10 Surprising Ways to Reuse Coffee Grounds for Sustainability

Coffee Grounds

Every year, people around the world consume 10 billion kilos of coffee beans. So, I’ve put the old thinking cap on and come up with 10 ways to reuse those coffee grounds and maybe you will find a few things in this list that you can employ within your own lives.

1. Coffee Grounds: Use as a Fertiliser for Plants and Gardens

Coffee grounds are one of the most wasted resources in the world. It’s a shame that something so useful is often thrown away without a second thought.

However, there are several ways to use used coffee grounds that can benefit not only your daily life but also the environment. For starters, used coffee grounds can be an excellent fertiliser for plants and gardens.

If you’re looking for a natural way to add nutrients to your soil, then look no further than your morning brew! Used coffee grounds are naturally rich in nitrogen which is essential for plant growth.

They also contain other minerals such as potassium and phosphorus that plants need to thrive. So, instead of throwing them away, mix your used coffee grounds into the soil around your plants or sprinkle them on top as a mulch.

And it’s not just outdoor plants that benefit from coffee ground fertiliser. You can also use it on indoor plants such as herbs and houseplants.

Just mix the used coffee grounds with some potting soil before planting or sprinkle on top of the soil once every few weeks as a natural plant food. By using spent coffee grounds as a fertiliser, you’re not only reducing waste but also creating more sustainable ecosystems around you.

You’re contributing to an eco-friendly future where soil nutrients come from natural sources rather than synthetic ones that can harm the environment in various ways. So let’s all do our part and make sure our spent coffee grounds end up where they belong – back in nature’s cycle!


2. Mix with Used Eggshells to Create a Natural Pest Repellent

Let’s be honest, chemical pesticides can be harmful, not only to pests but also to the environment. What if I told you that you could use something as simple and natural as spent coffee grounds and eggshells to keep pests away from your plants?

Yes, you read that right. If you’re looking for an organic insect repellent, mix some used coffee grounds with crushed eggshells and sprinkle it on the soil around your plants.

Coffee grounds are rich in nitrogen, potassium, and other soil nutrients. When mixed with crushed eggshells, they create a formidable barrier against slugs and snails.

Eggshells alone can be effective in keeping these slimy creatures away because their sharp edges deter them from crossing over them. However, when mixed with spent coffee grounds, the combination creates an even more potent organic insect repellent.

Not only is this method of pest control eco-friendly and sustainable for our future planet, but it’s also extremely cost-effective. Why waste money on harmful chemicals when you can use something that would otherwise go into the trash?

By using spent coffee grounds as plant food instead of throwing them out, we’re not only reducing waste but also enriching our soil naturally. So next time you brew yourself a morning cup of coffee, don’t throw away those used coffee grounds; instead mix them with some crushed eggshells for an effective organic insect repellent!

3. Make a Gritty Soap for Cleaning

When it comes to cleaning, there are a multitude of products on the market that claim to be the best at removing dirt and grime. But what if I told you that you can make your own all-natural, exfoliating soap using something you probably already have in your pantry – spent coffee grounds? That’s right, those little brown granules that used to give you a morning boost can now be repurposed for a more sustainable future.

Not only do they provide an eco-friendly alternative to chemical-laden cleaning products, but they also offer a plethora of benefits for your skin. Used coffee grounds are an excellent exfoliator that can help remove dead skin cells and promote cell turnover.

They also contain antioxidants that can help protect your skin from free radical damage and caffeine which has been shown to reduce inflammation. So not only will your skin feel cleaner and smoother, but it’ll also have a healthy glow.

To make the soap is pretty simple – just mix together equal parts coconut oil, olive oil, and used coffee grounds until well combined. Then pour into a mold and let sit for at least 24 hours before cutting into bars.

The result is an invigorating soap with a gritty texture that cleanses and exfoliates in one step. In addition to being great for your skin, this DIY soap is also great for the environment.

By reusing spent coffee grounds instead of throwing them away, you’re reducing waste and giving them another purpose beyond just providing morning caffeine. So next time you’re cleaning up around the house or looking to try out some new eco-friendly products give this refreshing hand cleanser recipe a try!

4. Use as a Wood Stain for Furniture

If you’re looking for a natural wood finish, look no further than your morning cup of coffee. That’s right, used coffee grounds can double as an eco-friendly stain for furniture and other wooden objects.

Not only is this method affordable and sustainable, but it also gives off a unique look that can’t be replicated by traditional stains. Using coffee grounds as a wood stain is incredibly simple and easy to do.

All you need to do is mix the leftover grounds with hot water until they form a thick paste. Then, using a paintbrush or rag, apply the mixture onto your wooden surface in even strokes.

The color will deepen over time as the mixture dries and sets into the wood. Not only does this method work well on furniture, but it’s also great for DIY projects like picture frames or wooden signs.

And since it’s made from spent coffee grounds, you can feel good about using an otherwise wasted resource to create something beautiful. In addition to its aesthetic appeal, using spent coffee grounds as a wood stain is also better for the environment than traditional options.

Most commercial stains contain harsh chemicals that can be harmful to both humans and the planet. By choosing an eco-friendly option like spent coffee grounds, you’re taking one small step towards creating a more sustainable future.

Coffee Grounds Wood Stain

5. Deodorise your Fridge

Do you ever notice that strange smell coming from your fridge? It’s an all too common problem, but fear not!

The solution is right in front of you: spent coffee grounds. Not only are they a great fertiliser for plants and gardens, but they also make an excellent fridge freshener.

