Did you know that it is estimated that around 30% of what we throw away consists of food scraps and other organic waste?
This is then deposited in landfills, where it releases dangerous greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere.
And Mother Nature doesn’t like that.
But there is a more useful solution that is both economically beneficial and environmentally friendly – and more of us should be doing it every day.
Instead of throwing all this waste into the trash, you can turn it into fertilizer to use in your garden – packed with nutrients to enrich the soil and plants.
With that in mind, I’ve put together this review of the best kitchen compost bins on the market – with a handy buyer’s guide, composting advice, and FAQ section to follow.
Waste not – want not. Start today turning your food scraps into that sweet, sweet black gold.
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- Top 15 Best Indoor Compost Bins 2021
- NEW OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Compost Bin
- Joseph Joseph 30046 Compo Easy-Fill Compost Bin
- Brabantia 109768 Sort & Go Waste Bin
- Spigo Indoor Kitchen Compost Bin
- EPICA Stainless Steel Compost Bin
- The Relaxed Gardener Kitchen Compost Bin
- Full Circle Kitchen Compost Bin
- Zero Waste Together Mountable Kitchen Compost Bin
- Norpro 83 Ceramic Floral Compost Keeper
- Green Apple Ceramic Kitchen Compost Bin
- Chef’n EcoCrock Counter Compost Bin
- Bamboozle Food Compost Bin for Kitchen
- PriorityChef Compost Food Waste Bin
- Joseph Joseph Intelligent Waste Compost Bin
- Food Cycler Platinum Kitchen Compost Container
- How to Choose the Best Compost Bin for Kitchen Scraps
- Where should I put my compost bin in my kitchen?
- What do you use compost for?
- How do you use a kitchen compost bin?
- How do I stop my kitchen compost from smelling?
- What should you not compost?
- Should compost be covered?
- Should I have maggots in my compost?
- Can I put moldy food in compost?
- How often should you turn your compost?
- Is it OK to have flies in compost?
- What will make compost break down faster?
- What are the disadvantages of compost?
Top 15 Best Indoor Compost Bins 2021
NEW OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Compost Bin
First up we have this budget offering with a simple design – an updated model from OXO’s previous kitchen countertop compost bin. With an easy flip-up lid that keeps odors at bay when it’s down, the smooth interior walls prevent food and waste build-up, while the contoured base keeps it from slipping.
The lid is completely removable to make it effortless to deposit the contents on your compost heap or in your tumbler, and the rotating handle ensures it’s easy to carry and transport when required.
- Great price.
- No-nonsense design.
- Brand to trust.
- Choice of colors.
- Might be a bit basic for some.
Joseph Joseph 30046 Compo Easy-Fill Compost Bin
This easy-fill food-waste caddy is available in countertop or door mounted versions. Able to hold four liters, the wide opening makes it easy to scrape your dirty plates in the bin and not make a mess everywhere else.
There’s a built-in vent that when open prevents moisture and odor build-up and when closed provides an insect barrier.
A liner-retaining hole keeps your liner in place to avoid any spillages and make it easy to remove and transport the contents when you’re ready to do so. The unit is well ventilated with the odor filter located in the lid.
- Stainless steel handle on the countertop version.
- Choice of two colors.
- Simple, elegant design.
- Compact and easy to store.
- Highly rated.
- Make sure you’re ordering the right unit – the price is very different for each.
- Is there really a need to use a plastic liner?
Brabantia 109768 Sort & Go Waste Bin
Organize your waste with this highly versatile bin that can be used either on the floor or with the wall-mounting-bracket that’s supplied. It comes in a choice of bright colors – so you can have a color-coded system for a variety of different uses.
100% compostable liners are available to fit, the lid stays open for hands-free access when in use, and it’s made of durable, high-quality plastic that’s easy to clean.
Simple, effective, and stylish, pick up one in each color and get yourself sorted.
- Choice of sizes.
- Stackable units.
- Large carrying handle.
- Eye-catching design.
- Not strictly a dedicated compost bin.
Spigo Indoor Kitchen Compost Bin
With a large one-gallon capacity, this stainless-steel compost bin features a retro design that is available in a choice of colors to suit your kitchen decor.
A charcoal filter is incorporated in the lid to keep odors at bay, and the metal handles either side offer a strong, sturdy alternative to a single swing handle on most other compost pails.
A removable inner bucket makes filling and emptying super easy, so there’s no need to use any bag or liner if you prefer to keep the waste down. This also prevents acid degradation on the metal, so the outer steel container is kept looking spick and span for years to come.
- Attractive, vintage design.
