Excelso coffee have long been on a path of reducing their waste, be it sewing the sacks the coffee beans come in into cool reusable bags and aprons or encouraging their clients to ditch the single use coffee cups, they are always looking for new ways to lessen their environmental impact.
But what about the spent grinds from every coffee made?
From rubs to scrubs and getting grubby in the garden, Josie has a few great ideas on how not to let those grounds go to waste.
Coffee BBQ Rub
Made for meat, mushrooms and everything in between, this BBQ Coffee Rub recipe is our family’s new way of bringing our favourite brews home with us.
Best made with dry grinds, so if you are reusing leftovers, you may want to dry them out first.
2 tbsp coffee grinds
1 tbsp smoked paprika
2 tsp sea salt
2 tsp dried onion flakes
2 tsp dried garlic flakes
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp fresh orange peel
Combine all spices in a small bowl and stir together. Store in an airtight container or jar for up to 6 months.
Coffee Body Scrub
A coffee scrub can help exfoliate your skin, lifting away dull, dead skin cell build-up, leaving you with a complexion that looks more radiant and energised. Some also say it helps remove cellulite, so if you needed another reason to drink coffee, this may just be it!
¼ cup coconut oil
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup coffee grinds*
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
Dry your used grounds on a baking tray in the sun or by putting in a warm oven once turned off. Once dried completely, measure them into a bowl with your coconut oil, sugar and cinnamon and whip up with a fork or, better still, get in there with your hands. Your hands will warm the coconut oil, making it easier to mix.
Scoop into a clean jar and that’s it!
To use, smooth a small amount onto warm, damp skin, then gently massage onto your skin using your fingers and rinse off thoroughly with warm water before patting dry.
*Espresso grinds are the best; filter and plunger grounds are coarser and great if making a scrub for your feet.
In the Garden
Coffee can give your garden as much of a pick me up as it does for you. Here are a few ways to use those spent grinds, be them from your brew at home or if you snapped up a bag from Excelso.
Coffee will help the food in your compost bin decompose faster. Worms love coffee, so if you have a worm farm, add the grinds in.
Coffee will add nitrogen to your soil, so either sprinkle grounds around your plants and water well or add grounds (225g of coffee grounds into 9 litres of water) to water and feed your plants. Acid-loving plants like blueberries, roses, azaleas and hydrangeas particularly love a little caffeine hit when you are done with those beans.
Some gardeners believe insects and bugs and even some animals don’t like the smell of coffee, so the grounds act as a natural repellent.
Looking for a great garden mulch?
Coffee chaff, a great byproduct of roasting coffee beans, can be mixed with wood chips or sawdust to make a great garden mulch which will help reduce soil erosion, suppress weeds and retain moisture.