Kitchen Counter Top Compost Bins

Containers for Kitchen Compostable Food Scraps

Collecting kitchen food scraps for compost is worthwhile even for those who have small container gardens. Doing this also cuts back on solid waste which would otherwise go into landfills. To collect compostable waste you should have a designated compost bin to set on the kitchen counter for storing scraps in until you are ready to take them to the outdoor compost pile. This system means you will not have to carry food scraps outside after every meal but instead may empty the counter top bin on a weekly basis. They are designed so you don’t have to worry about attracting flies, pests or having bad smells in your home.

Features to Consider Before You Buy

Decorative appeal is important for anyone who intends to leave the pail sitting in view on a counter top. It is a matter of personal taste and individual decorating style but be aware that you will want to match the kitchen decor and appliances.

Pay attention to how much compostable waste your household generates and how much a compost crock or pail can hold. For a household which generates a half gallon of food scraps daily you’ll want a compost pail which has a 1 to 2 gallon capacity. That size will ensure that you will not have to empty the indoor pail onto the outdoor compost pile as frequently. A simple method of determining what capacity you need is to keep track of the volume of food scraps generated in your home for a week before buying.

Check the opening size as this feature can be annoying if it is too small. Do you want to be able to scrape a plate or cutting board off over a pail without spilling scraps on to a counter? If so, then the wider the opening of the container, the better it will suit your needs.

Any compost pail will need to be washed at some point. Smooth, rounded sides are always easier to clean than sharp, 90 degree angles so often a round compost pail is best. Some containers are made to be dishwasher safe which can be a great feature. If you wish to use this method for cleaning make certain the one you purchase fits in your dishwasher.

A tight fitting lid is an important feature to consider when buying a kitchen compost pail. If the cover does not close and seal well you may end up with foul smelling odors in your house. Loose fitting lids can also allow fruit flies to get into the pail. Fruit flies are not something anyone wants in their kitchen.

Carry Handle
Many kitchen counter compost bins are for sale with handles built into the sides. A full bin can be heavy when you factor in the added weight of the container itself. Make sure the carrying handle is strong and stable, securely attached and also check for reinforcements on the sides. You don’t want the handle to give out and drop rotting food scraps on your kitchen floor. This can also cause potential damage to the crock itself.

Most counter top compost keeper models now contain a filter fit into the cover. The filters are typically the carbon/charcoal variety and can be effective for cutting down unwanted odors. A filtration system of some sort is recommended.

A filter will typically take care of ventilation issues but if you select a model without one make sure that the unit addresses air flow in some manner.. If a compost keeper allows no air to enter, anaerobic conditions will be created along with some nasty odors. These anaerobic conditions will also travel to your outdoor compost which is important to avoid.

Material – Composition
Decide your preference as far as what material you would like a kitchen counter compost keeper made from. There are several types on the market including stainless steel, plastic, ceramic and bamboo. Some people prefer eco-friendly recycled or renewable materials. Also take into consideration that the container is made from will factor into the weight. Ceramic compost crocks can be quite heavy when they’re full while plastic or stainless steel is lighter.

Which do you think will last longer – plastic, ceramic, stainless steel, or wood/bamboo? You don’t want a compost crock with will only last a short time, that would defeat the purpose of a green lifestyle. Decide which material is best suited for the wear it will see in your home.

Where to Buy Compost Containers

Here are a few ideas from Amazon to get you started. There are a wide variety of compost pails for sale. Read the reviews and get a better idea of what would suit your home and personal needs. Reviews are one of the best ways to find out if a product is good or bad as well as the best and worst features of an item.

Kitchen Compost Pail Bin Stainless Steel
Compost Bin Stainless Steel
Stainless steel is a good choice for ease of cleaning. It is also lightweight. There are several designs for sale. Check for dishwasher safe models.
Counter Compost Container Ceramic
Compost Bin Ceramic
Ceramic is attractive and comes in an assortment of colors. Some think the pails are heavy. Others like the look and feel enough to handle the weight.
Kitchen Counter Compost Container Plastic
Compost Container Plastic
Plastic is lightweight and frequently dishwasher safe. Available in black or white with lift out insert for simple, quick cleaning. Stylish, modern design.


Kitchen Compost Bin Stainless Steel Colors
Bin Stainless Colors
Stainless steel containers can come in a variety of colors to match your kitchen decor. Green, red, blue, black and more.
Kitchen Compost Container Copper
Compost Bin Copper
If your kitchen hardware is brass, gold tone or copper color, a copper bin may be the best pick for your home.
Kitchen Compost Container Vintage
Container Vintage Bucket
For a country home an antique, vintage look may be best. There are several cute designs which are attractive and functional.


Would rather be outdoors. I believe we are tasked to take care of the earth and environment. It's our duty to live sustainability.

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