The 12 Best Countertop Compost Bins To Buy

Your compost won't get to the back yard on its own. Our buyer's guide reveals the 12 best countertop compost bins available today!

Countertop compost bin


We’re fervent compost advocates over here at Epic Gardening. And as a compost fanatic, I collect all my kitchen waste to add into the mix. I’ve got a countertop compost bin that I use for that task.

Kitchen countertop compost bins are not all created equal. As everyone’s kitchen has unique decor, there’s a myriad of styles. Not only are there pretty countertop compost bins, but there’s different features to choose from.

Let’s go over what you’ll need to get the right compost bucket for your space and for your food scraps!

EPICA Countertop Compost Bin Kitchen | 1.3 Gallon | Odorless Composting Bin with Carbon Filters |...Best OverallEpica Stainless Steel Compost BinBest Overall
  • 1.3 gallon size
  • Easy to clean
  • Stainless steel
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Polder Kitchen Composter-Flexible silicone bucket inverts for emptying and cleaning - no need to...Best SiliconPolder Kitchen ComposterBest Silicon
  • 1 gallon size
  • Invert to empty
  • Silicone, metal stand
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Chef'n 401-420-120 EcoCrock Counter Compost Bin Black and White 3.3 liter 1Most StylishChef'n EcoCrock Compost BinMost Stylish
  • .75 gallon size
  • Beautiful design
  • Ceramic and plastic
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OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Compost Bin, White - 0.75 GALSturdy PlasticOXO Good Grips Compost BinSturdy Plastic
  • .75 gallon size
  • Not machine washable
  • Plastic
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The Relaxed Gardener Kitchen Compost Bin (0.8 Gallon) - Rust Proof and Leak Proof Countertop Compost...Double PailThe Relaxed Gardener Compost BinDouble Pail
  • 0.8 gallon size
  • Leak-proof design
  • Steel and plastic
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Gardenatomy Kitchen Compost Pail Bin for Countertop - Large Decorative Copper 1.3 Gallon Food Scrap...Copper FinishCopper Kitchen Countertop Compost BinCopper Finish
  • 1.3 gallon size
  • Stylish in kitchen
  • Stainless steel w/copper finish
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Joseph Joseph Compo 4 Easy-Fill Compost Bin Food Waste Caddy with Adjustable Air Vent, 1 gallon / 4...Wide OpeningJoseph Joseph Compo Easy-Fill Compost BinWide Opening
  • 1 gallon size
  • Store inside cupboards
  • Plastic
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Norpro Ceramic Floral Blue/White Compost Keeper, 3-QuartPretty DesignNorpro Floral Blue/White Compost KeeperPretty Design
  • 3 quart size
  • Strong and durable
  • Ceramic
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Bamboozle - 1 Gallon Compost Bin, Naturally Decomposing Bin with 2 Hemp-Based Filters, Sustainable...Eco-FriendlyBamboozle Food ComposterEco-Friendly
  • 1.25 gallon size
  • Sustainable design
  • Bamboo
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Full Circle Fresh Air Odor-Free Kitchen Compost Bin, Black and WhiteEasy-Open LidFull Circle Kitchen Compost BinEasy-Open Lid
  • 1.5 gallon size
  • Push button to open
  • Plastic
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Greenlid Compostable Compost Bin - Starter Kit (30 Pack + ReusableCompostable BinGreenlid Compostable Compost BinCompostable Bin
  • 6" x 8.5" bin
  • Totally compostable
  • Cardboard, plastic lid
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Third Rock Kitchen Compost Bin Countertop – 1.0 Gallon Compost Bucket for Kitchen – Small...Kitchen ChicThird Rock Compost BinKitchen Chic
  • 1 gallon size
  • Designed to last
  • Carbon steel
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12 Best Countertop Compost Bins

1. Epica Stainless Steel Compost Bin

EPICA Countertop Compost Bin Kitchen | 1.3 Gallon | Odorless Composting Bin with Carbon Filters |...
  • FEATURED IN BON APPETIT & FORBES: Recognized by...
  • EASY TO CLEAN & RESISTANT TO LEAKS: Our one-piece...

