DIY: Used Coffee Ground Bombs For Your Sink

Wondering how to recycle used coffee grounds? We have the answer!

Editor’s Note: Since this story was published, we’ve received several comments confirming that continued placement of coffee grounds in your sink will ultimately result in potentially serious drain clogs. Assess your risk and, if you choose to follow Madisyn’s lead, please be advised to make and use these bombs sparingly. Thank you. XO

Our kitchen is the place we gather. Around the table with silly stories and best friends. Don’t let a funky odor from your garbage disposal spoil the fun. Fruits and veggies from late summer into fall are my favorite, but also tend to be the ones that can be the most pungent when processed through the sink disposal. With the season ahead full of entertaining and cooking, I’ve been trying to prepare some life-hack tips to be the hostess with the mostest. Used coffee ground bombs are the best way I’ve been able to achieve a cleaner, fresher sink so far, leaving a yummy smell that lingers. It’s also a great way to reuse the used ground coffee that typically ends up in my trashcan!



1 cup dry used coffee grounds

½ cup epsom salt or sea salt (I tried to use ingredients that were in my pantry, so I gave sea salt a whirl. It worked just as well!)

½ cup baking soda

3 tbs. apple cider vinegar

½ tsp. vanilla (optional, but worth it)

Small mixing bowl

Rounded measuring spoon

Sheet pan

Parchment paper



First, add all of the dry ingredients to the mixing bowl. The coffee grounds will have two superpowers: sharpening the blade of your disposal, and keeping the fragrance strong and pleasant. Baking soda naturally cleans the disposal when mixed with ACV, and the Epsom salt breaks up hard water stains and any gritty buildup.

Stir your dry ingredients up until everything is blended. Slowly begin to add ACV to the bowl — don’t be alarmed when the baking soda bubbles up like a science project.



Keep stirring until mixture begins to look like smooth wet sand. Pull out your baking sheet, and wrap parchment paper around it. Grab your measuring spoon (I used a tablespoon), and begin scooping out like you would ice-cream onto the parchment paper set up.

Let the coffee bombs dry overnight, and then place them in a mason jar next to your sink to use when needed. Just drop one down your drain, turn on the disposal while running hot water, and enjoy the coffee smell with your clean sink.


+ What other natural ways do you keep your sink clean? Let me know in the comments!

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This is amazing. I always have coffee grounds that I just throw away. I will need to try this.

8 years ago

This is awesome!
I’d never heard about it, can’t wait tot ry this out :)

8 years ago

That sounds like such a cool idea! I love the fresh smell of coffee, especially in the morning! Thank you for sharing!

The Weaver Of Words…..give me 15 words and I’ll tell you a tale

8 years ago

This is so perfect! I love that you put flowers in!

8 years ago

I wouldn’t do this unless you like clogged pipes. Coffee grounds and grease are the culprits to most clogged pipes.

8 years ago

I would never think of this, tempted to start drinking coffee just so i can try it. x

8 years ago

Doesn’t this clog the pipes though?

8 years ago

My sister and I have been doing this for years, adding cinnamon powder for extra scent. The key note is to make them with USED ground coffee beans as she recommended. The finer the ground the better and the hot water flushes them easily in our drain. Nice photos, you captured this wonderfully.

8 years ago

Hah, I kinda wish my garbage disposal actually worked now because I love the smell of coffee and the idea of reusing. In regards to clogged pipes, I am pretty sure that’s the point of using used grounds and vinegar.

8 years ago

this is a BAD idea…it might smell nice but coffee grounds do not break down ….not good for your pipes or the enviroment..better to use in your garden…..

8 years ago

I find that if you eat/use a lot of citrus fruits, the rinds are the best at deodorizing sinks with garbage disposals.

Janel Barthe
8 years ago

Sounds like a winner…I currently put used coffee grounds in my compost, but like the idea of making up these “bombs”–although doubt has crept in after reading some of the comments about possibility of clogged pipes. Anybody else out there have experience with this formula.?

8 years ago

I also use 2 lemon wedges, 1 tsp epsom salt or sea salt & 1 tsp baking soda. Just dump them in the disposal, NO water, pulse disposal 3 times. Then while the disposal is running, turn the COLD water on. Let it run until the lemon peel is gone, at least 15 seconds to allow the the water to flush your water lines into the sewer.

8 years ago

Wow I love this! I compost my grounds but these will have to be tried next time!

Marie Czarnecki
8 years ago

I do not think I would do this. I usually put them in the compost, you can use them in the garden and it keeps the ants away. I use lemon or orange peels to freshen my disposal. Baking soda will do too, also if you put ice cubes in the disposer it will clean, and keep the blades sharp.

8 years ago

I only recently learned that some things we allow down our kitchen drain cause problems at the local waste treatment plant. Coffee grounds are named among the things we should not put down the drain, not because they will cause us plumbing problems (they will) but because they are a problem at the waste treatment plant and in the pipes on the way there. Here is just one link that says this. I do grind citrus peel in the disposal to give a fresh scent and discourage the bacteria that cause DO (disposal odor). Throw the grounds in the compost heap to recycle them.

8 years ago

I have to chime in with the “no coffee grounds down the sink” comment. It’s bad for your pipes, and they cause problems at the waste water treatment center too.

8 years ago

This is such a great idea. In my household coffee is constantly being made. So useful. Can’t wait to try.

8 years ago

Try the “garbage enzym”. I am overwhelmed and thankfull that something like this exists…

8 years ago

Fantastic advice! I am going to show it to my sister. She drinks tons of coffee. There are so many useless coffee grounds. I am so happy that I have found your tip! Thank you so much for sharing it. Greetings!

8 years ago

Free people, I work at a coffee shop. Do you know what we do with coffee grounds? We compost them. We never, EVER, put them down the sink. It is a recipe for disaster. Please don’t promote this, these people are only going to have to call a plumber.

8 years ago

Coffee grounds = HORRIBLE for your pipes and will ruin your garbage disposal. aloha!

8 years ago

Trust me…my husband is a mechanical contractor and this is a BAD idea! Coffee grounds are excellent in the garden but he’ll on your pipes!

7 years ago

well I tried the coffee ground bombs and they “bombed” they are way too watery. They just melt into flat, watery, pancakes on the cookie sheet. I even added 1/2 cup more of each salts and soda and cannot get it to stiffen up to put on a pan to harden. Maybe someone is trying to tell me this is not such a good idea, since I have read all the comments about the pipes in your house and the waste water treatmeent plant/ I think I will stick to orange peels and vinegar and soda when I feel it needs freshening up.

7 years ago

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