How to Make an Indoor Compost Container


Once you begin composting, you realize you do not want to make a trip to the compost bin every time you peel an apple or clean out your coffee maker. An indoor compost container, also called a compost pail, is the answer to this problem. Making a homemade compost pail is quick and easy. Simply put all of your kitchen scraps in this pail and haul it all out to the compost bin once a week instead of several times a day.

Step 1

Select a container with a fitted lid. A 5-gallon bucket works well. Choose something smaller if you do not create a lot of kitchen waste or prefer to make frequent trips to your compost bin. Cat litter buckets are easy to come by if you have a cat or know a cat owner.

Step 2

Drill a circle of holes in the lid of your container to control odor. Find carbon filters where you purchase supplies for cat litter boxes. Use a strong glue to attach a carbon filter to the underside of the lid. Use small dots of glue so that you can remove and replace the filter when it no longer is controlling odor.

Step 3

Add wood chips to control the odor if you do not have a carbon filter. Wood chips at the bottom of the compost container and sprinkled in as needed will help control the odor. If you use wood chips instead of a filter, do not drill holes in the lid of the bucket.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not use wood chips made from treated wood.

Things You'll Need

  • 5-gallon bucket with lid
  • Drill
  • Glue
  • Carbon filter
  • Wood chips


  • Daily Herald: Make Your own Compost Pail From a Plastic Kitty Litter Container
  • King County: Make Your Own Kitchen Waste Composter

Who Can Help

  • Info Barrel: The Kitchen Compost Pail
Keywords: compost pail, kitchen waste container, indoor compost container

About this Author

Em Connell McCarty has been writing for 27 years. She studied writing at the University of Iowa and at Hollins University in Virginia. She writes fiction, creative non-fiction and essays. McCarty's work has been published in Hip Mama magazine.