Any gardener or plant care enthusiast will tell you that healthy soil is the key to healthy plants. Rich, nutrient filled soil is arguably the most import component when planning a garden or yard landscaping project. In order to grow the best blooms and luscious lawns a gardener will need sun light, water, and a way to renew the soil of lost nutriment content. Compost bins offer an elegant and sustainable solution by allowing users to recycle food and garden waste. We have decided to research our sources for the best compost bins so your garden can grow strong while simultaneously reducing your home’s carbon footprint.
There is a lot of prep behind making sure your garden is thriving and healthy. Unfortunately, soil pollution may be just as bad for your heart as it is for the planet, a new study warns. Researchers in Germany say any link between heart disease and soil is likely due to pesticides and heavy metals left in the ground. The team adds pollutants in soil could be damaging our hearts by causing inflammation and disrupting our body clocks. Soil pollution could also be causing heart disease by raising oxidative stress, which leads to more free radicals in the body, which cause chain reactions that damage other cells. It also leads to the body containing fewer antioxidants, which help to clean out radicals.
Soil health aside, composting waste is a better alternative for the environment then simply throwing it away. Plus, it’s just one more thing that guarantees you’re not guilty of greenwashing. What is it? It’s a term used to describe when someone pretends to be more environmentally sustainable around others. A survey of 2,000 general population Americans revealed half of respondents are guilty of doing this.
Don’t fall in with the bad crowd and pretend to be something you’re not. Both garden hobbyists and serious plant growers can turn to composting to offset the decline in quality of soil and for sustainable waste management. From vegetable gardens to perfect lawns, composting is a great way to reduce waste and ensure that your soil stays healthy and ready to grow. So now it’s time to investigate our sources for the best compost bins. Let us know your recommendations in the comments below!
The List: Best Compost Bins, According to Home Experts
At the top of our list is an outdoor composter that is well-reviewed by many of our sources. The Spruce writes, “The FCMP Dual Chamber Tumbling Composter impressed us with its easy-to-use and durable design when we tested it in one of our backyards. It features two chambers designed for quick curing and has multiple aeration holes to speed up the decomposition process. The tumbling chamber is made of recycled BPA-free, UV-inhibited black plastic, which absorbs heat, promoting even faster material breakdown. It’s also easy to turn thanks to multiple cutouts on the side of the barrel. Aside from its efficiency, we appreciated this composter’s elevated and sealed design, which keeps pests and bugs out of the chambers.”
The tumbler design allows the compost mix to move around and dissipate heat. Better Homes & Gardens explains the advantages and drawbacks: “This outdoor tumbling composter makes rotating your compost super easy. With two chambers that together hold up to 37 gallons of organic waste, the composter allows you to keep filling one side with new materials while the other side ‘rests.’ Every couple of days, simply shut the door and then turn the tumbler a handful of times to mix the materials inside. This allows you to successfully rotate the compost without actually getting your hands dirty. Another great feature of this composter is the deep ridges that run along the sides and body of the bin. The ridges help prevent large clumps of compost building up over time, allowing materials to mix more effectively when you rotate the bin. The air vents on the side are even adjustable, allowing the user to control how much oxygen their compost receives.”
Bob Vila.com also mentions: “If you need a consistent supply of fresh compost to feed your flowers and vegetable garden, then the FCMP Outdoor IM4000 Tumbling Composter will fit the bill. At 37 gallons, it holds plenty of kitchen scraps, grass clippings, and other yard and garden waste—yet despite its ample size, this tumbler is easy to turn. It also features double inner bins, which allow you to have two batches of compost in different stages of decomposition going at the same time.”
