Most of the time I bring food to work, and I usually bring utensils to eat it with, but sometimes I forget and have to use some of the steelware we have at work. However, the steelware has a strong metallic taste which I dislike. My steelware at home doesn't have this metallic taste. My question, is there an easy way to remove this metallic taste from the steelware?

Just do it's answer seems like a reasonable alternative that will help avoid the problem. If someone has a way of removing the taste I would still be interested to know, although it may not be possible according to the comments.


6 Answers 6


Instead of changing the properties of a metal, the easiest thing would be to permanently have your own set of steelware at the office. Use it a lunch, wash/clean it, store it in your cubicle/office. I usually have my mug and some utensils at my workplace, I rather spend a couple of minutes washing them than using things I don't feel comfortable with(I've seen how my coworkers "clean" the utensils)

  • I don't have a cubicle or office. Only a desk that is easily accessible by others, and it has no drawers.
    – Dragonrage
    Jan 12, 2016 at 18:22
  • 1
    I know it seems a bit excessive, but I do keep a small "chest" which I can lock, my coworkers really prefer my cocoa packets and just took them without even asking. It lead me to putting them in this "safe-box" so it can only be accessed by me. I don't know if that could work for you.
    – Just Do It
    Jan 12, 2016 at 18:26
  • 5
    Drill small holes through your cutlery so you can pass a thin chain through them, which you can padlock onto your desk.
    – fredley
    Jan 12, 2016 at 18:27
  • That's actually quite interesting @TomMedley I just might give it a try! :]
    – Just Do It
    Jan 12, 2016 at 18:28
  • @justdoit Could you possibly provide a picture of it, or something like it? It might work if it is small enough.
    – Dragonrage
    Jan 12, 2016 at 18:28

The cutlery at work tastes metallic. Usually you bring your own, but when you forget, you have to use theirs. So just leave your own at work, and wash them after each use.

To prevent it from getting stolen, buy cutlery with small holes in:

enter image description here

Or drill them in yourself. Now you can pass a thin (wallet-style) chain through the holes to secure the cutlery to your desk when you're not there to avoid theft.

  • 2
    Was this meant as a comment elsewhere? The question doesn't mention storage or theft at all. It's asking how to get rid the utensil's metallic taste. Jan 13, 2016 at 14:17
  • @RobertCartaino I edited Fredley's question to add context, and I think it's easier to understand now. Sep 24, 2019 at 1:15

"Just Do It" suggested leaving clean utensils at your desk every day. Another option, if you have a lunch bag that you always use to bring your food, is to have a set of utensils that you always leave in your lunch bag. When you get home, you could either wash them and put them back in your lunch bag, or put them in the sink/dishwasher and put a clean set in your lunch bag. Just so long as there's always a set in your lunch bag!

(I know this is a workaround, not an actual solution for removing the metallic taste from the utensils at work. But the answer from "Just Do It" was well received, so I thought I'd add this workaround too.)

  • 1
    I normally take them in my bag, and take them out to wash at home. The problem is I forget sometimes. If I put a new set in though, that might help.
    – Dragonrage
    Jan 12, 2016 at 22:57

A bit of a late answer but after researching this a tad myself I may have a bit of relevant data and conjecture to contribute in the case that anyone may see this topic as well and desire a way to rid their cutlery of the metallic taste.

I found an article in a similar discussion online: http://www.ttl.fi/en/publications/Electronic_publications/Documents/Stainless_steel.pdf

On page 21 it references how chromium and nickel can leach out of stainless steel and mentions that the amount will decrease after each use. I believe if this is true the cutlery at your work may have been fairly new and will lose that taste over time once it is used washed and so on.

Applying what I know of chemistry you may be able to speed up that process if you apply heat to speed the reaction or use acids to help strip away surface impurities faster. I have yet to try this, but if anyone feels like running an experiment try soaking the cutlery for a day or two in a mild acid such as vinegar or soda or submerge it in water and let it boil for a decent while, wash it, and then see if there is a noticeable change in the bad taste. It might not be a quick enough fix you could use at work during lunch break, but could help anyone who bought cutlery and can not stand the metallic taste.


Lacking data I cannot be sure, but the metallic taste most probably comes from residue soap components (bases, the soap itself, proteinases ...) all of which can be washed away with water and a little scrubbing with your hand. I highly assume a dishwater save metal is also reasonably inert and therefore has no distinct taste.


That's a strange thing. Your own steel ware has probably the mention "INOX" or "stainless steel". That's why it should have no taste.

If the one at work is cheaper quality, it could give metallic taste. Which means, you actually eat a few metallic ions every time. Some metals are health damaging! For example nickel or lead is bad. Worst is aluminum! NEVER use aluminum! Don't eat in blank aluminum dishes, don't use aluminum fork or spoon, never cook in blank aluminum. You could eventually use aluminum foil to wrap food if you don't heat it up.

I don't know in which country you are but in Europe we have been told, aluminum raises the risk of Alzheimer's disease.

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