5 uses for Coffee Grounds



Coffee is one of the simple pleasures in life.  I love it so much I don’t even know how to explain it without making myself sound like someone you’d warn your children about.  I will talk about coffee, drink coffee, go to bed early just so I can wake up and drink coffee.

Sometimes I even have a little shot of coffee before I go to bed to tide me over before I can have more coffee.  I am suspicious of people who do not love coffee as much as I do.  I’m REALLY suspicious of tea drinkers.  Why stop at tea?  Why not be one of those weirdos who drinks hot water with lemon?

So it comes as no surprise that this house produces a lot of coffee grounds.  I usually throw them in the compost bin, occasionally I actually (gasp) throw them in the garbage like a regular person and other times I just roll around in them. A few months ago I realized people react weirdly if you smell of pure coffee so I thought I’d try to figure out a few other things I could do with my spent grounds.

From me to you …. 5 uses for coffee grounds.


1. Make a pincushion! (I’m getting the stupid/weird/least useful tip out of the way first)


Apparently dried, used coffee grounds make the perfect pincushion filling because they prevent the pins from getting rusty. I’ve never had a problem with rusty pins, but if you have then I’ve just saved the day for you.  And that is why I chose to include this weird little tip.

2.  Use it in the fridge to absorb smells instead of using baking soda.

This really and truly works. I’ve tried it and was amazed. Just fill a bowl with old coffee grounds and set it in the refrigerator like you would a box or bowl of baking soda.  The other added bonus is when need baking soda it’ll be in the cupboard not sitting in the fridge absorbing 2 years worth of smells.  This in turn means you won’t have to stare at the smell filled bowl of baking soda and contemplate whether you could get away with using it in your cookies.



3.  Turn pink hydrangeas blue.

Boost the blue in your hydrangeas by amending the soil with coffee grounds. A lot of sites throw this tip around. What they don’t tell you is you need to add a LOT of coffee grounds to turn the soil acidic enough to grow blue hydrangeas. So if that’s what you want, every time you make coffee, put your grounds on the hydrangea.  Crushed egg shells will help too.


4.  Clean your pots and pans.

Out of abrasive scrubbing pads? Coffee grounds in the pan will scrub off most messes.



5.  Exfoliate your skin.


This is easily my favourite coffee grounds use and I use it all the time. Mix up some coffee grounds with olive oil until it’s like a paste. Keep it near the sink to clean up after gardening, painting or anything else that gets your hands a mess. It’s also reportedly a great face mask. I’ve never tried it but I don’t doubt it for a second. The coffee grounds exfoliate your skin while the olive oil leaves your hands feeling soft and moisturized. I’ve always thought salt scrubs were pointless because salt extracts moisture which is the exact opposite of what you want to do for your skin. Coffee grounds also have the added bonus of making your hands smell like coffee.

But not your whole body.  That’s just weird.  Apparently.


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  1. Erin says:

    So clever and interesting!! I love articles like these. Thank you so much for sharing. Cant wait to try a couple of these ideas at home.

  2. cash says:

    the extra coffee grounds from my french press, after they cool straight to my Rose bushes. Rose bushes like acidic soil been doing this for years

  3. Andrea says:

    Hi Karen….i had that same bore on my zucchini plants last year…this year I put the coffee grounds around them as apparently nasties don’t like climbing across the grounds…i am hoping what goes into the ground also causes the bore to dislike it as well. So far so good…5 nice zucchini and healthy plants. Keep writing…it’s my morning go to as I wake up!

  4. Shirley says:

    I use my coffee grounds for fertilizing my rose bushes. I let a couple of cups of grounds sit in a bucket of water until the water starts to turn color, stirring one in a while. I then pour around all of my roses and within a few days they are blooming like crazy!

  5. Chris says:

    Great post! Not only are the grounds great for the fridge, they can work miracles in a freezer too! I bought a freezer that due to some silly circumstance I didn’t check the inside of stunk like something had putrefied in there 🙁 cleaned it out several times, still stunk, found a hint of using coffee grounds in a dish, crumpled slightly damp newspaper on the bottom of the freezer, let it sit for some days change the paper a few times and yay! My cheap freezer turned out to be a pretty good value! (I did try the paper by itself, and I just had a stinky freezer and stinky paper)

  6. tk says:

    Gather a week’s worth of used coffee grounds in the fridge then add 2 cups water and simmer for about 30 minutes. Once cooled, use as a rinse on dark hair to dim gray areas. From great grandmother….

  7. Lisa K says:

    My eyes really are not that bad but when I read that line “someone you would warn your…about” I swear it said Chicken not Children. At this point I spat my tea on the screen. And I not only learned how to use coffee grounds but I also learned that green tea is a really nice screen cleaner.

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