I got some interesting comments on my post about saving Egg Shells and re-using them in all sorts of ways. One comment I got a number of times was that folks remember their parents or grandparents saving Coffee Grounds and using them for some even more unexpected and intriguing ways…
The first thing I can recall my Dad doing to re-use Coffee Grounds was to throw them on the compost pile.You never threw them out!
Dad and Mom both grew up during the Great Depression when follks came up with all kinds of ways to make a hard life healthier and more comfortable. Everybody had a vegetable garden. everybody made compost.Nobody threw anything away that they might prove useful in future.
Well, now science has validated some old school uses for Coffee Grounds that may bring back memories for you… or your folks!
I already knew (from my folks) that Coffee Grounds can be used to scour stubborn pots and pans and, in the shop, remove rust from tools. They’re both abrasive and acidic. Perfect.
My paternal grandmother swore by Coffee Grounds for keeping your ice box (she started housekeeping before electric refrigerators!) sweet smelling, no matter what you out in it. She also made little sachets of dried coffee grounds to use as air fresheners. My mom insists that they actually worked, though I’ve never tried the trick, myself.
In the flower garden, it’s said that Coffee Grounds can be used to keep slugs and other ground-dwelling bugs off your plants. At the same time, some folks swear that a scattering of Coffee Grounds will act as a barrier against intrusion by cats and dogs into your garden. My own Mom swears by Coffee Grounds as an essential additive to keep cut flowers fresh.
In the vegetable patch, science has confirmed that Carrots and Radishes specifically can benefit greatly from a top-dressing of Coffee Grounds.
Finally, a tip every cook should know: Rub your hands with coffee grounds to get rid of the odour after handling garlic. I’m not sure if this trick actually gets rid of the Garlic smell or just covers it over with a stronger but less annoying Coffee aroma. But it seems to work!
BuzzFeed Life shares a pretty comprehensive list of uses for Coffee grounds that are supported by some kind of science and/or a lot of anecdotal evidence. Some of them will surprise you!
~ Maggie J.