While I’m not necessarily a big fan of cola (I’m much more of a DIET cola girl,) I’m not here to judge those who enjoy it from time to time. Yes, we all know that cola is laden with sugar and chemicals that will rot our teeth out of our skulls, but sometimes you just have to live your life, right? ;-) But aside from consuming it as a beverage, there are actually a surprising number of other reasons why you might want to keep a few cans of cola in your fridge!
Cola’s fizziness, acidity, and caffeine content are all characteristics that can be useful for tasks around the house. And of course, it’s flavor makes a great addition to many recipes!
14 Uses for Cola
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1. Make a Delicious BBQ Sauce
- 1 12oz can of cola
- 1 1/2 cups ketchup
- 2-3 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2-3 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1/4 of an onion, diced
- Black pepper, to taste
- Dash of salt
- 3 Tbsp Frank’s hot sauce
- Dash of crushed red pepper
Add all ingredients to a saucepan, and bring to a soft boil. Simmer for 20-30 minutes, until it begins to reduce. Strain the sauce into an airtight container, and discard the solids. Place your sealed container of sauce into the fridge. It will continue to thicken in the fridge, so don’t be nervous if it looks thin at first.
2. Dissolve Sticky Messes
The phosphoric acid in cola can help break down sticky messes. Pour cola on sticky spots like sap or gum. Let the cola sit for 5 minutes or so, then wash with soap or shampoo. Easy and painless!
3. Remove Rust
The acidic quality of cola is also helpful for dissolving rust from tools! Pour cola into a bag or bucket, and submerge your tool in the cola. Let it soak for 24 hours, then wipe the rust away with a cloth. No elbow grease needed here!
4. Add Volume
Add body and volume to your hair using cola! The caffeine in cola can add body to your individual strands of hair. Just pour room-temperature cola over dry hair, then rinse with water and style as usual. You’ll love how bouncy and shiny your hair will be!
5. Erase Oil Spots
Oil spots on your driveway can be an eyesore, but you can lift those stains with the help of cola. The sodium bicarbonate in the cola helps dissolve greasy stains. Pour a generous amount of cola on any oil spots, and let it sit for at least 3 hours. Afterward, spray the spots with your hose to wash away the cola and oil.
6. Soothe Wasp Stings
Wasp stings can be really painful! Wasp stingers actually release a small amount of venom, which causes the painful sensation in the area surrounding the sting. The acid in cola can actually help neutralize the wasp venom. Just pour cola over the area of the sting for sweet relief. (Before applying cola, make sure you’ve removed the stinger from your skin – scraping your fingernail over the area should do the trick.)
7. Wash Chalkboards
The carbonic acid from cola can help dissolve and wash away chalky, mineral-y deposits. Over time and repeated uses, chalky residue tends to build up on chalkboards. You can use cola to help get it clean again! Just dip a cloth in cola, and use the cloth to wipe your chalkboard clean.
8. Clean Pots and Pans
There are few things more obnoxious and difficult to clean than pots and pans with burnt-on messes. Luckily, cola can help make the process much easier! The fizziness of the carbonated cola will help dissolve those tough, crusty messes. Just pour a shallow layer of cola into the pot or pan, and leave it overnight. Wash it out in the morning, and the gunk should wipe away MUCH easier!
9. Eliminate Odors
Cola is surprisingly useful as an odor eliminator. Pouring cola on your pet’s coat can help neutralize skunk odor if your pet has had an unfortunate run-in with a skunk. You can also add a bit of cola to your wash cycle to help remove odors from particularly stinky clothing!
10. Feed Your Plants
Coke can be used as an inexpensive fertilizer for several types of plants, like gardenia and azalea flowers. You can also use it to help break down and enhance the quality of your at-home compost pile!
11. Clean Toilets
Fresh out of toilet bowl cleaner? Try a can of coke! Pour a can of coke right into the toilet bowl, and let it sit for a few hours or overnight. Give it a quick scrub to help loosen scum and lime buildup, and flush. So shiny!
12. Remove Paint
Cola can help remove stray paint splatters from your metal furniture. Saturate a dish towel with cola and place it on the paint stain, and leave it there for a few days. Make sure to periodically re-moisten the towel with additional cola. After a few days, the paint should have loosened considerably, making it much easier to wipe away!
13. Clean Coins
Cola is a coin collector’s secret weapon, because it makes a great cleaning solution for coins! Dip grimy coins into a cup full of cola and let them sit for an hour or so. The grime will dissolve and the coins will wipe clean easily. Oooo, shiny!
14. Defrost Your Windshield
There’s nothing worse than having a frosted-covered windshield, but no ice scraper handy. In such a bind, a clever solution is to use a can of cola! Just pour it over your windshield, and the ice will dissolve away. At least enough so you can drive to the store to pick up an ice scraper. ;-)