The 5 Stinkiest Foods You Probably Eat (and How to Get Rid of the Smell After Eating Them)

It’s a sad fact: Some of our favorite foods produce other people’s least-favorite smells. Ironically, some of those smells overwhelm us too. Compare how you feel about smelling popcorn at a movie theater with the scent lingering in your office all afternoon after a coworker microwaves a bag.

Well, you’ll be happy to know there’s no need to give up the pungent foods you love! With a little help and know-how, you can manage food smells — good, bad, and what-is-that? — wherever you live, work, and eat.

1. Read this if you’re hooked on cooking fish.

Don’t blame fish. Fish smell fine when they’re alive. It’s when they’re dead that a “fishy” odor emerges and escalates quickly. The longer a fish is dead, the stronger it smells. (Don’t buy or eat fish giving off a powerful stench. It’s likely not fresh and may be going bad.)

There are kitchen tricks to reign in raw fish smell — washing fish with water, treating it with lemon or milk — but we’re here to talk about managing a post-meal aroma.

Say you just enjoyed a home cooked dinner for one of wild-caught black cod. (Generally, diners find ocean-going fish like cod smellier than their freshwater counterparts.) Though the cod wasn’t on the stove very long, it perfumed the house in a way you know will offend your housemate’s senses.

Can you salvage this situation? Yes, with the help of an air purifier! HEPA air purifiers can help reduce odors in your home — but make sure your unit includes a filter with activated carbon, as this is a key component of odor removal.

2. Last one in is a rotten egg.

Rotten eggs are famously stinky. You can, however, do a good egg wrong and cause it to smell bad. All it takes is boiling one for too long to unleash a sulfur smell that will be long remembered and discussed. (Your place will smell like a hot spring.)

Let a Honeywell air purifier help clean and freshen your indoor air for you.

3. Don’t be afraid to say cheese.

Cooking fish or boiling eggs requires heat. Hot foods waft aromas into the air.

What about smelly cheeses? Many beloved cheeses don’t need to be made into warm fondue or raclette to emit a powerful punch.

Some varieties are perfectly stinky at room temperature. For example, the aromas of washed-rind cheeses like Limburger and Tallegio and blue cheeses like Gorgonzola and Stilton can invade a space without the help of heat.

Though the odors can be strong, and others’ reactions can be even stronger, don’t shortchange your sophisticated palate. Enjoy a second helping from your well-curated cheese platter while a Honeywell HEPA air purifier helps with the funk.

4. Eat your veggies.

Bok choy, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower. The list of cruciferous vegetables is long and wide-ranging. Which is great because there’s something for everyone, and they’re really, really good for your health.

Surprisingly, the sulfurous smell (sound familiar?) they give off isn’t necessarily the result of cooking. A seasoned chef will recommend chopping cruciferous veggies and letting them rest before cooking them to lessen their odor-causing properties. Cooking will then tame the smell even more.

But if your uncle’s recipe for cabbage soup requires leaves to be boiled intact, consider adding an optional Honeywell enhanced odor-reducing air purifier filter. Just a note though, that these filters are not compatible with all Honeywell air purifier models!

5. Fermentation is sweeping the nation.

Fermented foods are ones that people have intentionally allowed microbes to grow on. It’s microbial magic that turns cabbage into sauerkraut. Fermentation has been in practice for centuries. And it turns out that fermentation can not only make foods taste better, but it can make them healthier to consume.

Win-win, right? Well, fermented foods’ aromas can cause controversy. So before you reheat that delicious kimchi fried rice, ensure your air purifier is up and running.

Clear the table, not the room.

Life’s too short to eat only bland foods! Don’t throw your hands in the air or your favorite foods out the window. Get a Honeywell HEPA air purifier. It’ll become an important kitchen companion.