This is one of the best countertop compost bins. It’s what I use, and I wouldn’t give it up for the world.

It does not have an inner pail, but I’m okay with that. My complacency is because this bin is formed of a single sheet of steel. There are no weld joints to develop rust, and no weak spots that might leak. It’s one of those countertop compost bins with solid construction.

I will admit that it’s not the fanciest option in the world. The interior gets gunked up with assorted waste products. You’ll have to scrub it clean. But it’s easy to clean, and the lid fits securely. In that lid is an easily-replaced activated carbon filter.

More often than not, I leave the lid off entirely. Most of my kitchen waste gets covered in coffee grounds, so there’s little risk of bugs forming around my bin. But when there is a lot of food waste on the surface, the lid keeps pests and smells at bay.

A sturdy steel handle makes it easy to carry out to the composter and dump it. If there’s any drawbacks, it’s that if it’s tightly packed, I need a spoon to scrape the waste out – and that’s true of any pail.

Yes, it’s very simplistic. But in all honesty, how fancy do your countertop compost bins have to be?

2. Polder Kitchen Composter

Polder Kitchen Composter-Flexible silicone bucket inverts for emptying and cleaning - no need to...
  • ONE-GALLON CAPACITY temporarily stores food scraps...
  • NON-STICK SURFACE RINSES CLEAN and is dishwasher...

Whoever created these countertop compost bins knows just how annoying it can be to empty a tightly-packed compost bin. And so they went a step beyond any other style. This bin can literally be turned inside-out, making it one of the best countertop compost bins.

Constructed of silicone, the bin has a small handle on its underside that allows you to push all the waste out. You can then rinse off the smooth interior walls and pop it right-side out again, making it extremely easy to keep clean.

It’s also machine washable, an option most other composters don’t have. But there is a drawback. It’s unusual-looking, and might not blend with your kitchen decor. The wire frame that supports the bucket stands out a bit from the grey silicone.

If that’s not a problem for you, this is probably the easiest compost pail you’ll find for your kitchen. And it’s worth every penny.

3. Chef’n EcoCrock Compost Bin

Chef'n 401-420-120 EcoCrock Counter Compost Bin Black and White 3.3 liter 1
  • CONTEMPORARY DESIGN: Modern 3 liter (0.75 gallon)...
  • AT HOME: Dual bucket design with removable inner...
  • ODOR FREE: Includes two replaceable natural...

These countertop compost bins are seriously adorable. No, really. It has a little leaf “growing” out of the top as a handle for the lid.

But once we’re past the cuteness factor, this is actually one of the best countertop compost bins. The exterior is ceramic, with a green plastic inner bucket. The cute little lid hides a filter, too.

I’m still not a fan of plastics for my compost pail, but in this case, I’d probably make an exception. If you’re teaching your kids how to compost, this would be an excellent reminder. And even if you live alone, it’ll do the trick!

4. OXO Good Grips Compost Bin

OXO Good Grips Easy-Clean Compost Bin, White - 0.75 GAL
  • Convenient size and design for everyday...
  • Lid flips up for easy filling and flips down to...
  • Smooth interior walls prevent foods and liquids...

For a plastic bucket, a lot of thought went into this model. It’s designed with ease of emptying in mind. But though it’s one of the best countertop compost bins, it’s not designed for ease of cleaning, which is its downfall.

Yes, you can handwash it, and it works just fine. That’s easy enough. But you can’t put this model in the dishwasher. The inner layer is attached to the outer, and it’s not sealed well. Water can build up between the layers.

If you only handwash, this may be a great option for you. It holds 12 cups of waste, or roughly 3/4ths of a gallon. The lid does not have a filter, but keeps the scent down. It’s made to flip up which makes adding waste simple, and can be removed to empty.

