Repurposing K-Cups: My 10 Favorite Ways

10 Ways of Repurposing K-Cups

Repurposing K-CupsThink it’s a good idea to be repurposing K-cups? I certainly do! With the popularity of Keurig Brewing systems, it’s no surprise that many of us go through a lot of K-cups. If you’re like me, you’ve been wondering how to combat some of that waste that all the used K-cups create. I’ve created a list of my 10 favorite ways of repurposing K-cups. Some you may have tried, some may be new to you, but hopefully you’ll be able to get some ideas from these and run with them. We all need to do our part to help the environment!

First of all, before you can go about repurposing K-cups, you have to clean them out. I leave them to dry for a day or so. It just makes the process easier. Make the hole in the top bigger so it dries out quicker if you want. Then, if you’re not going to reuse them as coffee pods (tip 9), this is what I do:

  • Peel off the foil lid as carefully as possible. Try to get all the foil off. Sometimes a butter knife helps, depending on how stuck it is.
  • Dump the grounds into the compost heap or into the trash.
  • Next, inside the rim of the K-cup, run a butter knife along the edge where the paper filter meets the plastic.
  • Finish by removing the paper filter entirely and throwing it in the compost or paper recycling bin.
  • Rinse out completely, let dry and you’re ready for repurposing K-cups.

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10 Ways of Repurposing K-Cups

1.   These are ideal for holders of small craft supplies (sequins, beads, rhinestones, glitter, etc.) How about for jewelry? Small necklaces you don’t want tangled, spare earring backs, rings and more!

2.   Or make holders for small tools like nuts & bolts, washers and self-tapping screws. Glue a magnet to the bottom and place on a metal surface. No tipping!

3.    You & the kids can use them for crafts. Start saving them, I’ll start posting some crafts as I create them.

4.    Speaking of crafting, ask your school if they’ll take donations. I’m sure the teachers already have some crafts in mind.

5.    Use as a refrigerator deodorizer. Did you know that coffee grounds soak up odors just as well as baking soda? Put 2 or 3 in a bowl (open up the tops a little more) and place in a strategic location. After a couple days, see if the weird odors don’t disappear. As an  additional odor boost, try putting a few drops of vanilla, or other extract, in the center of the grounds.

6.    Use as seedling starters. Pour in pot soil and seeds. Transfer to the garden when they start to grow big. A gardener I am not so I defer you to this great article: K-Cup Recycling: Toss the Grounds in your Garden and Turn the Cups into Seed Starters to get you started on this project.

7.    Use as medication dispensers, decorated or not. Label the outside with whose it is, when to take, or other pertinent information.

8.    Use rinsed K-cups in between baked goods to keep the foil or plastic wrap off the icing.

9.    Re-use them for another cup of coffee:

a)   Take off foil lid, rinse and put with aluminum recyclables.
b)   Dump used grounds in compost pile or in trash.
c)   Rinse K-cup well, being careful not to damage the paper filter, and let dry.
d)   Refill with coffee grounds, leaving some room at the top for swelling.
e)   Cover with a square piece of foil, sealing the edges.
f)   Line up the bottom hole of K-cup with needle in Keurig until you feel it drop in.
g)   Brew coffee as normal. You can even reuse the foil lid a few times!

10.  Recycle: Remember, even if you won’t be repurposing K-cups, parts are still recyclable. Compost the grounds & paper filter or sprinkle the grounds in your garden and recycle the paper. Did you know ants hate coffee grounds? Sprinkle them on ant hills or along places where the ants get in your house; non-toxic! The rinsed, foil top can be recycled with aluminum. Unfortunately, the plastic part is made with some “ingredients,” if you will, that are not recyclable, but I hear Keurig & Green Mountain are working on this for the future!

I’m sure there are other ways of repurposing K-cups that I don’t know about. I would love to hear your suggestions and things that you’ve tried and have been successful with. I’ve also read of people using them for liquids, but I have yet to see how they’ve gotten around that tiny hole in the bottom. If you know of a way, make sure to let me know about that too! It’s going to be fun making some crafts by repurposing K-cups. I can’t wait to share those with you too as I create. I guess I’d better get started!

Until next time!
~Michele

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