messes, crumbs and who knows what left behind.  I was actually shocked, as I like to think that I keep the fridge and freezer relatively clean.  I removed the contents, discarded old/expired foods, washed the shelving, sprayed and wiped the inside and replaced the contents.  Tip: wipe down the bottles and containers before putting them back in case they have sticky residue on the bottoms.  I was so happy with my new fridge/freezer, that I’d sneak into the kitchen, open the doors and just enjoy the view.  Unfortunately, the mystery funk was still there!  Even after a deep cleaning, the fridge and the freezer still had a lingering smell that I could no longer blame on the sad, moldy, forgotten bag of spinach that had taken up lodging in the depths of my crisper drawer.

I recalled the Arm & Hammer Fridge Fresh boxes that I had seen at the grocery store and thought try them to see if that would help.  I had them in my shopping cart and then thought that I’d try my hand at a DIY version instead.  Seriously, it’s just silly to spend the money (no it’s not a lot, but still!) on a simple box of baking soda.  I use baking soda for various things around the house (cleaning, teeth whitening, exfoliating, etc.) and buy the big bulk bags from Costco.  It lasts forever!  Adding a few drops of lemon essential oil really helped give it a yummy smelling boost!

And guess what, it actually worked!  After placing one of these in my fridge and one in my freezer, the mystery funk smell was gone by the next day.  And it hasn’t returned yet!

It couldn’t be easier.  Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Small glass jar & ring (wide mouth would be preferable to provide more surface area)
  • Baking soda
  • Lemon essential oil – other ideas include Purification, any other citrus oils (orange, lime, grapefruit), and Thieves (where I buy my essential oils)
  • Small square of fabric (try to find something that isn’t too tightly woven.  Cheesecloth would be great!)

Fill your jar half full of baking soda, add 4-6 drops of essential oils and stir thoroughly.  Cover the jar with the fabric and secure with the jar ring (not the lid).  This allows the air to circulate into the jar and destroy the odor.  Place it anywhere in the fridge and/or freezer.

TIP: Write the date on the jar with a dry erase marker, then replace the mixture after three months or earlier if things get funky before then.

DIY Fridge Funk Fighter - make your fridge smell wonderful!

Look how cute this freshener looks!  It’s getting cozy with a jar of my homemade mayo.

I am really impressed with the results and my fridge and freezer are still smelling great!

I’d love to hear if you try this and what you think!

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About Julie Quates

Julie is a naturally minded momma to a sweet one year old boy. She discovered Paleo in 2012 and used real food to conquer several health challenges. Julie shares her passion for sustainability, homesteading, gentle parenting and natural motherhood on Instagram and Facebook .


  1. I use vinegar to neutralize the smell in my fridge. But your fridge freshener looks also very great with all natural ingredients. I need to add this recipe to my list!
    Jessica @ Oildiffuser101 recently posted..How to Use Essential Oils for Hair CareMy Profile

  2. This looks so easy, and were going out of town for a little while, so I’m going to make this then come home to a nice smelling fridge! But I don’t use Young Living, I use Heritage. What’s in purification, and could I use Lavender, Peppermint, or another blend called His Garments? Or does it need to be citrus. And does the oil smell linger on the food?

    • I wouldn’t worry too much about the scent you use – anything that smells fresh will do the trick! I’d play around with it and see what you think. Citrus is great. Purification contains citronella, lemon and other oils similar to that.

  3. Do I have to use the cloth? Could I just put the jar in there with the open ring?

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