I prefer countertop compost bins that are a little sturdier, but if you want a good beginner bin, this is a decent option.

5. The Relaxed Gardener Compost Bin

The Relaxed Gardener Kitchen Compost Bin (0.8 Gallon) - Rust Proof and Leak Proof Countertop Compost...
  • Open with One Hand - If you have been looking for...
  • Leak Proof - The problem with other countertop...
  • No Smells - Unlike other bins that need two...

This one may have a farmhouse look to it, but it’s one of the best countertop compost bins for the average household. Just under a gallon of waste will fit in this milk-can inspired bin. A plastic liner pail makes it easy to remove the waste material, and there’s a charcoal filter in the lid.

I like that they used steel for the exterior, but to me it seems to defeat the purpose of making a stainless steel compost bin. Metal doesn’t retain odors or stain like plastic can. They’ve opted to make the inner pail dark in color to prevent staining. But it’s still plastic, and it still can have permanent odor issues.

The powder-coated steel exterior gives it a rustic look. So does the emblazoned “COMPOST” on the side. This would look fantastic in a farmhouse kitchen. It may not blend as well with industrial kitchens, but that’s style, not function.

For functionality, I’ll give this high marks. If you’re looking for a model with a removable inner pail, this is a great choice!

6. Copper Kitchen Countertop Compost Bin

Gardenatomy Kitchen Compost Pail Bin for Countertop - Large Decorative Copper 1.3 Gallon Food Scrap...
  • BETTER VALUE: Most compost pails come with just 1...
  • PURE, PREMIUM STAINLESS STEEL: On the inside, our...
  • GENUINE COPPER COATING: Go ahead... set this...

Let’s face it, most of us like our kitchens to look nice. And if you’re one of those folks who has all copper cookware, first off, I’m jealous. But you’ll want one of those countertop compost bins that fits your decor.

Enter this lovely compost bin. This is similar in construction to the seamless Epica stainless steel model. However, it’s been fully copper-plated to heighten its looks. Shiny and sleek, it’ll do the task you want it to do.

It has the same downfalls as the Epica model as well. But remember, I use an Epica. I don’t consider the lack of inner pail to be a major issue for this model.

So if you’re looking for something that’ll blend in with your dark wood and copper kettles, here’s your bin! And it’ll be beautiful no matter where you put it.

7. Joseph Joseph Compo Easy-Fill Compost Bin

I’m not a fan of plastic, but I am a fan of people being able to tuck items out of view when they want to. This little bin fits that need perfectly. Designed to mount on the inside of a cupboard door, it allows the user to hide their kitchen waste from casual view.

When you need to use it, grab the handle and lift it off its hanging hook. You can take it to your cutting board and fill it up, or carry it out to empty it. And when you’re done, it hides right away with ease.

8. Norpro Floral Blue/White Compost Keeper

Norpro Ceramic Floral Blue/White Compost Keeper, 3-Quart
  • Measures: 10" x 7" x 7" / 25.5cm x 18cm x 18cm...
  • Attractive, strong and durable, ceramic compost...
  • Store peelings, egg shells, coffee grounds, table...

The aesthetic of ceramics can’t be denied. For those of us who like to have their line of ceramic jars on the kitchen counter, this bin will fit right in.

My biggest complaints about this model are that it’s designed to be shaped like the Epica, and its weight. The shape is good, but the entire weight of the handle will hang from two slender ceramic points. And ceramics are heavy even when they’re not loaded with soggy coffee grounds!

Even with my reservations about those two points, this is still a great model. It does not have an inner pail, so you’ll need to wash it out thoroughly after emptying it. And a charcoal filter pops right into the compost container lid, keeping odors out of your kitchen.

9. Bamboozle Food Composter

Bamboozle - 1 Gallon Compost Bin, Naturally Decomposing Bin with 2 Hemp-Based Filters, Sustainable...
  • CONVENIENT DESIGN: This compost bin has been...
  • NATURE FRIENDLY: This natural garbage bin is made...
  • EFFECTIVE COMPOSTING: Designed to help you adopt a...

