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5 Surprising Things You Can Do with Vinegar

07/13/2014 02:46 pm ET | Updated Sep 12, 2014

There are some products hiding in your pantry that can actually be useful for multiple everyday things. I'm not talking about mayonnaise hair conditioning treatments, but rather real cleaning and cooking hacks that everyone should try -- and it starts with a bottle of vinegar. This product is not only already in your pantry, it's environmentally friendly, safe around kids, and keeps your cleaning expenses under budget.

Most cleaning products contain harsh chemicals with intense fumes that can have harmful health effects. For a natural alternative without the fumes, grab a bottle of distilled white vinegar. Due to its high level of acidity, it is effective for killing most mold, bacteria, and germs -- perfect for chemical-free cleaning. When cleaning with vinegar, there are a few things to keep in mind. Since it has a high level of acidity, it's important to dilute it with water to avoid damaging any surface.

Surprising Things You Can Do With Vinegar

Vinegar can also be used in cooking -- beyond the basic salad vinaigrette. Make perfectly poached eggs and rejuvenate wilted greens with this pantry superstar. Vinegar can also be used outside as a natural insect repellent on plants -- think edible plants like herbs and vegetables. This is a great alternative to gardening sprays full of pesticides and harmful ingredients.

Dig out the vinegar and try some of these life-altering vinegar uses. Not only will your house sparkle like new, but you'll be avoiding bringing harsh chemicals in your home. Check out some of our tips and see which surprising use you'll try first!

-Emily Jacobs, The Daily Meal

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