Everything Pretty
Everything Pretty
  • Hometalker
  • Smithville, OH

Save Your Coffee Grounds! Turn Them in to Gardener's Soap

1 Hour

Instead of throwing away my used coffee grounds, I saved them to make a gardener's soap. This recipe scrubs away dirt while the shea butter softens your skin.
I used to put my leftover grounds on my rose bush, but I don't have a rose bush any more. I have to be careful dumping them outside because I have free range chickens. I don't need a bunch of caffeinated chickens running around.
Start by melting your soap base. I used 8 ounces of melt and pour soap. I microwave it for 30 seconds at 80 percent power and stir. Just be careful that it doesn't start to boil.
You want to let it cool until a scum forms on the top. Meanwhile, mix .5 tablespoon bentonite clay with an equal part distilled water to make a paste.
Once the soap cools, add the clay and water mixture, 1 tablespoon cornmeal, .5 tablespoons dried coffee grounds, .5 tablespoon shea butter, and 1 teaspoon of orange or lemon essential oil.
Pour in to a soap mold and let harden. Enjoy!

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Everything Pretty

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

4 questions
  • Valerie
    on Dec 29, 2015

    I had the same question as someone else...is it only 1/2 Tbsp coffee grounds? doesnt seem like much...

    • Jan Hartfield
      on Jan 5, 2016

      @Valerie I believe it said 5 TBLSPS dried coffee grounds above, I think the link is a missprint

    • Mikkigirl
      on Sep 27, 2016

      5 T coffee - the 1/2 T is the amount of bentonite clay.

    • Browntrees1
      on Nov 29, 2016

      Hmm...the recipe above does state .5T of coffee grinds

    • Everything Pretty
      on Jul 20, 2018

      Use half a tablespoon of ground coffee. The recipe is correct as written. I doubled it, so I used a full tablespoon.

  • Rhonda Endriss
    on Mar 6, 2016

    I heard coffee grounds are hard on your drains

    • Cealwhalen
      on Apr 29, 2016

      I read that coffee grounds help clean out your drains???Ceal Whalen April 28, 2016

    • PattieJune
      on Jun 2, 2016

      Just remember your kitchen sink is not a garabage disposal.

    • Margaret Zyla Belfry
      on Sep 26, 2016

      I use coffee grounds twice weekly on my hands to get rid of dead cells and exfoliate my skin! I just take some lotion soap in my hands, add coffee grounds and rub on my hands for a few minutes. Then I rinse and wash again with just the lotion soap. Feels so good and helps immensely with my dry hands!

    • Mikkigirl
      on Sep 27, 2016

      The amount of coffee grounds in one bar of soap, let alone from one hand washing, is not going to effect the drains one way or another.

    • Browntrees1
      on Nov 29, 2016

      Agreed Mikkigirl. I'm sure if large amounts of coffee grinds were dumped in your drain it would clog the drain over time, however when using a small amount of coffee grinds like what is present in this soap or scooped into the palm of your hand during a twice a week exfoliative handwashing, it shouldn't harm the drains particularly when used with soap. I would be more concerned about the excess Shea Butter going down my drain however, I use bleach and other cleansers to clean my sinks, toilets and bathtub/shower and I'm sure that breaks down coffee, Shea Butter and the like as well. I go to coffee shops and ask for their cappuccino coffee grinds as those are very finely ground and come in handy compacted rounds with most of the water pressed out of it. When I make homemade body, hand and face scrubs I only use the cappuccino grinds. They are very small but still exfoliate very well and I still get the benefit of the caffeine for my skin. They also work better in my soil as they are dryer and more finely ground. (^_^)

    • Margaret Zyla Belfry
      on Feb 3, 2017

      The biggest reason they don't want coffee grounds going down your drain... in areas where water goes into the ocean, streams and lakes, it polutes the water. They claim they have found high levels of caffeine in some of the lakes, streams and even areas of the ocean. I say, find a way to remove it and make a new coffee drink. LOL!

    • Nancy Wilson
      on May 3, 2017

      Seriously, by the time coffee goes through the process of getting to the ocean there's not much caffeine left. If you put the used grains down the drain, use a vinegar and baking soda cleaner regularly. It will dissolve any "clumping" and run hot water as a follow up. Where I would be concerned in depositing anything down your drains without using a garbage disposal unit is if you have cesspools. You stand the risk of clogging your tanks.
    • Eliza Spear
      on Feb 7, 2019

      I have heard the same thing. Flush coffee grounds down the drain to keep it flowing and don’t flush tea leaves because they will clog it. Don’t know if it’s true...just saying I heard it.

  • Terrell Sanzone
    on Mar 2, 2017

    You put .5 tablespoons on a few items but I see you using a full tablespoon. Do you mean 5 tablespoons? If not, perhaps saying 2 teaspoons etc would be better? I really want to make this soap but I also want to be sure of the measurements. TFS!

    • De
      on Jul 10, 2018

      Wish she had answered your inquiry because that was my thought also. Oh well, hope it turned out for you.

    • Everything Pretty
      on Jul 20, 2018

      My reply is above your reply.

      I doubled the recipe, so I used a full tablespoon.

  • Melissa Hausam
    on Mar 4, 2017

    Where do you get the clay??

Join the conversation

2 of 10 comments
  • Linda Sue Johnston
    on Jan 19, 2017

    no coffee grounds if you have a septic tank in the mountains

  • Rose Maloney
    on Feb 2, 2017

    I save slivers of bar soap, add a little water at a time, microwave for 45 seconds at a time (I'm working with about 2 cups soap slivers) until melty and thick. Then I pour it into a mold and let harden in a cool dry cabinet with a tray of clean cat litter to speed the drying process. I don't see any reason you couldn't recycle the coffee grounds along with the soap slivers for the potting shed soap! Also, if you work a little soap up under your nails before you start digging, it'll be a lot easier to have clean hands when you're done if you are like me and don't like to wear gloves.

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