Unique Uses for Coffee Grounds

Posted on

uses for coffee grounds

The average coffee drinker drinks around 3 cups of coffee per day, which means a lot of left over coffee grounds. Most coffee drinkers aren’t aware of the multiple uses for their used coffee grounds and as such wind up dumping them in the trash can – which is a shame, because coffee grounds are one of the most environmentally friendly post-consumer products out there.

If you are a regular coffee drinker, you owe it to both yourself and the environment to re-use those coffee grounds that are destined for the trashcan. One of the most popular ways of re-using the grounds is to help enrich the soil of house or garden plants. We’re going to explore unique uses and you might be a bit surprised at just how versatile used coffee grounds are!

Garbage Disposal Odor Eliminator

Coffee beans are regularly used to “reset” the sense of smell after using the nose to sample things such as perfumes, wines, and even candles. There are several chemicals in used coffee grounds that naturally attract and neutralize odors. So, instead of spending money on poisonous household cleaners to eliminate the odors coming out of your garbage disposal, just throw a few coffee grinds down there and watch the odors disappear!

Protip: For an added sense of freshness, drop a slice of lemon into the garbage disposal and then turn it on. In a matter of a few seconds, your entire kitchen will smell lemony-fresh!

Keep Cats Away

Is your neighbors cat constantly using your garden as its own personal litter box? Add 3-4 scoops of wet coffee grounds and an orange peel or two. The pungent combination acts as a natural cat repellant. It won’t harm the cat and the coffee grounds and orange peel will naturally biodegrade, thereby enriching the soil of your garden. Win-win situation!

Turbocharge Your Carrots

If you grow carrots, try this unique trick to help them grow bigger. Take wet coffee grounds and mix them with the carrot seeds for a few days prior to planting them. Carrots love coffee grounds and will get a big boost of nutrition that will help them grow better after being planted. Be sure to include some coffee grounds when you’re planting the seeds. They will deter bunnies and other pests from eating the carrots.

Odor Absorber

You can also use coffee grounds to absorb odors. They do just as good of a job as baking soda does, but without the added expense! Take a small container or glass and add the coffee grounds that you’d get from 4-5 cups of coffee. Place it in the back of the fridge and let it sit for a couple of weeks. Once you start noticing odors coming back, simply replace the container with new coffee grounds, then throw the old coffee grounds into your garden or nearby a tree for added nutritional benefits.

DIY Candles

If the smell of freshly brewed Kona coffee gets your motor running, then why not make a candle out of it? It’s easy and quick to make and your entire house or office can have that freshly brewed coffee smell whenever you light the candle.

To make a coffee candle, simply take 1 cup of wax candle remnants and 1 to 2 tablespoons of used coffee grounds. Melt the wax in a sauce pan. Then take a paper coffee cup, add a wick, then pour the melted wax into the coffee cup. Add the coffee grounds and stir with a wooden popsicle stick. Let cool then cut away the paper coffee cup and viola! You’ll have an attractive candle that you can light at any time, and instantly be aromatically taken away to the big island of Hawaii.

Exfoliate Your Skin

Why spend hundreds of dollars annually on exfoliation products that most likely contain unknown or unsafe chemicals and additives? Coffee grounds make an excellent organic body scrub. The recipe is simple to make. Save up your coffee grounds and put them in a container that you can easily reach your hand into. A low-slung plastic rectangular box tends to work best. Then add some warm water and your preferred all-natural oil (such as coconut oil). Then scrub your entire body to exfoliate!

Organic Facial

Used coffee grounds can also be used as a natural facial product. Take two tablespoons of used grounds and add them to two tablespoons of organic cocoa powder. Add three tablespoons of heavy cream or whole milk, and then add a dripping tablespoon of honey. It makes for a great alpha-hydroxy and antioxidant facial. Best of all, it’s 100% natural with no harmful chemicals or additives.

Caffeine Soap

If you love the jolt of coffee in the morning, but you don’t have time to brew a cup, why not make caffeinated soap? The human body can absorb caffeine through the skin. There are plenty of recipes on the internet that will show you how to make hundreds of caffeinated soap variations. This way, on those days that you’re late to work, simply hop in the shower after you wake up, use your caffeinated soap bar and skip the morning cup of joe!


There are many different uses for used coffee grounds that can not only save you money, but save the environment as well. If you like one or more of these recipes, but don’t drink anywhere near enough coffee to make it work, try stopping by your local independent coffee shop. If you ask nicely, there’s a good chance that they will give you a coffee can full of used coffee grounds for free!

Join the Carta Coffee mailing list

Enter your email address for new releases, limited editions, promotions and more.