Cream of tartar is just something you put on fish, right? Oh, heck no. There are a plethora of uses for the little white powder both around the house, and as part of natural home remedies.
Not only can cream of tartar be highly beneficial when baking, it is also an active base ingredient in craft recipes.
What Exactly Is Cream of Tartar?
The powder that is formed inside of wine barrels during the winemaking fermentation process creates cream of tartar. It is a natural tartaric acid that is harvested from the sediment of wine barrels.
Once the cream of tartar if purified, it becomes the white powdery substance that is found in the spice aisle in supermarkets.
Everyone probably has at container of cream of tartar in the spice cabinet, even if they are not sure exactly why or when they bought it. After reading through this list of cream of tartar uses, I am willing to bet that lonely container will soon be nestled among more of its own.
1. Rust Remover
To get rid of rust, combine ¼ of a cup of baking soda, 1 teaspoon of cream of tartar, and up to 2 capfuls of hydrogen peroxide to create a paste. Rub the cream of tartar paste.
Apply the paste onto the rust spot and allow it to set for half an hour before rubbing in and then wiping away with a clean sponge or rag.
2. Egg Whites
To increase the volume and stability of egg whites when making meringue, mix in one pinch of cream of tartar to help prevent the bubbles from the eggs from collapsing.
3. DIY Natural Puffy Paint
Mix together ½ teaspoon of cream of tartar, 1 tablespoon of self-rising flour, 1 tablespoon of salt, 1/4 of a cup of water, and a few drops of food coloring.
Paint any design you choose on a microwave safe surface, then bake it in the microwave for 30 seconds and watch it puff up and harden.
4. DIY Baking Powder
Both baking powder and baking soda are natural leavening agents that help doughs to rise.
To make your own single action baking powder, mix together 2 teaspoons of cream of tartar and 1 teaspoon of baking soda.
Make on an as needed basis, the homemade baking powder is not shelf stable like double action manufactured versions.
5. Tile and Bathtub Cleaner
Combine 2 tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide and an equal amount of cream of tartar to make a paste to use as a natural scrubbing agent on soap scum and gunk build up on tile.
6. Dough Ornaments
Combine 1 teaspoon of cream of tartar, 1 cup of flour, up to ⅓ of a cup of water, ¾ of a cup of salt, and 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil to create a dough. Allow the dough shapes created to air dry or bake in the oven at its lowest setting for about 10 minutes.
7. Stainless Steel Cleaner
Combine ¼ of a cup of cream of tartar with 1 cup of distilled white vinegar and use as a spray to clean stainless steel sinks and appliances.
8. Carpet Stain Remover
To get rid of stains on the carpet and rugs make a soft paste out of cream of tartar and lemon juice. Carefully dab only the stained portion of the carpet or rug.
Allow the natural low-tox mixture to settle on the stain for about 10 minutes before wiping it away and then rinsing. For deep stains, you may have to repeat the paste application twice.
9. Repair Scratches
Cream of tartar does an excellent job of repairing scratches on dinnerware. Mix the white powdery spice with only enough warm water to form a pliable paste and rub it on the scratches dinnerware.
10. Ring Around The Collar Remover
Simply sprinkle a few shakes from the cream of tartar container directly onto the ring around the collar. Rub in the white powder, and then wash the garment as you normally would.
11. Toaster Cleaner
Mix enough water with cream of tartar to create a fluid that resembles milk in both color and texture. Scrub the nooks and crannies of the unplugged toaster to remove all of the crumbs and sticky residue.
12. Boiling Sugar
To prevent sugar from forming crystals when boiling it, add a pinch of cream of tartar into the pot to prevent its ability to bind together.
13. Cleaning Silver
Renewing tarnished silver shouldn’t be such a dreaded chore. Combine 1 tablespoon of cream of tartar with just enough warm water to make a light paste and rub it onto the silver with a clean cloth to restore shine.
14. Urinary Tract Infection
Cream of tartar may alter the pH levels found in urine and foster an environment inside the body that cleanses it from the bacteria that causes urinary tract infections.
Mix 1 and ½ teaspoons of cream of tartar into a standard glass of warm water. Stir to combine, then add in a capful of lemon juice and stir to mix. Typically, adults with UTIs can drink the home remedy up to twice daily.
