Compost Bins For The Kitchen: Complete Buyers Guide

If you want to separate your organic waste sensibly, you almost can’t get around a decent compost bin for the kitchen.

But be careful, the bucket should be well ventilated and neutralize odors as much as possible.

The material also plays a role. A decent organic garbage can is sturdy and easy to clean.

I show you, in addition to my favorite models, therefore, what you should definitely look for when buying and what there is to consider when collecting organic waste in the kitchen.

Compost bin for the kitchen – short and sweet

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With a compost bin you can collect organic waste in the kitchen and store it temporarily.
The organic waste can be disposed of in the organic waste garbage can or composted in the garden or on the balcony.
The compost bin usually has a lid to protect against flies and unpleasant odors, some models also have an activated carbon filter
Kitchen composters are available in different sizes and even as a built-in model, so there is something for every household size.

In addition to colorful plastic bins, there are also really chic containers made of stainless steel. Beware of coated metal bins. They often look pretty, but rust quickly.

Kitchen compost bins in comparison – the most important criteria at a glance
Size: The capacity of the compost bin you should choose depending on the size of your household or kitchen.
Cleaning: The compost bin for the kitchen should be easy to clean. The inner surfaces should therefore be as smooth as possible so that the contents do not stick.

Features: most kitchen composters have a lid so that you can’t see anything and nothing smells. Some models also have an activated carbon filter, more on that later.

Ventilation: Although the waste is only temporarily stored in a kitchen composter for a short time, it can happen that the waste ferments. The compost bin should therefore be well ventilated.

Why a compost bin in the kitchen?

With a compost bin, you prevent valuable kitchen waste such as fruit and vegetable peelings from ending up in the normal residual waste.

Separation is not only sensible, but has even been mandatory in Germany for several years. As of January 01, 2015, the organic waste garbage can must be used nationwide in accordance with the Closed Substance Cycle Waste Management Act. Accordingly, biologically recyclable waste should no longer end up with normal household waste.

For me, the separation already in the kitchen is not annoying at all, but actually beneficial. You can collect the waste in the compost garbage can and don’t have to run to the composter or the organic waste garbage can every time.

If you are a garden or balcony owner and like to work with homemade compost, you can use your kitchen waste for this purpose. The practical containers are more or less the first step to making your own compost.

You don’t have to be afraid of unpleasant odors. Many compost bins for the kitchen are designed accordingly.

Which compost bins for the kitchen are available?

The offer is huge: kitchen composters come in different designs and made of different materials:

  • Plastic organic waste garbage cans
  • Metal and stainless steel bins
  • Kitchen compost bins made of enamel
  • Kitchen waste garbage cans with activated carbon filter
  • or organic waste garbage cans for installation

I have not seen any compost bins for the kitchen made of wood. Wood likes to absorb moisture. The material could swell and eventually mold.

Kitchen compost bucket made of plastic

Plastic compost bins are lightweight and easy to clean, often even in the dishwasher. The garbage cans are also super cheap and you can get them in different sizes, colors and shapes.

Personally, I’m not a fan of plastic, despite its many advantages. Plastic unfortunately looks cheap most of the time. In addition, the material can quickly discolor and readily takes on odors.

That is the decisive disadvantage for me.

Compost bins made of stainless steel and other metals
Metal compost bins are often made of high quality stainless steel. They are heavier than plastic bins and also the price has it unfortunately in itself. On the other hand, stainless steel is hygienic, easy to clean and in my eyes the perfect material for the kitchen.

Often, the metal compost bins are equipped with an activated carbon filter.

Just make sure that it is actually high-quality stainless steel. Other metals or merely coated buckets are cheap, but can rust if necessary. Here better not save at the wrong end.

Enamel organic waste garbage cans
Similar to metal compost bins, enamel bins are heavier and more expensive than plastic compost bins. You can use warm water with dish soap to clean these bins.

I think enamel is just totally chic from a purely visual standpoint, but most compost bins only have an enamel coating. Once this flakes off, the metal underneath can rust.

Compost bucket made of ceramic

Rare to find, but very nice to look at, are ceramic compost bins. The containers are much heavier than plastic and if it falls down, the bucket is broken. On the other hand, the models are often glazed, therefore easy to clean and a real eye-catcher in the kitchen.

Compost bin for the kitchen with activated carbon filter

An activated carbon filter in the organic waste garbage can is a great thing: it prevents unpleasant odors in the kitchen, because they are neutralized by the activated carbon.

The odorous substances can be deposited on the porous surface of the activated carbon and in the many spaces in between. The contents of the compost bin are supplied with oxygen by the activated carbon filter. This is already the first step to composting and therefore perfect if you make your own compost in the garden or on the balcony anyway.

The activated carbon filter is usually located in the lid of the compost bin, often with organic waste containers made of metal or stainless steel.

Advantages of the activated carbon filter:

  • no unpleasant odors through the compost bin
  • composting process already starts
  • Disadvantages of the activated carbon filter:

Filter must be replaced regularly, which again costs money
Organic waste garbage can for installation
A built-in organic waste garbage can saves space and is not visible in the kitchen. It is simply integrated into the kitchen cabinet. Mostly it is available only in a set with the kitchen waste garbage can.

