How to Get Burnt Popcorn Smell Out of Microwave [Quick Ways]

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Popcorn is the perfect snack to enjoy while watching movies on the couch at home. It tastes delicious and can be prepared in just a few short minutes. But the problem arises when your movie experience makes you so engrossed that you forget your popcorn in the microwave, and it burns in the microwave.

Unfortunately, burnt popcorn leaves a lingering odor behind, which might not be ideal. The yellow butter stains we find from burnt popcorn in the microwave can be frustrating and, oddly enough, seemingly hard to remove! Also, see our recommendations for the best stainless steel microwave 2022.

How to Get Burnt Popcorn Smell Out of Microwave

We have put together some great tips to get rid of the nasty burnt popcorn smell out of microwave oven and clean the yellow stains.

Ventilate the House

Microwave smells weird when the popcorn is burnt in it. The first thing to do, when your popcorn burns, is to open up windows and any doors leading outside of your house. You should also turn on the kitchen vent, as well as any other fan that circulates air, at a high speed to remove the smoke and odor from your house. Once the smoke clears out, pick and through all burnt pieces of popcorn into a garbage bag and throw them out in the bin.

Water & Vinegar Steam

Water and Vinegar Remove Popcorn Smell and Stains from Microwave

  • Mix equal parts of water and vinegar in a microwave-safe bowl.
  • Microwave the bowl for 3-4 minutes.
  • Don’t open the microwave door immediately. Let the bowl sit in there for 5-10 minutes more.
  • Open the microwave door.
  • It will remove the odor of burnt popcorn and also loosen the grime or burnt bits stuck on the microwave wall. The next step is to clean the microwave, which we will discuss later.

Note: Vinegar itself leaves a scent, which can take days to dissipate, and if you don’t like the smell of vinegar, you can steam your microwave with a lemon and water solution.

Water and Lemon Steam

Water and Lemon Steam to Remove Odor from Microwave

  • Take half a bowl of water in a microwave-safe bowl.
  • Squeeze a lemon into the water. You can also leave the lemon skin in the bowl. But make sure to observe it closely while microwaving so that the lemon skin doesn’t start burning.
  • Microwave it for 3-4 minutes and let the solution boil and create steam.
  • Don’t remove the bowl instantly after the completion of the microwave cycle so that the steam can penetrate the burnt food or pieces and make it soft enough to clean.

Cleaning the Microwave after Burning Popcorn to Remove the Odor

Sometimes, the burnt popcorn leaves a yellowish mark, which we need to be clean. And occasionally, there are already food bits stuck on the wall from previously microwaved food.

The odor particles get stuck to the food bits and don’t simply dissipate with time, so proper cleaning of the microwave also helps in removing the odor.

For cleaning, remove the turntable and the microwave ring. Wipe it with a clean cloth. If there are yellowish burnt marks or splatters in the microwave, you can clean it with water and baking soda paste.

  • Make a paste of baking soda and hot water.
  • Apply it on the microwave walls, base, and door.
  • Leave the paste for 10-15 minutes. Then, you can use a soft sponge to rub the paste on the microwave to clean the burnt marks.
  • Wipe it out with a clean cloth and remove the moisture with a dry cloth.

Alternatively, you can also sprinkle baking soda and rub it with a damp cloth or scrub brush rather than applying a paste and wiping it clean with a clean cloth.

Don’t miss to check out our budget friendly picks for the best microwaves under $100.

How to Get Burnt Popcorn Stain Out of the Microwave?

  • Take a damp sponge, put some vinegar on top of the sponge, and sprinkle the baking powder on it.
  • Heat the sponge in the microwave for 15-20 seconds.
  • Scrub the microwave with the sponge.
  • Wipe it with a clean damp cloth.

Burnt Stains in MicrowaveUsing Nail Polish Remover

Acetone-based nail polish remover can also be used to remove or lighten the yellowish stain in the microwave caused by burnt popcorn. Pour some nail polish remover on a sponge and rub the scorched and discolored areas with it.

Acetone in any nail polish remover can lead to eye irritation, so make sure to use it carefully. And don’t forget to wipe it with a damp cloth after rubbing it, because it’s a flammable substance and shouldn’t be left in the microwave.

Deodorizing Microwave to Get Rid of the Burnt Popcorn Odor

Cleaning Burnt Stains from MicrowaveAnother method of removing the smell is by placing a deodorizing agent in the microwave. You can use either baking soda or activated charcoal as a deodorizer.

Put an open box of baking soda or activated charcoal in a container for a whole night in the microwave. They have an absorbing quality and will absorb the odor of burnt popcorn or any other food.

Make Coffee in the Microwave

Coffee can also absorb the smell of burnt popcorn. Put some ground coffee in a bowl with water. Microwave it for three minutes. Let the coffee sit in the microwave for two more minutes before taking it out.

Microwave Strong-Smelling Items

You can also microwave cinnamon or vanilla drops in water for a few minutes to mask the lingering odor.

Cook any Other Food

If you don’t have time to steam vinegar, lemon solution, you can cook any other food with dominating smell or bake a deliciously smelling cake in it to curb the popcorn odor in the microwave.

Use Air Fresheners

Popcorn’s nasty smell can linger for weeks. And odor particles tend to stick in the nooks and corners where there is no air circulation. Fabric surfaces like upholstery, absorb the odor. While ventilating all the house should do the trick, for quick results, you can use air fresheners such as Febreze to mask the smell.

You may also like to learn – Are Paper Plates Microwave Safe.

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs

Does burnt popcorn ruin a microwave?

Microwaves have a tough build, and some burnt popcorn doesn’t ruin the microwave unless you have seen some sparks or it has caused the fire. Clean the burnt residue from the microwaves, and if there is no apparent damage to the door and it closes normally, then it is perfectly safe to use. If you are still unsure, you can contact the manufacturer.

Why does burnt popcorn smell linger?

When popcorn is burnt, the oil used in it vaporizes into mist and merges with the burnt smell of popcorn. These odor particles easily cling to fabrics or surfaces and don’t easily dissipate. Another reason is that our nose is sensitive to some smells more than others. And burnt popcorn odor, which resembles some other nasty smells such as binturong urine, is one of the odors to which our nose receptors are more sensitive.

How long does burnt popcorn smell last?

Brunt popcorns smell can last from many days to a week, depending on the ventilation and the microwave cleaning. If you immediately clean the microwave and the burnt residue, the smell will dissipate sooner.

Wrapping Up!

Above are some tips to remove the staunching odor of burnt popcorn from the microwave. If the problem still persists, it may be due to the odor molecules being trapped in the microwave’s filter. Some microwave filters are removable; clean them to remove the smell.

About Amelia

Hello, I’m Amelia. Welcome to my blog KitchenUnder100.Com. Over here I regularly post kitchen hacks, reviews of kitchen tools, utensils and related articles. My mission is to search and recommend the best kitchen products, so you don't waste your precious time and money on anything that is not worth it.

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