It’s no secret that composting is great for the planet. The problem is that, for many busy households, throwing kitchen scraps in the trash is the most convenient option.
But what if you could save organic waste from ending up in a landfill without stepping foot out of your kitchen? Not only is it possible. It’s probably easier than you think!
My top favorite kitchen compost bin is Bokashi Living, which is not only a practical bin to throw away food scraps, but is also a compost system in its own right. Although the method of composting is via fermentation, it means that by the time I add my waste to the compost bin outside, it is already ‘broken down’.
If all you are after is a bin (not a composting system), a top favorite for many is the EPICA Stainless Steel Compost Bin. While this compost collector won’t do it all, it’s the perfect solution for those looking to save food scraps to place in their outdoor compost at a later time.
Not the best indoor compost bin for your needs? No worries! There are many more options to choose from:
What is a Kitchen Compost Bin?
At its surface, a kitchen compost bin seems pretty self-explanatory. Unfortunately, many well-intentioned consumers misunderstand what many of these bins are and how they work!
First things first, the term “kitchen compost bin” can refer to many different products. And it’s essential to know which type you are purchasing.
Most kitchen compost bins on the market are actually compost collectors. Compost collectors do not create finished compost. They are just an extremely convenient way to store food scraps without making a trip out to the compost heap after every meal.
This might be disappointing news! However, the reality is that the normal composting process just doesn’t work on an indoor scale.
With that said, there are several kitchen compost bins that do produce finished compost. These systems don’t work the same way as your backyard compost pile.
The most common indoor-friendly composting methods include Bokashi, electric food recycling, and vermicomposting.
Each method comes with its own pros and cons. But the one thing they all have in common is that you can do them right in your kitchen!
Best Indoor Compost Bin for Kitchen Scraps in 2023
Best Overall — Bokashi Living Starter Kit
Bokashi Living Starter Kit
Try out this innovative Japanese food disposal technique in your own kitchen with this convenient Bokashi starter kit. Bin and compost all in one.
Bokashi is a Japanese alternative to traditional composting that uses fermentation to break down organic waste. And the Bokashi Living Starter Kit makes it incredibly easy to get started!
This kit is far more than just a great Bokashi bucket. On top of including two separate bins, it also comes with Bokashi bran — the microbes that make the process possible — and a detailed starter guide.
The Bokashi Living Start Kit includes enough bran for 7 to 8 months of use in the average household.
Best for Scraps Only — EPICA Stainless Steel Compost Bin
EPICA Stainless Steel Compost Bin
Store your compostable kitchen scraps with this leak- and rust-free stainless steel collector.
Simple is often best, as proven by the EPICA Stainless Steel Compost Bin. This countertop compost collector may not boast any interesting features but it’s the perfect choice for anyone looking to conveniently store fresh food waste.
The stainless steel bin is molded out of a single piece of metal, significantly lowering the risk of rust or leaks. The lid includes space for a replaceable charcoal filter. Each filter deters odor for up to 6 months.
The EPICA Stainless Steel Compost Bin can hold a gallon of kitchen waste — up to a few days’ worth of meals depending on your household.
Best Budget Option — OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Compost Bin
OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Compost Bin
Streamline your household composting with this affordable and easy-to-use kitchen compost collector.
Despite the affordable price point, the OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Compost Bin is full of useful features and thoughtful details.
This countertop compost collector boasts a hinged, removable lid for hands-free use and easy cleaning. It also features a handle, making trips to the outdoor compost more convenient. The plastic construction isn’t the most sustainable solution but can be offset by using the compost collector for as long as possible.
The OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Compost Bin comes in two sizes: 0.75 gallons and 1.75 gallons. So you can select the version that best suits your kitchen and household needs.
Premium Option — BelleMark Kitchen Compost Bin
BelleMark Kitchen Compost Bin
Combine beauty and sustainability with this countertop compost collector made of solid acacia wood and stainless steel.
Form and function are constantly at odds in a living space like the kitchen. But with a stylish container like the BelleMark Kitchen Compost Bin, you don’t need to choose one over the other.
The BelleMark Kitchen Compost Bin features an acacia wood exterior lined with food-grade stainless steel. Both the steel liner and lid are dishwasher-safe. The solid wood exterior should be wiped clean and maintained with oil.
This 1.6-gallon compost collector stores days’ worth of food waste without creating an eyesore.
Best Compost Caddy — Simplehuman Compost Caddy
Simplehuman Compost Caddy
Keep your kitchen counters clean while making clean-up a breeze with this magnetic compost collector that mounts to any rectangle metal trash can.
Kitchen counter space is valuable real estate. Fortunately, the Simplehuman Compost Caddy makes it possible to collect food scraps in more locations than one.
This stainless steel works great as a countertop compost collector. But where it really shines is attached to the side of a metal garbage can — built-in magnets make this possible.
The entire container easily detaches from the magnetic mount. It includes a removable inner-bin with a handle (compatible with 4-liter compostable liners) for hassle-free emptying.
Best Electric Food Recycler — Vitamix FoodCycler FC-50
Vitamix FoodCycler FC-50
Keep your kitchen waste out of the landfill with this compact and easy-to-use electric food recycler.
Mother Nature is an incredible force. But there are some things, such as electric composting, that only human innovation can make possible. The Vitamin FoodCycler FC-50 is an electric-powered alternative to composting that dries and sterilizes organic kitchen waste.
