Used coffee grounds? Versatile allies in the kitchen and beyond
From organic compost for gardens and odor absorbers in the refrigerator to skin scrubs. Do not throw away coffee grounds, they could be useful.
- Used coffee grounds can be a valuable resource at home. It is important, however, to conserve them in the best possible way, eliminating any moisture.
- Thanks to the substances contained in them, coffee grounds are natural and excellent fertilizers and add important nutrients to soil.
- Ants in the house? Thanks to the acid base and the smell released, coffee powder is a natural repellent for insects.
- From absorbing odors in the refrigerator to descaling pots: the (double) value of coffee grounds in the kitchen.
- From cosmetics to green energy: here are other possible uses of coffee grounds.
From waste to opportunity
When the end becomes a new beginning, and waste an opportunity. Coffee grounds are precious assets at home. Or, at least, it turns out they can be. Most of the time, in fact, we treat them as waste, immediately throwing them in the bin. In reality, coffee grounds from our Moka can be very useful. Primarily beneficial in garden and vegetable garden care, they can be also used in the kitchen and in beauty routines. Here are some examples of the incredible versatility of coffee grounds.
The hidden bounty of coffee
When we talk about coffee, we think about what is enjoyed in the cup. A pleasure that accompanies us through the whole day, starting from breakfast. A life partner that supports our daily life from teenagehood. Coffee, however, has a hidden secret, not linked to the characteristics of the blend, to the roasting process or to the preparation of the Moka. It has latent virtues and the potential to keep on giving, for example through leftover coffee grounds. These residual compacted disks can, in fact, prove to be a valuable resource to be used at home. It may therefore be worthwhile keeping them. In order to reuse them, it is important to pay attention to how they are conserved. Once removed from the filter of the coffee maker, they must be dried carefully, eliminating any moisture present. This also prevents funguses from taking hold. If you do not plan to use them immediately, you can store the coffee grounds in a container. Better if made of plastic or glass, with an airtight seal. This will help to avoid the formation of mold.
Coffee and plants: everything you did not know
One of the main uses of coffee grounds is in the care of domestic greenery. Coffee grounds are, in fact, natural fertilizers, excellent for the vegetable garden, the garden or for pots on the balcony. Their efficiency derives from the substances contained within. These are:
- nitrogen, which stimulates plant growth and favors vegetation;
- potassium, a "structural" element in the construction of plant tissues.
Together with phosphorus, these two elements fuel complex reactions and processes in soil. In addition, coffee grounds provide calcium and magnesium; natural elements that play an important role in the health of the soil and therefore of the plant. In short, coffee grounds contribute to improving the nutrition profile of soil. Combined with other materials, they form an organic, natural and cheap compost useful for enriching loam for plants. A sort of "homecoming", therefore, for coffee, since it originates from the land and plants.
Coffee grounds: a natural repellent against ants
To stay on the topic of the outdoors, coffee grounds are also useful as a natural repellent against ants and other insects. Just put some coffee powder along the perimeter of the plant that needs protection and this will create a first line of defense.
This natural remedy against ants is, moreover, particularly effective inside the walls of the house. Especially in spring. During this season, when temperatures rise, it is in fact fairly common to find ants in the kitchen or in other rooms. The acid base and the smell of the coffee grounds will keep the ants away.
The (double) value in the kitchen
We have mentioned the versatility of coffee grounds. These remnants are fundamental also in the Moka’s natural realm: the kitchen. In fact, coffee grounds are a practical, economical and effective solution used to eliminate odors in the refrigerator. To do so, one should fill a small bowl and leave it in the fridge for a few hours. It will absorb unpleasant odors, even the most persistent ones, and at the same time, releases a pleasant coffee scent. In short, coffee grounds are one of the most effective natural odor absorbers. Another useful way to employ coffee grounds is rubbing them between one’s hands, to remove bad smells after cutting certain foods.
In the kitchen, coffee grounds can also be used to descale pots with traces of burnt food. By adding a little bit to the dish detergent, the slightly abrasive power of the coffee grounds is exploited to obtain an incisive cleaning action.
Other possible uses of coffee grounds
There are many other uses for coffee grounds. For instance, they can also be applied in cosmetics. Here are a couple of examples on how to use coffee grounds in a beauty routine.
- Scrub: the coffee grounds, mixed with a few drops of oil or honey, create an effective natural exfoliating mask.
- By diluting a small amount of coffee powder in hot water, you can prepare a regenerating foot bath that can relieve tired feet.
What if coffee grounds were the energy of the future?
There are already experiments underway: the aim is to convert them into renewable energy through biogas plants. The heat produced would be used for heating, while the residue would be a natural fertilizer. A new possible stage in the long journey of coffee.