9 Best Kitchen Countertop Compost Bins, Reviewed. Which is the Best Indoor Compost Bin For You?
Collect food scraps for your compost pile without stinking up your kitchen, inviting fruit flies, and eating up countertop space when you grab our choice for the best kitchen compost bin! And, should you ever want something more sustainable, we found a sleek, compostable bin made entirely out of bamboo.
The 9 Best Kitchen Compost Bins to Collect Your Food Scraps for Composting
Years of composting have taught me the essentials for a small compost bin in the kitchen. It should be easy to clean, doesn’t smell, and has enough capacity. And it certainly helps if it is stylish too.
We’ve found nine great options for you to choose from, depending on your needs and style preferences.
Here’s a quick chart highlighting their features. Stick around for our in-depth compost bin reviews!
Still undecided? Let’s dig deeper into our best kitchen countertop compost bin reviews.
If you are looking for a compost bin that has it all, look no further than the ever-popular EPICA Compost Bin. It is our best countertop compost bin choice for four primary reasons – modern looks, ease of use, countertop space-saving footprint, and exceptional odor control.
Its smooth and glossy stainless steel material doesn’t overpower or clash with your existing modern kitchen design theme, but rather it exquisitely complements it. You will barely notice it’s there because of its small footprint. You can even tuck it away behind a cabinet door!
However, this kitchen compost bin can still accommodate up to 1.3 gallons of food scraps without requiring more counter space. How? Well, this countertop compost bin takes advantage of vertical space.
Now, let’s talk about many kitchen compost bin buyers (like ourselves) are worried about – odor. The EPICA compost bucket will not make you say, “Phew, what’s that smell?!”
The airtight lid combined with the replaceable charcoal filter does a pretty impeccable job in keeping those nasty and puke-inducing odors of rotting food scraps out of your kitchen.
Some elbow grease is unavoidable when it’s time to install a new charcoal filter. But, you don’t have to do it often because you only need to change it every six months. That’s still a win!
Sometimes cost matters more than looks. If that’s the case for you, we recommend our budget kitchen compost bin choice – the OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Compost Bin.
It may not have the classy stainless steel finish or the large capacity of our top pick, but it does get the job done. Like most OXO Good Grips products, this bin is made of heavy-duty plastic. It has an easy to open, removable lid that makes filling and emptying a breeze. While it doesn’t feature a filter, the lid seals well, trapping away odors and keeping bugs out.
Perfect for apartment composting, this small compost bucket is good for a couple, but you might need to empty it more frequently for a larger family.
Let’s face it, one of the reasons we buy a compost bin rather than just use a bucket is aesthetics. And when it comes to attractive design and quality craftsmanship, the BelleMark Kitchen Compost Bin definitely fits the bill.
A beautifully crafted acacia wood box holds a stainless steel insert to place your kitchen waste. The large lid makes it easy to scrape your scraps off the cutting board right into the bin. Plus, at 1.6 gallons capacity, you don’t have to empty it as often as our budget pick!
An easy to open lid means you are likely to use your compost bin more.
When it’s time to empty the contents, you remove the stainless steel insert and dump your organic waste. The unit doesn’t have a handle, so you might want to buy some compostable bags to carry the scraps to the outdoor composter. Either way, clean-up is a breeze as the stainless steel insert is dishwasher safe.
Aside from the steep price, this compost bin is not recommended for homeowners who already have a cramped countertop. Unlike our budget and best compost bin choices, this unit uses horizontal space to hold kitchen scraps.
One of the reasons we compost is to be more sustainable, and to be honest, most bins out there aren’t really eco-friendly. But not the Bamboozle Kitchen Compost Bin. Because instead of plastic or stainless steel, it is made from bamboo!
Just because you are an eco-warrior who always wonders how to speed up compost doesn’t mean you don’t love beautiful things. The Bamboozle adds elegant luxury to what is otherwise a dirty task. Carbon filters keep away the smell, and ventilation holes make sure it doesn’t attract flies.