The Vitamix FoodCycler FC-50 uses heat and grinding blades to break down food scraps into lightweight humus. All you need to worry about, however, is filling the machine and pressing a button to get things started. Everything else is automatic.
This electric kitchen composter takes up less than a square foot of counter space and can process food scraps in as little as a few hours.
Best Sustainable Materials — Bamboozle Kitchen Compost Bin
Bamboozle Kitchen Compost Bin
Skip the plastic in favor of this countertop compost collector made of stylish, biodegradable bamboo.
If you’re looking for ways to minimize plastic consumption, switching to bamboo is a wonderful alternative. The Bamboozle Kitchen Compost Bin is a simple countertop compost collector made entirely from biodegradable bamboo fibers.
Ideally, you’ll use your kitchen compost pail for years to come. But when it does come time to replace or dispose of this collector, you can rest easy knowing there will be less waste as a result.
The entire Bamboozle Kitchen Compost Bin is dishwasher-safe and features a replaceable carbon filter in the lid. Each filter lasts approximately 2 months.
Best Worm Bin — The Essential Living Composter
The Essential Living Composter
Explore the world of vermicomposting with this kitchen composter that relies on live worms to break down food waste.
Traditional compost relies on beneficial bacteria to break down organic waste. But The Essential Living Composter utilizes a much different lifeform: Worms!
The thought of keeping a bin full of worms in your kitchen might sound like the worst idea imaginable. However, vermicomposting (the practice of composting with live worms) is incredibly compact and odor-free.
As is, the Essential Living Composter has a 6-gallon capacity but more trays can be purchased separately. Since worms don’t need light, this system can be left out on display or tucked away in a closet or cupboard.
Best Modern Compost Bin — Full Circle Scrap Happy Freezer Compost Bin
Full Circle Scrap Happy Freezer Compost Bin
Save kitchen scraps without worrying about flies or foul odors with this modern compost bin that fits in your freezer.
If you’re worried about attracting bugs with a kitchen compost collector, consider investing in the Full Circle Scrap Happy Freezer Compost Bin.
This ultra-convenient silicone container makes it easy to collect and store food scraps until it’s time to add them to the compost. The built-in handle hooks onto your kitchen drawers for hands-free collecting.
The Full Circle Scrap Happy Freezer Compost Bin has a capacity just over 0.5 gallons and fits most freezer compartments. It can be placed in the dishwasher as needed.
Best Counter Compost Bin — Norpro Ceramic Compost Keeper
Norpro Ceramic Compost Keeper
Keep your kitchen counter looking great with this cute ceramic compost collector.
There are tons of great kitchen countertop collectors to choose from. If you’re looking for the most stylish compost bin, however, look no further than the Norpro Ceramic Compost Keeper.
This ceramic compost collector comes in several colors and patterns. Once it’s set up on your kitchen countertop, no one will even be able to tell it contains food scraps!
The Norpro Ceramic Compost Keeper has a capacity of 3 liters. It includes a replaceable filter for odor prevention — each filter has a 6-month life expectancy.
Best Under-Counter Compost Bin — Exaco ECO 2.4-Gallon Kitchen Compost Collector
Exaco ECO 2.4-Gallon Kitchen Compost Collector
Stop making multiple trips to your backyard compost each day with this large-capacity indoor compost collector.
Most kitchen compost bins are small and compact — perfect for setting on a countertop. The EXACO ECO 2.4-Gallon Kitchen Compost Collector is ideal for anyone in need of a larger capacity.
It might not be the prettiest compost collector in the world. But you won’t find a better large compost bucket! It even includes a replaceable carbon filter to fight odors while you save up compostable food scraps.
This 2.4-gallon compost bin is the perfect size for storing under the kitchen counter or in a pantry closet. Once the container is full, the built-in handle makes it easy to carry and empty the contents into your outdoor composter.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do kitchen compost bins smell?
They can. But they shouldn’t.
The best way to prevent odors from a kitchen compost collector is to stick to a regular emptying schedule. If the food inside starts to smell bad, it’s a good sign that the decomposition cycle is well on its way (and the material would be better off in the actual compost!).
Non-compostable food waste — i.e., dairy, meat, etc. — is far more likely to cause foul odors than compostable waste. These items shouldn’t be placed in a compost collector.
When it comes to all-inclusive kitchen composters, like Bokashi bins, worm farms, and food recyclers, bad smells are often symptoms of something bigger.
These systems shouldn’t produce odors if they are working correctly. This is a likely sign that the composting environment is out of balance.
Why do some kitchen composters have holes?
The vast majority of kitchen compost bins do not create finished compost. But that doesn’t mean they can’t get things started.
The holes seen in many countertop compost collector lids are there to let air in. This ensures beneficial microbes stay alive until the food scraps are moved to the outdoor composter.
Of course, if air can get in it can also get out. This is why many compost collectors come with air filters that keep odors from escaping.
How often should you empty a compost collector?
Indoor compost collectors won’t create finished compost. So it’s important to empty your kitchen compost holder on a regular schedule!
Compost receptacles should be emptied every few days. At the very least, you should empty your indoor compost bin once a week.
Most kitchen countertop compost collectors can be emptied when they reach capacity.
If you use a large compost pail, however, there’s a good chance you’ll need to empty the bin before it is completely full.
Last update on 2023-12-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API