These containers can be used for storing things and a variety of crafts. This guide is about uses for metal coffee cans.
Re-use metal coffee cans and lids. My grandfather used coffee cans to store nails, bolts, small screw drivers, and other tools. The cans kept the moisture out and kept things organized. They can also be used to store small containers of oil, etc. and sandpaper.
By duckie-do from Cortez, CO
I have many 3 lb. coffee cans that I hate to throw away. Does anyone have any clever and practical uses for them? Thanks.
Maybe decorate the can and put houseplants in.
I save large tin coffee cans to use as containers I give my baked treats away with. This is the Christmas theme I used. I am not camera savvy, sorry.
I used ribbon in different sizes and types wrapping the cans and ending with large bows in the back. (before I did this step I cut a small matching piece to glue along the seam of the can to better hide the seam).
I cut slits in lids and ran curling ribbon through, tied bells to that before I curled the ribbon as a finishing touch and placed a bow over that. Most cans I used 2 colors or designs of ribbon. One can I covered in wrapping paper then used ribbon. The possibilities for decorating ideas for these are endless and you're recycling.
Tip: Go to a few different stores after each main holiday to catch the sales and you will get a great assortment of ribbon and decorations at a huge discount to use for the next holiday. For most of mine I paid between 75 to 90% off the original prices.
By Freedom059 from OH
Coffee cans make really cute drums for the toddler and preschool set. I spray painted mine with leftover plastic paint, cut 2 vertical slits , one on each side and inserted a man's belt through the slits and buckled it on the inside. Then I popped the lid back on, added 2 dowel sticks or wooden spoons. The belt goes around the back of the preschooler's neck (like the Fisher Price toy drum) and the drum hangs in front in easy banging distance. The drum can be decorated with stickers, colored tape, etc.
Source: Desperation! One grandchild had the Fisher Price drum and the other wanted one, too. So I made one from a large plastic coffee can I had.
By PollyG from Turtle Creek, PA
Uses for coffee cans. Post your ideas.
I use empty coffee cans (well washed and thoroughly dried, of course!) to store pasta, etc. Keeps bug out of the cabinets!
By Becki in Indiana (01/24/2005)
I bake bread in coffee cans. When fully baked the bread takes on a look of a mushroom. With the bread being round, it's perfect for a sandwich. I hope you too will enjoy this use. (01/24/2005)
By Rio Lady
I have a lot of animals (birds, hamster.cat, squirrel). I use the coffee cans for their food so that other animals can not get in them and I don't have bags of food sitting all over the place they can be placed on top of each other for easy storing. The others are used by our child to keep small toys in them so the dogs can not choke on them after he is through playing with them. (01/25/2005)
Coffee cans are great for picking berries and cherries. If they are allowed on a beach, you got youself a sturdy sand bucket, complete with scoop.
you can use coffee cans for small home repair projects like cementing, plastering or painting. And it's a nice way to clean tools and brushes up afterwards. Also think of the possibilities of decorating these containers to use in the house (02/05/2005)
By Mr. Thrifty
I use mine as a cantenna to access wireless internet! You can do a google search to find out how to make these cantennas. The largest size coffee can actually works! (02/18/2005)
I put the dog do do in it from outside. (02/18/2005)
I cut a whole in the plastic top and line the can itself with a plastic grocery bag and then place the plastic top back on. I place one in the front and one out back for when smokers come over so they have somewhere to put the butts from their cigarettes and I don't have to run around the next day in the lawn picking them up. When they get full I just remove the plastic bag, tie it, toss it, and put in a new one. (02/18/2005)
By Suzanne S.
Make a birdhouse with them. Cut a small hole in the plastic lid - about 1 inch in diameter - slightly below center. Add a perch, if desired. Insert an opened and straightened wire hanger, rope, etc on both ends to hang with. You will have to puncture the bottom end of the can to insert your choice of hanger as well as another tiny hole on the plastic lid. The lid can then be removed at the end of the season to clean out the house if needed. You might want to paint the can with non toxic paint as birds sometimes are frightened by shiny metal. (02/22/2005)
When you're camping, for making toast over a gas or coleman stove: Cut both ends off a metal coffee can, peel off the plastic coating on sides, cover one end with foil, place a small grill from a toaster oven over top, slice some holes/strips in the tin foil and put your toast on top (one or two at a time) Turn your stove on to medium and turn the bread with a fork until it's nicely toasted. Unless you don't watch it, you'll have perfect toast.( (07/12/2005)
I have three horses and have found that the smaller coffee cans are great for hanging halters and bridles on, Getting a nail into the can is a challenge but I used a screw driver and a hammer. It works great (11/06/2005)
I keep an empty coffee can in the cabinet over the washing machine. As I clean out my husband's pockets, I put his change in the coffee can. Then you kinda have a secret stash for something you want later! (03/31/2007)
By Stephane in Millington,Tn
I use to put paint in when painting. (05/26/2007)
By Donna in mo.
We cover the outside of the coffee can with various Christmas wrapping paper, fill them with, goodies, and give them out as Christmas presents, the kids love to get involved with this activity. (09/30/2007)
Coffee cans are great in the garage. Use them to separate and store all your nuts, bolts, screws and nails.
They make great storage for all your hair accessories.
Add sand to the can and put it on your porch for an ashtray.
Clean out your junk drawer!
Put one by the sink for scraps and compost. (11/13/2007)
Put a few candles and matches in a clean can, no label. Store with the lid on in your vehicle. If you are stranded in snow and need heat, put one candle in the center and light it. Take safety precautions like having one window open slightly for oxygen - make sure you're receiving oxygen through that window and it isn't covered by snow. Having the tin sitting on something burn-proof would be best, etc. (11/13/2007)