When I store leftovers in plastic tupperware and eat them later, I sometimes taste plastic. I do have some glass pyrex containers and they don't leave this aftertaste, but I would like to be able to use my plastic tupperware since I have so much of it.

Is there a special way to clean plastic tupperware? I tried handwashing and after it's dried, putting newspaper in there to absorb stuff.

On another note, it seems like some of my plastic tupperware absorb some food material onto itself. Kind of like forming a seasoning on a cast iron pan, except this is a waxy-food-weird-tasting film on the insides of the tupperware. Anyway to get rid of that? Soaping doesn't seem to work. This film is way too waxy.

  • 3
    Tupperware lasts a long time, but it sounds like yours has lasted a bit too long and is chemically deteriorating. I'd stop using it for food purposes. Might see if anything you notice acting weird is on this list? parentsr.us/tupperware-admits-to-containing-bpa
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Apr 20, 2016 at 3:36
  • 3
    If you are using "tupperware" as a catch-all for plastic food containers you need to be aware not all are created equal. there's lots of cheap stuff made of sub-standard plastics which may not be good for you.
    – GdD
    Commented Apr 20, 2016 at 12:23

5 Answers 5


There are many different types of plastic, but it sounds like your tupperware is made of the porous kind, which will hold on to food particles and explains your note. Heat will expedite the leaching of chemicals into your food, so you should use the containers only for storage, and heat up and eat food from an actual plate or bowl. If you have to continue using them, you could always wrap your food in paper to minimize contact.

Here's some more info


I think the handwashing you're doing is the opposite of the best approach. Please use the dishwasher; it will heat water hotter than your hands can stand and that heat will get rid of the smells in the containers.


Baking soda is an excellent, food-safe cleaner for metal, glass, and plastic. You can use it as a non-abrasive scouring powder to remove the oily-waxy buildup from your containers.

Baking soda also is very effective at neutralizing odors. However, if you continue to taste plastic or remnants of other foods, then it's probably time to retire those particular containers.

It's quite convenient to fill a shaker jar with baking soda, and keep it handy near your kitchen sink for multiple cleaning purposes.

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Baking soda can also safely extinguish grease fires without poisoning the food, which is another reason to always keep it prominent in your kitchen.


A food safe plastic container should never ever leave a "plasticky" taste in anything. However, the commonly used containers will literally absorb a bit of the food, especially oil-soluble compounds in it (notice how paprika and turmeric can permanently discolor them in a nearly irreversible manner) - and also put some of these compounds back into their contents. Common plastic is not 100% impenetrable to liquids and gases; metal and glass are for all practical purposes (except to helium and hydrogen :) - that's why containers that have to sustain pressure or vacuum are made of these. counterintuitive because your floor stays dry if you put a plastic bucket full of water on it.


You can buy Preseasoned Bowls from Dollartree. It helps with the taste. They preseason them for 3 full days before hand so you know what you will taste.

  • 5
    Er... seasoned in the sense of cast iron, or seasoned in the sense of "garlic herb-flavored tupperware"?
    – Sneftel
    Commented Jan 31, 2020 at 16:58
  • Its true...its damn true.
    – user80882
    Commented Feb 5, 2020 at 14:17

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