Coffee: The sweet nectar of the gods and everyone’s favorite addictive beverage. The human race has been drinking it since at least the 15th century, possibly even before then. Legends say the goat herder Kaldi first discovered coffee when he noticed his goats were more energetic after eating the red berries of the coffee tree. Other recorded history says coffee was first consumed in the Sufi monasteries in Yemen. Either way, it’s an important part of many cultures, from the Middle East to North and South America. However, did you know it’s good for more than waking you up and turning you into a functional part of society? Here’s a list of 25 Unique Uses For Coffee And Coffee Grinds.
Source: coffeecrossroads.com; wikipedia, Feature Image: Pixabay.com
Mix used coffee grounds in with your compost pile or straight into the dirt when planting seeds or seedlings, and your plants will thank you. This is especially helpful for carrots and radishes as it keeps away bugs that would eat at the roots. Also, any high acidity plant (like blueberries!) will thrive with a little bit of coffee.
Mix one tablespoon of honey and one tablespoon of coffee powder (super finely ground coffee) and apply it to your face in a gentle circular motion. Leave the mixture on for ten minutes and rinse. The coffee will exfoliate your skin and give it lots of good antioxidants, and honey is moisturizing and anti-inflammatory. For oily skin, adding 2-3 drops of lemon juice to the mix can help control the oil and brighten your complexion.
Using coffee to dye natural fibers resulting in a vintage look for clothing and textiles has been used by professional costume departments for decades. Wet the fabric, add it to a large pot with hot, strongly brewed coffee or dissolved instant coffee (1/2 - 2 cups depending on color you want). Let your garment steep in the dye for at least an hour, up to overnight. Rinse well in cold water and let it soak in clean cold water with a splash of vinegar for ten minutes to set the color.
To exfoliate and fight cellulite, mix about a cup of coffee grounds (not coarse grind!), a few tablespoons of sea salt or sugar, and coconut oil to make a paste. Apply to problem areas in a circular motion, rinse. This will not only reduce cellulite with regular use over time, but it also makes a great pre-shave exfoliant and moisturizer.
Growing your own worms for bait or to make your garden happy? Feed them your used coffee grounds! Vermicomposting is using worms to break down organic matter in your garden or composting bin. It may sound gross to some, but worms are a vital part of our ecosystem, and turns out, they love coffee as much as the rest of us.
Put some coffee beans in a bowl or vase, tuck a candle in the middle, and tada! You now have a classy centerpiece that makes your house smell like coffee when lit. It's a good way to use old stale coffee beans or grounds that you don't want to brew. If you have a handful of tealights, you can use three tealights and small bowls or wine/cocktail glasses instead.
To make your boxed chocolate cake mix taste homemade, or to take your from scratch cake to another level, add some finely ground or instant coffee to the batter. Coffee brings out the best in the cocoa, making your chocolate cake even more decadent while adding a coffee flavor.
Take one clean old sock and your favorite coffee beans or grounds, tie a knot in the end and stash it in your car. In addition to the lovely smell, coffee also keeps other unpleasant smells at bay, so if someone smokes in the car, or left the window open in the rain, your nose won't know. This trick can also be used for smelly sneakers.
Letting paper soak in a shallow pan of coffee or water with coffee grinds placed on top of the paper for a few minutes to a few hours will make the paper look aged. Allow the paper to air dry for distressed texture.
Scrubbing your hands with used coffee grounds will quickly take away any smells that stick to your skin, like onions. Bonus: it's exfoliating so you get really soft hands.
Next time you feel a migraine coming on, brew a strong pot of coffee. Caffeine restricts blood vessels which eases pain, which is why it's included as an ingredient in many over the counter headache medicines. Drinking one to two cups of strong coffee at the onset of a migraine may help curb symptoms for some people.
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Sprinkle your leftover coffee grounds on your freshly shoveled steps or walkway. Like kitty litter or salt, the coffee will provide traction. However, unlike salt, coffee won't harm your soil.
As a non toxic baby and pet safe alternative to traditional ant baits or poisons, put used coffee grounds in areas you've noticed a few ants, or pour an entire pot of brewed coffee into an anthill to deter them from the area.
Coffee can be used as a rinse to make your hair super shiny. Pour room temperature brewed coffee over freshly cleaned hair and leave in for twenty minutes before rinsing.
Make a meat rub from coffee, salt, pepper, and garlic and apply to dry meat just before cooking. This works well with any cut of chicken, beef, or pork. The darker the coffee, the stronger the coffee flavor will be.
Ever wonder why perfume stores have little dishes of coffee beans sitting around? It's because coffee "cleanses" your nose so that the next thing you smell is a purer and more accurate sniff. Over time, our noses can become desensitized to certain smells, particularly if we've been, say, sniffing perfume samples for half an hour. Smelling coffee beans or grounds "resets" our nasal pallet.
Coffee can be added to henna powder for hair or skin to make the color richer. Henna naturally produces a reddish color on skin and brings out or adds red tones in hair. Adding coffee achieves a richer tint.
Instant coffee can be mixed with water and used like water color paints. Mix different amounts for varying shades of brown, or even different roasts ground into a fine powder. This technique works best with watercolor paper.
Sprinkling wet coffee grounds over the ashes in your fireplace helps keep them from flying everywhere while cleaning, making a dirty chore much quicker and neater.
Baking something special? Top it with coffee flavored frosting! If using store bought frosting, you can add one tablespoon of strong brewed coffee per can of frosting. For homemade frosting, use one tablespoon of coffee for every two cups of confectioner's sugar. Dust the top of your cake or cupcakes with a little bit of coffee powder for that extra finishing touch.
Coffee can be used to stain wood. Brew coffee very strong and dark (about 1 cup coffee to one cup boiling water) in a heat safe bowl or measuring cup for at least half an hour. Once it's cooled, strain and use as a stain for wood, without any harsh chemicals. For more intense color, instant coffee can be mixed with hot water and used.
Craving something sweet? Mix about a third of a cup of strongly brewed coffee or instant coffee with half a can of condensed milk and two and a half cups of whipping cream. Whip the mixture in a blender or hand mixer like you would to make whipped cream. Once you have a thick creamy texture, pop it in the freezer to harden, and you'll have a lovely coffee ice cream, using only three ingredients.
Coffee enemas can be done at home, and some people swear by their detox abilities. Make sure you use distilled water to make your coffee, just as you would for a plain enema and retain for fifteen minutes to get the full effect. It seems coffee is good for you regardless of which end it's applied to.
Sprinkling used coffee grounds on your sponge can remove baked or burnt on bits of food from dishes or a counter top. Just take care when using it on nonstick coated pans.
Many studies suggest that coffee has numerous health benefits such as staving off type 2 diabetes, liver cancer, and heart disease. Most studies suggest at least 2 cups per day, decaff or fully caffeinated. They also recommend that you consume black coffee without any added sugar.
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