Manufacturers have not always taken into account the requirements for a kitchen waste garbage can in the best possible way. The compartment for organic waste is often very small in these built-in variants. Often, the compost bin has a lid with a rubber seal. Thus, the lid closes completely tight and the contents can not “breathe”.

The built-in variant is best suited for very small kitchens where space is limited.

Which waste can be put into the kitchen composter and which not?
Not all waste should go into a compost bin. If you don’t have a composter at home and you want to dispose of the waste in the organic waste garbage can, different regulations apply depending on the local disposal company as to what does not belong in the organic waste garbage can.

If in doubt, check with your local waste disposal company.

Komposteimer mit Abfall

These wastes are usually not a problem for the compost bin

  • Coffee filters with coffee grounds
  • Tea bags
  • Potato peels
  • Vegetable waste
  • Fruit waste
  • Egg shells
  • kitchen herbs waste, also with pot balls, without pot
  • cooked potatoes
  • withered bouquets of flowers (without ribbon)
  • peels of bananas and citrus fruits in small quantities
  • food scraps, without meat and preferably without fat

Small animal litter made from untreated wood may be placed in the kitchen compost bin. If you want to dispose of the contents of the compost bucket in the organic waste garbage can, different regulations apply to small animal litter depending on the district.

What does not belong in the compost bin

  • Meat
  • Fat
  • Bones
  • broken glass
  • Packaging remains
  • Stones
  • Plastic waste
  • Metal and plastic foil
  • vacuum cleaner bags.

My tip: To protect the compost bin from dirt, you can use a compostable bag. However, kitchen crepe is more suitable as the bottom layer. It absorbs the moisture of the organic waste and rots. Compostable bags are always criticized and should also not be disposed of in the organic waste garbage can.

Compost bucket in the kitchen – These are the advantages

A compost bin for the kitchen has lots of advantages:

Kitchen waste that is compostable does not have to go in the trash: numerous, valuable kitchen waste can go in the compost bin. They do not end up in the garbage and thus reduce the amount of residual waste. Since this kitchen waste is still rich in nutrients, it is available for composting.

Compost bucket serves as a temporary storage for compostable kitchen waste: You should empty the compost bucket regularly to prevent the fermentation process from starting. However, you can collect kitchen waste over a short period of time and do not have to dispose of it immediately in the composter or in the organic waste garbage can.

Organic waste can breathe: Due to the design of most compost bins, organic waste can “breathe”. This prevents the onset of fermentation. Unlike a trash can, air can enter the compost garbage can while odors cannot escape to the outside.

Compost soil is a useful fertilizer for many plants: For almost all vegetables and ornamental plants in the garden or on the balcony, you can use compost to improve the soil. It provides many nutrients and is of natural origin. You can also use compost as a fertilizer for houseplants.

Compost bucket can be easily cleaned: You can even clean the compost bucket in the dishwasher, depending on the model. Alternatively, it’s super easy to wash out with water and dish soap.

What are the alternatives to the kitchen compost bin?

To the conventional compost bin in the kitchen there are several alternatives, with all of them is composted or fermented directly.

A worm composter in the kitchen
A worm composter is a box that consists of several tiers and is filled with compostable kitchen waste. Special compost worms digest the waste and produce special worm humus through their excretions. Worm composters usually have compact dimensions and are also suitable for the kitchen.

Bokashi bucket for indoors, terrace and balcony.
A bokashi bucket, which originated in Japan, can also be placed in the kitchen.

Bokashi buckets remind purely visually strongly of the compost bucket. It is mostly made of plastic, is closed airtight and is equipped with a tap.

The kitchen waste is not decomposed and composted, but fermented.

Effective microorganisms are used to produce bokashi. It is a mixture of lactic acid bacteria, purple bacteria and yeasts.

The production of kitchen bokashi is super fast. However, the end product is very pungent and should only be used in diluted form for fertilization. But I also find it totally practical to use as a natural drain cleaner. The fermentation itself is completed within two to three weeks.

For me, a totally exciting alternative, even if you want to create compost on the balcony, but do not have enough space.

Direct disposal in the organic waste garbage can or composter
You can also dispose of your kitchen waste directly in the garbage can or in the composter. You can find my favorite models in the composter test.

Since the waste from fruit and vegetables etc. contains valuable nutrients, you should not throw it in the residual waste.

Küchenabfälle im Garten

I can especially recommend self-composting, even if you don’t have a large garden. A small composter with small dimensions can also be super in the allotment, on the terrace or even on the balcony.

Composting is particularly quick in a drum composter or a thermal composter. Unlike the compost heap, it does not have to be moved and often has a floor grid. Such a composter with a bottom offers protection against rats and mice.

What to look for when buying a kitchen composter
If you want to buy a compost bin for the kitchen, you should consider some criteria:

Capacity: The capacity should be based on the size of your household and the amount of kitchen waste. For smaller households, a capacity of about 2 liters is suitable, while for larger households, a capacity of about 4 to 6 liters is suitable.
Cleaning: The kitchen composter should be easy to clean. If the walls are relatively smooth, nothing sticks and it dries less. Then cleaning is usually super easy under running water with a little dishwashing liquid. Some models are even suitable for the dishwasher.
Do I need a removable lid? You should not do without a lid on the compost bin, so that no unpleasant odors escape. Ideally, the lid should be removable for easy cleaning.

