Coffee beans are one of the most versatile ingredients on the planet. When ground, coffee can be brewed in an endless amount of ways, from a Phin filter to a Portable French Press to a siphon to an espresso machine. High quality ground coffee, like Omni Bev’s Signature Blend, which features a balance of Robusta and Arabica beans harvested from the highlands of Da Lat, Vietnam, can go a long way in elevating your brewing experience.
However, regardless of which brewing method you use, you will always be left with coffee grounds. While most folks are quick to discard the grounds after brewing their morning cup of coffee, there are a wide variety of uses for the grounds that are as versatile as the beans themselves. Here is our guide to five ways to reuse coffee grounds.
One of the most common ways to reuse coffee grounds is to use them as garden fertilizer. In general, most home garden soil is lacking in the nutrients necessary to promote healthy plant growth. Fertilizer in general serves as a way to give budding plants the nutrients they need to prosper, and coffee grounds specifically are full of these nutrients, including potassium, iron, nitrogen, phosphorus, nitrogen, and magnesium.
To use your coffee grounds as fertilizer, you can simply sprinkle the grounds on the soil around the plants, or mix ½ a cup of the grounds with a cup of warm water in a spray bottle to make a fertilizing mist for indoor gardening.
In recent years, coffee facial scrubs have become all the rage, with an endless line of brands promoting the benefits of coffee exfoliants and masks. What do all of these products have in common? They’re all made with coffee grounds! The coarseness of coffee grounds is great for removing dead skin cells and dirt, without being too harsh to cause deep scratching.
To use coffee grounds as a facial and body exfoliant, mix them with a little bit of water, coconut oil, or your favorite natural lotion or moisturizer, and scrub directly onto your face and body. Rinse with warm water once complete.
Coffee grounds are a great tool to promote hair growth and a healthy scalp. Hair and the scalp are naturally much more acidic than water and traditional hair care products. Given the acidity of coffee grounds themselves, using coffee in hair can help to rebalance your scalp’s natural acidity levels. Likewise, the coarseness of coffee grounds can help to remove the buildup of dead skin cells, and the caffeine in the grounds can help increase blood flow to the scalp, promoting hair growth.
To use coffee grounds on your head, scrub them directly onto your scalp and in your hair before using shampoo. Massage your scalp for several minutes, then wash and rinse your hair with your favorite hair care products.
Given the porous nature of coffee, coffee grounds absorb the odors around them, making them a great natural deodorizer. Like baking soda, which has similar deodorizing properties, coffee grounds are used to eliminate odors in the refrigerator, in trash receptacles, and in shoes, as well as to remove the odor of onions and garlic from your hands after cooking.
To use coffee grounds as a deodorizer in your trash or refrigerator, simply fill a cheese cloth with your coffee grounds (make sure you’ve allowed them to dry sufficiently) and place the cloth into your trash or at the back of your refrigerator. To use them in your shoes, sprinkle the coffee grounds into your shoes and leave overnight. For your hands, wet your hands and scrub them with a small amount of the grounds, then rinse with cold water.
Coffee grounds make a great addition to your pantry, both as an ingredient in desserts or as a meat tenderizer. Recipes like coffee cake, chocolate chip cookies, and brownies can all be enhanced with the addition of coffee grounds, which complement the natural sweetness of the baked goods. Likewise, when added to a dry-rub mix, the natural acidity of the grounds can help to tenderize your favorite meats and enhance their flavor.
While there are a countless number of recipes online for how to use coffee grounds in cooking, some favorites include this recipe for brownies or by adding a ¼ cup to your favorite dry-rub or marinade.