13 Surprising Uses for Flour

13 Surprising Uses for Flour

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If you’re going to have success in the kitchen, you won’t be able to do it without having flour as one of your main ingredients. It’s key for adding just the right texture and structure to all your favorite and delicious baked goods. What you may not know, is that flour can be used for a number of other purposes in your home, even outside the kitchen. These are 13 surprising uses for flour that you need to know about. In case you missed this post, How To Make Flour Tortillas From Scratch or this one, How To Make Norwegian Lefse From Scratch. I have my Popeye Pancake recipe below, enjoy.

Related Topic: What to Store in Your Pantry for an Emergency or 30 Pioneer Skills We Cannot Lose

13 Surprising Uses for Flour

13 Surprising Uses for Flour

1. Loosening a Jar Lid

Is it just me, or do you every once in a while have a hard time reopening the lid on a pickle jar? Even the lid on a jar of jam or jelly can be a hassle. To help stop this from happening, apply a pinch of flour around the edge. Problem solved!  

2. Clean Up Oil Spills 

I’ll be honest enough to admit that every once in a while I can be a bit clumsy, even in the kitchen. Cooking oil spills can be a very messy ordeal to have to clean up afterward. 

If you happen to ever have a vegetable or olive oil spill, all you need to do is drizzle a layer of flour over the spill and allow it to absorb most of the mess. Then simply take a dustpan and small brush to sweep up the residue, followed up with a soapy washrag to finish the job.   

3. Works Well to Get Rid of Acne

Flour can also be used to help fight acne. By adding a dab of honey and a bit of flour to your pimple, cover it with a bandaid right before you go to bed. In the morning, rinse it off, and you should see that it’s less noticeable and healing quickly. That’s because the flour helps to dry it out, while the honey works as a healing agent. 

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4. Refreshes Your Facial Skin

Not only can the flour be used on acne and other facial blemishes, it’s also a good ingredient to use when making a face mask. Go with wheat flour that will give you glowing, brighter skin, while lessening evidence of oily residue on your face. It also has anti-inflammatory compounds in it that will help slow down the skin-aging process.     

5. Insect Deterrent in Your Garden

For many years now, gardeners have insisted that sprinkling flour on their plants is a good method to keep insects from eating the leaves and vegetables that are growing on their plants. Another reason to use this pest control method is that it doesn’t require using harmful chemicals.   

6. Polishing Copper

Whether you have a penny collection or a copper pipe that’s looking a little grimy these days, all you need is an equal parts mixture of flour, white vinegar, and salt. Add the paste mixture to your copper and allow it to dry. It should buff right off and bring the desired polish that you desire. 

7. Returning Shine to Your Appliances 

Flour can also be used to buff stainless steel so that your kitchen appliances and bathroom sink can shine brighter than ever before. All you need to do is apply the flour on the stainless steel surface, add a bit of elbow grease to it, and then rinse. Simple, yet effective! 

8. Can Be Used as a Dry Shampoo

I have the perfect solution for those of you who are wanting to get away from the commercial shampoos that have been known to have harmful chemicals in them. So how about going more natural by using flour to clean your hair? 

I’d encourage you to go with the finely-ground organic rye flour versus the all-purpose flour, and then mix it with 2 tablespoons of water. Rub it into your hair and allow it to soak for a couple of minutes. Just be sure to rinse well and then use a comb to get out any tiny chunks that may be leftover.   

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9. Rainbow Flour Paint

When you’re in desperate need of a fun and creative new way to paint, try out this rainbow flour paint recipe that brings a thicker texture that your children are sure to appreciate. The end results are sure to be well worth it.  It’s the perfect solution for the next time you’re all cooped up on a rainy day. 

10. Make Homemade “Galaxy” Playdough 

Want to fascinate your students or your own kids with the most beautiful playdough you’ve ever seen? This playdough recipe that uses flour is really easy to follow, and I can guarantee will hold your children’s attention for a long time. 

11. Paper Mache Glue 

Remember doing paper mache in school as a kid? Now you can pass that knowledge on to your kiddos with this paper mache project. This fun activity features a bowl, but you can also use a balloon as well. 

12. Ripen Avocados 

When you’re craving guacamole dip, but your avocados aren’t ripening fast enough for you, again, flour can come to your rescue. Put your avocados in a bag and then pour the flour on top. Allow them to sit on your countertop for about 24 hours and at that point, they should be ripe enough to use. 

13. Freshen Old Playing Cards

If the next time you go to play with your playing cards and you notice food or oily residue on them, go ahead and put them in a paper bag along with some all-purpose baking flour. With a good minute’s shake, followed up with a shuffle or two, your playing cards should feel good as new. 

My Grandkids Favorite Recipe

Popeye Pancakes by Food Storage Moms
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6 people
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Grease a 9 by 13-inch cake pan or use a muffin tin like I did today. Add the ingredients into a blender and whip until very fluffy. Quickly add the egg mixture into the muffin tin or cake pan. It's all about the fluff right now. Bake for 20 minutes. Serve with butter and syrup, powdered sugar, or cinnamon and sugar. Enjoy.

13 Surprising Uses for Flour

Final Word

With 13 more new and surprising uses for flour, there’s really no reason why it should never be in your kitchen’s pantry. Flour will help you when you’re in a pinch or help you clear up a pimple just in time for school pictures. What are other surprising uses for flour that you are aware of? Leave a comment below and let me know! May God Bless this world, Linda. 

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Copyright Images: Fresh Flour Deposit photos_41791735_s-2019

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  1. We store a lot of flour. I make bread and other baked goods using it. These uses are totally awesome. Linda, thank you so much for sharing these tips with us.

    1. Hi Deborah, I know a lot of people may have stocked up on some flour that may not make bread so I thought they could use these tips. Here in Utah last year, flour and yeast were hard to find. I had plenty but people stocked up that maybe don’t really make bread, not sure. I can’t imagine not having flour because like you, we both like to bake and cook! Linda

  2. Thank you for these amazing uses, Linda!!

    We use fresh ground whole wheat flour in place of purchased cream of wheat. We call it ‘creamy wheat’. It cooks up fast: we like it with butter and honey. But a friend likes it with cream and sugar.
    Another use for flour that we love is: oven pancakes (or hootenanny/ German pancakes/ etc).

    1. Hi Janet, oh my gosh, I remember growing up we ate cracked wheat cereal all the time. Oh the oven pancakes, oh my grandkids love those! I need to add that link to the post, thanks for the reminder!!! Linda

  3. Re the flour as garden insect repellent–I ran across a tip about getting rid of squash bugs. Sprinkle self-rising flour on the leaves (and, I assume, the bugs!)–the bugs eat it, get a belly-ache, and die. Maybe I was too late with planting my spaghetti squash last year–anyway, didn’t get to try it, since for once I didn’t see nay bugs to try it on!

  4. ever have to mark a line across the ground – flour stays around long enough to get the job done that day and it’s gone without any harm ….

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