Too many mandarin oranges left over from Chinese New Year? If they’re still rolling around in your fridge, it’s about time to get rid of them — but if you don’t want to waste them, here’s five ways you can use the peel around your house.

1. Make it into a natural insect repellent.

It’s said that roaches, ants, and other pests can’t stand the smell of orange oil. You can even use it to get rid of aphids! Here’s how to make a natural repellent that’ll keep them away:

  1. Peel the orange rinds off from the fruit, removing as much of the white inner portion as possible with a small knife.
  2. Cut the peel into 1-inch pieces.
  3. Place the cut peel into a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil and let simmer for five minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and cover the saucepan with a lid. Allow the mixture to sit for 24 hours.
  5. Strain the solution through a sieve and into a spray bottle.
  6. You now have your own natural orange oil repellent! Shake well before use.

Alternatively, you can simply blend the orange peels and water together.

For getting rid of plant pests that have a waxy protective layer, such as mealybugs, you can consider adding a few drops of detergent or castile soap to your solution.

2. Shine your taps and other stainless steel.

The natural oils in the orange peel is great for polishing away smudges and keeping your stainless steel shiny. Use it to rub down your taps and other stainless steel hardware. The oils also provide a natural barrier, helping to keep your steel resistant to water spots.

3. Deodorise your fridge.

This works best if you’re able to use a food processor to grind the peel into powder, but cutting them small will also help. Put a mixture of the small rind pieces and baking soda into a dish, and leave in the fridge. It acts as a natural deodorizer, keeping your fridge smelling fresh.

4. Add it to your natural cleaning solution.

Using white vinegar as part of your natural cleaning solution works great, but it does leave a slight smell. Adding some orange peels to the solution and letting it soak helps to reduce the tangy smell of the vinegar, and adds some cleaning power thanks to the citric acid.

it works great for loosening soap scum in the bathroom and scrubbing stains. Be careful to dilute it if you’re using it to mop your floor, though!

5. Clean out your microwave.

Place the orange peels in a bowl filled with water, then microwave for 1-2 minutes. Not only will the orange get rid of smells from the microwave, it helps to loosen caked-on food, too, so it’s easier to scrub away.

What are your favourite ways to use orange peels?