What to do with leftover coffee

Here’s What to do with Leftover Coffee [11 Incredible Uses]

How many times have you brewed more coffee than you can drink? If you are using a coffee maker that delivers 10 cups of java per brew, the chances are – you are letting that java go down the drain. So, is there a way to reduce waste? What to do with leftover coffee?

You can use it to make delicious dessert dishes such as:

  • Brownies
  • Ice cream
  • Frappes

You can also use it in a number of other ways like:

  • Make ice cubes
  • Hair dye
  • To boost your plants’ growth

However, these are not the only uses for your unused coffee.

Below you’ll find other brilliant methods to make the most of your remaining java!

What to do with Leftover Coffee? Top 11 Best Ways to Use it!

We’ve made a list of more than 10 creative ways on how to repurpose leftover coffee and coffee grounds so let’s get down to business!

What to do with leftover coffee, brownies

1. Bake Brownies

Substitute milk and other liquids you use to make brownies at home for leftover coffee and you will make them taste 5 times better!

You can add more or less coffee, depending on how strong you want your mocha brownies to be.

What to do with leftover coffee, ice cream

2. Make Ice Cream

What you’ll need:

  • 1 cup of leftover coffee
  • 1 to 1 ½ cups of whole milk
  • ½ cup of heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup of sugar
  • 4 egg yolks
  • a little bit of salt

How to make the coffee ice cream?

  1. Mix heavy cream and milk in a pot and heat them slowly over medium heat
  2. Beat egg yolks in a bowl, then add salt and sugar and whip until the mix is foamy
  3. Pour the milk and heavy cream into the mixing bowl and continue whipping so everything is well combined
  4. Take the content back into the pot and cook it at low to medium temperature for no longer than 15 minutes
  5. Take the pot off the heat and add leftover coffee
  6. Let it sit for 10 to 20 minutes at room temperature, then freeze

What to do with leftover coffee, ice cubes

3. Make Ice Cubes

Pour coffee leftovers into ice cube trays and leave them to sit in the fridge for as much as you want.

You can use them when making iced coffee (as hot coffee would dilute them).

But you can also make cocktails with them to add some more flavor to your fav drinks.

Alternatively, you can simply add several cubes when enjoying a cup of cold milk.

What to do with leftover coffee, frappe

4. Make a Frappé Coffee

What you’ll need:

  • Whipped cream
  • 2 cups of milk, ideally almond milk
  • 3 ½ tablespoons of granulated sugar
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons of chocolate syrup
  • coffee ice cubes
  • shaved chocolate bar

How to make frappe?

  1. Blend milk, sugar, chocolate syrup, and coffee ice cubes in a blender
  2. Pour the mixture into your fav cup
  3. Top with shaved chocolate and – enjoy.

What to do with leftover coffee, chili

5. Add Some Coffee to Chili

If you’re feeling braver and more adventurous, then you can try adding leftover java to chili.

Add ½ or ¾ cup of coffee when preparing a homemade chili dip.

By doing so you will achieve a richer and deeper flavor and color!

What to do with leftover coffee, roasted meat

6. Use it When Roasting Meat

The acidity in the coffee can help you tenderize the meat when roasting/baking it.

You can add one to two tablespoons and your meat will get a little extra flavor.

It might sound weird and even off-putting but some coffee on your steak when preparing it for dinner can help to make it nice and tender.

What to do with leftover coffee, smoothie, girl

7. Make a Smoothie

Blend several coffee ice cubes with vanilla, chocolate.

Or whatever protein powder you like, even non-dairy milk and frozen fruits.

This will help you make the tastiest, healthiest smoothie you’ve ever tried.

What to do with leftover coffee, sauces

8. Make Sauces

You can use your unused java to make tasty sauces, like the ones that we list below.