If you want a natural, BPA-free and metal-free solution for kitchen scraps, the Bamboozle bin should be your choice. Made of bamboo fiber, it’s a fully-sustainable, eco-friendly option as well.

Stylistically, this design fits well into most kitchen environments. It’s unobtrusive, with a white color that blends into the scenery. This unit holds 1.25 gallons of compost and is a decent size.

What I like about it is the sustainable aspects of construction and its looks. What I don’t like is that bamboo fiber can absorb odors. This would be among the best countertop compost bins if used with compostable bags to keep the smell from permeating your bin.

A carbon filter in the lid and a sturdy bamboo handle finish it off. All things considered, if you like the sustainability aspect, this is a great option.

10. Full Circle Kitchen Compost Bin

Full Circle Fresh Air Odor-Free Kitchen Compost Bin, Black and White
  • Patented design lets air flow through for less...
  • Opens easily with a push of a button
  • Easy to clean and empty for less mess

I keep reiterating that I don’t like plastic compost pails for kitchen scraps. But even though I don’t, this one has great design elements.

With a touch, your spring-loaded lid will pop open, ready to add material. A compost bag can be suspended within to catch your waste products. And its design allows air to flow from the bottom of the bin upward, reducing the amount of smells.

It also keeps the material drier than a normal bin, which slows decomposition in the kitchen. While you want this stuff to break down quickly, it’s better if it does it in your own compost pile or worm bin!

This option’s great for people who make coffee every day and have wet grounds, as it can dry them out more readily. Lots of peels or damaged produce? No problem. Your only concern should be really juicy stuff leaking through the bottom of your bag before it can dry.

11. Greenlid Compostable Compost Bin

Greenlid Compostable Compost Bin - Starter Kit (30 Pack + Reusable
  • Just fill it with your food Waste, and compost the...
  • Leak proof and eliminates Smells
  • Comes with 30 containers, 30 compostable lids and...

And now we come to the compost bin-that-is-not-a-bin. Or, rather, it’s a bin and it’s compost fodder, too.

If you’re someone who finds it difficult to have enough brown waste in comparison to kitchen scraps in your bin, this is your choice. Squeamish about cleaning out the gunk in your pail? This will fix that, too.

Unlike all the other models today, this entire bin gets carried out and dropped right onto the pile. Remove the lid to use later – it’s machine washable and ready to put on the next one.

Fully constructed of “end of life cardboard”, this bin is a final stage in cardboard recycling. Cardboard can’t be recycled more than a few times before it needs to be retired. And this bin ensures your outdoor compost pile is the cardboard’s final resting place.

If you have a lot of soggy materials, the bin may become soft or leak. But for most normal kitchen waste, this works perfectly. And who doesn’t need more browns in their green waste?

12. Third Rock Compost Bin

Third Rock Kitchen Compost Bin Countertop – 1.0 Gallon Compost Bucket for Kitchen – Small...
  • WASTE NO MORE and go eco-friendly with an indoor...
  • KEEPS ODORS IN with odor control. Food and fruit...
  • WILL NEVER RUST, scratch or chip. We made our...

Our final pick is one which combines kitchen chic with a functional bin. This particular model from Third Rock is constructed of carbon steel with a stainless lid handle. Built to last, it can be used with or without compost pail liners.

It will fit in with your pots, pans, and kitchen storage containers seamlessly. Better yet, it has an easily-identifiable style that alerts guests where to dispose of their fruit and veggie waste. Cleaning is a breeze, as its steel body can be hand washed with soap and water.

Carbon filters sit just inside the lid, preventing those unpleasant smells from kitchen scraps escaping. And honestly, if it looks good, fits your aesthetic, and will last forever, it’ll be perfect for you!

What’s A Countertop Composter?

Countertop compost bin
A counter compost bin can be carried out to empty into a worm bin or composter. Source: MN Pollution Control

Let’s talk about what a counter compost pail is… and what it’s not.