15. Aluminum Cookware Cleaner
Make your aluminum pots and pans sparkle again by mixing 2 tablespoons of cream of tartar with 1 quart of water. Bring the mixture to a boil for 10 minutes to clean the inside of the cookware. The cooled solution can be used to clean the outside of the pots and pans.
16. Boiling Vegetables
Add ½ of a teaspoon of cream of tartar to the cook pot before boiling vegetables to help preserve their vibrant color.
Thanks to its natural acidic properties cream of tartar is a superb low tox cleaning agent for the skin. Mix together 8 ounces of water with 1 teaspoon of cream of tartar and drink once daily to eliminate the bacteria that typically causes acne.
18. Nicotine Cessation
Mix 1 teaspoon of cream of tartar with 8 ounces of 1 teaspoon of orange juice and drink daily to help rid the body of nicotine, and, hopefully, make the taste of cigarettes unpleasant to help you kick the habit without the use of potentially dangerous prescription medications.
19. Copper Cleaner
Mix together 3 tablespoons of cream of tartar with enough lemon juice to make a soft paste to buff on copper dinnerware and decor with a clean cloth to restore its natural beauty.
20. Ink Stains
Mix 1 tablespoon of cream of tartar with only enough lemon juice to form a thick paste to apply to ink stains to remove them. Allow the paste to settle onto the stain for about 15 minutes before washing the garment.
21. Arthritis Pain
Combine 3 tablespoons of Epsom salts with 2 tablespoons of cream of tartar, and pour the mixture into your bathtub. Fill the tub with warm to hot water, and leisurely soak in it for about 40 minutes as needed.
22. Laundry Stain Remover
Combine 2 to 3 drops of either lemon essential oil or peppermint essential oil with 2 tablespoons of cream of tartar. Apply the mixture to the stain, and allow it to settle onto the garment until it dries to a fairly hard state – then wash as usual.
23. DIY Natural Play Dough
Gather the kiddos to let them help make their own play dough. Combine the following ingredients in a cook pot and warm over medium heat for about five minutes:
- 4 tablespoons of cream of tartar
- 1 cup of salt
- tablespoons of cooking oil
- 2 cups of water
- 2 cups of flour
- and food coloring of your choice
Stir constantly to avoid scorching, and lay the mixture out on a non-stick surface to cool before using.
24. Blood Pressure Reducer
Cream of tartar can help infuse potassium into the body to help prevent high blood pressure. Drinking 1 teaspoon combined with 8 ounces of water nightly can help naturally eliminate the risk of high blood pressure.
25. Ant Deterrent
Sprinkle cream of tartar anywhere you see ants, or in spots they are likely to use to gain entry to the home to deter them.
26. Laundry Whitener
Pour up to 3 tablespoons of cream of tartar into the washer, and allow laundry items to soak in it for 2 hours before washing to help restore their former brightness.
27. DIY Natural Toilet Scrub
Sprinkle cream of tartar onto the interior edge of the toilet bowl, and allow it to settle for about a minute before using the brush to scrub the bowl to deep clean and shine the commode.
28. Pipe Cleaner
Mix 1 teaspoon of cream of tartar with 4 tablespoons of salt, and 4 tablespoons of baking soda, and sprinkle it into the sink, bathtub, and shower pipes.
Pour a medium pot of boiling water into the drains immediately following the sprinling to break up grime and dirt than can cause them to clog, as part of your weekly cleaning routine.
29. Natural Heartburn Remedy
Combine ½ of a teaspoon of baking soda with ½ of a teaspoon of cream of tartar. Stir the mixture into an 8 ounce glass of water and drink slowly to reduce or eliminate heartburn pain.
30. Natural Gallstone Relief
When minerals and gallstones combine and harden, gallstones can form. To help prevent or treat gallstones naturally, mix together 3 teaspoons of cream of tartar, the juice from six lemons, or an equal amount of lemon juice, and 3 tablespoons of Epsom salts.
Combine the mixture with 1 liter of water (a quarter of a gallon) and sip on throughout the day, or an as needed basis.
Cream of tartar is also sometimes used in the manufacture of laxatives. When stored in an airtight container and kept in a cool dark place, it has an almost indefinite shelf life.
Tara lives on a 56 acres farm in the Appalachian Mountains, where she faces homesteading and farming challenges every single day, raising chickens, goats, horses, and tons of vegetables. She’s an expert in all sorts of homesteading skills such as hide tanning, doll making, tree tapping, and many more.