Hollandaise sauce:

  1. Whisk ½ cup of leftover coffee with several egg yolks
  2. Stir in butter and add salt, pepper, and paprika

Barbecue sauce:

  1. Mix ½ cup of coffee with chili powder, brown sugar, ketchup, 1 cup of onion, 1 cup of cloves, cumin, dark molasses and mustard

What to do with leftover coffee, liqueur

9. Make Coffee Liqueur

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Mix brown sugar with leftover coffee
  2. Add rum or bourbon and spices (vanilla, cinnamon)
  3. Pour it into a glass bottle
  4. Let it sit in the refrigerator for a few days

You can use this liqueur as ice cream topping or you can even add it to cocktails.What to do with leftover coffee, soil, garden


10. Fertilize Your Garden

Dilute leftover coffee with water in a 1:3 or 1:4 ratio and pour over your garden plants.

This trick applies to black coffee only i.e. no sugar, creamers, or milk.

Coffee can provide multiple nutrients for plants, including calcium and magnesium, nitrogen, and strengthen the stems and boost their growth.

Repeat every two weeks for best results.

Orchid, iris, gardenia, magnolia, begonia, and azalea like coffee the most.

Yet, if the leaves start turning brown or yellow, that means the soil in your garden is already acidic.

This is a sure tale sign that you should stop this practice.

What to do with leftover coffee, hair dye

11. Hair Dye

Mix 2 to 4 cups of leftover coffee with your fav conditioner and apply the mixture after shampooing.

This will give your hair a nice, deep brown shade and stimulate hair growth.

We wouldn’t recommend using it on lighter, blonde hair shades tough!

What to do with leftover coffee, ground coffee

What to Do With Used Coffee Grounds?

Once you’ve used the liquid and don’t know what to do with the grounds, here are some quick tips!

1. Get Rid of Odors in the Refridgerator

Collect the grounds in a small jar and leave it open.

Put the jar in the fridge and the grounds will soak up those nasty odors in your fridge.

2. Use Them as a Shower Bath Scrub

Use a bath sponge and dip it in a jar filled with coffee grounds.

Rub your skin with the sponge and the coarse texture of the grounds will remove layers of dead skin.

You can also mix coffee grounds with honey, coconut oil, coarse salt, brown sugar, and your fav essential oil/vanilla extract to make an exfoliating wash.

3. Scour Away Tough Dirt

Use a sponge and some coffee grounds to clean your pots and pans.

Although they are abrasive, they still not too abrasive so you can still use them to scour away stains and bits.

4. Grow Mushrooms

Use coffee grounds as a substitute for sawdust when growing mushrooms.

You won’t need to sterilize them and you’ll have some available every day.

Use fresh, espresso grounds for best results (within 24 hours after brewing).

Dunkin' Original Blend Medium Roast Ground...
22,761 Reviews
Dunkin' Original Blend Medium Roast Ground...
  • Delicious taste and rich aroma of Folgers medium...
  • Decaffeinated coffee that’s 99,7% caffeine free...
  • Folgers instant coffee crystals can be mixed with...

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How long is leftover coffee good for?

Brewed coffee is good for one to two hours maximum unless you refrigerate it.

In that case, you can use it within the next 7 days.

2. Can I use leftover coffee for iced coffee?

You can, although this is not the exact way ice coffee is made.

Usually, you need to fill a glass container with ground coffee beans and cold water, then leave it to sit for 16 to 20 hours and strain.

This method removes acidity and bitterness.

On top of that, there’s a chance your cup of ice coffee will not taste as smooth and delicious if you use leftover coffee to make it.

Still, if you are eager to try, store your leftover coffee in the fridge as soon as possible after brewing it.

Make ice cubes by following our instructions and let them sit in the fridge as well.

When craving iced coffee, mix cold leftover coffee, cold milk, coffee creamer, and ice cubes.

You can also cool the glass that you’ll use before serving.


Once it gets cold, brewed coffee is nothing but an abandoned mess, unless you know how to reuse it.

If you didn’t know what to do with leftover coffee, we hope our clever tips would help you to reduce waste and save up some bucks in the long run.

Recycling just about anything is as popular as ever so you can definitely jump on the bandwagon by reusing your old java.

Now – would you rather use it to make some sweet treats or to feed plants in your garden?

Do you have some extra ideas about how to repurpose leftover coffee and coffee grounds?

Come on, leave your answers in the comments below!

Last update on 2023-09-23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *