66 Reasons To Buy Coffee Filters, Even If You Don’t Drink Coffee


Coffee Filters

Even if you’re not a coffee drinker, you might want to consider picking up a package of coffee FILTERS the next time you go shopping. They are extremely economical to buy and there are SO many uses for this coffee-making essential that have nothing to do with coffee!

WELCOME to “Save My Sanity Saturday” at One Good Thing By Jillee….where I attempt to avoid having a nervous breakdown by actually giving myself a day off from blogging once a week! Please pull up a chair, sit back, and enjoy an “oldie but goodie” from the One Good Thing By Jillee archives.

—-Originally posted on May 6, 2013—-

Saturday was flower-planting day at my house! I wanted to have all my flower beds and pots planted before my daughter’s graduation party on Sunday and it turned out to be the perfect weather for working in the garden! As I was putting potting soil into my flower pots I was dismayed over the fact that a good amount of dirt was falling through the holes in the bottom. I remembered reading something about using coffee filters to line the bottom of your pots to avoid this problem. I just happened to have a package of like a THOUSAND coffee filters that I had picked up recently to make THESE paper peonies! (Aren’t they pretty??!) I think the whole package cost me like a dollar!

Problem solved! I just love a simple idea that works! So I decided to see if there were MORE creative uses for this large number of coffee filters that I had on hand. Boy oh boy! I don’t know where I’VE been…but I couldn’t believe all the creative uses I came across! However, the more I searched, the more I seemed to come up with the same tired list of 25 creative uses for coffee filters. Not that the ideas weren’t good, but I was looking for ideas that weren’t so readily available. Some “off the beaten path” stuff, if you will.

So here is my list (curated from across the world wide web) of 66 creative uses for coffee filters…..some more common than others…..that have nothing to do with drinking coffee.


coffee filters

  • Put a filter in the bottom of your flower pot containers, over the drainage holes. This keeps the soil from leaving the container while still allowing water to run through it.
  • Soak filters in brewed tea or even just plain water and chill. Fold them and use as a cold compress for puffy eyes.
  • Accordion fold a few coffee filters, cut into strips, and use as shipping material for fragile items. The unbleached kind make fun shredding material for hamsters.
  • A coffee filter is perfect for spreading oil or butter on a cooking pan since a coffee filter’s fibers won’t break off in your oils like a napkin’s would.


coffee filters

Antonis Achilleos

  • Shield stacked china from scratches and nicks by layering a filter between each piece.
  • Use a coffee filter to prevent splatter when heating something in the microwave, simply place over the top of your food and cook as normal.
  • Poke a hole in a filter and insert the stick of your popsicle. You now have a DIY popsicle drip collector!
  • Put the end of an ice cream cone in the center of a filter and wrap the filter around it for a drip-free ice cream cone wrapper.


Coffee Filters

  • Use a coffee filter as a makeshift rag. Unlike paper towels, coffee filters are lint free and take up very little space.
  • Put under bacon, fries, fried chicken etc. to soak up excess grease.
  • Use to line bamboo steamers.
  • Place a few tablespoons of baking soda in a filter and twist the top together with a rubber band. Place in shoes, gym bag, closet, refrigerator, or anywhere else that may have developed some less-than-pleasant odors.


Coffee Filters

  • You can also use them safely to clean computer monitors, television screens, and windows. They clean without leaving residue.
  • Cut up a stack of filters, place them in a small tin and you’ve got a set of face blotters perfect for your purse and last-minute shine control.
  • Make skirts for Barbies.
  • Good-quality coffee filters are made from 100 percent virgin paper, so you can use them to clean your glasses without leaving lint.
  • Line the bottom of cookie tins.


Coffee Filters

  • This is one of my favorites! Dampen a coffee filter with some white vinegar and a few drops of your favorite essential oil (I like to use Lavender) and use as a substitute for a dryer sheet. Your clothes will come out smelling fresh and the coffee filter reduces static.
  • Strain bacon drippings by pouring them through a coffee filter into a ceramic bowl or mug. The brown bits, grains, etc will stay in the filter. Also works well for recycling frying oil.
  • Kids food holders for Tacos, Hot Dogs, Pita Sandwiches, etc.
  • For perfectly heated tortillas, spritz a coffee filter with water and lay a tortilla on top of it. Spritz a second coffee filter and put it on top. Heat the stack in the microwave for 10-15 seconds, and your tortilla will be warm and still pliable. You can use the same ones over and over.


coffee filters 7

  • A disposable “snack bowl” for popcorn, chips, etc.
  • Make homemade tea bags by filling coffee filters with a selection of loose tea leaves and dried fruit peels. Tie together with string and use just like normal tea bags.
  • Wrap jumbo dill pickles in coffee filters to prevent dripping when eating.
  • Use as a portable doggy food bowl.