The porous nature of coffee grounds makes them excellent at absorbing odours. Simply place some used grounds in a bowl or container and put it in your fridge.

Within hours, the unpleasant aroma will be replaced with a pleasant coffee scent.

6. Tenderise Meat

Meat lovers, rejoice! Not only does using coffee grounds as a meat tenderiser add a delicious depth of flavour to your steaks and roasts, it is also an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional meat tenderisers.

When using coffee grounds as a meat tenderiser, there are several methods to choose from. One option is to simply rub used coffee grounds onto the surface of the meat before cooking.

The acidity and texture of the coffee will work to break down the connective tissues in the meat, resulting in a more tender final product. For best results, let the coffee grounds sit on the meat for at least thirty minutes before cooking.

Another option is to create a coffee marinade for your meat. Simply mix together brewed coffee (using spent coffee grounds), olive oil, garlic, and your choice of herbs and spices before marinating your preferred cut of meat for several hours or overnight.

The result will be a flavourful and succulent meal that will impress even the most discerning foodie. Using spent coffee grounds as a meat tenderiser is just one small step towards creating a more sustainable future.

Tenderise Meat
Tenderise Meat

7. Natural De-icer

During the winter months, de-icing your driveway becomes a necessary task to avoid slips and falls. However, traditional ice melt products can be harmful to the environment and pose a risk to pets and wildlife. Luckily, spent coffee grounds can be used as a natural de-icer that is both effective and eco-friendly.

Simply sprinkle the grounds onto icy areas, and they will begin to work their magic.

8. Deodorise your Hands

Do your hands stink after handling garlic or fish? Forget about using those chemical-laden hand soaps and reach for some spent coffee grounds instead. As an avid coffee drinker and a believer in a sustainable future, I am always looking for ways to make use of every bit of my coffee.

And that includes using it as a refreshing hand cleanser. Used coffee grounds are abrasive enough to exfoliate your skin, removing any stubborn grime and odor-causing bacteria.

Plus, the caffeine in the coffee helps stimulate blood flow and reduce inflammation, leaving your hands feeling soft and rejuvenated. To use coffee grounds as a hand cleanser, simply mix them with a small amount of water to create a paste, then rub it onto your hands for about 30 seconds before rinsing off with warm water.

The result? A natural exfoliating soap that leaves your hands smelling like fresh coffee.

9. Make Coffee Kombucha

Have you heard about the probiotic coffee drink that’s taking the health world by storm? Yes, we’re talking about coffee kombucha.

And guess what? It’s made with spent coffee grounds!

Who knew that our beloved morning pick-me-up could be transformed into a gut-healthy beverage? Coffee kombucha is essentially a fermented coffee beverage that’s made by adding a SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast) to sweetened, brewed coffee.

The result is a slightly sour, slightly sweet drink that’s packed with beneficial bacteria. Not only does it taste delicious, but it also helps promote digestive health and boosts your immune system.

So why not give it a try? Don’t throw away those used coffee grounds just yet – they can be put to good use in brewing your own batch of coffee kombucha.

Imagine sipping on a refreshing glass of this probiotic-packed beverage while knowing you’re contributing to a more sustainable and eco-friendly future.

Coffee Kombucha
Coffee Kombucha

10. Remove Product Build Up on Hair

Remove Product Build Up on Hair If you’re struggling with hair that’s weighed down with product residue, give spent coffee grounds a try. Used coffee grounds make an amazing scalp exfoliator, removing the buildup from all the styling products you’ve been using.

You’ll be amazed at how healthy and shiny your hair looks after just one use. Using coffee grounds for hair care is both environmentally friendly and cost-effective.

Instead of using harsh chemical-laden shampoos to strip away natural oils, use fermented coffee beverage rinse made from used coffee grounds. The organic acid in the coffee helps to remove dulling buildup while helping your hair retain its natural moisture.

It’s important to note that not all hair types may benefit from using coffee grounds as a scalp exfoliator. If you have sensitive skin or suffer from dandruff, it’s best to avoid this treatment altogether.

But if you’re looking for a natural way to get rid of product buildup on your locks, give this eco-friendly solution a go!

Remember, this can work as a dye as well, so if you have light or blond hair you may end up dying it a darker colour.


The potential of spent coffee grounds has been vastly underestimated. We have explored a plethora of uses for these seemingly useless grounds, and it is clear that they hold immense value in our daily lives.

From providing vital nutrients to our gardens and plants, to serving as a pest deterrent and even a natural wood finish or stain, the possibilities are endless. As we continue to strive towards an eco-friendly future, it is important that we take advantage of every opportunity to reduce waste and promote sustainability.

The utilization of spent coffee grounds can help us accomplish this goal in many ways. By using them as an environmentally friendly ice melter or refrigerator odor eliminator, for example, we can help reduce the harmful chemicals that are released into our air and soil.

And let’s not forget about their unique benefits for personal care. Spent coffee grounds can serve as an exfoliating soap or scalp exfoliator, removing hair product residue and promoting healthy skin.

Additionally, they can be used as a refreshing hand cleanser or even in the creation of a probiotic coffee drink like Kombucha. In essence, the sky’s the limit when it comes to repurposing used coffee grounds.

By incorporating them into our daily lives in creative ways such as these – whether through creating a meat marinade or using them as organic insect repellent – we take one more step towards creating a sustainable future. So let’s not continue throwing away this valuable resource; instead let’s embrace its many benefits and put it to good use!