Coffee is my vice of choice.
I don’t drink much, don’t smoke or do drugs, and generally try to be an upstanding citizen. But coffee (okay, coffee and diet soda) is my “bad” thing. Every morning when I get out of bed I wander myself into the kitchen and make myself a full pot of delicious, hot, fresh, dark coffee. I’m not here to take sides, as this post isn’t actually about drinking coffee, but if I had to choose I’d drink only Melitta at home. Love that stuff!
But anyway, when you drink a full pot of coffee by yourself every day, you throw away a lot of used coffee grounds, and if you’re like me, you get to thinking if you can DO anything with those coffee grounds (especially if you like better than cheap coffee). Turns out, the answer is YES.
1. Scrub dishes
Why had I never thought of this before?! I always use baking soda to scrub my stainless steel sink, but coffee grounds can safely be used on non-stick pans. I didn’t have any dirty non-stick pans last night, but my sink WAS dirty, so I went ahead and scrubbed that. I’m not sure how well you can tell from the photos but I think it came out pretty good!
I love brown sugar scrubs, but they’re just too harsh for the skin on my face. I’m a huge fan of St. Ives Apricot Scrub, so why not a coffee scrub? Coconut oil is always a good medium for scrubs. Why not try this Coconut Coffee Body Scrub from BLDG 25?
3. Add nitrogen to planting soil
I live in a garden apartment, on the second story, and I’m lucky enough to have a pretty large terrace/balcony (6’ x 12’) where we sometimes grow our own veggies. Last year we skipped our garden, but this year I’m already thinking about what to plant! I have a packet of carrot seeds and used coffee grounds are apparently a great additive for carrots! I will definitely be giving this a shot this year.
You’ve always been told that baking soda can help deodorize your fridge, and Arm & Hammer even makes special “fridge” boxes of baking soda (that they probably charge you extra for). But there’s something that feels wasteful about opening a brand new box of baking soda and letting it sit unused in the fridge. Used coffee grounds can be a great alternative. You can use an old coffee can and set it in the back corner, or you can tie dried grounds in two layers of stockings (use up those hose with holes) and tuck it under your car seat to freshen the air. Want more info? Try this Instructable.
5. Rejuvenate dark hair
I have no idea if this will work, but dang it, I’m going to try it. Take old coffee grounds and re-steep in hot water for 15 minutes. Use as a rinse for dark hair to revitalize the color. As you know, I have dark hair, I’m already graying a bit, and I don’t dye the top of my head (I dye the underside of my hair red sometimes), so I’m going to see if this will darken my grays naturally or if it’s a giant crock. I will report back to you with the results!
There are way more uses than listed here, but these are the ones I’m definitely going to try myself, if I haven’t tried them already.
Do you reuse old coffee grounds? Let me know in the comments!
2 thoughts on “5 Ways Coffee is Good for More than Just Drinking”
I’ve used my coffee grounds in my compost for years now and they also make a nice mulch around rose bushes. (Which means my “Aunt Betty” rose will be getting some come Spring and Summer.) And now that
I know that you like coffee as much as I do, I know what to get you next time I see you. We have a neighbor-
hood roasting place called Blanchard’s and one of Sam’s old friends also roasts and has a coffee shop called
Black Hand. Does the hubs like it too? Maybe you can have a taste test between the two and let me know
which you like best. (Never turn down free coffee, right?)
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There are a LOT of coffee grounds uses for gardeners, I just don’t have much of a garden. Hubs only drinks coffee very rarely. But absolutely, never turn down free coffee! 🙂