How to Clean Insulated Lunch Cooler Bags & Remove Odour

lunch bag

In your daily life, you may ask how can I clean my lunch bags or cooler bags? Without a doubt, over time the contents leak, spill and leave an unpleasant surprise inside when the lunch bag returns home. Can I just throw it in the washer, or do I have to hand wash it?

Can They Be Machine Washed?

Many people threw these stinky lunch bags into the washing machine without any problem. However, the type of each lunch bag varies. Although some can withstand the agitation of the washing machine, others may literally fall apart at the seams from all of the rough action in the washing machine. If so, check the care label/instructions.

Hand Washing Lunch Bags?

For those lunch bags that just need a quick cleaning, or are not made to tolerate the washing machine, a good hand washing will do the trick.

You Will Need:

  • Dish detergent
  • Water
  • Soft cloths or sponges
  • Towels

Steps to Clean the Lunch Bag:

  • Begin by filling the sink with warm water.
  • Add a small amount of dish detergent and agitate to mix.
  • Moisten a soft cloth with the sudsy water, and wring it out so it is just moist.
  • Wipe the interior and exterior of the lunch bag with the sponge or cloth.
  • If the lunch bag can be submerged in water, it will be easiest to place the entire lunch bag in the water and scrub it all over with a sponge or soft cloth.
  • Rinse by wiping with a cloth moistened with clean water.
  • Dry with a towel.
  • Allow it to air dry completely before use. This step is especially important if the lunch bag was submerged in the water as the insulated filling is likely wet as well.

How to Remove the Odour of Lunch Bags?

Over time, any container that holds food for extended periods of time will develop an odor. Lunch bags are no exception. Here are some steps to remove that “lunch bag smell.”

You Will Need:

  • Bleach
  • Baking soda
  • Water
  • Soft cloths or sponges
  • Spray bottle
  • Towels

Steps to Remove Odors from Lunch Bags:

  • Fill a spray bottle with a weak bleach and water solution.
  • Spray the interior of the lunch bag with the bleach solution.
  • Wipe it dry with a soft cloth.
  • Allow it to air dry completely.
  • An additional method is to make a paste out of baking soda and water.
  • Apply the paste to the interior surfaces of the lunch bag with a soft cloth.
  • Allow the paste to dry completely.
  • Wipe away with a soft cloth or brush out the dried paste with a towel.
  • Dry baking soda can also be sprinkled in the lunch bag and left to sit overnight. The baking soda will absorb the odors and can be shaken out in the morning.
  • Any remaining baking soda can be rinsed out with clean water but is not harmful if a little bit remains.

Hope you can keep the lunch bags tidy with these helpful cleaning tips!