Who Knew There Were So Many Uses For Coffee Filters?
I’ve written dozens of posts over the years sharing creative ways to use everyday household items. It’s a topic that I’m really passionate about! More often than not, those “single-use” items you have around the house can actually be used in a lot of different ways.
And every once in a while, I learn about so many useful things I can do with an item that I end up keeping it on hand even when I don’t use the item for its intended purpose! That was certainly the case with used coffee grounds, so it makes sense that it also ended up being the case for coffee filters too.
Even though we don’t drink coffee, I keep a package of coffee filters in the cupboard because there are so many brilliant ways to use them! I normally avoid buying things I don’t really need, but I’m happy to make an exception in this case (and it doesn’t hurt that coffee filters are really cheap!)
White vs. Brown Filters: Does Color Make A Difference?
When shopping for paper coffee filters, the two types you’ll see are white bleached filters and brown unbleached filters. While the bleaching process that white filters go through can help prevent your coffee from taking on a paper-y taste, it also produces chemical waste. (Plus, you can get rid of unbleached coffee filters’ paper taste by giving them a quick rinse beforehand!)
For the coffee filter uses listed below, feel free to use whatever kind you have (or whatever’s cheapest), whether bleached or unbleached!
So exactly what can you do with coffee filters? (You’re not the only one who’s curious, as this is one of my most popular pins on Pinterest so far this year!) Read on to find out!
18 Brilliant Uses For Coffee Filters
1. Soothe Puffy Eyes
Use a couple of coffee filters to help soothe puffy, itchy eyes. Just soak them in brewed tea (chamomile works well) or plain water, then chill them in the fridge. Then fold the filters and place them over your eyes as a soothing cold compress — ahh!
2. Grease Bakeware
Coffee filters are great for greasing baking dishes and pans with oil or butter because they don’t leave behind any fibers or residue. Just dip the filter into a bit of oil or softened butter and rub it around the inside of your pan!
3. Prevent Popsicle Messes
Prevent sticky fingers and stained clothes by putting a coffee filter on your ice pop stick. Just snip a small slit in the center and push the stick through it. The filter will absorb any drips so you can enjoy a refreshing frozen treat without the mess!
4. Protect Dishes
You can protect your nice dishes from scratches and nicks by layering coffee filters between each dish as you stack them. Coffee filters are strong enough to stand up to the movement of the dishes, but soft enough to prevent additional damage.
5. Eliminate Odors
Scoop a few tablespoons of baking soda into a coffee filter, twist it closed, and secure it with a rubber band. Place your baking soda sachet inside shoes, gym bags, closets, your fridge, or anywhere else that needs a little deodorizing. You can also add a few drops of essential oils to the sachet to leave behind a favorite scent!
6. Keep Soil In Pots
Drainage is essential for a potted plant, but you don’t want the soil coming out with the water. To prevent that from happening, just place a coffee filter in the bottom of a pot before adding soil. Excess water will have no trouble running through the filter, but the dirt will stay in the pot where it belongs.
7. Clean Up
Coffee filters make great cleaning rags for all kinds of cleaning jobs! They’re lint-free, which makes them great for cleaning computer monitors, televisions, and windows. Even the most reflective surfaces will turn out squeaky clean and free of streaks!
8. Prevent Microwave Messes
Don’t you hate it when food pops and splatters all over the inside of your microwave? Luckily, you can prevent microwave messes by placing a coffee filter over the dish or container. It’s a simple and affordable solution to a common problem!
9. Soften Clothes
This is one of my favorite coffee filter uses—use one as a makeshift dryer sheet! Dampen a coffee filter with a bit of white vinegar and add a few drops of your favorite essential oil. (I like to use lavender!) Toss the “dryer sheet” into the dryer with your clothes, and they’ll come out free of static and smelling fresh and clean!
10. Dry Glassware
If your glasses and stemware come out of the dishwasher and they’re still a bit damp, grab a coffee filter. Use the filter to dry your glassware for a spotless, sparkling finish.
11. Use For Snacking
A coffee filter can be used as a disposable bowl when you’re feeling snack-y. Use one to divvy up popcorn, chips, pretzels, and more!
12. Wrap Messy Foods
In addition to being handy as disposable bowls, coffee filters are also useful for keeping messy foods like tacos, burgers, hot dogs, and sandwiches contained. They’re a great size for catching all the fillings and toppings that like to fall out while you’re eating certain foods.
13. Add Flavor To Soups
Some soups call for ingredients that need to be “fished” out before serving, like bay leaves, herbs with tough stems, or whole spices. You can make this process super easy with the help of a coffee filter!
Just place those ingredients in the center of a coffee filter, then twist it up and tie it off with a piece of twine. Drop the sachet into your simmering soup, and you’ll be a able to easily pluck it out when your soup is ready to serve!
14. Corral Small Parts
Putting together a dresser? Use a coffee filter to corral the screws, nails, dowels, and other easy-to-lose parts. Take this tip a step further by using a pen to write the corresponding part number on each filter to make the assembly process quick and easy.
15. Keep Celery Crisp
Wrap celery stalks in a coffee filter, then place the wrapped stalks in a plastic storage bag. Store the celery in your fridge, and the coffee filter will help absorb excess moisture and keep your celery crisp.
16. Sprout Seeds
Use a coffee filter to sprout seeds and get a jump start on your spring planting! Dampen a coffee filter with water, then place a few seeds inside. Fold the filter up and place it into a ziplock bag. Place the bag somewhere warm, and in a few days your little seeds will be sprouting like crazy!
17. Absorb Oil
Whether it’s excess grease on food or excess oil on your face, you can quickly and easily absorb it using a coffee filter! Use coffee filters to absorb excess oil from freshly cooked french fries or bacon, or cut them into smaller pieces to use as face blotters. It works like a charm!
18. Keep Your Car Clean
Keep a stack of coffee filters in your car’s glove box and use them to dust your console and dashboard. You can also use them as napkins or to sop up spills in a pinch. And the next time you check your oil, you can wipe off the dipstick on a coffee filter.
Keep in mind that for some of these uses, the filter can be re-used again and again! They’re a lot tougher and more versatile than you might think!
Looking For More Posts Like This?
- I’ve written dozens of blog posts about creative alternative uses for everyday items, and now there’s a quick and easy way to peruse them!
- Check out all of my “Uses For” posts here.
What other uses for coffee filters would you add to this list?