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Ask Dr. Laundry

Ask Dr. Laundry

Removing baby food stains

By Dr. Laundry September 13, 2012

My baby started eating food and his clothes have some food stains, how do I remove them?

Baby food stains really benefit from pre-treating, but first be sure to scrape away excess stain (think pureed vegetable globs like sweet potatoes), and then rinse the stain with a little cool water. Be careful not to rub the stain further into the fabric. I am sure you have both white and colored items to clean, so here are some good techniques for both:

If the item is white:


If the item is colored (or made from a fiber on the do not bleach list):

Wash immediately in the hottest water recommended on the care label using detergent and Clorox2®.

After washing, air dry the items and check for success. This is a general technique that I always advise. Stubborn stains that are partially removed can often be treated again, and you increase your chance of eventual success if you don’t heat-set any residual stain in a hot dryer.