8 Things to Try with Used Coffee Grounds

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Here in the Parenting North East Store there’s one thing that we never run out of, and that’s coffee! Join us in our Newcastle City Centre store for a listening ear, we’re open 10am to 2pm weekdays, term time. Check out our Facebook page for more information.

But we are particular about our coffee too! so we only brew coffee from ethical coffee brand Indigo Valley. We tend to buy in The Coffee of Angles which is grown by an all women workers cooperative in Peru. It seems appropriate for our organisation and its YUMMY!

This means that every day we produce at least 100g of used coffee grounds that just end up in the bin! We’d much MUCH rather reduce our waste so if you can find a better use for our waste coffee grounds we’d really love to pass them onto you! Just let us know to save them for you and when you’re hoping to come and pick some up, bring a container and they’re all yours!



1. Rust-preventing pin cushions!

Filling your pin cushion with coffee grounds will prevent your pins from rusting! With added bonus of lovely smells every time you use it!

Tip: Make sure the coffee grounds are totally dry first.



2. Paint a picture!

Coffee grounds can be used to make free, non-toxic, kid-friendly paint. Just mix with warm water.

Tip: The less water you use, the darker the paint. Experiment with food dye to create different colours.



3. Happy Gardens!

Worms love coffee, so adding it to your garden beds will attract more of the helpful creatures. Plus, other bugs, slugs and snails HATE it, so sprinkling some on the soil will keep them away.

Tip: Coffee grounds also add much-needed nitrogen to your compost bin!



4. Emergency dark circle remover!

Because, kids. Hide the fact you’ve been up since 4am with a coffee eye mask! Mix 1tbsp coffee grounds with 1/2tsp melted coconut oil and leave on for 20 mins.

Tip: Add a few drops of diluted essential oil for lovely smells. Extra points for putting your feet up and actually finishing a cuppa.



5. Fridge freshener!

Coffee grounds make an excellent odour eliminator! Simply leave an open container in the back of the fridge.

Tip: Might make the fridge smell a bit like coffee, but that’s maybe not a bad thing…



6. Dye stuff!

The tannins in coffee are lovely for dying fabric and paper. Steep the grounds in hot water to create an eco-friendly dye, or rub the grounds directly on to the surface.

Tip: Wrong time of year, but the dye is also great for staining eggs for Easter!



7. Play dough!

Create a super easy, non-toxic play dough! 1 part coffee grounds, 1 part salt, 1 part flour, 1 part water – mix all the dry stuff first then add your water gradually. Let the kids loose with cutters and stamps.

Tip: Bake their creations at 180 degrees for an hour, they make lovely keepsakes or gifts.



8. Get Baking!

Make some yummy biscotti to dunk in your next cuppa!

290g plain flour, 115g sugar, 3-4 tablespoons coffee grounds, 2tsp cocoa powder, 2tsp baking powder, 2tsp salt, 2 eggs plus 1 egg yolk, handful of hazelnuts/choc chips/whatever you fancy.

Mix all together, knead for a few minutes. Roll into logs, bake at 200 degrees for 20 minutes, remove from oven and reduce the temperature to 160 degrees. Cut each log into slices and re-bake for 30 minutes until hard. A bit of effort needed but totally worth it!

Tip: These can be stored in an airtight container for up to 15 days (not that they’ll last that long).