Cranberry sauce is a mainstay at many Thanksgiving dinners, which means that cranberry sauce stains are as well. While not pretty, stains are a sign of a fun evening and a plentiful meal—replete with red wine, rich gravy, buttery treats, and delicious chocolate. Another sign of a well-enjoyed gathering? Snug waistbands, groggy heads, and achy limbs (that is, if you were standing in the kitchen all day; if you were watching football from the couch, glass in hand, this ain't you).
If only cranberry stains were less of a headache to get rid of...
The tricky thing with stains is that the older it gets, the harder it is to remove. Treat stains first—and quickly—before laundering or drying, for easier and lasting removal.
According to DoItYourself.com, the boiling water method works wonders on those dark red and purple stains from cranberry sauce. If you have a stain on clothing or a piece of fabric like a cloth napkin, stretch the soiled item over a bowl, secure with a rubber band, and pour hot water over it. Northern California-based Pacific Heights Cleaners also suggests blotting the stain with a solution of one-part distilled white vinegar, one-part laundry detergent, and 10-parts cool water. (Fun fact: The same ingredients work well for tannin-based coffee stains, too.)
If the stain is stubborn, repeat the steps until it has gone. Now wash the garment as recommended.
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Arati grew up hanging off the petticoat-tails of three generations of Indian matriarchs who used food to speak their language of love—and she finds herself instinctually following suit. Life has taken her all across the world, but she carries with her a menagerie of inherited home and kitchen objects that serve as her anchor. Formerly at GQ and Architectural Digest, she's now based in Brooklyn.