Coffee Filters

  • Put flavorings (bay leaves, woody herb stems, etc.) in a coffee filter, tie with string, and stick in soup while cooking for quick and easy removal later.
  • Use as a sandwich wrap (inside the baggy or plastic container) so your sandwich doesn’t get soggy in your lunchbox.
  • If you use cloth diapers you can line your diaper with a couple of these and toss the solids rather than not having anywhere to rinse them.
  • Changing diapers is bad enough, but toilet training kids on a potty is equally messy. Line the potty with a coffee filter so you can just lift out the number two and deposit in the toilet.
  • A coffee filter can hold small parts when working on vehicles, cleaning guns, or most any other project!


coffee filters

  • Coffee filters are fantastic for polishing leather shoes. Simply apply a dab of your favorite shoe polish and use the filter as an applicator.
  • A coffee filter will work well to desilk an ear of corn. Dampen a filter and wipe it in one stroke from the top to the bottom of the shucked ear of corn.
  • Use as a mini cutting board for chopping (not slicing) one tomato, onion, etc.
  • Use a filter as an easy-to-tear backing for embroidering or appliquéing soft fabrics.


coffee filters

  • After you are done washing your cast-iron cookware, place a coffee filter in the bottom of the pan and it will absorb moisture and prevent rust.
  • Put a couple of coffee filters in your pocket when you are working outdoors or going on a hike. They work great to wipe sweat, dirt and oils off your face.
  • Use filters to bake jumbo muffins or mini cakes in the oven. Fill the filter 1/3 full with batter and place in a shallow circular pan to bake.
  • Wrap cut celery stalks in a coffee filter before putting them in a plastic bag to store in the refrigerator. The coffee filter will help absorb any moisture, and keeps the celery crisp longer.


coffee filters 11

  • Kids Place Setting…turn plain coffee filters into adorable painted place settings at your next get together.
  • If you have a small cut or even a razor nick, grab a piece off of a coffee filter and put it on with pressure to stop the bleeding. Your coffee filter will work similar to a styptic pencil but without the stinging.
  • Make a DIY action figure parachute
  • To sprout seeds, dampen a coffee filter, place seeds inside, fold it and place it into a zip-lock plastic bag.


coffee filters 12

  • Weigh chopped foods. Place chopped ingredients in a coffee filter on a kitchen scale.
  • Use to hold your turtles while cleaning the tank!
  • Keep in your car glove box for window cleaning, to use as napkins and for quick cleanups.
  • Since you have a package in the glove box anyway…..the next time you need to check the oil level in the car, use a filter to wipe the dipstick.


coffee filters 13

  • Use coffee filters in the bottom of the kitchen compost pot. It keeps messiness from sticking to the bottom of the pot, and goes right into the compost pile outside along with the pot of compost when emptied.
  • Can’t find corn husks? Use coffee filters as a replacement in Mexican tamales. Add filling and steam as usual.
  • If you have to strain your urine to capture a kidney stone so you can take it to your doctor for analysis, you can strain it through a white coffee filter. It is easy to see the sediment against the white background.


coffee filters 16

  • Line a colander or strainer with a coffee filter, place the strainer in a bowl, fill with regular yogurt, and let sit in the fridge overnight. Fresh Greek yogurt for breakfast!
  • Use a coffee filter to spot clean your clothing. Use white vinegar or hydrogen peroxide and the spot will be greatly reduced if not disappear completely.
  • Separate tortillas for freezing.
  • To prevent holes in your clothes when wearing a pin, try putting a piece of coffee filter inside your clothing as a “stabilizer”. It makes the cloth sturdier and the pin is less likely to snag.


coffee filters 14

  • Add some fragrant flowers to the middle of a coffee filter and tie with a pretty ribbon to make a DIY sachet to scent your delicates.
  • Make a flavor packet to add to your sun tea. Take a filter and center the contents in the middle. Gather the edges, twist and tie with string. Drop into your jar along with tea bags and let it brew as usual.
  • Get spills out of carpets, before they stain. While the spill is still wet, cover it with a coffee filter. They will wick up the spill.
  • Filter wine when you break the cork
  • Wrap Christmas ornaments for storage


coffee filters 15

  • Coffee filters make great blotting paper for pressed flowers. Simply place the flower between two filters and put them inside of a phone book or any other object with weight.
  • Use them to remove fingernail polish when out of cotton balls.
  • Diffuse the flash on a camera.
  • Great in the tool room when separating nails and screws then use in to bottom of containers to remove moisture and prevent rust. 


