3 Creative Uses for Leftover Wine

wine-cleaner wine-bath fruitflies-wine

Leftover wine is not usually something I am faced with, but when it does happen, say, after a party or when I really don’t like the wine I’ve chosen, my frugal nature insists that I find a use for the wine, rather than dump it down the drain. Usually, I find a way to cook with the wine; red meat loves a red wine marinade, and chicken and pasta are amazing with white wine sauce. Rarely, though, I just can’t finish a bottle before it’s too skunky to drink, so I’ve found a few fun uses for the leftovers.

Bathe with Wine

My favorite use for leftover wine is to take a bath in it.  It feels extra-indulgent, smells great, and is beneficial for skin, too. The acidity of the wine helps skin retain its naturally acidic pH, meaning skin is stronger, healthier, more radiant, and better at blocking pollution and the sun’s rays. A few tablespoons is often enough to make a difference, but add as much as you like.

Bonus use: A little vinegar or dry white wine (so that it’s not sticky) applied to the face after washing is the secret to keeping acne and wrinkles at bay.

Clean with Wine

The alcohol in wine makes it a great disinfecting agent. White wines work best for lighter colored things like counter tops, while white or red could help clean E. coli or salmonella from your wooden cutting board. A cup of wine and a couple cups of water in a spray bottle make a great fruit and vegetable cleaning spray, since the alcohol and beneficial bacteria help remove bacteria and dirt on the surface.

Bonus Use: Wine can help window and mirrors sparkle. Apply a little to a paper towel or spray on the glass, then wipe dry.

Keep the Pests Away

One of the most annoying parts of working at a winery, especially in the late summer, is the abundance of fruit flies. They are a nuisance, but wine works to get rid of them as well as it works to attract them. Create a fruit fly trap by pouring a small amount of wine into a cup, then covering it with plastic wrap. Poke a few tiny holes in the plastic, which allows the flies into the trap. Usually, once they find their way into the trap, they can’t find their way back out. Dump out the wine and wash the cup every few days to keep the wine fresh enough to attract flies.


What other uses for leftover wine can you think of? What’s your favorite way to use up old wine, assuming you have some? Let me know in the comments!