- Durable materials.
- Easy to use and clean.
- Great price for what you get.
- None to speak of.
EPICA Stainless Steel Compost Bin
Made from durable stainless steel with a built-in, replaceable charcoal filter, this 1.3-gallon compost bin is on another level. The molded, one-piece, timeless design won’t look out of place in any kitchen, while being large enough to hold a week’s worth of food and organic waste, yet small enough to fit on your countertop.
It won’t scratch, crack or chip, and won’t bleed any toxic chemicals into your compost heap. The charcoal filter prevents odors circulating around your kitchen and can be cleaned simply with soap and water, and easily replaced when it expires.
- Sturdy construction.
- Eliminates odor.
- Vented filtration system.
- Very highly rated.
- None to speak of.
The Relaxed Gardener Kitchen Compost Bin
Just in case you needed a compost bin that reminds you it’s a compost bin, this version from the Relaxed Gardener does just that. Made with powder-coated steel, this smart unit has an inner, heavy-duty plastic bucket that prevents the outer bin from rusting and leaking.
Two carbon filters are included to reduce odors, and they should last six months each before requiring replacement.
At three liters, it fits snugly under most kitchen cabinets on your countertop, and the one-handed lid ensures it’s easy to use when you’re depositing food scraps and other organic waste.
- Made by gardeners for gardeners.
- Smart design.
- Tough and durable.
- More color options would have made it a real winner.
Full Circle Kitchen Compost Bin
Something a little different now with this unique, patented design from Full Circle. It uses a filterless special air-flow system that allows the compost bin to breathe and reduce odors and any potential insect build-up.
Able to open at the touch of a button, filling, emptying, and cleaning is super-easy, and it’s available in two different styles to compliment your kitchen.
Made with recycled plastic and partially recycled steel, this is an all-round environmentally friendly option that minimizes waste. Five compostable bags are also included for good measure.
- Push-button lid.
- No filters required.
- Choice of colors.
- Odor-free design.
- Dishwasher safe.
- The wire bag holder isn’t the most durable.
Zero Waste Together Mountable Kitchen Compost Bin
This practical compost bin is a good size at two gallons, and can be easily mounted under your sink or in a pantry door – or simply sit it on your countertop if you prefer.
The bracket and screws are included with this easy-to-clean, smooth HDPE and BPA-free plastic bin that is dishwasher safe and compatible with biodegradable compost bags.
The hinged lid clicks into place and ensures a tight seal, while the micro-perforations seal out fruit flies and other insects at the same time as reducing smell with the process of aeration. Healthy, PH balanced compost is promoted throughout, with the patented airflow channels to assist in the waste breakdown.
- Solid, durable construction.
- Use with or without bags.
- Easy to empty.
- Large mouth for easy-fill.
- Tricky to open with one hand.
Norpro 83 Ceramic Floral Compost Keeper
Stepping away from plastic or metal compost bins now with something a little different that is designed to be a lot more attractive in your kitchen rather than just your usual waste container.
This ceramic compost keeper is strong and durable, with a stainless steel handle and an odor-reducing filter lid with two filters included (replacements are available, and they last around six months each).
This highly-rated product is available in three colors, as well as an attractive floral design, so you can be sure you can easily match it to your kitchen decor.
With 3QT to fill, you have plenty of space before you need to empty the bin out, and doing so is just as easy as it is to clean its easy-wipe surfaces. Just make sure nobody mistakes it for a cookie jar.
- Choice of attractive colors and designs.
- Highly rated.
- Generous size.
- The handle isn’t the best.
- Ceramic will break if accidentally dropped from any height.
Green Apple Ceramic Kitchen Compost Bin
Here’s another ceramic option for those who value their kitchen aesthetic over practicality – although this does a great job of satisfying both demands. This is a beautiful, fun, bright design that’s in keeping with the environmentally friendly tone – because it’s an apple!
Available in striking red or green, it uses a charcoal filter system to eliminate odors without the need for perforated holes in the lid. It will hold one gallon of kitchen scraps before requiring to be emptied, using the secure handle to do so.
Easy to clean in warm, soapy water, the bin doesn’t require compost bags, so you can use it time and time again just on its own, while it looks stunning on your kitchen counter.
- Attractive talking point.
- No need for bags.
- Durable and well-made.
- Again, it’s ceramic, so it will break if you drop it.
- The handle could be better.
Chef’n EcoCrock Counter Compost Bin
Staying on the theme of eco-friendly designs, this is another beautifully made ceramic compost bin that has the advantage of incorporating a durable plastic bucket inside. This is a great addition – as it means you don’t actually have to carry the ceramic base anywhere and risk breakage.
