A Cook's Guide to Stain Removal

Whether you consider yourself a master chef or a more of a microwave wonder, cooking and eating can get a little messy. While creating, heating up or eating a culinary masterpiece, you might have a few spills along the way.

Don't panic-simply pull up this guide to get rid of these common cooking stains.

Basic Tips

Regardless of the type of the spilled substance, always use these tips when trying to remove a stain.

  • Never use cleaning products that contain bleach
  • Keep colour-fast towels handy-they are more effective at drawing up liquid than salt
  • Clean stains from the outside edges toward the centre.
  • Keep stubborn stains moist with a damp washcloth while waiting for a professional-stains are easier to remove before they set

Simple Solutions

Use these solutions to get rid of common cooking stains.

  • Dishwashing solution: For every litre of warm water, add one teaspoon of dishwashing liquid
  • Ammonia solution: Mix ammonia and water at a 1:15 ratio
  • White vinegar solution: Mix white vinegar and water at a 1:1 ratio


You can easily get fat on your clothes when you cook ground beef and it spits onto your shirt. If this happens to you, don't fret just pull out some cleaning supplies.

First, use hot water and a high-quality cloth sponge to soak up any excess fat. Next, use the dishwashing solution and blot the area dry with a colour-fast towel. Keep applying the dishwashing solution and blotting the area dry until the stain has gone or until you no longer see results.

Rinse the area with clean, warm water and blot it dry.

Soup Stains

You can easily spill a full bowl of soup, but luckily it's usually easy to get any resulting stains out as well.

Simply apply the detergent solution to the stain, rinse it off with clean water and repeat the process as long as you see results.

This method may not work if the soup contained food additives that set.

Tomato Sauce Stains

Whether the stain come from a pizza night gone wrong or some escaped spaghetti, red stains seem to stand out more than any other colour. Before you throw away your shirt or cover the carpet with a couch, try out these methods to get rid of the stain.

First try the dishwashing solution. Rinse the area with the solution and blot it dry. If it makes a difference, repeat this process.

If that stops working, move on to the ammonia solution. Apply the solution and rinse the area with clean water. Then apply the vinegar solution, rinse the area and blot it dry. Continue applying the ammonia and vinegar solution using this method as long as you see a change in the stain or until you get it out.

Rinse the area with cold water and blot it dry.

Black Sauce Stains

When you said you wanted to add more black into your wardrobe, a black sauce stain probably wasn't what you had in mind.

Use the following methods to clean up any black sauce stains: First, rinse the garment, carpet, etc. with the detergent solution. Blot the area dry. Repeat this method until you get rid of the stain or the method stops making a difference.

Next, rinse the area with clean water and blot it dry with a colour-fast towel. Use the ammonia solution for particularly stubborn stains. Rinse with clean water and blot it dry.

Don't lose hope when some stains refuse to go away. If you can't get the results you want with household methods, call in a professional stain removal company. They have the experience and equipment necessary to fight stubborn stains you aren't able to tackle on your own.

Common Holiday Stains

The holidays are here! It’s the perfect time of year to entertain and celebrate with family and friends.

Our website has a wealth of information about stain advice and this post will cover common Christmas and holiday stains.

Once the holidays are over, it’s easy for your carpet or upholstery to seem a little untidy with new stains from dropped food, increased foot traffic and spilled drinks. If your carpet in less-than-perfect condition, check out our tips below to improve stains.

Getting your home back into shape after the holidays can be intimidating. But don't stress when spills happen (and they can happen no matter how careful you are). Simply be prepared.

You can remove most stains with ease if you treat them quickly and properly. The longer you wait, the more difficult the problem becomes.

Here are some solutions to help you deal with fresh stains as they happen. If you have a set stain see our section on stain removal advice for more specific help for your stain.

Cranberry Sauce

This is a holiday favourite, but its red colour stains easily. If cranberry sauce spills on your carpets, after you have removed the excess treat the stain with a mix of dishwashing liquid and warm water (1 teaspoon to a litre of water). Blot with a sponge or an old colour fast towel until it absorbs the liquid.  Repeat this process until the stain is removed or stops responding.


