What Are Coffee Grounds and What Can You Do with Them?

Are you wondering, “what are coffee grounds?” What can you do with them? Learn more about coffee grounds below! 

what are coffee grounds - coffee beans and ground coffee in wooden box
Coffee grounds contain numerous minerals

There is nothing like a delicious cup of coffee in the morning. The smell of fresh coffee grounds is truly something amazing. On the other hand, the cleaning process is not enjoyable.

Sometimes, spent coffee grounds can stick to the inside of your coffee maker. In other situations, use coffee grounds might pool at the bottom of your cup. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why so many people go to a coffee shop like Starbucks instead of using coffee beans on their own.

What are coffee grounds? Is there something you can do with leftover coffee grounds after your morning coffee? Take a look at some of the top uses for used coffee grounds below! 

The Definition of Used Coffee Grounds

First, it is important to understand what is meant by coffee grounds. Used coffee grounds are the leftover results after the brewing process. When you prepare coffee in the morning, you are going to mix hot water with either coffee beans or ground coffee.

After you finish your cup, you may spot leftover coffee grounds. They vary in their shapes and sizes but often look like needles, beans, or grains. 

Often, people look at used coffee grounds as waste products. A lot of people throw them away. On the other hand, some people view this as wasteful.

Fortunately, there are a few ways that you can put coffee grounds to work for you even after using them to brew your morning cup of coffee. Don't just put coffee grounds down the sink!

Put Coffee Grounds To Work in Your Garden

If you have ever thought about growing a garden, you may want to put coffee grounds to work for you. You may be surprised to hear that most soil does not have all the required nutrients for optimal plant growth, including azaleas, radishes, and hydrangeas. Acid-loving plants enjoy coffee grounds because of the acidity.

In order for you to remain healthy, you need the right nutrients. Flowers are the same way. Flowers absorb nutrients from the soil.

Over time, the soil gets depleted. As a result, future flowers do not have access to the same nutrients.

Coffee grounds contain numerous minerals that are important to the growth of flowers. A few key examples include chromium, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, iron, potassium, and nitrogen. 

In addition, you can also use coffee grounds to absorb heavy metals that might otherwise contaminate the soil. If you want to take advantage of coffee grounds in your garden, simply sprinkle them into the soil near your plants. They will even attract earthworms to your flower bed, improving its health.

Use Coffee Grounds for Composting

compost bin and a green garden fork
Adding compost to your garden traps water and nutrients in the soil

You might also want to use coffee grounds for composting. If you are not able to put them to work immediately, composting is a way you can save them for later. You can even use your compost as mulch.

If you decide to give a DIY compost bin a try, this is a natural process that takes organic material and turns it into a rich, dark material. This material is called compost. 

If you add compost to your garden or yard, you can trap water and nutrients in the soil. This is another way that you can improve the overall health of your plants.

If you want to get the most out of your composting process, you should try to add other items to your compost pile. A few examples include shredded newspaper, eggshells, leaves, grass clippings, herbs, stale bread, and even waste from fruits and vegetables.

You should try to avoid adding grease, oils, dairy products, fish, or meat to your compost pile. As this decomposes, it could threaten the rest of your compost pile. 

Spent Coffee Grounds Can Act as a Repellent and Keep Pests Out of Your Yard

Are you tired of insects and pests threatening the health of your yard or garden? Spent coffee grounds might be able to keep them away. There are several compounds in coffee, such as caffeine, that you can use to keep insects away.

Caffeine and other compounds are actually toxic to some of the tests that could threaten the health of your garden.

In addition, you might be able to use spent coffee grounds to deter beetles, fruit flies, ants, cockroaches, and mosquitoes. If you would like to put your coffee grounds to work in this way, simply sprinkle used coffee grounds around your outdoor seating areas. This should be enough to keep these pests away from your home. 

The Final Word on What Are Coffee Grounds

Coffee grounds are the byproducts of the brewing process. They look like small grains, needles, or beans that are leftover when you are finished with your morning cup of coffee. Even though a lot of people throw use coffee grounds away, you can actually use them in creative ways.

You can use spent coffee grounds to fertilize your yard, remove toxic metals from your soil, start a compost pile, and keep insects out of your yard or garden. Therefore, consider putting spent coffee grounds to work for you! You don't necessarily have to throw them away.

FAQs About What Are Coffee Grounds

Can I use spent coffee grounds to make another cup of coffee? 

You can attempt to use that coffee grounds to make another cup of coffee. Keep in mind that the brewing process extracts essential oils from the beans. If the coffee grounds do not have any oils left in them, your next cup of coffee might taste a bit weak.

How do coffee grounds make my plants grow well?

Your plants need a lot of minerals to grow properly. This includes chromium, magnesium, iron, potassium, phosphorus, calcium, and nitrogen. Coffee grounds contain all of these minerals. If you add them to the soil, your flowers will absorb them, allowing them to grow big and strong.


  • Job experience includes extensive work as a teaching assistant, tutor, and guest lecturer and extensive employment in the healthcare field. Have published multiple research papers and numerous poster presentations on various healthcare research topics.