The best houseplants for a kitchen to remove unwanted fumes and stubborn odours

Kitchens are full of stubborn smells, grease and moisture which can be hard to tackle daily. Luckily some leafy friends can give you a hand

composte of three different houseplants to show the best houseplants for a kitchen
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Staying on top of your kitchen cleanliness every day can seem like an impossible task, especially when the grease and fumes start building up. But there is one natural and efficient way to make the job a little bit easier. 

Whether you're looking for ways to make your kitchen smell good or simply want your space to be uplifted by a bit of greenery then look no further than these houseplants. 

Plants in the kitchen might have never crossed your mind, but several species will not only survive the various conditions but also thrive from the heat, fumes and grease in the air. Here are the top five plants to elevate your kitchen in more ways than one.   

Best houseplants for your kitchen 

Like plants that help with condensation in every room and thrive in your bathroom, these species will be the perfect addition to your kitchen and support you through every dish. 

Teaming up with Wren Kitchens, plant expert Radek Babicek from Fantastic Gardeners has shared the five best plants for helping purify the air, improve your mood and elevate the look of your space. 

Radek Babicek
Radek Babicek

Radek has been a part of the Fantastic Gardener's team for over three years, he is now one of the company's top gardening experts and helps his clients achieve satisfying results in their garden and their homes with plants. 

1. English Ivy

english ivy in bedroom

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Whilst you may think ivy belongs in the garden, it's one of the best indoor plants for your health and wellbeing. As it's a drooping plant, Ivy is ideal for windowsills and shelves. 

"English ivy is easy to grow indoors and can add a beautiful splash of colour to any kitchen. This plant is one of the best ones to help reduce indoor air pollutants like formaldehyde benzene, which is a byproduct of tobacco smoke, burning gas and open fires, as well as mould and bacteria," says Radek 

If you have any furry friends then make sure the plant is well out of their way as ivy is toxic to pets and could damage their stomachs should any part of the plant be ingested. 

English Ivy 20-30cm: £8 at Patch Plants 

English Ivy 20-30cm: £8 at Patch Plants 

If you're looking to brighten up your space and have a lot of vertical room in your kitchen, then English ivy is a great addition. It's practically unkillable and will be happy in most light conditions. 

2. Spider plant

picture of a spider plant in a light yellow pot on a windowsill

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Should you be looking for better home health, then using greenery like the spider plant can make a huge difference to your home's air quality, especially in your kitchen where gas pollutants can quickly build up. 

"The spider plants are great at removing bad odours, fumes and pollutants from your kitchen's environment," explains Radek. Used like one of the best air purifiers this simple plant can help to improve indoor air quality.

Similar to English ivy, this plant is also extremely low maintenance so it can thrive under a variety of conditions, perfect for the busy plant parent. 

Variated Spider Plant 20-30cm, 12cm pot: £12.99 at B&Q

Variated Spider Plant 20-30cm, 12cm pot: £12.99 at B&Q

Not only are spider plants great air purifiers they also make a stunning dining table centrepiece with their striped leaves and voluminous shape. This one from B&Q comes with a chic white plant pot too! 

3. Snake plant

snake plant on a windowsill in a black pot

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Although snake plants are one of the most toxic houseplants to cats, they are a great addition to your kitchen should you keep them out of the way of curious paws. Similar to the cast iron plant, snake plants make ideal statement pieces in your kitchen and have large leaves which don't take a lot of care. 

So if you're looking for a low-maintenance life, especially when it comes to the aesthetic and upkeep of your kitchen then look no further than the snake plant. 

Snake plant in 14cm Terracotta Plastic Grow pot: £12 at B&Q 

Snake plant in 14cm Terracotta Plastic Grow pot: £12 at B&Q 

Fancy adopting a snake plant? This small yet leafy species is ideal for brightening up a room without becoming a burden. Continue to let it grow and you'll have an impressive-looking low-maintenance plant in no time. 

4. Aloe Vera

picture of an aloe vera plant on a counter top with other houseplants

(Image credit: Getty Images)

If you're struggling to know how to care for plants and their various strange preferences then the aloe vera plant might just be the perfect fit for you and your kitchen. It's practically indestructible thanks to its thick, rigid leaves but it also possesses healing powers!

"If you burn yourself, cut off a lower leaf near the stalk and rub the gel on the burn. You’ll feel almost instant relief," says Radek. 

Aloe Vera plant, 30-40cm with pot: £22.99 at B&Q 

Aloe Vera plant, 30-40cm with pot: £22.99 at B&Q 

Always burning yourself on the oven trays? You might benefit from having your own personal aloe healing station in your kitchen. This one from B&Q comes with a pot and is an ideal size for your kitchen windowsill. 

5. Cast Iron plant

cast iron plant close up in from of tiled window

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Also known as Aspidistra Elatior, the cast iron plant is tall with structured leaves and is best placed on the floor as a statement piece in your kitchen. It could make the list of the top five easiest house plants to keep alive as it's low maintenance so it's perfect for a busy household. 

Radek says, "The cast iron plant can endure more than an average houseplant, for example, it can withstand extremely low light, temperature fluctuations, and infrequent watering." 

As your kitchen will often go from cold to hot and dry to humid in a matter of minutes, this ever-changing environment isn't ideal for all houseplants however the cast iron will endure and happily survive your manic kitchen climate.

Aspidistra cast iron plant 90-100cm: £85 at Patch Plants

Aspidistra cast iron plant 90-100cm: £85 at Patch Plants

A leafy statement piece will never not be a kitchen trend in our eyes, and this cast iron plant is ideal for just that. With low maintenance preferences, this plant is an investment for sure. 

It's not just air purification and anti-odour properties these plants can provide your kitchen, Darren Watts the Showroom Design Director at Wren Kitchens also points out the aesthetic advantages.

"From a design perspective, incorporating plants into the kitchen - especially throughout the spring and summer seasons, when florals and ‘indoor-outdoor’ interior design trends are popular – adds to the kitchen landscape, helping to add interest, colour, texture, and dimension," he explains. 

Emily Smith
Digital lifestyle writer

Emily joined woman&home as a staff writer after finishing her MA in Magazine Journalism from City University in 2023. After writing various health and news content, she now specialises in lifestyle and home writing where she covers all things cleaning, interiors and homeowning.