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How to Countertop Compost

Countertop composting is a way to collect vegetable and fruit waste that would normally go down the disposal and use it to help grow and maintain an outdoor compost pile. While you can purchase decorative countertop compost containers, any large container with a lid will work just as well. Composting kitchen waste, along with other organic material, is a simple first step to going green, and your vegetable or flower garden or containers will love the results.

Choose a can or jug with a large mouth opening and lid. This will make it easier to toss food scraps into the compost. Coffee cans make a simple countertop compost bucket.

Toss vegetable peelings, fruit skins, coffee grinds, bread crusts and cooked leftovers into the bin daily. You can also add eggshells, pasta, rice, tea and other grains to the compost with no problems. Avoid adding meats, bone or fats to the compost as these can turn rancid quickly.

Dump the countertop compost bucket onto your regular compost pile regularly as it fills up. If your city offers a "green waste" recycling program, you can place your countertop compost in the bin provided by the program.

Rinse the compost bucket using the garden hose outdoors before bringing it back into the house.

Wash and dry the compost container using hot, soapy water before using it for kitchen waste. This will help prevent smells and remove any dried-on grime.


Several companies offer biodegradable compost bags for countertop composting. Look for these at your local health food store or online.

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