GEOBIN offers another outdoor compost bin that has been well-received. Good Housekeeping explains, “Gardeners and those handling yard maintenance may want to consider this customizable plastic bin for outdoor compost piles: The BPA-free polyethylene material comes in a roll that you can adjust to create the size you need. It includes ‘keys’ that lock the form into shape and allow you to open the bin when you’re ready to use your compost. While we have not tested this bin, we like that users can create an efficient cylinder or a square bin by affixing the sides to garden stakes. The material is perforated for ventilation, and it is designed to be easy to fill and stir. The bin will be open to rodents and pests, so it’s best to stick to yard scraps only.”
Gardens Illustrated adds, “If composting is a fundamentally eco-friendly activity, then here’s the eco-friendly bin to do it in. The Geobin is essentially a rolled sheet of perforated plastic that’s 50 per cent recycled: you can unroll it to the diameter of your choice, and then fasten it together with the included closure keys. The simplicity of the materials and the setup makes it a particularly affordable choice, too.”
Food Network says, “If a temporary composting system, easy to set up, break down, store and/or transport, is what you need, then look no further than the GeoBin. This simple roll of durable aerated plastic sets up in minutes with several stiff stakes. Place it where it will get some morning sun and is open to the sky and start composting that same day. With a capacity of 33 cubic feet, it’s best suited for kitchen scraps and paper waste. Made from recycled materials right here in the USA, GeoBin is the lowest cost composting system you can buy. Set one up in the spring for a season of composting at the summer rental, then take it down and pack it up when your lease expires. Perfect for the gardener on the go!”
The first indoor compost bin entry on our list is from Simplehuman. Strategist writes, “This Simplehuman compost caddy is compatible with many of the brand’s trash cans (including our best-in-class kitchen trash can). It was recommended by both Taryn Williford, managing editor at Reforge and former lifestyle director at Apartment Therapy, and Strategist senior writer Liza Corsillo. Its integration with her existing trash and recycling system ‘really soothes both the aesthetic and functional parts of my brain,’ Williford says. The caddy can be docked on the side of the bin or rest on your countertop, and the lid has a soft closure that isn’t airtight.”
The Spruce provides some additional details: “The Simple Human Compost Caddy is a great option for anyone looking to minimize their kitchen scrap waste without having to walk outside to a larger compost bin. Although this kitchen compost bin is more expensive than other options on the market, there are several design elements that we think make it stand out against the competition. This bin is compatible with several of Simple Human’s trashcan designs, so it easily magnetizes to the side of a trashcan, rather than taking up counter top space. However, it can also easily detach from your trash can to limit trips between your counter and trash. The soft-close lid can also stand up to make dumping scraps easy. If you don’t own a Simple Human trashcan, you can also purchase an optional wall mount, which can be installed in a kitchen cabinet and out of sight. Whether you use choose to purchase the compatible, compostable liners or dump scraps directly into the plastic liner bin, this compost caddy is easy to carry outside to a larger compost pile or empty at your local composting facility.”
Good Housekeeping also provides useful critiques: “This bin is streamlined with a footprint that works well on kitchen counters when you’re prepping food or cleaning up after a meal. The brushed stainless steel finish is designed to resist fingerprints, and the large housing for the lid helps secure and conceal the bag for the removable inner bin. Note: Many compost bags will work, but for the best fit, the company recommends its custom-fit compost bags. The unique feature is that it comes with a magnetic mount that lets you attach the caddy to Simplehuman trash cans so that it’s stored out of the way and accessible for quick use. One downside is that the mount is not universal and will not work for all trash cans.”
Amongst the many types of compost bins available, sometimes functional no-frills options are the best fit. The Spruce Eats writes, “Oxo brings its ubiquitous style to the world of compost with a modern, locking bin that comes in several colorways and is meant to hold just a few days’ worths of food scraps. The locking mechanism is the main feature here, as it’s designed to keep the odors locked in. The drawback is that there’s no aeration for the compost, but this isn’t meant for long-term storage. Another nice design element is the smooth, rounded plastic walls, which make cleanup easier. Corners and hard edges are places for food debris to get stuck, and Oxo has eliminated those for a wipe and rinse cleanup process. While we found we could’ve used a little more room and perhaps a more attractive aesthetic, the Oxo Good Grips Compost Bin checked all of the remaining boxes: It’s affordable, user-friendly, super easy to clean, and effective at keeping odors and pests at bay.’
