10 Unusual Things You Can Do with Sugar

Sugar truly deserves its place of honor in pantries around the world. It's indispensable for sweetening up beverages like coffee and tea, and it adds delicious flavor to baked goods. But did you know that sugar has myriad practical household uses as well? From healing wounds to eliminating pests, here are 10 weird ways you can use sugar—without giving into your sweet tooth.

By Jamie Birdwell-Branson | Published Dec 19, 2017 06:13 PM

Keep Flowers Fresh

How to Keep Flowers Fresh Longer

To extend the life of fresh-cut flowers, combine three teaspoons of sugar (which nourishes blooms) with two tablespoons of vinegar (which establishes proper pH levels). Dissolve the mixture in a quart of warm water, and pour it into your vase for longer-lasting arrangements.

Related: 10 Foolproof Flowers Anyone Can Grow


Clean Your Coffee Grinder

How to Clean Your Coffee Grinder

After heavy usage, coffee grinders tend to get dirty and smelly. By grinding one-quarter cup of sugar in the appliance, you’ll blast away stuck coffee beans, eliminate excess oils, and reduce odor. Then, with your grinder refreshed, it's time to enjoy a fresh cup of joe!

Related: 10 Things a Coffee Maker Can Do—Besides Brew Coffee


Trap Wasps

How to Make a Homemade Wasp Trap

When you're dining alfresco, nothing puts you and your guests more on edge than a swarm of wasps, especially if you’re allergic to the pests. Catch the buzzing insects in a homemade trap consisting of sugar, water, and a plastic bottle; check out instructions here

Related: 10 Plants to Grow for a Pest-Proof Yard


Treat Insect Stings

How to Treat Insect Stings with Sugar

Suffering from a bee or ant sting? Apply a paste of equal parts sugar and water to the injury, then let the solution sit for 20 minutes to eliminate the irritation.

Related: 9 Unexpected Household Uses for Table Salt


Nurse a Burnt Tongue

How to Heal a Burnt Tongue

If you’ve ever taken a big bite of piping hot pizza, you understand the discomfort of a burnt tongue. Soothe soreness by sucking on a sugar cube or placing a pinch of sugar in your mouth; the sweet substance will temporarily dull the pain.

Related: 11 Totally Unexpected Uses for a Crock-Pot


Exterminate Roaches

How to Get Rid of Cockroaches

Does the sight of creepy-crawly cockroaches send shivers down your spine? Fill plastic bottle caps with equal parts sugar and baking soda, then place them around the house for easy, though not particularly quick, roach elimination.

Related: 7 Facts About Cockroaches You Won't Want to Believe


Banish Grass Stains

How to Get Rid of Grass Stains

Whether you got them by diving for a baseball or roughhousing with the dog, grass stains can be pretty tough to clean. Luckily, the enzymes in sugar can break down the stains and get your clothes looking new again. Simply combine one-half cup of sugar with one-half cup of warm water to form a paste, then apply it to the stained area. Let it sit for about an hour before washing the garment.

Related: 9 Smart Hacks for Laundry Day


Make Food Last Longer

How to Make Food Last Longer

Have you ever had to toss a block of cheese or batch of cookies that expired too soon? Next time, test out this clever food-saving hack: Add a few sugar cubes to an airtight storage container to absorb mold-causing moisture.

Related: 11 Home Hacks You Can Do with a Bag of Groceries


Wash Grimy Hands

How to Wash Hands with Sugar

If you’ve undertaken a particularly messy gardening project, clean your hands by adding a little sugar to your soap. The sweet substance acts as an exfoliant to scrub the dirt away.

Related: 12 Unexpected Uses for a Regular Bar of Soap


Light a Grill

How to Light a Grill with Sugar

Imagine this: You bought some steaks for a backyard barbecue only to realize you’re out of lighter fluid. As a quick solution, sprinkle some sugar on the coals and light a match. The sugar will quickly catch flame, and you'll be exercising your grilling expertise in no time.

Related: The Top 8 Ways to Hack Your Grill


Sweet Hacks

Sweet Hacks

Want more tricks like this? Take a gander at what’s inside your pantry. You might be surprised to find out that quite a few staples can also be used for cleaning and repairs around your house.


Don't Miss!


Want a cleaner, tidier, more organized home? Sign up for the Clean Sweep newsletter to receive weekly tips, tools, and bright ideas that will help you maximize your next cleaning session.