Coffee Grounds Uses



CC Flickr photo courtesy of stevensnodgrass.

Enjoying a delicious cup of home brewed coffee is a perfect way to begin the day.  But after making the coffee, what is the best thing to do with spent coffee grounds?  Coffee drinkers go through a lot of coffee, and if you make it at home, then you end up with a lot of grounds to dispose of.

Luckily, coffee grounds are an organic material, and they don’t need to be thrown away.  Here are a number of ways to use or recycle your coffee grounds.

Use Coffee Grounds in the Garden

Plants require organic material in addition to water and sunlight.  Most gardeners purchase fertilizers to supply food for plants.  However, coffee grounds make a great fertilizer that can be used throughout the garden.  Rich with nitrogen and potassium, which are common ingredients in store-bought fertilizers, coffee grounds offer an inexpensive way to keep your garden healthy. Roses are especially fond of coffee grounds.

Coffee grounds can help a garden in more ways than one.  Coffee provides a natural way to get rid of pesky slugs and snails too.  Simply sprinkle the grounds around the infested garden areas, and you won’t have to worry about these pests gobbling up your plants.   Additionally, coffee grounds can be used to get rid of ants.

Feed Your House Plants



Like outdoor plants, house plants need nutrients too.  Coffee grounds are a convenient way to feed your neglected house plants.  You can mix grounds with water to feed to plants, or you can place used grounds directly on the soil and allow the nutrients to filter down each time you water your plants.

Compost Coffee Grounds

Even if you don’t have plants to feed, don’t throw your grounds away.  Instead, consider composting them in a compost pile or compost bin. Coffee grounds compost just as easily as your other organic kitchen wastes.  Brown coffee filters are generally compostable too.  In addition, worms love to eat coffee grounds.  So if you are into composting with worms, or if you raise worms for fishing, use those spent coffee grounds. Learn more about composting at Compost Instructions.

Coffee Grounds Can Deodorize?

Not totally sure about this suggestion, but I’ll throw it out there anyway because Heloise says it’s true! Another way to get a little more use out of your coffee grounds is to use them to deodorize refrigerators, freezers, or microwaves. Even your drains.  Coffee grounds can be used much like baking soda.  Place your wet grounds in an open container, and as they dry, they will absorb nearby odors.  This works great in the refrigerator or freezer.  To deodorize a microwave, place wet grounds on a plate and cook them on high for about a minute.

You can even wash your hands with coffee grounds after chopping garlic or onions to get rid of the smell.



Not only is coffee one of our favorite beverages, but coffee grounds can provide a number of uses too.  So think twice before you throw out your coffee grounds.  Are you sure you don’t have another use for them? And even if you can’t think of a way to use them, grounds readily compost.



George October 15, 2011 at 7:49 pm

I always thought that coffee grounds were acidic and need to be balanced in a compost pile, but I recently discovered that coffee grounds are neutral. While coffee is acidic, the grounds aren’t. So, there’s no need to amend coffee grounds when adding them to a compost pile or worm bin.

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