Chances are if you’re a coffee-lover, you end up with a lot of leftover coffee cans. Caffeinated or decaf, there’s no escape from the excessive amounts of steel cans you accumulate once you’ve finished drinking their delicious contents. Instead of throwing them away, though, why not give them a new lease on life?

While recycling empty products is great, reusing and repurposing them is even better. With Earth Day just around the corner, make reusing your coffee cans your goal for the season. Reusing products contributes to waste stream reduction, conserves resources and decreases pollution rather than making new products from virgin materials.

With this in mind, here are some ways you can get creative and make functional products from your old steel coffee cans.



If you’re not looking to create anything fancy and want to start with an easy idea, then something as simple as kitchen compost storage is an ideal way to upcycle your coffee container.

Instead of constantly making trips to your compost bin outside and scraping the plates in the pouring rain, using your empty coffee can to collect food scraps will help between runs to the compost heap. Gather your compost until the can is full and then take it out to your compost bin, like you would with your general waste.

Even better, you can pop your coffee grounds in here too, which act as a beneficial source of nitrogen. This is a dream for coffee lovers who like to garden.


While we’re helping the environment, let’s look after our beloved wildlife too. Repurposing your steel coffee cans into bird feeders is a friendly way to feed the birds and encourage wildlife into your yard.

The easiest way to create a bird feeder is by opening the top of the can halfway. Then do the same for the bottom of the coffee can. Make sure to bend the sharp edges inside to prevent cutting yourself. From here, punch a hole in either side of the can at both ends, and thread through some wire to form a horizontal hanger. Now add in some bird feed and watch the birds gather in your garden.


For the creative folk out there, how about something for your art supplies? Create a personal storage container to hold your paint brushes, pens, and pencils. You could even use it as a water pot for your paintbrush when you’re painting your next masterpiece. Keep it simple, or paint the pot to make your own unique design.

Even if you’re not creative, this idea will still work well for storing pens on your desk. And if you’re doing some DIY painting, then why not soak your paintbrush in paint thinner using the coffee can?


Coffee cans are ideal for storing the bits and bobs around the house that don’t seem to have a home. From storing tools in your workshop or garage to collecting sewing buttons or kitchen utensils, the possibilities are endless.

No doubt you have a collection of empty coffee cans already stacked up, so you’ll probably find a use for one in every room of your home.


If plants are your thing, then save money on vases and plant holders by upcycling your empty coffee cans into something more personal. Design them to your liking, something bright and vibrant with spray paint, or maybe wrap them with twine for a more natural look. Whatever your vibe, give it your own flair.

Take a look at our blog for more details on how to create your own plant holder and other DIY craft ideas.


Now let’s create some ambience in the home with candle holders. Paint the coffee can to suit your interior, and poke holes through it using a hammer and nail. These can be simple dots or more intricate designs. Either way, they look great, letting the light shine through for a cozy setting. Simply pop in the candle or tea light and voilà, the mood is set.

Why not take it one step further and make your very own hanging light fixture? Leave it silver for a rustic effect, or paint them for something more chic.


There are so many other ways to reuse your old steel coffee cans or build on these fun and functional ideas. Let your imagination take over! Don’t forget to upload a photo of your creations and tag us on Facebook or Instagram.