Treat gravy stains in a fashion similar to cranberry sauce. After wiping away the excess gravy, blot the stain until you remove it or it no longer absorbs into your cloth. Use a mixture of dish washing liquid with warm water (1 teaspoon to a litre of water) to remove any residue. Finish sponging with cold water and blot dry to remove the remaining solution.

Fruit Juice

Don't panic if one of the children at your family event knocks over a glass of juice onto your carpet. Flush the stain with cold water and blot dry. Treat residue with water and detergent solution as above and blot dry.  If you are left with a stubborn residue see our stain specific advice.

Tree Sap

Christmas tree sap can get stuck on carpet and leave a stain even after you throw out the tree. To treat sap, allow it to dry and then pick it off of your carpet fibres. Treat residue with a water and dishwashing liquid solution or  a carpet spot cleaner appropriate  for your carpets fibres.

Dirt & Mud

As guests arrive, they track mud, dirt and wet leaves that have accumulated on their shoes inside the house. Place quality mats in your entryways, both inside and outside of your home. Then most of the mess will stay away from your carpet areas. To treat dirt and mud, vacuum your floor with a quality vacuum. For the best results we recommend a vacuum cleaner with a motorised powerhead.

Tree Water 

If you spill water from the Christmas tree, it can leave brown stains on your carpet and even rust, depending on your tree stand. Attempt to remove the stain using a solution with half vinegar and half water. The vinegar neutralizes the browning effect. This stain may not come out easily if the water was rusty, in which case you should consult with a professional.

For other solutions, like red wine stains, see our section on stain removal advice. 

Accidents happen, but you don’t have to live with the stain forever. You can clean most spills off your carpets using warm water and towels to blot the spot. However, some set stains need professional cleaning. Our team will help get your home back in shape, so you can have a happy new year.


Phone: 0488 726 888

emailThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  website: www.stainbusters.com.au

Stain Busters Carpet Cleaning and Pest Management Toowoomba are your carpet, rug and upholstery cleaning and stain removal professionals. We have developed our own shampoos and stain removal products and procedures allowing us to get heavily soiled and badly stained carpets clean fresh and stain free GUARANTEED.

Stain Busters Carpet Cleaning and Pest Management Toowoomba Technicians are IICRC qualified which is your guarantee they are fully trained in all aspects of carpet, rug and upholstery cleaning, protection and stain removal.

Removing stains others leave behind is our specialty. This is why many of Toowoomba's best Property Managers recommend us for their end of lease carpet cleaning. They know the importance of getting it right the first time. You can be assured we will achieve the best results in your home or commercial premises for you too.

Carpet, Rug and Upholstery Stain Removal Services....The Stain Buster Difference.

Stain Busters Carpet Cleaning and Pest Management Toowoomba regularly remove difficult stains like: Cordial, dye, ink, pet stains, tea, coffee, red wine, makeup, nail polish, paint, blood, tar, grease, oil and most others.

Stain Busters Carpet Cleaning and Pest Management Toowoomba also offer the following services:

Carpet, rug and upholstery protection, leather cleaning and protection, tile and grout, vertical blind, and mattress cleaning, pest control, odour removal treatments and a full range of water damage carpet restoration services. For more information on all our services visit our local website www.stainbust.com.au

Stain Busters Carpet Cleaning Toowoomba also services the surrounding areas including:

Highfields, Cabarlah, Meringandan, Crowsnest, Goombungee, Kingsthorpe, Oakey, Cambooya, Clifton, Allora, Biddeston and surrounding areas.

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You are very unlikely to see Stain Busters on the cheap list. Our thorough cleaning process takes time and care so cutting corners to give you a cheap job is not what we are about. However we do understand how important it is to deliver a great result at a true value price. We want you to use us again and again and tell all your friends about us. This is why we have a satisfaction and value guarantee.

Ask about our special package prices.