My morning always starts off with a cup of coffee to brighten me up and motivate me to tackle the workday. I use a Keurig with small one-time-use K-cups. Every time I take one out, I hear a little voice in the back of my head saying, “you’re being wasteful, K-cups are expensive, isn’t there something you can do?” Well yes, yes there is. Here are several ways to get more use out of coffee grounds, save money, and recycle.
The first topic I want to talk about is plants! After all, one of our missions at ArboVe is to be more environmentally and eco-friendly. Coffee grounds are natural, recyclable, and compostable. By throwing these in your compost bin, you can give your future plants an added boost. Coffee grounds are acidic, and some plants thrive on this making them brighter, more vibrant and appear more lively. Roses and blueberries are a good example of this. Throwing coffee grounds out as fertilizer either alone or mixed in with compost can also help to revitalize grass and put an end to a patchy yard! If you sprinkle coffee grounds in houseplants, not only can it improve the look of them, but also help you fight off pests. Gnats, flies, ants, and other bugs don’t like coffee and will stay away. Even rodents are deterred by the smell of coffee.
The second topic is cleaning! We’re always looking for a safer cleaning alternative with fewer chemicals. You can use coffee grounds to help scrub off stains and gunk in the bathroom, tub, and kitchen. Use coffee grounds mixed with Dawn Dish Soap or by themselves to help scrub off stuck-on food, dirty pots and pans, messy stovetops, and more. Coffee is a great natural exfoliant that can really give you that added help for stuck-on grime. Using the same mixture, scrub your kitchen sink and rinse when you’re done with dishes. It leaves your kitchen sink shinny and odorless! This can even help clean out your disposal and the odors lingering there. If your disposal is starting to stink just mix coffee grounds, baking soda, and vinegar for an extra odor kick.
This brings us to my next topic: Odors. Coffee is a wonderful neutralizer that gets rid of strong odors we may not want. Leave an open container, like you would baking soda, in the back of your fridge to get rid of stale or old food smells. You can also put coffee grounds in the freezer, either in a container or an old clean sock you lost the pair to. If your shoes stink, fill an old clean pair of socks with coffee grounds and leave in your shoes. Fill up a jar or vase with coffee grounds, add a fake plant, and place in the bathroom or other areas of your home that just need a little help. Add coffee grounds to homemade candles of soap if you really love the smell. Lastly, if you can’t rid of a strong odor clinging to your skin like onion or fish when you’re cooking, use coffee grounds. Combine the coffee with your choice of oil (coconut oil, olive oil, vitamin e oil, etc.) and create an exfoliating scrub for your skin, guaranteed to get rid of those stuck odors. You can also add sea salt or Epsom salt to this mixture for added exfoliating properties or a natural body scrub. Your skin will be left shiny, smooth, and soft!
Coffee grounds have many uses and can be beneficial in all areas of your home. This is a great way to recycle something small and save money in other places! Next time you brew a cup, don’t just throw out the coffee, save it in a container for one of these great ideas.