What To Do With Old Coffee Beans (10 BaristaHQ Tips)

If you're a coffee lover, it's likely that you've got older coffee beans at home. 

While coffee beans can last for a good amount of time, there are ways to ensure that it lasts longer and doesn't go to waste. 

This guide will provide you with everything you need to know pertaining to how long coffee beans last, along with what to do with old coffee beans and more.  

Generally, most coffee beans stay fresh and last for about a week or two once the packaging is opened, especially if they're placed in a cool and dry storage area.

It does, however, depend on the manufacturer, and it can also differ depending on the packaging that it comes in.  

If you’d like to prolong the lifespan of your coffee beans, you’d typically place them in an airtight container to conserve both their freshness along with their flavor.  

what to do with old coffee beans

What Can You Do With Old Coffee Beans? (10 Great Ideas) 

1. Coat Them With Chocolate  

That's right; you can make your own chocolate covered beans at home. All you've got to do is melt chocolate over low heat, mix in your stale coffee beans, and allow them to cool. 

Not only are they simple to make, but this is also one of the best ways to enjoy stale coffee beans.  

You can also do this trick espresso and make wonderful chocolate covered espresso beans. Espresso beans are perfect for this type of delicious snack or garnish.

You can also use them to make coffee ice cream. I recommend coating the beans in chocolate and then using them in ice cream. What's not to love?

2. Use Coffee Beans as Fertilizer  

Whether you've got 2-year-old coffee beans or stale coffee beans, they're perfect as compost for your yard and garden.

Plenty of chemical compounds such as magnesium, copper, and even potassium can be found in old coffee beans.

These compounds help with supercharging the soil and ensure that the soil in your garden is well taken care of.   

3. Experiment With Brewing Equipment 

If you've got some brewing equipment that you want to experiment with, there's no better way to do so than with old coffee beans.

While they won't provide you with the taste that you're looking for, you'll be able to have some fun playing around with your coffee beans and brewing equipment.  

4. Use As a Skin Exfoliant  

That's right; you can actually use coffee beans - specifically used coffee grounds, as an exfoliant.

Simply grind your coffee beans into dry coffee grounds, and you can use it to remove dead skin cells off your face. 

You can even make a scrub with your coffee grounds, simply mix it with coconut oil and add brown sugar along with vanilla extract.  

5. Use As Dye  

Instead of using chemical dyes, you can reuse coffee beans as a natural dye. While a strong brew will provide you with a deeper brown color, a weak brew will give you a lighter brown color. 

It's not difficult to make your own dye, and it doesn't take a long time either. 

6. Artistic Purpose  

If you've got coffee beans that are relatively stale, or even if they’re 10 year old coffee beans, there are plenty of useful and creative ways to use your coffee beans.

One creative way is to place your coffee beans in a candle glass. Not only will they add to the overall atmosphere of your home, but they’ll also add a relaxing touch to any room that they’re placed in.

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even make yourself your very own coffee candle 

7. Use To Solve Cellulite Problems  

Interestingly, coffee beans can also assist with cellulite. As there's caffeine present in ground coffee beans, when rubbed on the skin, it can help with stimulating blood circulation.

In addition, antioxidants are also present in coffee grounds, which can help with increasing the production of collagen in the body.

It's important to know, however, that this is not a long-term solution!  

8. Used as a Cleaning Agent  

Old coffee grounds can be used as a cleaning scrub for your kitchen. As it has acidic and abrasive properties, it can help with getting rid of difficult marks and spots.

All you've got to do is add soap and water and a sprinkle coffee grounds, and you'll be all good to go. Have this cleaning agent ready to go, and you can be assured that your home will be nice and clean.  

9. Used as an Insect Repellent  

Old coffee grounds can also be used as an insect repellent. All you've got to do is spread some old coffee grounds in certain areas, and you'll see insects such as ants magically disappear.

Old coffee grounds are also great at repelling mosquitoes along with fleas and cockroaches - how useful is that?  

10. Odor Control  

As coffee has a strong smell, it's great at controlling odors around your home and overpowering certain aromas.

If you've got old coffee grounds, simply place a container of them in your fridge to control any odors from your food. They're also great at getting rid of unpleasant odors in a car or other musty smells around your home.  

teacup with coffee and book

Can You Refresh Stale Coffee Beans? 

Unfortunately, it is not possible to revive stale coffee beans and get them back to their flavourful state.

When you've left coffee beans out in the open, oxidation will degrade the flavor and aroma of your coffee beans.  

If you do choose to use stale coffee beans, however, you can attempt to mask the stale flavor by throwing in spices, extracts, and even oils to help with hiding the stale taste.  

refreshing coffee beans

Old Coffee Bean FAQs

Is it OK to use expired beans when making coffee? 

While drinking coffee made with expired beans won't make you sick, your coffee won't have the same flavor and intensity as fresh coffee beans. It's always recommended to use fresh coffee beans to make coffee instead of using expired beans. 

Can you use old coffee beans for cold brew? 

Yes, it is definitely possible to use old coffee beans for cold brew. As the extraction time is a lot longer, it won't impact the flavor as much. At times, older coffee beans can even make your cold brew taste better!  

Can you re-roast coffee beans? 

It is not recommended to re-roast coffee beans, as coffee beans that are roasted twice can potentially cause your coffee to become bitter. It’s recommended to roast a fresh batch of coffee beans instead.  

How do you preserve coffee beans? 

If you would like to preserve your coffee beans and their fresh roasted flavor, you should store your coffee beans in an airtight container at room temperature. Avoid clear containers as light can affect the taste of your coffee. Instead, store them in a dark and cool place.


As seen from above, there's plenty that you can do with old coffee beans, from using them for artistic purposes to even using them as a skin exfoliant. However, while you could use expired beans to make coffee, it's not recommended as it would affect the overall flavor of your coffee. Instead, if you get yourself a fresh batch of coffee beans and store them properly, you'll have great-tasting coffee for weeks to come.  

Karmy Widjaja


Karmy Widjaja
Karmy Widjaja, holding a degree in Hospitality Administration, combines her academic background with a profound passion for the world of coffee. Her work is enriched with a wealth of insights, not only about the art of coffee making but also about the broader aspects of the coffee industry. Her quest for coffee perfection is a central theme in her engaging articles, as she continues to explore the vibrant coffee scene in Perth. And when it's time for a coffee break? Karmy's all about a laid-back flat white with almond milk – it's her go-to for a tasty coffee kick.

My favorite drink? I'd go with... flat white with almond milk.

See Our Editorial Processes

Meet Our Team

Share Feedback

Leave a Comment