Coffee Filters

  • Make travel coffee bags out of coffee filters and dental floss.
  • Use as a “pre-filter” for your water purification system to help extend the life of your water filter.
  • Put a filter in the bottom of a metal fruit bowl to prevent brown spots on your fruits or vegetables.
  • Use to dry wine glasses and prevent water marks.


Just to name a few……………………… :-)

Keep in mind that for some of these uses, the filter can be re-used again and again! Coffee filters are more durable than most people think and (as I hope I’ve demonstrated today) can be used in a mind-boggling number of ways!

 How do YOU re-purpose coffee filters?

Coffee Filters

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  1. cedwards says

    I LOVE these ideas…..quick question though. Spot cleaning clothes with White Vinegar or Hydrogen Peroxide; will those products, not cause bleach spots?

    This is a FABULOUS website!!!!!!! Thank you

  2. Linda says

    Great list though you may want to use unbleached coffee filters for anything relating to food.

    Also, a tip of my own: If you have trouble separating the filters, turn the whole stack inside out before storing, and they will come apart much more easily.

  3. Jenna says

    Am I missing something? Is this for a dryer?

    “”This is one of my favorites! Dampen a coffee filter with some white vinegar and a few drops of your favorite essential oil (I like to use Lavender). Your clothes will come out smelling fresh and the coffee filter reduces static.””

  4. Brenda says

    They are also handy in craft area, when using glitter, put coffee filter under project, it catches leftover glitter and makes it easy to pour back into glitter bottle….
    Love all of the other useful hints for them…

  5. Sarah Elmer says

    I use them as dryer sheets with my homemade clothes softener. Just put some softener in a lid, then soak up with coffee filter and throw in the dryer. Easy and reusable.

  6. Brenda says


    Unless there is another tip that I’ve never heard of, I think you might’ve meant to say baking soda, instead of baking powder for this one. ;) I actually use this method for smelly things, but I use baking soda in the coffee filter. Baking soda absorbs the odor.

    Re: Place a few tablespoons of baking powder in a filter and twist the top together with a rubber band. Place in shoes, gym bag, closet, refrigerator, or anywhere else that may have developed some less-than-pleasant odors.

  7. Cindy Burson says

    You said to use baking powder for odors. Did you mean baking soda? I have never heard of BP being used for odor control. Just wondering if this is one of your new ideas.

  8. says

    I have so many different coffee filters hanging around since we switched to an individual cup coffee maker – this is totally awesome! Need to figure out how to dye the filters hot pink and make those fabulous flowers for my daughter’s wedding! Thanks for all the creative ideas!!!!

  9. Erline says

    Coffee filters can be used between pancakes or waffles before freezing them.

    I also use a coffee filter on my mason jar with a rubber band around the top to keep my keifer on the kitchen counter.

  10. CC says

    I use Jillee’s homemade window cleaning solution and use nothing but cheap coffee filters to apply and dry the windows. Works like a champ leaving no streaks or paper towel fibers behind.

  11. Michelle says

    They make great parrot toys. Just punch a hole in a bunch of filters and thread some string thru it. Hide some treats between the layers, hand it in your bird’s cage and you have an inexpensive preening and foraging toy!

  12. Ctaylor says

    Re the two about lining diapers and the potty so you can flush the solids, I don’t think it’s a good idea to flush coffee filters. A city sewer might be able to handle them, but not a septic system. Plus, having one inside a diaper doesn’t sound very comfortable for the baby! Lol

  13. Anne says

    A fun thing I’ve always done since a kid was use them to make snowflakes at Christmas! We just fold them up and starting cutting out designs, etc and have a homemade snowflake to decorate with.

  14. Pam says

    I have used them for art projects with my kids. After we colored Easter eggs and still had a lot of dye left, we used medicine droppers to squirt the dye on them. Stack several together after they dry,twist a colorful pipe cleaner around the middle, and you have beautiful butterflies.

  15. says

    To make coffee filters easier to separate, in the stack, I keep a rubber thumb tip purchased at any office supply store (the kind you use to flip through a stack of papers) and then when I want a filter, I just slip the rubber tip on my finger give the filters a little pinch and voila, one filter comes off the stack.

    • Melody says

      We use the eraser end of a very short pencil. My husband attached a tiny bit of Velcro to the pencil and the other side on the filters box. That way it’s always handy. Works great!

      Really enjoyed all these uses! Thanks!!!

  16. Karen B says

    These tips came just in time!! My husband bought 1000 of the wrong size (too large) coffee filters at a big box store and he opened the package before I could point out the error of his ways. Before this post, I had envisioned myself cutting down coffee filters for years to come.


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