Some people complain that the handle can be flimsy, but it is 100% biodegradable if it breaks. How awesome is that? A compostable compost bin.
Joseph Joseph Compo 4 Kitchen Compost Bin utilizes a nifty built-in ventilation system to prevent foul odor build-up from your kitchen compost.
Instead of the usual holes at the lid, this unmountable compost bin also has a vent below. That way, air enters the bottom to dry out your compost and exits the top through a carbon filter, removing any smells.
It is made of heavy-duty plastic with a stainless steel handle, making trips to the compost pile easy. It is also available as a mountable version, but the shape is slightly different. It’s long rather than deep, so the opening is convenient to scrape food waste from plates.
They even make compostable bags that fit the unit perfectly to cut down on your time cleaning, giving you more time to work in your garden.
“Isn’t this practically the same as the EPICA?” Nay-nay.
Norpro Ceramic Compost Kitchen Compost Bin may have the same shape as our top pick, but it’s ceramic. The advantage of having a ceramic countertop composter is it doesn’t easily topple over even when your scraps are just about ¼ of the total capacity of the bin. Plus, if you have a farmhouse-inspired kitchen, the bin’s nostalgic appearance will fit just right in!
But the ceramic material is a double-sided sword.
At 1 pound without waste, it’s already heavier compared to other options. Fill it up to the rim, and you can make a simple trip to your compost pile into an arm workout. And it doesn’t help that the handle is a bit flimsy.
If you want this for collecting scraps like coffee grounds, we recommend removing the handle entirely and just carry the bin. It’s not that terrible, but it can be inconvenient for someone with wrist tendonitis or arthritis.
Like the Joseph Joseph, the Full Circle Fresh Air Kitchen Compost Bin provides exceptional airflow for stink-free food scraps collecting.
However, this bin is a little different. You’ll have to use bin liners; otherwise, food waste would fall out of the ventilation holes.
It comes with five compostable bags to get you started, but you will need to purchase them after that. And most compostable bags aren’t going to break down in your backyard compost pile, even with the best compost tumbler.
Saving you from the inconvenience and effort of bringing the entire bin out to the yard is Relaxed Gardener Kitchen Compost’s clever dual bucket system. When it’s full, you take out the inner lightweight plastic bin, and you are good to go. And yes, the removable bucket has a handle too!
However, you don’t want to wait for the inner bucket to be full before emptying because it can easily crack. Once you have slits, your best solution is to use a compost bag, or else you increase the chances of ruining the steel outer bin.
Yes, the outer bucket has a powder-coated finish, but it will eventually peel, especially when you frequently dump highly acidic food scraps.
If you don’t want to fuss around with rust but want the convenience of a dual-bucket system, get the Chef’n EcoCrock Kitchen Compost Bin.
Instead of steel, it rocks a ceramic outdoor bin. We admit it. It is heavy and fragile, but you won’t need to take it with you on your next trip to the larger outdoor compost pile. Why? Because the Chef’n is also a dual-bucket bin!
No need to worry about cracks, though. The inner plastic bin is thicker and more solid than the Relaxed Gardener. And, you can wash it in your dishwasher! The ceramic container, however, does need to be hand-washed.
Plus, this is the only countertop composter from our best indoor compost bins review with a cute green sprout-shaped handle! It may not be the most sophisticated and stylish compost bin, but it’s certainly quirky.
Your Guide To Buying The Best Countertop Compost Bin
The truth is you can use any old bucket for scrap collection. But that can lead to a stinky, bug-infested mess. So, the best option is to pick a countertop compost bin for your home. But, before getting one, here are some buying factors.
Even if you’re planning to buy a Lowes compost bin, you’d want it to be durable, attractive, and easy to clean. Let’s examine the pros and cons of the different materials.
