Can You Reuse Coffee Grounds? (Is Rebrewing Twice A Good Idea?)

Many people are practical when it comes to their consumption. Some are cutting costs to save some money, while some are environmentally conscious. Whatever your reasons are, you probably thought about brewing your coffee more than once. We get the idea. The coffee grounds are clean, and all you have to do is add hot water again.  

While it sounds like a good idea, many people are not keen on rebrewing their coffee. So if you are curious about the question, can you reuse coffee grounds? You're not alone. We will answer that question and show you other things that you can do with your used coffee grounds.  

If you're looking for a short answer, it's no. While it may seem tempting, using coffee grounds twice is highly discouraged. The reason why you can't rebrew your grounds lies in the extraction process.  

During this process, the hot water comes in contact with the coffee, dissolving the grounds. Then, the oils and flavor compounds start to mix into the water and produce a flavorful cup of joe. Unfortunately, once these compounds are mixed in the water, they're essentially extracted and gone. This makes the second brew useless, as it will create an entirely different set of flavors and not just a weaker version of the same cup.  

In addition, brewing the coffee grounds leads to over-extraction. The first brew has already extracted all the flavors of the coffee. So if you pour another water to the extracted grounds and just let it sit there for a while, it will produce a bitter, harsh, and unpleasant tasting cup.  

If you try to be clever and let the grounds dry before reusing it again, you'll end up with an under-extracted cup, which tastes sour and has a thin body. This is because the drying process still extracts the remaining flavors of the coffee, leaving the dried used grounds flavorless.  

Reuse Coffee Grounds

Can I Reuse Coffee Grounds For Cold Brew? 

While brewing your coffee with hot water twice is a big no-no, reusing the grounds from a cold brew is accepted. However, don't expect the second brew to be as strong as the first. The first one will always be stronger in caffeine and taste than the second one.  

Compared to brewing it with hot water, cold brew used grounds can still provide good flavors. That's why out of all the brewing methods, used coffee grounds from cold brew are the only accepted ones to be brewed twice.

However, don't reuse your coffee beans more than twice, even if you're using the cold brew method. There's nothing left for you to use after the second one, so you'll end up wasting the cup, your coffee, and your time.  

coffee grounds use twice

Can I Reuse Coffee Grounds For French Press? 

While it's not recommended, you can reuse the coffee grounds from your French press for another steep. However, if you plan on doing this, you need to reuse the beans right away. The longer you wait, the more bitter your next brew will become. It is recommended to use the grounds within 15 minutes, and more than that will be wasted.  

Another important thing you need to know is that the second brew will not have the same flavor as the first one, plus the aroma and caffeine will be weaker. This is because the first brew already extracts the bold flavor and aroma. But even if you can reuse your grounds for French press twice, it is still ideal to use new grounds. Skimping on coffee isn't really saving since you don't get the same flavor twice.  


Comparing New Vs. Used Coffee Grounds 

There are three main differences between new and used coffee grounds: taste, caffeine content, and color. To understand their differences more deeply, we have compared them using these three categories.  

Taste

New coffee grounds brew a bold and intense cup, while used coffee grounds lack flavor and aroma. The smell, complex flavors, and oils are already extracted during your first brew, leaving almost nothing to the second brew.

That's why when you brew used grounds, you essentially have dirty water. The second brew won't even taste like coffee. Some people may say that it's not "drinkable." 

Caffeine Content

When you brew a coffee, you only extract approximately 50% (can vary depending on the brewing technique and grind size) of the caffeine out of the grounds on your first brew.

However, if you rebrew the same grounds, you won't extract the remaining 50% of the caffeine as the first extraction changes the value of the coffee's components. If you try to brew the used grounds the same way you did first, you might still get a little caffeine out, but the taste will be sour and flavorless.  

Color

The new coffee grounds produce a dark and robust colored drink. During the first brew, all the essential components to make a good cup of coffee are released to the drink. So, if you reuse the same grounds, all the crucial elements are gone, leaving a pale, watered-down coffee that resembles a tea-like color.  


Other Ways To Reuse Coffee Grounds 

Do you know that you can still be practical even without rebrewing twice? We have listed below other ways to reuse coffee grounds so you can still be practical without drinking a weaker cup of coffee.  

