17 Useful and Creative Ways to Reuse Coffee Cans Now

by Jenni on February 22, 2013

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coffee cans

17 Useful & Creative Ways to Reuse Coffee Cans

 

I don’t know about you, but we drink a lot of coffee at our house. I know we’re not the only folks that drink a ton of coffee so I can’t even begin to imagine how many coffee canisters are floating around out there! I’ve found a few creative ways to recycle containers – for instance – I learned how to remove ink from plastic containers so that we can reuse them! Coffee cans are a whole other beast!

Oh, and while I’m on the subject of coffee – my friend Alea wrote this post on how to use leftover coffee! Lots of great ideas and fun recipes! You know how sometimes you have that little bit left in the bottom of a pot? Instead of pouring it down the drain, use some of the ideas from her link above!

Ways to reuse coffee cans

Ways to reuse coffee cans in the kitchen:

1. Store table scraps and produce trash. Yes, it’s a less decorative use but still very useful. By keeping your table scraps and produce peelings in cans like this with a lid, it prevents the smell from lingering in the kitchen. It also keeps those pesky fruit flies away! One thing I tend to do is keep my canister with a lid in the fridge just so that the scraps don’t spoil so fast. When it’s full, you can dump it accordingly or add to your compost pile.

2. Make a set of Kitchen Canisters. Paint them and easily stencil or free-hand words like Flour, Sugar, Coffee, Tea, Cereal, Granola, Oats, or whatever you want. Or check out this idea…Organized Island shows how to use contact paper to decorate her coffee cans! The plastic lids keep everything airtight so whatever is inside will stay fresh! In order to be more “green” you can buy bags of coffee and simply refill your canisters. That’s what we need to do. I have to keep my eye out for some coupons though. It’s usually more expensive!!

 

Reuse Coffee Cans

Ways to reuse coffee cans in the bathroom/utility room:

1. Get rich in your utility room. Clean out pockets when doing laundry and place items in the canister. Usually my husband has tons of little metal screws, bolts and things from work in his pockets. Occasionally I’ll find money too! When he’s looking for something in particular, he always checks the cans!

2. Spare bathroom tissue holder. Get rid of that old tired wooden toilet paper holder that sits by your toilet!! Dress your canisters up and set them on the toilet tanks for cute decor!

3. Hold mani/pedi supplies. Add your nail files, clippers, remover, cotton pads and polish to a canister and when you’re ready to do your nails everything is all in one place.

4. Store plastic bags. I recently shared 21 ways to reuse plastic grocery bags. If you keep your bags, just cut a hole in the lid and you can pull a plastic bag out anytime you need it. These are great to keep in your bathrooms to quickly replace a small trashcan bag!

5. Store homemade detergent. I make my own homemade laundry detergent, but I currently store mine in a Huggies Wipes container. The next time I make it I’m going to make a double or triple batch and will store it in some of my coffee containers! They’re more airtight than the wipes container I’m using so less chance of drying out.

 

Coffee Cans Recipes

Crafty and creative ways to reuse coffee cans:

1. Use for gifting homemade treats or soup. You can actually bake bread in a metal coffee can. Tie a pretty bow on it and send as a gift to a new neighbor or friend! If a loved one is sick, send them some homemade chicken soup in a canister with a get well gift tag attached!

2. Make a bird feeder. This would be a fun project to do with the kids or make for a parent/grandparent! We live in the country so we love our bird feeders here.

3. Create outdoor lighting. Punch a bunch of tiny holes in several cans and string party lights through them to make a fun strand of luminary lights on your patio or along your sidewalk! I’m thinking of making some for my backyard!! Here’s a great tutorial for outdoor coffee can lanterns! These look like so much fun to make!

4. Turn into flower planters. Poke some small holes in the bottom of a can, fill with a few gravels and dirt and plant some pretty flowers. This is such a fun idea!

5. Decorate and keep craft/art supplies. If you’re already an artsy craftsy person you can easily find ways to doll up a canister and keep your drawing pencils, paints, markers, and other craft items in.

6. Keep yarn in. If you’re working on a knitting project, keep your yarn in the canister and cut a hole in the lid to let your yarn slide through. This will help in keeping your yarn from getting tangled and possibly the kids or cats from tearing up your work!

 

Ways to reuse coffee cans

Kid Friendly Ways to Reuse Coffee Cans:

1. Make a drum. You know how the kiddos love to beat on pots and pans! Give them a few coffee cans with the lids on and let them beat those drums. Throw some rice or beans in them and let them shake them up!

2. Make a Money Bank. Cut a slit in the lid big enough for kids to slide change through and they’ve got their very own money bank. When it fills up, take them to town and let them buy something fun with their money. It’s a great way to teach them about saving money and spending smart at an early age!

3. Coffee Can stilts. This is super cool, creative and looks like loads of fun! PlayCreateExplore has a nice tutorial on how to make coffee can stilts here. I can’t wait to make some of these!

4. Make a Time Capsule. Decorate and fill up a coffee can with all sorts of things like pictures, popular toys of today’s time, etc. Seal the lid nice and tight with glue or tape and hide it somewhere where someone through the years might find it. If you’d rather keep it so that your kids can have it when they’re older…keep it in a closet or somewhere you’ll remember!

I hope you’ve enjoyed these tips. We’d love it if you left a comment below! Let us know any other tips you might have to add to the collection of ways to reuse coffee cans!

Ways to reuse coffee cans

If you enjoyed these tips, check out some other fan favorite posts below:

21 Ways to Reuse Plastic Grocery Bags – Plastic Recycling

How to Remove Ink from Plastic Containers – Reuse Your Containers

Homemade Laundry Soap | Only 3 Ingredients (Just 2 Cents per Load!!!)

How to Get Rid of Fleas Using Apple Cider Vinegar – All Natural & Thrifty

Topic: Reusing Coffee Cans

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Amanda K February 23, 2013 at 7:43 am

I use one for my kitchen utensils, like the spatulas, wooden spoons, etc. My kitchen is coffee themed, so I’m leaving it as is, works perfect.

Reply

Jenni February 23, 2013 at 6:24 pm

Amanda, that sounds cute and a coffee themed kitchen sounds awesome!! Thanks for sharing :)

Reply

Layne April 3, 2013 at 12:08 am

More awesome ideas! I love how you re-use items, Jenni! So smart! Thanks for sharing!

Reply

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