Can You Put Coffee Grind Down The Garbage Disposal?

coffee in drainWe all know that grinding your own coffee beans usually results in better tasting coffee but what do you do with the used grind when you’re done with it? Do you throw it directly into the trash like most people? Do you save it for the garden like some avid composters and gardeners? Do you rinse it down the sink?

When I use my drip coffee maker it’s super easy to pull the filter out of the machine and toss it all in the trash (or the compost if I’m feeling ambitious) but most of the time I make coffee from a french press or a moka pot. These are far more difficult to clean than just pulling out a filter and tossing it.

The first couple times I cleaned my french press I just rinsed it out in the sink and let all the grounds go down but after doing some research on whether this was good for the disposal or not I found that it really can be a problem for your pipes. Not so much for the disposal but the pipes further down the system.

Coffee grind is basically a gritty mud that can slowly start or exacerbate clogs. If you don’t rinse it away very slowly or run the water for a long period of time during the cleaning the grind can slowly build up in the pipes.

I’ve started rinsing the grind out into a paper towel in the sink and then throwing that away. It makes things easier and is safer for the pipes. For my french press I basically lay the paper towel over the drain and then put a bit of water in the pot and swish it around. I then slowly pour the water with all the spent grounds in it into the paper towel. The towel holds the grind while the water passes through into the pipes. This keeps the vast majority of my mess away from my plumping and should prolong the healthy life of my pipes.

Here is a video that shows other things that you can’t or shouldn’t run through the disposal.

OK, so you may not want to put your grind down the sink but how do you get your grind in the first place?

I’d also like to invite you to take a look at this sweet page I put together on grinding coffee beans without a grinder. Keep it in mind the next time you go camping.


Owner and proprietor of the Gamble Bay Coffee Company