What To Do With Old Spice Jars? (Find Out Now!)

Jennifer Eggerton
by Jennifer Eggerton

Spices transform ordinary food into gourmet dishes. Every home cook has a pantry filled with their favorite spices. When the jars run empty, you may wonder about what to do with old spice jars.

Use old spice jars for storing flour, cinnamon and sugar, powdered sugar, baby powder, powdered laundry soap, and herb blends. Use them to rinse and store paint brushes. Organize your office. Make scented candles and sand art. Fill them with potpourri to freshen up a room. Glass spice jars cannot be recycled.

Spice jars are the perfect size for repurposing. Let’s take a closer look at what to do with old spice jars.

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Are Old Spice Jars Recyclable?

When it comes to recycling, not all glass is created alike. The only types of glass that can be recycled are food containers, but this doesn’t include spice jars. Old spice jar glass does not break down properly for recycling. Using old spice jars for recycled glass products affects the strength, durability, and clarity of the glass.

Can You Reuse Old Spice Jars?

If you buy a spice rack that comes with bottles, you can reuse the jars as you run out of spices. You’ll need to clean the bottles and get rid of any lingering smell of the old spices. If you don’t clean the jar, your new spices will have an aroma and flavor of the old spices.

How to Get the Smell Out of Old Spice Jars

Wash the jar with dish soap and water. Put 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda in the spice jar, and fill it with water. Put the plastic shaker insert and lid on the spice jar. Shake the jar to mix the water and baking soda. Let the jar sit overnight.

Remove the shaker insert and lid. Rinse the jar and lids with warm water, and let them air dry. Give the jar a few days to dry and for the residual odor to dissipate.

12 Ideas for How to Upcycle Old Spice Jars

There are so many ways that you can repurpose old spice jars. Once the jars are clean and the odor of the old spices is gone, it’s time to get creative.

1. Store Flour for Non-Stick Baking

Buttering and flouring baking dishes is a must for your goodies to come out of the pans cleanly. Normally you have to dip your hand into the canister of flour or use a spoon or measuring cup. Before you know it, you have more flour on your countertops and floor than in the baking dish.

An old spice jar simplifies greasing and flouring baking dishes. Add flour to the jar, and keep it with your other ingredients. When it’s time to prepare a baking sheet, pie tin, or baking pan, spread on some butter, and sprinkle on the flour.

2. Mix Some Cinnamon and Sugar

Do you love cinnamon and sugar? Rather than mix the two ingredients when you need it, use an old spice jar to store some for those early breakfasts. Fill the old spice jar about 2/3 to 3/4 full with sugar. Add ground cinnamon, put on the lid, and shake. Keep the plastic shaker insert on the jar so you can sprinkle just the right amount on your toast.

3. Sprinkle on Some Powdered Sugar

Sprinkling powdered sugar on your baked treats gives it an elegant look and a bit more sweetness. Getting just a dusting of powdered sugar is tricky unless you have a fine sifter. An old spice jar works just as well. Fill the old spice jar with powdered sugar, put on the plastic shaker insert, and sprinkle away. Store the jar of powdered sugar with your other baking ingredients.

4. Blend Herbs and Spices

You can find herb and spice blends at the grocery store, but they come at a premium. Use the herbs that you already have at home to make spice blends, and store them in old spice jars. Here are some popular blends that you can make at home.

  • Garlic powder, oregano, and basil for garlic bread
  • Italian seasoning with thyme, rosemary, basil, oregano, red pepper, and garlic powder
  • Poultry seasoning with rosemary, sage, parsley, and marjoram
  • Old Bay seasoning with cinnamon, nutmeg, bay leaf, cardamom, celery seed, pepper, ginger, cloves, mace, paprika, and dried mustard
  • Herbs de Provence for fish, meat, and vegetables with basil, thyme, lavender, and fennel
  • Blackening seasoning with cayenne pepper, thyme, oregano, paprika, garlic powder, white pepper, and black pepper
  • Quatre spices for pate and sausage with cloves, pepper, ginger, and nutmeg

5. Use Baby Powder

Baby powder simplifies some of the more challenging moments in life. Keep an old spice jar of baby powder around. When you trim your child’s hair, a light sprinkle of baby powder on the neck easily removes those small trimmed hairs. Baby powder is also great for removing sand from your feet when you’re at the beach.

6. Manage Your Paint Brushes

Artists know how hard it is to keep track of their paint brushes. Old spice jars are the perfect size and shape for storing and rinsing paint brushes. When you store your paint brushes in an old spice dry, keep the brush end up.

7. Organize Your Home Office

Old spice jars help keep your home office organized. Store pens, pencils, binder clips, paper clips, and other small items. The jars also help keep your craft items organized. The jars and shaker inserts are perfect for glitter.

8. Clean with Baking Soda

Baking soda removes odors and quickly cleans sinks and tubs. Put some in an old spice jar with the shaker insert, and set it in your refrigerator. Sprinkle baking soda on a mattress or pet bed to freshen it up.

9. Wash Clothes on the Road

An old spice jar filled with powdered laundry detergent fits into your suitcase. Keep it in your toiletry bag for those times when you need to wash small items on the road.

10. Make Scented Candles

Use old spice jars for scented candles. You can find the wax and essential oils at a local hobby store. The jars are small enough that they fit easily around your tub, in your bedroom, and other rooms in your home.

11. Get Creative with Sand Art

Sand art is an abstract decorative element that looks good in the kitchen, bathroom, and living room. Buy colored sand at a local hobby store. Add thin layers of each color until the jar is full. Put on the lid, and you have a homemade pice of art. This is a fun project for kids.

12. Deodorize a Room

Fill an old spice jar with potpourri, and put on the shaker insert. Leave the lid off. The aroma from the potpourri fills the room.

Do Spices Go Bad?

Spices lose their potency in flavor and benefits. Dried herbs last 1 to 3 years. Powdered and ground spices last 2 to 3 years. Whole spices can last up to 4 years. If your spices are beyond the normal shelf life, it’s a great time to repurpose those old spice jars.

Related Questions

What’s the difference between spices and herbs?

Spices come from the seeds, fruit, root, or stalk of a plant. Herbs come from the leaves and other fresh parts of a plant.

What’s the best way to store spice jars?

Spice jars should be stored where it is cool and dry. Spice jars should not be stored in direct sunlight.

Do you use the same amounts of fresh herbs as dried herbs?

Dried herbs are more flavorful than fresh herbs, so you should use less of the dried herbs. Flavor-wise, 1 tablespoon of fresh herbs equals 1 teaspoon of dried herbs.

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Old spice jars can’t be recycled, but they are very easy to repurpose. Old spice jars help with your baking, organizing, and cleaning. There are many ways to use old spice jars for your hobbies and crafts. Have your kids join in with some fun sand art, or fill the jars with potpourri. Keep baking soda in the jars for deodorizing your fridge, pet beds, furniture, and mattresses.

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Jennifer Eggerton
Jennifer Eggerton

Jennifer L. Eggerton loves being hands-on, whether it's with a home DIY project, making repairs, re-decorating a room, or keeping life organized. She enjoys helping people by sharing her knowledge, insights, and experiences, as well as her lessons learned. In addition to her work as a writer, Jennifer is a Jeep® overlander, self-published author, and nature photographer who loves being outdoors.

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