How Does One Clean Tea Tins
Hi, I have been a fan of tea for quite some time, and a couple of years back I had gotten some washi tea tins that I placed loose leaf tea in. I was cleaning out my tea cabinet today to make room for my new tea, and I dumped the old teas from the canisters. I want to use them again for the new loose leaf tea that I have, but I don’t know how to go about thoroughly cleaning the tins. They have a wrapping on the outside of them, so I don’t want to submerge them in water. Is there a proper way to clean out tea tins?
I have some tins like this – I try to put tea in them that isn’t quite as fragrant, as they cannot go through the dishwasher. When I run out, I usually take a damp cloth and wipe it out carefully. Then, to ensure it is totally dry, I let it sit open until I feel like the scent has had enough time to truly dissipate. Sometimes I repeat the wiping process a couple times if I found my first go-round to be lacking.
Thanks for the tip, sadly the tins do have quite a strong odor to them. The tea I had gotten were strong to begin with, and they had been sitting in those tins for 2 years+. I’ll try this idea first though as there are still some particles of tea in it that needs to be wiped out anyways.
The other option, one I do often, is to pick a tea that is scented similarly. :) I still wipe out and dry thoroughly, but if I am putting a caramel chai in a container that used to house masala chai, I am not working too hard to clear out that scent. Same with hibiscus-y herbals, or citrussy ones. Any tin that can’t go through the dishwasher tends to get dedicated to a certain type of tea I am likely to restock.
I know Marzipan recommends using denture tablets to clean them, and you wouldn’t necessarily have to get the outside wet at all. Mandala’s Smart Soak also works really well for getting rid of lingering odors. :)
Thanks! After I wipe them out, I’ll try the denture tablets. If that doesn’t work then I’ll try the soak.
Like Leah said above, be sure to let them sit open for a day or two just to make sure they’re completely dry inside.
Denture tablets remove tea stains and odor really well. I use them to clean my thermos.
I wipe with water mixed with vinegar — advice from David’s Tea. Works pretty well.
I was thinking abt baking soda. Don’t put it inside without paper towel or filter. Baking Soda is famous absorbing any smells and flavors. And you don’t have to wash the tin.
I would be very careful not to get the outside of the tin wet. The washi paper/tape would get ruined with water. I would use a damp paper towel to carefully wipe out the inside and then leave it open to dry and air out.
After wiping out the tin, letting it air out will work but be prepared to wait. Sometimes it takes a month or longer for really strong smells.
Oh man, I have a way to do it, but not for the paper covered tins. I always just use super, super hot water and then let them air dry on a windowsill (near sunlight) for like a week or more. I’ve done the whole baking soda dance, and it didn’t work as well as the hot water.
But maybe if you were SUPER careful with the hot water, you might be okay? Or if you wore dish washing gloves and used really hot water on a washcloth to clean the inside?
I’ll be interested to see how the denture tablets work, though!
Thank you everyone for the suggestions! The denture cleaner worked; however, I don’t think my tins were that great of quality since it seemed like they had leaked a little from the bottom. The tins are still usable, just the paper on the bottom of the tins are slightly discolored. I don’t guess there are liners for tea tins that I can put in them to keep them from getting too dirty?
I’ve used various methods of cleaning tea tins – scrubbing with a paste of baking soda and water and leaving it to sit overnight, diluted vinegar, and letting it air dry. All of them remove the scent of the old tea to some extent but I find that the smell still lingers especially from strong teas.
To make cleaning a little easier, I keep separate containers for different types of teas. So one container for greens and oolongs, another for rooibois, another for fruity and floral teas, etc.