As I’ve noted numerous times before, I do think single-serve coffee makers are environmentally preferable in a number of ways: you’re not going to make more than you need (so no waste of water or ground coffee), and they don’t use energy to keep coffee hot before you drink it. But what about all of those coffee pods? Yep, they add up quickly, and generally end up in the trash as they can’t be recycled through traditional means.
But, can you reuse K-Cups? Those little plastic pods have to be useful for something, right? A number of thinkers and makers have dedicated themselves to this question, and come up with all sorts of interesting approaches to getting more use out of these materials.
First: Can You Reuse K-Cups to Make More Coffee?
Coffee pods aren’t designed for reuse, but that doesn’t mean that lots of waste-haters and frugal types have tried. The best option would be a reusable coffee pod (which a number of manufacturers make). But if you’ve already got disposable K-Cups on hand, a number of folks have come up with ideas for reusing them after cleaning out the used grounds.
The Wings and Wheels Channel walks you through a simple reuse process:
A slightly different approach to refilling used pods.
Pre-made reusable tops (not an affiliate link)
Next: Crafty Reuse Ideas for Your Coffee Pods
Got way more used pods than you could possibly use for making more coffee? Here are some other ways you can reuse your K-Cups:
Storage for freezing fresh herbs
An organizer for tiny things (jewelry, sewing supplies, etc.)
A groovy round light shade (substitute K-cups for paper cups)
And that’s just scratching the surface: spend a little time on Google or Pinterest to find many, many more ideas. Got a favorite project for making use of used coffee pods? Share it with us…
Photo credit: Shutterstock