Capable of holding .75 gallon the lid features a cute sprouting seedling design that doubles as a handle, and uses a charcoal filter to eliminate odors with holes to increase airflow and encourage compost breakdown.
The drafted bucket shape makes clean up super easy, although you can use a compostable bag as a liner if you prefer.
- Beautiful, eco-themed design.
- Well-made, heavy-weight ceramic.
- Easy and fast clean-up.
- Will suit any kitchen.
- None to speak of – let me know if you find any.
Bamboozle Food Compost Bin for Kitchen
When it comes to being environmentally friendly, I doubt there’s a better compost bin than this for keeping it as au naturale as possible. Made from biodegradable bamboo fibers, this is a sustainable, durable, and repurposed product that is kind to mother earth on so many levels.
The simple, elegant design and bamboo handle will look great on any kitchen countertop, while the square bucket makes it easy to fill and empty, with an odor-eliminating filter included in the perforated lid.
It comes individually wrapped in an eco-friendly craft box, which makes it an ideal gift for anyone who wants to safeguard the world we live in – which should be all of us.
- 100% natural materials.
- Super-stylish design.
- Choice of colors.
- Up-cycled product.
- Two filters included.
- It’s dishwasher safe, but not sure how easy it would be to clean in general.
PriorityChef Compost Food Waste Bin
Featuring a double filtration system and attractive, stainless steel construction, this professional-quality compost pail has been beautifully made with successful and odorless composting in mind.
The high-grade, rust-proof material won’t scratch, stain, chip, or crack while looking right at home in any modern kitchen. Its soft silicone handle is comfortable to use, while the large, one-gallon capacity means you won’t need to take too many trips to your compost heap outdoors.
With double filters, it’s probably one of the best compost bins for eliminating odors around.
- Professional look and feel.
- Suitable for any kitchen.
- Premium materials.
- Comfortable carry handle.
- Expensive for what it is.
Joseph Joseph Intelligent Waste Compost Bin
If you really want to improve your kitchen waste organization then look no further than this one-stop-shop for all your trash needs from Joseph Joseph.
The ingenious Totem 60 waste and recycling unit combines everything in one attractive design, which is perfect for convenient waste management.
It takes up the same amount of space as a conventional kitchen bin, and yet incorporates a 9.5-gallon general waste compartment, a 6.3-gallon multi-purpose drawer for recyclables, and a one-gallon compost bin which can be stored in the unit or on your kitchen counter if you prefer.
Carbon filters inside each lid eliminate odors, while the removable inner bin secures trash liners inside to make removing trash bags much easier.
- Attractive design.
- Premium quality construction.
- Powder-coated steel body.
- Versatile use.
- Breathing vents.
- Choice of colors and styles.
- The recycling drawer would fill up very quickly.
Food Cycler Platinum Kitchen Compost Container
We finish with the top of the food (waste) chain in the form of this electric indoor composting system that reduces scraps up to 90% of its original volume. The compost shredder can turn food waste into viable soil nutrients in as little as three hours, with an improved odor filter and filter monitoring technology that lets you know when it needs replacing.
Simply throw in your food scraps and waste, push the button, and before you know it you have a highly mature, nutrient-rich soil amendment ready to use in your garden.
With the waste not allowed to sit and ferment, this is easily the best kitchen compost bin to prevent fruit flies available.
- Fast acting process.
- Easy to use and clean.
- Significantly reduces the chance of insects.
- Dishwasher safe, removable bucket.
- Exorbitantly expensive.
- The capacity is on the small side -,, especially for larger families.
How to Choose the Best Compost Bin for Kitchen Scraps
Below you’ll find a detailed guide to what you should be looking out for when choosing a compost bin for your kitchen.
You’ll also find useful composting tips and tricks in the FAQ section thrown in for good measure.
Design and Appearance
Let’s not beat around the bush here – regardless of practicality, we all want kitchen tools and utensils to look good in situ. This is why a lot of thought has gone into the aesthetic designs of these compost bins.
Sure, feel free to just buy any old bucket and throw it under the sink, but composting is cool and you want to say it loud and proud.
So, perhaps the first thing you’ll notice is the appearance of the compost bin – and how it might look on your countertop.
From modern styles to vintage designs, they come in all shapes and sizes – so make sure you choose one that will not just perform well but will look sharp amidst your kitchen’s color scheme.
The size of a compost bin is an important consideration as it is directly related to how often you need to empty the thing out.
Consider the size of your family and the volume of food scraps/waste you will likely be disposing of every night.
