How to get Garlic & other strong Spices' smell out of my Zojirushi Flask/ Thermos acquired via a herbal Immunity decoction?

Major components of this decoction were:

  • Garlic cloves
  • Black Pepper seeds
  • Cinnamon
  • Bay Leaf
  • Ginger
  • Cumin seeds
  • Turmeric powder
  • Coriander powder
  • Fennel seeds

Flask Product & Materials info:


  • Its SlickSteel® finish interior is corrosion resistant and repels stains.
  • Durable and sanitary 18/8 stainless steel interior with SlickSteel® finish
  • Made of BPA-free plastic and stainless steel
  • Structure, design & details as pulled from product website

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Mine is the Stainless Steel colored 16 oz one:

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More data from Manufacturer's website FAQ and Manuals:

[QUOTE] Q3: How can I clean my vacuum bottle? A: Always rinse out your vacuum bottle after each use and rinse the stopper under running water. Do not soak the vacuum bottle in water or place in a dishwasher to clean.

The exterior, stopper and cup(s) can be cleaned using a moist sponge or soft cloth and mild dishwashing liquid.

The interior can be cleaned using a mild dishwashing liquid and then rinsed thoroughly.

Please refer to your instruction manual for more. [/QUOTE]

Manual: https://www.zojirushi.com/servicesupport/manuals/manual_pdf/smkhe.pdf

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  • 2
    Could you please add what you have tried already? This may help getting to a good solution quicker.
    – Stephie
    May 27 '20 at 8:50
  • it would also be helpful to add what's the material on the inside of your flask
    – Luciano
    May 27 '20 at 9:37
  • 3
    If soap and water won't do it, I'd try vodka. A lot of spices contain oils that are not very water soluble. May 27 '20 at 21:56
  • I suspect the smell is in the plastic parts rather than the stainless. Am I right?
    – Chris H
    May 28 '20 at 14:57
  • @ChrisH - Let me check, although it was still inside flask as well. Maybe separate and keep to check
    – Alex S
    May 28 '20 at 16:40
  1. Wash out with warm soapy water. A toothbrush could help in the scrubbing. While still wet, add baking soda into the flask and scrub.
  2. Pour an inch or two of white vinegar into a clean carafe, then fill most of the way with hot tap water.
  3. Not tried this one, but seems a few people have had good results. 4 Alka-Seltzer tablets with water.
  4. Adding freshly ground coffee, which will help to mask the smell if it is still there.

Edit: Just read through the manufacturer's instructions, and have updated my advice as a result.

  • 4
    Note that the smell is far more likely to linger in the plastic components than the steel, you you will need to treat those especially.
    – unlisted
    May 27 '20 at 10:20
  • 1
    I got something similar on another group 1."Fill up your flask with hot water and 4 tbls of white vinegar, leave over night. Rinse well next day! Usually works for strong odour 😉" 2."Bi carb should soak up smells too." 3. "People often put a container in their fridge to absorb smells so maybe try that overnight then do the wash" - Will have to ask the house ladies what they've tried so far and then execute a mix of all suggestions.
    – Alex S
    May 28 '20 at 11:59

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