Hand & Body Scrub 

Coffee grounds can naturally exfoliate the skin. It also has antioxidant properties that can remove dead skin cells. This is why the coffee grounds can be used as a hand and body scrub.  

To use them as a scrub, mix 1 cup of coffee grounds from your brewed coffee, 6 tbsp coconut or jojoba oil, plus 3 tbsp sea salt or white sugar into a bowl or a jar. Mix everything thoroughly until everything is combined thoroughly. Then, you can apply it to your face, hands, body, or any part of your body you'd like to exfoliate. Next, gently rub the grounds on your skin.  

Note: Avoid washing coffee scrubs down your drain. If you are going to use the scrub in the shower, it is best to place a fine-mesh sieve over the drain to catch the grounds and throw them in the trash.  

To Remove Unpleasant Odors 

Coffee grounds have nitrogen, which can help remove foul-smelling sulfur gas from the air when combined with carbon. Simply put, coffee grounds can help absorb and eliminate unpleasant odors.

If you want to deodorize your fridge or freezer, you can place a bowl of coffee grounds inside. This will neutralize odors from spoiled or fragrant foods. If you want to make portable air fresheners, you can put the grounds in old socks or pantyhose and tie the ends to seal.

These portable fresheners can be placed in your gym bag, drawers, under your car seat, or in other places that need deodorizing.  

Cleaner For Pots & Pans 

Do you have pots and pans that require a thorough cleaning? Coffee grounds can be our best friend. 

Dry, used coffee grounds are abrasive and acidic enough to remove burnt-on gunk from pots and pans. To remove the gunk, soak the pans and pots in hot water for 30 minutes. This will loosen the gunk. After that, gently run the grounds to remove the stains and residue.  

Note: Coffee grounds are not recommended for glossy or nonstick surfaces. At the same time, don't scrub your cookware with force. Only use coffee grounds when you want to use steel wool for your pots and pans.  

Fertilizer 

As mentioned, coffee is acidic, and some plants benefit from acidic soil. That's why you can reuse your coffee grounds as fertilizer to help cultivate a healthy ground. Sprinkle the coffee grounds on top of the soil, or mix them with it.

If you have a vegetable garden, tomatoes are one of the plants that will benefit the most since they prefer acidic soil. If you love flowers, magnolias thrive in acidic soil so mix some coffee grounds in its soil.  

Coffee Candle 

If you love the smell of coffee, you can use the coffee grounds to make DIY coffee candles. By  

Making your coffee candle, you can fill your house with that energizing, wonderful coffee aroma you love. You can even use a coffee mug to spice up your DIY candle. All you need is candle wax, a wooden stick, and your used coffee grounds.  

Animal Repellent 

Coffee grounds can also help repel pesky insects from your garden. Some insects and animals find the coffee aroma too strong, which deters them from your plants. Sprinkle the grounds in your garden so insects, particularly snails and slugs, and animals, like chipmunks, will not devour your plants.

This will prevent them from damaging your garden. However, be careful with using coffee grounds as an animal repellent. Some insects are essential to a healthy garden, and completely removing them can create more harm than good.  

coffee ground grains

People Also Ask (FAQs)

How long till used coffee grounds go moldy? 

It is best to check your grounds every 1 to 2 months for mold growth. However, if you store them properly, they can last for a year or two.  

Do you use used coffee grounds for cellulite? 

You can use coffee grounds to reduce the appearance of your cellulite. This is because coffee can stimulate dilation while the scrubbing motion increases blood, making the skin look plump and the cellulite less noticeable. However, the effects are only temporary.  

Can you use the same coffee filter twice? 

Yes, you can use the coffee filter twice. You can even use it up to four to five times before it stops working effectively. Unlike coffee grounds, you can stick the filter back again even after using it. For best results, rinse off the filter and dry it before using it again.  


Conclusion

If you want to reuse old coffee grounds, it is best to use them for other things than to brew another cup. If you rebrew your grounds right after the first brew, you'll get a bitter, over-extracted cup. If you let it dry before reusing them, you'll end up having a disappointing sour drink. Either way, you're just wasting time.  

However, used ground coffee is versatile, and there are other alternative uses to it, such as fertilizer, scrubs, or animal repellent. So even if you don't use it for another brew, you still get to maximize every ground you use.