Yes. You can compost coffee grounds and filter. Apart from coffee grounds and filters, you can also compost used coffee beans and paper tea bags (with string and paper tag but excluding the steel pin).
Coffee grounds are brown in color, but they are a green material. They are rich in nitrogen and contain approximately 1.45 percent nitrogen. On the other hand, coffee filters are brown compost. Adding both simultaneously helps you maintain composting ratio and balance the green and brown content of your pile.
Adding Coffee Grounds to Compost
Never add unused coffee grounds to compost, as unused grounds are highly acidic and can change the compost’s pH. Acidic compost takes a lot of time to decompose and can also kill pathogens.
However, brewed grounds are 100% safe for composting. The brewing process removes the acidity. The leftover grounds have very low acidic content.
Coffee grounds are a rich source of nitrogen. Nitrogen is important in many fertilizers and helps maintain good soil health.
Adding Coffee Filters to Compost
You may hear some say that coffee paper isn’t compostable. Most coffee papers are compostable, but checking the packaging is better. Compostable stuff usually has biodegradable labels.
Most coffee machines use paper filters for composting. Almost all types of paper coffee filters are compostable. There aren’t many red flags here.
The general rule is only paper filters must go in the compost. Nylon-based and fabric coffee filters must not be added to compost. Some coffee filters are treated with bleach. The quantity of bleach used on these filters is minimal. It won’t alter your compost’s pH. Your compost is safe with bleached coffee filters.
Things you can Compost
- Fruit and vegetable scraps
- Egg shells
- Stale bread & corn husks
- Expired spices
- Juicer pulp
Things you must not Compost
- Dairy products
- Oily foods & products
- Meat and fish waste/products
- Cooked food waste
- Black walnut products
- Onion & garlic scraps
- Citrus fruit scraps
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does a coffee filter take to decompose?
There isn’t any straight answer to this question as the decomposition of coffee filters depends on certain factors. The following factors can impact the decomposition time of coffee filters.
- Type of the filter
- Time of the year
- How long since it has been manufactured
How much coffee ground can you put in your compost pile?
Putting too much coffee grounds in your compost will smell like rotten eggs. Especially when you turn your compost pile, it will give an unpleasant odor. If it happens, add more brown material to the compost and turn it well. So, it’s better not to add many coffee grounds to your compost pile. Coffee grounds are brown in color but are greens in composting. You must add them as per the composting ratio.
When will a coffee ground decompose after adding to the compost?
Usually, coffee grounds take three to six months for decomposition after you add them into the compost. It’s better to layer one part of leaves to one part of grass clippings and one part of coffee grounds. Turn this compost pile after every week, and your coffee grounds will decompose within three to six months.