15 Creative Ways to Extend the Life of Spent Coffee Grounds - Part 2
We get through a staggering number of coffees. If you sit down and do the maths, it’s amazing how much coffee just one person gets through. According to recent studies, the average person in the U.S. drinks around 3 cups of coffee every single day.
If we use 7g of coffee grounds in each cup, that’s 21g of coffee grounds used each day. That’s over 7 and a half kilos a year!
Thankfully, it’s easy to compost old coffee grounds, so we don’t need to worry about our coffee harming the environment. But what if we could go one better?
Coffee grounds, believe it or not, are actually a wealth of opportunities. They are an incredibly versatile waste product, which can be used in a huge range of different ways.
From skincare to deodorisers, the life of a coffee ground can extend far beyond your morning cuppa.
In fact, when we wrote our last blog post about using up spent coffee grounds, we found that we had loads more left to share. We decided that we weren’t done with coffee grounds yet.
With our eco-conscious readers in mind, we’ve dedicated this blog post to sharing 15 more of our favourite ways to use up old coffee grounds. These range in effort levels, the rooms to use them in, and skill level.
Whether you’re feeling crafty, or are running a bit short on time, you’ll definitely find an idea to use your morning coffee.
So, before you dump your grounds in the compost, give these tips a read.
1. Caffeinated coolers
We love a good cup of coffee. But, rather than just sticking with the same old brew every day, use your old grounds to liven things up a bit.
Using a long cold brew method, soak your grounds to extract the coffee flavour (even if they’ve already been used once).
Then, you can add them to coffee cocktails or iced drinks - our blogs are filled with recipes to inspire you.
2. Get baking
With the same cold brew method of flavour extraction, you can use your spent grounds in home baking, too.
Our Sugar-Free Cinnamon and Coffee Cake is a delicious (and healthy!) cake recipe, which makes a perfect midweek treat.
3. Tenderise meat
If it’s savoury you’re after, coffee grounds can also be used in your cooking.
By adding them to a marinade, then leaving the meat to infuse its flavour, you can achieve more tender meat, with a richer flavour and a note of smokiness.
4. Restoring furniture
We all know how frustrating it is when our wooden furniture gets a big scuff mark. With a few coffee grounds, it’s super easy to lift off these scratch marks.
Simply add a teaspoon of olive oil into a bowl, then stir in a tablespoon of the grounds. Give it a good mix, until a paste is formed. Then, dab the mixture onto the scratch with a cotton bud.
Wipe with a dry cloth, and see the difference!
5. Deodorising tablets
Coffee is a remarkable deodoriser. Once the grounds have been used, and while they’re still damp, press them into an ice cube tray, then pop them in the freezer.
Once they’re frozen, you can use these little tablets as deodorizers in your bathrooms, kitchen, waste areas, laundry areas, and garden.
6. Freezer refresher
The tablets that you’ve made above also work really well in freezers. They are ideal for shelves that contain pre-cooked meals, meat or fish, or any other strong-smelling foods.
Each tab can last for weeks, too!
7. Coffee candles
Candle making is a lovely craft, and the results are really impressive. They make great gifts, and you can really get your creativity going with their design.
What’s more, by using old coffee grounds, you can save a lot of money on your new favourite hobby. Swap out aromatic oils for your grounds for a natural (and free) scent.
You can even create a layered look (alternating between grounds and cream wax) to create a chic statement piece.
8. Acne-fighting face mask
When used in skin care, coffee has remarkable acne-fighting capabilities.
To make your own fresh face mask, simply combine your grounds with cocoa powder, milk, lemon juice and honey. Death Wish Coffee has a great recipe for you to try.
9. Exfoliating hand soap
Your caffeinated skincare shouldn’t stop there. It’s rough texture and deodorising properties make it the perfect ingredient for a hand soap.
Melt a standard block of glycerin soap, then add in around 50g of used coffee grounds. Then, pour the liquid into a mould and leave to set (it’ll only take a couple of hours) back into a bar of soap. Easy peasy!
10. Hair care
There’s a reason why so many luxury shampoos and conditioners contain coffee. This ingredient is great for leaving your hair sleek and shiny.
If your hair is dark in colour (we wouldn’t advise this recipe for blonde or copper hair), then steep your coffee grounds in hot water for 20 minutes, then leave the mixture to cool.
Once cooled, rinse your hair with the coffee in a sink, before you start your usual shampoo routine. This will give your hair a glossy, shiny look, without needing any chemicals.
11. Combat cellulite
As you can see, coffee is a brilliant all-round skin care ingredient. This is all thanks to the active compounds that it contains. In addition to being a favoured hair and face care ingredient, it’s also commonly used to help reduce cellulite.
To make your own (infinitely cheaper) alternative to professional cellulite treatments, combine 200 ml of steeped coffee grounds with a teaspoon of olive oil.
Then, apply the mixture to cellulite, wrap with cling film, then leave to soak in for around 20 minutes.
12. Restore dark clothes
If your dark clothes are losing their colour, then they can quickly look worn out. Thankfully, just like us, they can be refreshed with a good cup of coffee.
Bring them back to top condition by adding coffee (made by letting your grounds soak in a cup of hot water) into your washing machine. After this cycle, your clothes will come out with a richer and bolder colour.
13. Flower power
Coffee is a rich source of nutrients and minerals. As a result, they make a great addition to your soil, especially if you’re growing flowers that benefit from acidic soils.
These include flowers like hydrangeas, azaleas and rhododendrons - with a scoop of old coffee grounds added to their patch of soil, these plants will absolutely thrive in your garden.
14. Care for seedings
Younger plants also benefit greatly from the addition of coffee. If you’re growing seedlings, add a scoop of coffee into the soil. This will give them a good kick of nitrogen, which will help them to flourish.
15. Organic insect repellent
A clump of coffee grounds is a highly effective (and completely organic) way to keep ants, slugs and snails at bay.
Simply add a pile near any areas of your garden where you commonly encounter pests.
And there you have it - even more DIY ideas to give your used coffee grounds a whole new lease of life. With these all-natural chemical-free ideas, you can reduce your household waste, and totally transform your home while you’re at it.
If you drink as much fresh coffee as we do, you’ll want to invest in a bean-to-cup machine that gives these mighty beans the respect that they deserve. That’s where we come in.
Our Smarter Coffee machine is a must-have for any coffee lover. Trust us, this innovative device will completely radicalise your morning routine. Check out the Smarter online shop to find out more.