If you’re big coffee drinkers – there’ll be plenty of coffee grounds that need somewhere to go.
For the folks who consume a lot of fruit and veg – larger compost bins might be in order.
And don’t forget you need to make sure it will fit where you want to store it. There are many instances of bins purchased that are the wrong size because simple measurements weren’t taken first.
As well as being available in all shapes and sizes, compost bins are made from a variety of materials.
The most common of these include stainless steel, heavy-duty plastic, and ceramic.
There are bins available that are made from 100% natural materials, too.
They all have their advantages and disadvantages.
Steel is durable, looks attractive and lasts a long time. However, it can be prone to rust, food acidity can damage it over time, and it can scratch and dent if not cared for.
Plastic is easy to clean but not as durable as steel. There’s a danger it will be flimsy or of poor quality in some models.
Ceramic looks great and is usually very durable and well-made. It’s also heavier than other materials and will shatter into a million pieces if dropped from any height.
The material you choose will depend on what is a priority for you with a kitchen compost bin – and possibly your budget.
Odor and Pest Control
Because of the very nature of compost bins, one of the most important considerations before purchasing is how they manage odors and pests.
Rotting food scraps will always attract undesirables to your kitchen, not to mention potentially release a foul-smelling stench as they break down.
To combat this, most compost bins will use charcoal filters to keep odor trapped in the unit itself, rather than wafting around your kitchen.
Look for pails that have air vents, holes, or some other satisfactory ventilation system. This will help keep bugs to a minimum.
That being said, insects are going to be more or less unavoidable – see the FAQ section for tips and tricks on how to keep them under control.
For the most part, compost bins are inexpensive and the price difference from product to product is negligible.
It really depends on the quality of materials and design, but a decent bin shouldn’t be more than $25.
You might pay more for striking designs, while electric compost units cost an arm and a leg.
As I always say, buy the best you can afford, but with these products, you don’t need to break the bank to get a good one.
Where should I put my compost bin in my kitchen?
It’s really up to you where you place your compost bin in your kitchen, but you’ll want to keep it somewhere it’s not going to get knocked over, and where you have easy access to it.
Consider any pets you might have in the house – they like nothing better than trying to raid bins for scraps, and they’ll maul a compost pail if they can get their grubby little paws on it.
It’s a good idea to keep it somewhere cool – so anywhere out of direct sunlight and certainly not on a windowsill. Although they’re designed to eliminate or reduce foul smells – heat that baby up and it might be a different story.
If you have a dedicated, pull-out trash drawer or unit – it’s a great idea to add a compost bin there and keep all the potentially nasty smells hidden away together.
What do you use compost for?
Compost is rich in nutrients which flowers, plants, and crops in and around your home cry out for.
As well as using the stuff all around your garden on your prized blooms, bedding plants, vines, etc – you can try growing potatoes indoors with a little bit of compost love.
Indoor tomatoes are also possible, too – if you have a set up with heat lamps.
You might even have a go at trying Aloe Vera indoors and enjoy the many healing benefits of the plant.
Failing that, there’s a whole host of vegetables you can grow inside which would seriously thrive off a generous dose of your beautiful, homemade compost.
Because these days, we should all try to be as sustainable as possible and care for our environment – which is still possible even if you don’t have a lot of space or a suitable garden.
How do you use a kitchen compost bin?
Many people are reluctant to try kitchen composting because they’re unsure how to do it, or they’re concerned it will create horrible smells and attract creepy crawlies and flying things.
To put your mind at ease, check out the excellent video below which teaches you all you need to know about composting – from the kitchen to the garden.
How do I stop my kitchen compost from smelling?
With decomposing food, nasty smells and odors are usually par for the course, but you can take steps to control it and ensure it doesn’t offend your nostrils in your kitchen.
Look for compost bins with good ventilation that will allow air to circulate and break down the contents faster.
Bins with charcoal filters in the lid are advisable to prevent any smells from leaving the confinements of the bin. Remember, you need to replace these every six months – and never wash them or get them wet. They’re not reusable.
Add old shredded paper or paper towels/toilet roll to the bottom of your bin. This will prevent slime and bin juice from collecting and creating a pungent aroma.
Also, you need to understand why your compost smells the way it does. This involves learning about green and brown compost – and the correct ratios you need to add to your compost heap for minimum odor, maximum nutrients.
Watch the video below as a guide to green and brown composting.
But perhaps the best way to make sure your kitchen doesn’t smell of rotting compost – is to be proactive when it comes to emptying it out regularly and not letting waste sit for long periods – especially in warmer weather.
