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Ask Dr. Laundry

Ask Dr. Laundry

Removing baby food stains

By Dr. Laundry August 10, 2012

How do you remove baby food stains from baby clothes?

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:


  • Rub stain gently with Clorox® Bleach Pen® Gel immediately before laundering.

  • Wash immediately in the hottest water recommended on the care label using detergent and ¾ cup Clorox® Regular-Bleach.


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

  • Apply Clorox2® directly to the stain, and rub in.

  • Wait 3-5 minutes, but don’t let it dry on the fabric.

  • 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.