Composting miscellaneous kitchen items

Tuesday, 4 February 2014  |  HOTBIN Composting

We get quite a few questions asking if you can compost tea bags and coffee grounds in the HOTBIN. The answer is yes! There are also a number of other miscellaneous food or food related items that can be composted which we have included in the table below.

 

Miscellaneous food items Will it Decay Cold
Compost
HOTBIN compost Rate of decay in the HOTBIN Comments
Bokashi digestate Yes Yes Yes Slow  
Coffee grounds Yes Yes Yes Medium These have a large surface area, but are roasted which slows down their decomposition.
Compostable bags (e.g. starch bags) Yes Not Advised Yes Medium Preferably shred these. They usually take between 1-3 months to decompose, but more than 2 years in by cold composting.
Cooked food Yes Not Advised Yes Fast You can add these in hot composting bins but not in cold composting bins as it would attract rats and flies.
Fats and cooking oil Yes Not Advised Yes Medium Small quantities are ok if mixed in well, but not large volumes such as half bottles.
Fish and chips leftovers Yes Not Advised Yes Fast  
Fish and chips box/paper Yes Not Advised Yes Medium Card and compostable trays can be added - polystyrene cannot be added!
Frozen foods Yes Not Advised No Medium Please defrost frozen food before adding it to the HOTBIN - adding it frozen transfers too much heat from the waste pile.
Left over curry Yes Not Advised Yes Fast Ok to add, as long as there is not too much sauce.
Oil (palm, olive) Yes Not Advised Not Advised Medium Small quantities are ok if mixed in well, but not large volumes such as half bottles.
Pizza boxes Yes Not Advised Yes Medium Tear into small strips.
Tea bags Yes Yes Yes Medium Some tea bags take longer to decompose than others - it depends on what the bag itself is made from.