This viral simmer pot is a totally natural way to make your house smell amazing for hours

This stovetop recipe uses the perfect ingredients to bring a fall fragrance to your home

A kitchen with walls painted sage green, a large range with a Dutch oven on the stove
(Image credit: James Merrell)

The first nip of fall is synonymous with scents like cinnamon, spice, and baked apple pie, but artificial fragrances will never quite compare to the gentle waft of such smells straight from the kitchen. There's something so comforting about the natural aromas gently filling the home that instantly signals the start of the new season, and the best way to please those olfactory senses is with a stovetop simmer pot. 

A bubbling Dutch oven full of fresh fruit, spices, and herbs might make you feel a bit witchy, but it's sure to only welcome a positive kind of energy into your home. Not only will it make your home smell good by simmering away for hours on your stove, but the scent will linger for days afterward, too. Wondering what to put into your concoction for the most irresistible aroma? This viral TikTok has you covered. 

Small rustic kitchen with green shelves and tiles

(Image credit: Zeke Ruelas)

Like all good simmer pots, this recipe starts with sliced fruit to form the base notes of the aroma. In the TikTok video, which has now been viewed more than 2.5 million times, interior designer blogger Liz Lovery starts with fresh oranges and apples. Store-bought options will serve you just fine but if you're able to find homegrown apples from a farm or even your backyard then the organic flavors will probably be more potent. 

Liz then sets to work in the kitchen slicing one apple and one orange into thin rounds (without peeling them) before adding them to her pan along with five cups of water. Next, it's time for the spices. She adds two whole cinnamon sticks, two whole cloves, two star anise, and three all-spice berries into the pan. The fragrant spices are synonymous with this season and together they culminate into a warm, woody, and peppery scent that quickly permeates your whole home. 


♬ original sound - gilmoregirlstok

Once the ingredients are added, all that's left to do is cover the pan and bring to a boil to allow all the scents to mingle. When it's gently bubbling away, turn down the heat and remove the lid, leaving the pot to simmer. You can keep the pan on a low heat for several hours, but remember to stir occasionally to avoid any of the ingredients burning at the bottom.

'A simmering fall potpourri is perfect for someone who prefers completely natural scenting options,' says Heidi Stojanovic, co-founder of Foton Candle. 'It’s super simple but smells amazing! You could also combine all the ingredients in dried form within a mason jar or box as a personal gift to a close friend or family.'

The beauty of this recipe is that while it offers the bare foundations for a classic fall fragrance, it can easily be adapted with different ingredients of your choosing, too. If you prefer a fruitier scent, add lingonberries, lemon zest, or rosehips for a fresher fragrance. For a more earthy aroma, add some sprigs of sage or rosemary into the mix alongside some whole peppercorns.

If you're wondering how to make your house smell like fall, this recipe is a foolproof natural method. Not only will it fill your home with a rounded fall fragrance throughout the day, but the scent will linger for days following, too! We can't wait to give it a try.

Color & Trends Editor

Lilith Hudson is the Color & Trends Editor at Livingetc. Writing news, features, and explainers for our digital platform, she's the go-to person for all the latest micro-trends, interior hacks, and color inspiration you need in your home. Lilith discovered a love for lifestyle journalism during her BA in English and Philosophy at the University of Nottingham where she spent more time writing for her student magazine than she did studying. After graduating, she decided to take things a step further and now holds an MA in Magazine Journalism from City, University of London, with previous experience at the Saturday Times Magazine, Evening Standard, DJ Mag, and The Simple Things Magazine. At weekends you'll find her renovating a tiny one-up, one-down annex next to her Dad's holiday cottage in the Derbyshire dales where she applies all the latest design ideas she's picked up through the week.