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The Pros and Cons of Used Grounds

When you make a decent cup of the Amazingly, Freakishly Good coffees that Klekolo sells, you have 1/3 of a cup of grounds that sit, spent – exhausted even – in the filter expressing their sacrifice. “Dammit man, we gave our all for you!” And they did. Don’t know about you, but I always wondered if there was more amazing coffee goodness lurking in there. Well, I did until I tried it. Then, well… not so much.

However, folklore is full of other uses of coffee grounds. I’ve examined a few and I relate them here, on the good side, and came up a few of my own, perhaps not so good. For example:

PRO: Deodorizer – Dry grounds on a baking sheet and put them in a container in your fridge. Washing your hands with coffee grounds will counter smells like onion and garlic on your hands after food preparation.

CON: Cat Box Additive – Until you see your kitty on caffeine AND catnip, you don’t really know what shock and awe is. I have a pile of fluff in my living room. Used to be a futon.


PRO: Insect Repellent – Sprinkle grounds around and on ant hills and they will leave town. Slugs and snails don’t like the java either.

CON: Bear Repellent – Doesn’t work. Just… trust me on this.


PRO: Brown Dye – Sure the grounds will let you down on flavor, but the color of re-steeped grounds can dye fabric, paper and Easter eggs.

CON: Spray Tanning Alternative – Um… on the plus side, I’m not orange. The bear found me attractive.


PRO: Cleaner for cast iron cookware – Coffee grounds are great at scrubbing out cast iron pans without jeopardizing the pan’s built-up seasoning. The deodorizing effects take care of food odors here too.

CON: Body Wash – My shower puff looks like hell and I haven’t had a single date since I started showering with grounds. Except for the bear. And he won’t sleep with me.


PRO: Kids’ Modeling Clay – I’m skeptical on this one, but apparently equal measures of corn meal and dried grounds plus a little salt and enough water to bind makes a textured clay that the kindergarten version of me can eat as well as mold.

CON: The same recipe does not work as a vegetarian meatball.


So, as you see, you can gain additional value from the deliciously spent beans with a little ingenuity and knowledge of folklore. Or you can do it my way.


Drinking: Organic Mocha Java

Listening: Jerry Garcia & David Grisman; Teddy Bear’s Picnic

1 thought on “The Pros and Cons of Used Grounds”

  1. Chris Brown (not that one)

    If you take the kid’s modelling clay and heave it at the ceiling you can make soft polka dot shapes on virtually any ceiling. And it will leave a faint aroma that will please all senses.

    Another brilliant musing.

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