Food waste recycling containers for indoors

California instituted laws regarding food waste in 2022…

.….and I’ve been trying to find the right container for our family. Messy counter vs messy planet ( I believe that’s an easy choice, but family and others disagree.

Our city gave us a countertop version that works pretty well on the counter for me, but husband doesn’t like it on the counter.

I don’t like having to open a cabinet, usually with a messy hand to add things, which probably happens at least 10 times a day.

I’ve been looking at the floor versions. We generate way more recyclables than landfill, so we could make good use of multiple containers, but we would probably fill them every few days!

Joseph Joseph totem

Do you use something for recycling food waste?


A First World problem. You crack me up sometimes.

Well, I do live in a first world! Any helpful suggestions?

You crack me up sometimes.

Just sometimes? :slightly_smiling_face:


We used to compost and all of our compostable food waste went into an informal compost pile on the back of our property that my husband would sometimes turn over with his garden tractor. We have an acre of land. We used the compost on our perennial and vegetable beds. It was always interesting to find squash, pumpkins and tomatoes that germinated from seeds and showed up in unexpected places. We did have a countertop container - we bought it when we lived in the Netherlands. We emptied it daily into a a green bin that sat under our carport, the same size as our garbage bin, that the town collected each week and took to a municipal compost facility. They used the compost on garden beds - the Dutch have beautiful municipal (and private) gardens. I never minded the countertop container - it was quite modern looking, black plastic with an easy to lift hinged lid. It’s just a habit you have to develop. I enjoy watching Kenji Lopez-Alt work in his kitchen and put aside compostables. It’s just a natural part of his process.


Thank you!

countertop container - it was quite modern looking, black plastic with an easy to lift hinged lid. It’s just a habit you have to develop

Do you have a picture?

I have been composting for years, have several outdoor methods, and using the countertop one for at least a year, but husband likes to keep it hidden, especially in the kitchen, and we are at serious odds about it. He says no one wants food waste on their countertop, in spite of several models being called "countertop "

Well, there’s always Rachel Ray’s “garbage bowl” approach but I’ve never seen what she does with her trimmings. I’d rather have them go outdoors than store them for a week somehow in my house. I have read about people putting them in a container in the freezer but my freezer space is too tight for compost…


I’d be worried about fruit flies more than anything else.


I probably still have the darn thing somewhere LOL. No photo handy. We moved back to the States in 2008. It was sleek and modern, didn’t have a handle like a bucket. The Dutch are quite modern with their designs.

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Aren’t they?

ETA still working on my quotes.

Thank you! I try to close it ASAP, line with used napkins and paper towels, empty it , wash, spray it with something like 409, and try to let it dry after cleaning every few days or as needed, and in 1.5 years, no obvious flies indoors as a result. But we do sometimes have flies.

OTOH, the outside bin was pretty gross yesterday, in spite of a recent cleaning, and careful layering, these were at the outside window!

I’m not trying to compost, but…

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The one thing I appreciate above all else is honesty.
And by that I meant you.:slightly_smiling_face:



Okay…Full disclosure!

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I actually got a flashlight and looked for our Dutch countertop compost container under the kitchen sink and on the shelves in our laundry room. It could be in the basement or in the garage. If I come across it I’d be happy to ship to you!!

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That’s very kind of you, but I’m committed to save the countertop battle for something else.

This one is nice!

Or this!

You have to pick your battles!!


I prefer just to take my garbage out daily, sometimes multiple times a day.

Multi-daily, I guess.

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Great article . Of course Santa cruz . I believe the compost is headed straight for the landfill. More tax insensitive. I was born and raised there . 60 years. Glad to get out 6 years ago .


… I prefer just to take my garbage out daily

Not me, but I can see that.

And if you are making something that requires lots of peeling, chopping, boning, etc, do you take out each handfull, put it in something to carry it, or somewhere between breakfast, lunch, and dinnner? And what about when you scrape plates after a meal? I use this thing so many times a day!

I take out the garbage after each meal.

Usually in plastic bags leftover from the produce bought at the market.


Well that puts pulling this thing out and putting it back 10 times a day in perspective!