Tupperware doesn’t dry in the dishwasher because it is made of plastic, has a low thermal mass so cools quickly and there is less opportunity for the water to evaporate as it dries. This means that Tupperware will stay wet for longer and will not dry in the dishwasher.
There are some ways that you can help your Tupperware along on its journey to dry out easily. These go from low effort all the way to getting your hands busy with a tea towel. Below I describe 4 easy ways to help your Tupperware dry in the dishwasher.
How to help Tupperware to dry in the dishwasher
Here are my top 5 tips to help Tupperware to dry in the dishwasher. This is a challenge but it can be done. Check out my guide below.
1. Place Tupperware on the top shelf
Put plastic Tupperware on the top shelf of your dishwasher to give it the best opportunity to stay upside-down and to drip dry. While the plastic will cool quickly and can still hold drips of water, placing it on the top shelf gives it the best chance of drip drying and staying upside-down.
Placing Tupperware on your lower shelves exposes them to more heat and stronger water pressure where they can be flipped over, damaged and gives them less chance to dry out. Stick to the top shelf for all of your Tupperware and lids.
2. Run your dishwasher on a full cycle
Running your dishwasher on a full cycle will give your Tupperware the best opportunity to dry out. The full cycle will include a drying function where extra heat can be added to your dishwasher to help the dishes dry out. This can help the water to evaporate from your Tupperware and dry out quicker.
3. Open the dishwasher as soon as it is finished
Opening your dishwasher as soon as you hear the little bell or see the light will allow excess steam to escape. This will reduce the amount of water that will form on your Tupperware. Some dishwashers will even pop open when they have finished to achieve this.
My dishwasher is not that fancy but I am usually nearby when it is finished. Open the door ajar and allow the steam to escape for dryer dishes including Tupperware.
4. Use a good quality dishwasher tablet & rinse agent
Using good quality dishwasher tablets and rise agents will help your Tupperware to dry more effectively. Rinse agents in particular work with your dishwasher’s rinse cycle which helps to break and soften water particles so they do not stick to your dishes.
Rinse agents will also work to keep your glasses free of spots.
Check out this easy hack to get the stains out of your Tupperware.
What to do if your dishwasher does not dry Tupperware
Wait it out
While all of these tips will help your Tupperware to dry, the best method with the least effort is to leave your Tupperware to drip dry until all of the water is gone. This could take a few hours so if you really don’t want to reach for the tea towel, make sure the Tupperware is upside-down and leave it in the dishwasher until it dries.
Keep the dishwasher door ajar to allow extra air movement and for steam to escape. Eventually you will get dry Tupperware but it might take 2-3 hours.
Use the tea towel
Tea towels are the most efficient way to dry your Tupperware if it is still wet after being in your dishwasher. Use a clean, dry tea towel to remove any excess drips from your Tupperware and then it can be stored stacked in your cupboard. Leave your Tupperware with the lid off when storing for the most air movement.
My favorite way to dry Tupperware that is still wet from the dishwasher is to take it straight out and place it on my dishrack. I always have a dish rack full of drying dishes. This is my lazy way to dry out any plastic container that comes out of the dishwasher and is still wet.
While there are only a few dishes that I hand wash, a dishrack is perfect for allowing Tupperware, Pyrex or other random containers the time to air dry on their own.
Why Tupperware stays wet in the dishwasher | FAQ
Dry Tupperware in the dishwasher by running it through a full cycle, adding a good quality dishwasher detergent and rise aid and opening the dishwasher door as soon as it finished. Leave your Tupperware to dry in the top rack upside-down in your dishwasher and after 2-3 hours, depending on the weather it will dry by itself. Always dry Tupperware completely before putting it away in your cupboard.
Plastic container stay wet in the dishwasher because they have low thermal mass which means they cool quickly and the water drips stay on the surface. Instead of the water evaporating as the container slowly cools like ceramic, plastic cools too quickly for this to happen which is why they stay wet in the dishwasher.
Tupperware can lose its color when placed multiple times in a dishwasher or placed on very hot washes in the bottom shelf. Always place Tupperware on the top shelf of dishwashers and choose a cooler cycle to keep your Tupperware in the best condition for longer. Remove Tupperware from the dishwasher to dry completely in your dish rack. This will increase air movement.
Why Tupperware doesn’t dry in the dishwasher? | Summary
Tupperware is made from plastic which cools quickly and will leave spots of water on the surface of the containers. To allow it to dry leave it in the dishwasher with the door ajar until it dries, place it on your dishrack or get out a clean dry tea towel and dry by hand. Tupperware is a great product but you might have to get busy to help it dry. Worth the effort I think.
I am an accredited practicing dietitian, experienced gardener and a dedicated cook. I love writing and sharing my experience so you can learn from my successes and mistakes.