Countertop compost bins might be a great choice for home-cooks looking to eliminate kitchen waste while avoiding the trash bin. “We love how the flip-top lid can stay open until you’re done filling the bin, and when it’s closed, odors are trapped inside…Although we prefer ventilated lids for odor and pest control, you’ll most likely need to empty the 0.75-gallon bin more often larger models, meaning the waste won’t sit in there too long. The manufacturer encourages you to use compostable liners, but it’s not required. If you do use it with liners, make sure your compost pickup service accepts them. If you choose not to use them, you’ll want to rinse the bin with soap and water; luckily, it’s small enough to clean in kitchen sinks,” says Food & Wine.
According to Wirecutter, “I live in Portland, Oregon, which has a citywide composting program. Prior to buying the OXO Easy-Clean Compost Bin, I’d used a variety of options that I hadn’t put much thought into. Consequently, I wasn’t particularly happy with any of them. When I sat down to look for a bin this time, I knew my criteria. I wanted a bin that would fit a 3-gallon bag and that I could easily remove and take out to the city-issued compost bin (which stays at the side of my house). I wanted a bin that looked decent, since I tend to keep my personal bin on the counter, close to where I do my food prep. I wanted to be able to clean the bin easily. And perhaps most important, I wanted to make sure it wouldn’t leak; I try to avoid putting anything too wet in the bin, but I’ve still dealt with unpleasant spills over the years. The OXO bin checked all of those boxes for me. It holds a 3-gallon bag, which I probably take out and replace every other day, and it’s unobtrusive-looking. Also, the lid pops off, so it’s super easy to clean, and it doesn’t have any slits or joins that can leak liquids.”
For consumers who love technology, there is the Vitamix FoodCycler. A Wirecutter reviewer shares their experience with the product: “Last summer I was gifted a Vitamix FoodCycler FC-30 electric composter (predecessor to the current Vitamix FoodCycler FC-50), which turns my family’s food scraps into ready-to-use fertilizer for our garden. We live in Portland, Oregon, and we had already been composting for a while, thanks to the city’s curbside-pickup program. At first I thought the dedicated appliance was a bit unnecessary, but it’s so efficient that we’ve been using it nearly nonstop ever since. The FoodCycler is about as big as an 18-pack of toilet paper rolls, so it can fit into a closet or cupboard, and it’s quiet enough to run regularly. It can break down fruit cores, vegetable peels, dairy, and even some meat scraps into a dry, organic matter that we use to fertilize our garden beds.”
The Spruce Eats also says, “A food recycler is another option if you’re looking for a countertop composter. Using heat and a grinder, this machine electrically processes waste into a reduced mixture that can be added to a worm bin or outdoor composter. It’s particularly useful for food scraps that are slow to decompose in traditional worm bins or compost piles or items that are prone to odors or attracting pests, like meat and dairy products. We found this machine easy to operate and a simple thing to incorporate into a daily or weekly routine.”
Gardens Illustrated also notes: “Rather than take up space in your garden, it sits on any worktop, table or cabinet and processes scraps in record time. Just hours after filling, you’ll get useful soil fertiliser to spread on your garden. In fact, you can empty and refill the FoodCycler multiple times in a single day – and chuck the 2L inner bucket in the dishwasher when you’re done. This little gadget can even compost tough materials like chicken bones. Just remember to use the handy carbon filters to remove any unwanted smells.”
You might also be interested in:
- The Spruce
- Good Housekeeping
- The Spruce Eats
- Gardens Illustrated
- Food & Wine
- Better Homes & Gardens
- Bob Vila.com
- Food Network
Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations.