Best Composting Bins For Upcycling Your Food Waste
Composting is the act of breaking down biodegradable waste into nutrient-rich fertilizer to give your soil a boost. According to Rebecca Louie, founder of the Compostess website and author of Compost City, Composting is the human version of recreating what nature does in the wild. The result? Compost - a soil additive so rich in matter, that it has earned the nickname "black gold".
After doing a brief research on product performance and customer reviews, I was able to narrow down the best composting bins available, based on different utility and capacity, serving different groups of people.
Our top picks
A simple bin with an attractive design that you can leave on countertops and under the sink
Alternating sides to ensure a steady stream of usable compost
Attractive compost bin with less carbon footprint and efficient energy
The compost it makes is rich in nutrients!
The long-lasting composting unit that is well-ventilated
It is easy to turn and doesn’t need to be assembled - perfect for urban composting
Flexible and perfect for outdoor use
Odor-free kitchen compost collector.
Getting started with composting
Composting your waste is one of the easiest and most effective ways of tackling climate change. It diverts trash from landfills, preventing the build-up of greenhouse gases. It also creates low-cost, nutrient-rich garden fertilizer.
As you begin deciding which home composting system to buy, ask yourself these questions first:
How much food waste do you generate each week?
How quickly do you want to process your waste?
Do you have outdoor space?
Do you have a garden that requires compost?
Types of compost bins
Like any other product, composters are differently designed to meet varied expectations and needs. It depends on where you live, the amount of food your family consumes, and personal preferences.
Worm composting models use earthworms, nature's soil makers, to break down biodegradable food waste.
Compost tumblers are best for larger volumes and quick composting. It is resistant to vermin, thanks to the closed lid and elevated designs.
Stationary compost bins are one of the most common designs due to operation and affordability.
Food waste digesters break down almost anything using heat and agitation. They come in countertop models for apartment composting.
Composter Reviews: Best Compost bins on the market today!
In this section, you will find top composters in different categories. The compost reviews provide in-depth information regarding the features, sizes, cost, capacity, and material. The reviews mentioned are from actual consumers.
Attractive stainless steel exterior
If you are someone living in the city, you will appreciate a dedicated bin like the EPICA stainless steel compost bin as part of your daily kitchen routine.
The EPICA is a simple composting bin with a handle and a lid and an attractively simple design that fits perfectly on your countertop but is also small enough to sit under your kitchen sink. It has a charcoal odor filter in the lid so that you don't have to hide it away, making it convenient to keep on the countertop. EPICA’s solid and sturdy stainless steel construction helps to prevent messy leaks or rusting from the organic waste.
The specially designed activated charcoal filter ensures an odorless indoor compost bin. The filter can be easily cleaned with water and soap.
Material: Stainless Steel
Size: 11 x 7 inches
Capacity: 1.3 gallons
Some customers suggest that by using some rubber cement, the problem of fruit fly infestation can be solved! People have also suggested putting a little paper towel in the bottom and fill the contents in a veggie bag to empty it once it's full.
Buy Now: Amazon
37 gallon capacity with dual chambers
It is designed for outdoor use
The tumbling feature helps to speed decomposition
This outdoor composting bin can hold up to 37 gallons of organic waste and has two chambers. This allows one side of the compost to break down while filling the other. Light pushes daily are all you need to mix the contents. The stand keeps the chambers above the ground, helping with rodent control and UV resistant black plastic container helps to attract and retain heat aiding the composting process.
Material: UV-resistant black plastic
Size: 28 x 36 x 30 inches
Capacity: 37 Gallons
Some customers have suggested adding dry sources like tissues, paper bags, or paper towels. It might drip and smell a little bit until it is ready. Some also find it time-consuming to set it up.
Buy Now: Amazon
Nutrient-rich soil amendment
This countertop food waste digester converts food waste into nutrient-rich fertilizer in just three hours. With the appearance of a bread machine, Food Cycler grinds and dehydrates everything from fruit and vegetable leftovers to chicken bones. After the overall cycle, the material is odorless and dry, making it a perfect organic fertilizer in the garden.
Material: Not known
Size: 50.04 x 46.23 x 40.89 cm
Capacity: 27.63 Pound
Online directions can be difficult to access. They haven't received any confirmation or tracking number and no response to an email. The kit doesn't include a thermometer.
Buy Now: Amazon
Stylish and with a small carbon footprint
Made of durable bamboo fiber
Designed for interior use
The Bamboozle model is an attractive compost bin, with a very minimal carbon footprint. The matte grey color and bamboo handle make it versatile, blending in with your interior! It has a tight-fitting lid with a replaceable charcoal filter designed to minimize the odor. The filters are dishwasher safe and have a lifespan of two months. Customers have said that it is easy to clean after emptying.
Material: Bamboo fiber
Size: 17.8 x 15.9 x 22.9 cm
Capacity: 2.5 pounds
Fruit flies can get in through vents on the top of the lid, even with the filter in place, although not in significant numbers. It is recommended to put a compost bag over the edges.
Buy Now: Amazon
Insulated and elevated
Stainless steel hardware
This long-lasting composter is an all-time favorite of many and the same composter is used by its founder for over a decade! The dual-chamber is designed to keep adding waste in one window, without disturbing the composting process in the other. The insulated lining facilitates composting even during the winter. It helps the food waste compost without unpleasant odor. The elevated design prevents vermin and the high-quality hardware prevents rusting.
Material: Alloy steel
Size: 111.8 x 132.1 x 71.1 cm
Capacity: 106 Gallons
Fully enclosed and animal resistant
Reduces or eliminates odors
Secure 12-inch twist off lid
End air vents aerate the compost
Need a low-maintenance compost tumbler? Look no further. This compact composter is perfect for small yards or gardens. It is FDA approved, so you can spread the compost in your garden without worrying about adding plastic toxins to the manure. It comes fully assembled - just turn it in once a week and after adding new material, you can notice compost in 14 days. The end of this composter has aeration holes that provide airflow to the compost batch. The resin material is 100% recycled and the dark color absorbs the sun's heat, keeping the compost active from the warm temperature.
Size: 30 x 22 x 23 inches
Capacity: 45 gallons
It can get a bit difficult to turn once it starts to fill up.
Buy Now: Earth Easy
The best value composting bin on the market
Easy to assemble with closure keys
People who have gardening and yard waste will appreciate this customized compost bin. It is a simple and efficient alternative to open compost. It has "keys" that help to adjust the size of the compost and to open the bin when the compost is ready.
Pro customers have created everything from cylinder to square bin. The perforated material is perfect for ventilation and it is easy to fill and stir the content. However, the bin can attract rodents and pests, so it is recommended to stick to only yard waste.
Material: 50% recycled plastic content
Size: 92.7 x 12.7 x 12.7 cm
Capacity: 216 Gallons
As compost becomes denser, you might find it difficult to turn without opening the bin. The structure of the bin also changes as the compost becomes denser.
Buy Now: Amazon
Patented design lets air flow through for less odor and fewer flies
Opens easily with a push of a button
Easy to clean and empty for less mess
Ready to use, including five compostable bags
Full circle eliminates the question of clean-up with a sustainable design that sidesteps the requirement to clean the bin. The composting bags do the job of collecting the waste.
The lid is perforated and vented to allow airflow through it, helping with the composting process. The large capacity means you don't have to empty the compost bin regularly like other small kitchen compost collectors. The product is made from repairable parts which can be easily replaced.
Material: Recycled plastic and recycled steel
Size: 11.38 x 8.5 x 9 inches
Capacity: 1.5 gallons
It is bulky, so you might have a hard time emptying the compost bin. Also, this compost bin CAN'T be used without bags. Opt for compostable bags to reduce carbon footprint.
Buy Now: Amazon
How to Choose Your Composting Bin - Buying Guide
Compost bins come in different sizes, shapes, and materials. Choosing one can be quite a task, but this buying guide can help you make better decisions and give an overview as you decide on the one for you.
Things to look out for:
Vermin proof: Make sure that the composter comes with a tight lid.
Durable: lasting material to make sure it lasts for years
Easy slide door: Flexible door to make harvesting the compost easy
Insulated chamber: Keeps the compost working in a cold climate
Right capacity: Estimate the quantity of waste your household produces
Food safe plastic: Look for designs and materials that don’t leach plastic into the fertilizer
Pick a bin based on the type
Different types of compost bins have different features, maintenance requirements, and capacities. They also differ in the types of compost yielded.
If you have a garden and want to compost kitchen scraps, weeds, and yard waste, enclosed bins are the best fit.
Batch composters are more efficient
Batch composters are more efficient in creating organic matter in less time. You need to include oxygen in the process by turning or mixing.
You can also get compost bins with a handle that is designed to help rotate for effective aeration to cook the compost quickly. Keep in mind, the bigger the bin, the heavier it gets!
Continuous compost bins are easy to maintain
Continuous compost bins are usually enclosed and fresh waste can be added anytime. It works by adding the fresh matter on the top with fine compost at the bottom. This way, you always have compost available and don't have to wait for a "batch". Due to the slow decay, a continuous composter takes nearly 6 months to complete one batch.
As an alternative you can also get a tumbling bin with two compartments - one batch to cook and one to dump new waste.
Decide between indoor and outdoor composting
If you are composting at home, there are two main types of composters - indoor and outdoor. Outdoor bins are bulkier and perfect for houses with large backyards.
Indoor and outdoor bins differ in the type of matter they can accept. Outdoor bins can accommodate large quantities of yard waste. Indoor compost bins can produce fertilizer for houseplants or a small garden and typically only composts food waste.
Consider the climate in your area
Composting is great if you live in a hot climate because it helps to break down the scraps. In dry weather, you might have to add moisture or more wet scraps.
Composting is possible in cold weather, but the process is slower. You can choose an outdoor bin that is not ventilated but can capture heat. You can also choose a worm composter if you wish to create compost in cold months.
Looking for more sustainable kitchen products?
Your sustainable journey doesn't need to end here. There is so much more to an eco friendly lifestyle. Please feel free to check out some of our other blog posts!