Does my compost bin need a handle? The big advantage is that a handle makes it much easier to walk to the organic waste garbage can and empty it afterwards. It is not absolutely necessary, but quite nice if you want to keep your hands clean.
Which material should I choose? Personally, I like stainless steel. It just looks chic, is stable, does not rust and does not take the smells so. However, from experience, plastic is easy to clean, has little dead weight and is much cheaper. There are also enameled compost bins and many models made of powder-coated steel. There I always have concerns about rust.

Accessories to the kitchen composter: For a compost bucket is not much accessories required. If you decide on a compost bin with an activated charcoal filter, there should be some replacement filters included, but it’s not a must. Some compost bins have an additional plastic bucket that allows for clean disposal of kitchen waste and easy cleaning. This is also quite nice, but not absolutely necessary.

The appearance of the compost bin: after all, the compost bin should fit the kitchen, so the appearance is already important to me. At first glance, the bin should not necessarily look like garbage. I find compost bins made of stainless steel, ceramic and enamel particularly pretty. Beautiful kitchen composters made of plastic are rarer to find. But that remains a matter of taste.
Compost bins for the kitchen in comparison – These models have convinced me

I have long researched, compared many products and now finally found my favorites. I would use these compost bins myself in the kitchen.

Abakoo Stainless Steel Compost Bin – 1.3 Gallon Premium Grade 304 Stainless Steel Kitchen Composter

Compost Bins For The Kitchen: Complete Buyers Guide

Abakoo Stainless Steel Compost Bin is a perfect solution for those who want to compost without the mess. The bin is made of food grade 304 stainless steel and it has a capacity of 1.3 gallons. That means you can put in all your vegetable scraps, coffee grounds, tea leaves and other organic material that you want to compost and let the bin do its magic.

The best thing about this product is that it comes with 4 charcoal filters that help reduce odors, flies and bad smells from the composting process. The filters are reusable so they don’t need to be replaced often.

The Abakoo Stainless Steel Compost Bin is a premium grade 304 stainless steel kitchen composter. It has 1.3 gallon capacity and is designed to fit in small kitchens.

It includes 4 charcoal filters that are made from food-grade activated charcoal and provide a powerful odor elimination system for the composter. The composter also includes a removable tray for easy access to compost and an airtight lid with locking mechanism that prevents odors from escaping.

Check it out on Amazon today

RED FACTOR Premium Compost Bin for Kitchen Countertop – Stainless Steel Food Waste Bucket with Innovative Dual Filter Technology – Includes Spare Filters (Matt Copper, 1.3 Gallon)

Compost Bins For The Kitchen: Complete Buyers Guide

The RED FACTOR Premium Compost Bin is a food waste bin for your kitchen countertop. It has an innovative dual filter technology that allows you to compost your food waste right on the countertop.

This makes it easier than ever to produce nutrient-rich soil with minimal effort. The RED FACTOR Premium Compost Bin is made of stainless steel and has a sleek design that will look great in any kitchen.

The RED FACTOR Premium Compost Bin is the perfect kitchen countertop compost bin. It has a stainless steel food waste bucket with an innovative dual filter technology that enables you to use it without any worries.

The RED FACTOR Premium Compost Bin is a stainless steel food waste bucket with an innovative dual filter technology, which makes it perfect for your kitchen countertop. The two filters are designed to keep odors contained and allow for easy composting and disposal of food scraps. This means you can compost and dispose of your food scraps without any worries.

Check it out on Amazon

FAQs – Things to know about the compost bin in the kitchen.

Does the kitchen compost bin smell unpleasant?

A kitchen compost bin will not smell unpleasant if you empty it at least every two days. If an activated carbon filter is present, unpleasant odors should be neutralized.

Does a compost bin in the kitchen attract flies?

During the summer months, a compost bin can attract fruit flies, dew flies and vinegar flies. You can avoid this by keeping the compost bin closed.

Additionally, you can take precautions by keeping the kitchen clean, using a fly screen in front of the window, ventilating regularly, and emptying the compost bin more frequently during the summer. An activated carbon filter can counteract fruit flies.

Can the contents in the compost bucket become moldy?

The contents in the compost bucket can mold if the kitchen waste was previously spoiled or if the contents are not well ventilated. To avoid mold growth, you should empty the compost bucket regularly.

Can I use plastic bags for the kitchen compost bin?

Plastic bags and other plastics are not suitable for the compost bin. You also have to be careful with special compostable bags. Although they facilitate clean emptying, disposal in the organic waste garbage can is usually not recommended. An alternative is kitchen crepe, which you place at the bottom of the compost bin.

Where can I dispose of the compost if the kitchen composter is full?

If the kitchen composter is full, you can dispose of the contents in the organic waste garbage can or composter. Please do not throw the waste into the residual waste.

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