Plastic is an inexpensive and durable material. But the truth is it’s not the most attractive or eco-friendly material out there.
While a plastic bin like the OXO Good Grips is easy to clean, it can sometimes absorb odors (1).
Metal, particularly stainless steel, like the EPICA is made out of, is another durable material. However, other metals rust when exposed to water and oxygen.
Ceramic can be a great eco-friendly choice. Plus, it’s attractive and easy to clean. The downside of ceramic compost bins like the Norpro is their heavy weight. They are also very fragile.
Bamboo is a great sustainable option. Plus, it’s compostable! So if, for some reason, you no longer want to use your Bamboozle compost bin, you can throw it in with the scraps.
Realistically access how much waste your family creates and how often you want to empty the bin. Are you happy emptying it daily, or would you prefer once a week? The Oxo Good Grips Easy-Clean Compost Bin is great for two people, but a family of four may find themselves needing to empty it daily.
If you are uncertain about what you can compost, check out this video:
People don’t compost for many reasons, and smell is one of them (3). But compost bins have come a long way from a coffee can hidden under the sink. Nowadays, you will find them with charcoal filters and proper ventilation systems to mitigate the stinky situation.
Like the ones you find in the EPICA, charcoal filters adsorb the foul odor once the scraps start to rot. That’s not a typo; the smells stick to the carbon in the charcoal. But filters don’t work forever. You will need to replace them (4).
“Unfortunately, like most good things, activated carbon eventually stops working. That’s because the carbon’s surface becomes full of all the impurities that it has adsorbed. When that happens, your air no longer gets clean…”
Another way to help control the smell is proper ventilation. Airflow helps dry out your food waste and reduce the smell (5). Unlike most bins, the Joseph Joseph has ventilation holes below and in the lid to maximize airflow.
Lid & Handle
The lid and handle are essential components of your home compost bin.
Obviously, the lid helps keep odors in and insects out. But it does more than that. It can also help regulate the airflow so that your compost smells less. Many of the best compost bins, like the EPICA, have air holes to aid with ventilation.
A solid handle makes it easier to bring collected scraps to the compost pile and start worm composting. Cause let’s be honest, we could just throw our leftovers in a bowl, but we are paying for convenience.
No, you do not make compost in your kitchen compost bin. The bin is designed to hold your kitchen waste for a short time and minimize trips to the compost pile. Compost takes a long time to break down. You would not have enough space in a countertop bin to process your waste there.
Yes, you have to clean countertop compost bins to dissuade flies, rats, and cockroaches from ever visiting. If left uncleaned for weeks or months on end, the odor may stick (especially on plastic) and be harder to remove. Weekly cleaning is ideal for keeping your bin in excellent stick-free condition.
You can use a simple dishwasher soap and water solution. Some countertop compost bins are dishwasher-friendly but do make sure to verify with the seller!
No, generally, you do not need to use compostable bin liners. There are some exceptions. The Full Circle Fresh Air Kitchen Compost bin does require liners. Otherwise, they are used to cut down on cleaning and make composting easier.
- How To Get Rid Of Rancid Smells From Plastic Containers. Retrieved from: https://www.hunker.com/13421097/how-to-get-rid-of-rancid-smells-from-plastic-containers
- ‘I Want to Compost, but…’ Retrieved from: https://sustainableamerica.org/blog/i-want-to-compost-but/
- Activated Charcol Filters 101:What Are They And How Do They Work? Retrieved from: https://www.thinkcrucial.com/blogs/blog/how-activated-charcoal-filters-work
- Does Compost Smell? The Truth About Smell Compost. Retrieved from: https://helpmecompost.com/does-compost-smell-the-truth-about-smelly-compost/
Rachael and her husband arrived on Isla de Ometepe, Nicaragua in 2011. There they founded El Jardin de la Vida, a tropical micro food forest, focusing on Sustainable Living Education. She teaches others to build with natural materials, live off-grid, and appreciate slow food.