For the newbie to composting, it can be an easy assumption that a counter compost bin is all you’ll need for kitchen scraps. After all, it’s called a compost pail, right?

But you really don’t want to do normal composting in your kitchen. For one thing, kitchen waste is generally considered green waste. You need to balance your green and brown waste to make good compost. And for another, it can smell.

Bokashi composting and worm composting can both be done indoors from start to finish. Those use different techniques. By contrast, your countertop composter should be used for collection.

Once you’ve got a partially or completely full countertop bin, you can carry it where you need it. If you’ve got a worm bin, tote it over there and feed the worms your kitchen scraps. Do you have a compost tumbler? Go add some browns and greens and give it a couple of good spins.

After rinsing out your compost pail, it can go right back in the kitchen for the next batch. And there will always be the next batch!

Features Of Countertop Compost Bins

There are only a couple of common features in kitchen compost bins, so it’s not hard to pick your options.

The most common feature is a charcoal filter system. These are both good and bad. They’re great because as food scraps break down (especially onions), they smell. The charcoal filter prevents the stink from getting around your kitchen. But the filters on compost bins need regular replacements.

In some countertop compost bins, there’s also an inner liner. These are wonderful for keeping your pail clean of kitchen scraps, but can be difficult to remove when fully loaded. If you’re using compost bags, it’s much easier to empty the bin. Compostable bags may be necessary if you’re sending your compost to a municipal system.

Handles are available on most bins, but not all. Usually, ones with an inner pail are the ones that lack handles on the outside. While this is more style than anything else, it’s helpful to have a good handle if you’ll be taking it outside.

Material Matters: Compost Bin Construction

What your compost bucket is made of can have an impact on its longevity and usability.

A DIY kitchen compost bin is often built out of wood. While this does in fact work, wood absorbs any moisture that leaks out of your kitchen scraps. That means that your bin will start to smell like food scraps. Not very appetizing, is it?

Metal is the most common, especially stainless steel or aluminum. Surfaces of metal are easy to clean, but if it’s not stainless or aluminum, it can rust. Be sure you know what metal your pail’s made of.

Ceramic is a popular option for kitchen decor, and it can work really well too. The drawback with these is that ceramic tends to be heavier than metal. If it has an inner pail, these look great and work great. But if you have to haul the entire crock out to empty it of food scraps, it may be too much effort.

Don’t forget plastics! There are a few great plastic options available right now. The downside of plastics is that they are often less durable. Your plastic bin may only last for a few years, and when it finally kicks the bucket (so to speak), you’ll need a new one.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What can I use for a countertop compost bin?

A: We recommend one of the bins we’ve reviewed above. However, you can DIY a bin with a coffee can, a tupperware, or even a bowl with a lid to hold your food scraps.

Q: Do countertop compost bins attract bugs?

A: Yes. This is why you should empty your food scraps frequently, especially in temperate and warm seasons when bugs are plentiful.

Q: What is the best countertop composter?

A: We are partial to the Epica Stainless Steel Compost Bin, which has everything you need for countertop composting.

Q: Are kitchen compost bins worth it?

A: Definitely! Depending on your needs, and your local compost resources, there’s definitely a bin that will work for you.

Q: How often do you empty countertop compost bin?

A: Empty food scraps multiple times a week to keep your kitchen clean, fresh, and free of bugs.

Q: How do you keep countertop compost from smelling?

A: Empty food scraps often, and change any filters as often as possible to prevent smells.

Q: Do compost bins have maggots?

A: If you have too many ‘greens’ in your compost and not enough ‘browns,’ you shouldn’t be surprised to see many of these guys in your compost. Another potential cause is not mixing or turning your compost pile, leading to moist pockets of food waste that maggots will flock to.

Q: Do countertop composters actually compost?

A: Not technically. What is produced most often when you put food scraps in them is a kind of pre-compost, which can be added to a compost system or mixed into potting mixed and used with plants.

Last update on 2024-07-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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