Can I Use Coffee Grounds as Fertilizer?

Your morning cup of coffee can be plant fertilizer!

Nothing gets you started in the morning like a cup of coffee—but are you offering some to your plants? No? You should! Both your indoor plants and the flowers in your garden would enjoy what you pour into your mug each morning.

Can I Use Coffee Grounds as Fertilizer?

Yep, coffee grounds can be used as a fertilizer—but you don’t want to flood your plants with too much at once and throw off the natural balance of nutrients.

TikTok user Armen Adamjan (aka @creative_explained) explains that you can use coffee grounds (along with cinnamon and club soda) to make a fertilizer for your favorite houseplants. What’s in this plant food? A boost of potassium, phosphorus and nitrogen.

@creative_explained Coffee + Cinnamon + Club Soda = Magic🤩🌱 #gardening #plants #planttips #homemade #recipe #plantsoftiktok #learnontiktok #lifehack #diy #recycle #tips ♬ original sound – Armen Adamjan

The used coffee grounds add organic material to the soil. Cinnamon can act as a natural insect repellent for indoor and outdoor plants, plus promote root growth and overall plant health. And club soda contains macronutrients like carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, phosphorus, potassium sulfur and sodium. These are all helpful with getting your plants to look their best.

See what other pantry ingredients will help your garden grow.

How to Use Coffee Grounds as Fertilizer

Here’s the recipe:

  • 4-6 tablespoons used coffee grounds
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup club soda

Mix the ingredients until combined.

The TikTok user explains this combination of ingredients will make a plant food for you to use once every two weeks. According to his explanation your plants will be so much happier and return the favor with beautiful results.

It’s important to remember to use spent coffee grounds for this plant food and a schedule of feeding every other week. This is a fertilizer to give your plants on a bi-weekly schedule to spread out the distribution of nutrients for your plants. Your plants will thank you for with a display of lush leaves and showings of colorful blooms!

To keep the rabbits away, make a hot pepper spray for your plants.

What Plants Can I Use Coffee Grounds On?

Most of your plants will get a more balanced pick-me-up from the used coffee grounds that are less acidic once they have been through the brewing process. The solution of leftover coffee grounds mixed with club soda and a bit of cinnamon used on a bi-weekly watering schedule will provide a slow feeding supplement for indoor and outdoor plants.

Many acid-loving plants like your hydrangeas, azalea bushes and rhododendrons might enjoy a light sprinkle of coffee grounds at their base. Blueberry bushes and carrots like the boost of additional nutrients too.

My potted plants and garden growers have shown good results with this plant food mixture. And using the coffee grounds again helps mean less waste in the kitchen. That’s a coffee break that works for everyone!

Alice Knisley Matthias
Alice Knisley Matthias writes about food, family, education, and garden. Her work appears in The New York Times, Washington Post, Food Network, Delish, The Kitchn and Parade. Her book about healthy kid snacks is published by Scholastic. Other work includes Woman's Day, Redbook, Highlights for Children, Boys' Life, Kids Discover and America's Test Kitchen Cook's Country Cookbook.