How to Clean a Mortar and Pestle

To effectively clean a mortar and pestle, start by rinsing with warm water. This will remove most solid particles while simultaneously getting into all corners and crevices of its bowl.

Subsequently, add some white rice and use your pestle to grind it against all surfaces of the mortar bowl – this will loosen any food debris stuck inside as well as absorb excess moisture.

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Warm water

A mortar and pestle is an old-fashioned kitchen tool used to crush, grind, pound spices, herbs, nuts and other kitchen items into pastes or sauces. They come in all kinds of materials like stone, marble, glass wood and ceramic; in order to clean one properly it should first be rinsed in warm water to clear away any food debris that has adhered to its surfaces before being fully dried out before its next use.

A few drops of oil can go a long way toward keeping a mortar and pestle clean, preventing sticky bits of mortar from getting stuck between its cracks or becoming hard to clear. After applying oil drops, wipe the surfaces down using a damp cloth; harsh chemicals could otherwise damage it further.

As part of your mortar and pestle cleaning routine, the next step should be rinsing them with hot, soapy water. This step is especially essential if your mortar and pestle are made from porous materials like wood or unglazed ceramic; soap residue can leave behind residue that alters flavors when ground foods come into contact with it later. When it comes to cleaning molcajete molcajete (volcanic rock or basalt stone), no soap is recommended at all!

After thoroughly cleaning the mortar and pestle with warm, soapy water, you should rinse them again to make sure they have been fully scrubbed clean. Be sure to thoroughly scrub both inside and outside of the mortar so as to clear away all food debris before drying thoroughly for storage – this will prevent further spread of bacteria. For those concerned about its scent, rinse your mortar and pestle using isopropyl alcohol for additional freshening up.


The mortar and pestle is an ancient tool used for grinding and crushing ingredients. Historically, people made mortars and pestles out of stone and wood; nowadays there are several materials to choose from. Cleaning methods vary according to each material type used for creating them; but after each use you should rinse your mortar and pestle to protect it from becoming contaminated by bacteria or contaminants and dry completely before storing.

As soon as your mortar and pestle is dirty, the first step should be rinsing it with warm water to remove any remaining food debris and prevent dulling or brittleness of its surfaces. If it becomes particularly dirty, mild unscented soap may also help.

After you have rinsed and cleaned your mortar and pestle, allow it to air dry thoroughly before storing in damp places as this could lead to mold and mildew growth. Also avoid placing it near sources of moisture as this could make the mortar and pestle too moist and weak for proper usage.

Once your mortar and pestle is dry, the next step should be seasoning it. To do this, add a small amount of water to the bowl and stir with your pestle before taking a handful of uncooked rice and grinding it against all surfaces of the mortar bowl with your pestle to add seasoning to your mortar and pestle for future recipe development. Doing this will leave it ready to use when creating recipes!

After each use, it’s best to rinse a mortar and pestle with warm water to sanitize it thoroughly. While some people recommend using soap as an effective cleaner, doing so could actually damage its material composition – soap can penetrate into its composition and alter its makeup; additionally it could leave behind strong scents which transfer to subsequent recipes you use it for. A better approach would be sanitizing with food-grade mineral oil – this will sanitize without leaving behind strong odors behind.


Crushing herbs, spices, and other ingredients with a mortar and pestle has long been one of the go-to methods of crushing. But using one can also be messy, leaving your kitchen filthy. Luckily, cleaning your mortar and pestle easily with vinegar is now possible – whether its made of wood, stone, plastic or anything else; using this simple technique you can effectively rid any leftover residue and maintain cleanness within it.

Start by thoroughly rinsing your mortar and pestle with hot water, paying special attention to any corners that food debris might hide in. Next, scrub away with an appropriate tool – for best results use a scrub brush; otherwise be careful not to scratch stone mortar and pestles! If this doesn’t work for you try soaking your mortar and pestle in warm water for 15 minutes prior to scrubbing; rinse and dry afterwards thoroughly.

If you are cleaning a wooden mortar and pestle, be sure to only use warm water; hot water could damage its wooden fibers and crack or split. A bit of dish soap is OK for stone mortars and pestles but should be avoided since this could remove their protective oils while leaving behind an unpleasant soapy taste.

If your mortar and pestle have become stained, lemon juice or white vinegar are effective ways of cleaning them up. Alternatively, soak the tools for 30 minutes in a mixture of 1 part vinegar to 1 part distilled water before wiping off mineral deposits with a soft-bristled brush. If the stains persist, commercial wood cleaners are available. Just remember to reseason your mortar and pestle after cleaning to restore its colour and waterproof qualities of wood. In addition, it’s important to store it in a cool, dry environment in order to prevent bacteria growth; this is particularly important if you use it in a lab environment and it also protects it from cracking or breaking during storage.

Baking soda

First, rinse your mortar and pestle thoroughly with warm water, using a scrub brush if necessary, to loosen any food debris stuck between its crevices. After this step has been completed, allow it to air-dry for 24 hours before rinsing again.

Glass mortar and pestles should generally be washed in the same manner as any other piece of glassware; however, be wary about using soap on marble or granite mortar and pestles – the soap may seep into porous materials and leave behind residue that will change the flavor of food preparation in subsequent batches.

If your mortar and pestle are made of stone, use a mixture of salt, vinegar and baking soda as a powerful cleaner to clean them. After applying the cleaning mixture allow it to sit for half an hour before rinsing it thoroughly with warm water before allowing it to air-dry completely.

Clean your mortar and pestle using hot water and mild soap solution, especially if they’re particularly dirty. However, be wary when using soap if they’re made of wood or bamboo as the harsh chemicals may seep into these materials and alter their flavor.

Another option for cleaning your mortar and pestle is soaking it in a mixture of warm water and vinegar for 15 minutes, then scrubbing with a brush before washing with warm soapy water. After you have washed your mortar and pestle thoroughly, be sure to rinse well and completely dry them afterwards – then store in an area free from extreme temperatures, such as in a cupboard or shelf – this will prevent potential damage caused by other kitchen tools, like rolling pins.