What should you not compost?
Great question. Refer to the simple table below that gives you an idea of what can go in your compost bin and what needs to go in the trash. The lists are not exhaustive, but they give you a general idea.
- Coffee grounds
- Fruits and vegetables
- Paper towels
- Leaves and houseplants
Do Not Compost
- Grease or fats
- Pet waste
- Dairy products
Should compost be covered?
It’s not necessary to cover a compost heap in the garden, but in the kitchen, it is essential if you want to control odor and insects.
Again, look for a compost bin that has charcoal filters included – they help form a protective barrier from any unwanted smells leaking out from within.
Should I have maggots in my compost?
A great many people are squeamish about maggots, and indeed they’re not the most pleasant thing you will ever see crawling all over each other.
You’ll attract them if you have too many green compost items and not enough brown. See the video above for the correct ratios.
If you really want them removed, you should add more brown to your bin, and turn the compost to allow improved airflow.
Having said that, they will be beneficial to the compost and help break it down faster. You should only fuss over destroying them if they’re out of control, or if you really can’t stand the thought or sight of the squirming little darlings.
Can I put moldy food in compost?
Since it’s already begun the process of decomposition, adding moldy foods to a compost bin or heap is perfectly fine.
You simply need to add it to the center of your compost pile, between two layers of brown compost material.
This means it will heat up and decompose faster than they would be just dumped on top.
Continue to add food scraps in this way – always covering a layer of green waste with brown – and turn the compost regularly to speed up the process of composting and keep odor away.
How often should you turn your compost?
It’s very important that you turn your compost to allow aeration, prevent it compacting, to drain it if there’s too much moisture, keep the microbes happy, and prevent overheating.
How often you do this depends on the size of the compost pile, how much moisture is present, and the green to brown ratio.
As a rule of thumb, look to turn the compost once every three days.
But you don’t have to – you’re looking to keep the inner temperature up – so if it ain’t broke – don’t fix it.
And to take all the effort out of turning a compost pile (and if you’re really serious about creating the black gold) then you should look to invest in one of these awesome compost tumblers for your yard.
Is it OK to have flies in compost?
Decomposing food will always attract unsightly critters and insects, some of which you want, others not so much.
It’s perfectly fine to have flies in and around your compost – they’re helping to break down the material. However, while outside they might be fine, you don’t really want them in your kitchen.
Again, make sure you regularly toss your kitchen waste onto your compost heap or into your tumbler outside – or if you have an organic waste service that collects it.
Make sure your compost bin lid is secure – do your research well and find a product with a well-fitting lid.
Don’t allow water or moisture into the bin – keep scraps of newspaper on the bottom to soak up any water that might collect. It’s also a good idea to put a layer of dry “mulch” over each wet layer you add.
If the problem is getting out of hand, or you simply can’t stand the invasion any longer, look to creating a fruit fly trap which is highly effective at getting rid of the insects. Watch the video below for an easy DIY solution.
What will make compost break down faster?
Compost is created when organic matter breaks down. It’s usually a very slow process but there are a few tips and tricks you can utilize that can speed it up a little.
Perhaps the most tried and trusted technique is to simply shred everything you add to your compost as much as possible. If it’s already in bits, then it will decompose much faster.
Consider using a compost starter – a specially made formula to accelerate your home compost heap.
But getting the right ratio of green to brown is key here once again, so you have the correct balance of carbon and nitrogen.
What are the disadvantages of compost?
It’s not as simple as people might think. There’s a technique and a balance to it that you need to learn in order to be a successful composter. It’s not as easy as just chucking your food waste onto a pile and hoping for the best.
Odor control is also one of the big disadvantages of composting. Get it right (which isn’t that straightforward) and your nostrils will tingle with the sweet smell of fresh earth.
Get it wrong – and it’ll be similar to an eggy fart in a crowded elevator.
It takes a bit of trial and error to nail it, but once you get a handle on things and you’ve got it down to a T, then your garden is in for a real treat.
And Mother Nature thanks you in advance.
Home composting might be a bit of a challenge at first – especially if you’re new to how it all works – but with a bit of practice you’ll get the hang of it – and your garden will reap the rewards of much-coveted black gold.
The best kitchen compost bin should help you on your way to achieving that goal – so I hope you managed to choose one that’s right for you in this review.
As I’m currently in the market for one myself, I’m leaning towards the ceramic Chef’N model or the stainless steel Spigo version in red. I might just end up tossing a coin…
Let me know which one you would prefer and why – or if I’ve left any excellent compost bins out.
Best of luck – and happy composting!