We explain compost making methods and answer: what can you put in a compost bin?

This is what you can put into a compost bin. We show you how to make a compost bin from old Milk crates. We will then show you the various waste food scraps that that make the best compost.


This design is based on the terracotta composter that you might find on eBay or Amazon. The milk crate is perfect for a couple of reasons, the first being that it stacks nicely and is secure and the second is that they have holes in so the air circulation is perfect. There is another valid point for using milk crates to make compost and that is they are virtually free. So in-fact this is a guide on compost making methods that won’t cost you a penny. If you can find some black crates rather than multi-coloured crates then this will add the the aesthetics of the project.

Step 1: You will need


Three milk-crates
If you have one a glue gun
A pair of scissors
Some mesh to stop the weeds

A Saw
Some Wood
Any old drawer handles
Some good exterior varnish
A drill
Some Stainless screws

Again to keep the cost of this project down to almost £0.00 you could try find these materials in your home.


Step 2: Installing the Mesh


I would clean the crates with preferably alcohol based cleaners to remove dirt and grease before installing the mesh. The mesh will act as a barrier to stop the weeds and pests getting into your new compost bin. If you have an old tent you could use the window liner.


Step 3: Lid for the composter


In this example an old wooden drawer was used for the base and the lid of the compost bin. Then you could source any old handles for the lid, if you’re not too proud you could try looking in skips, you will be surprised what people throw away. Once you have assembled the lid and base you would need a good exterior varnish to be applied.


Step 4: Put together the Compost Bin



Put some old newspaper in the bottom of the new compost bin, this will stop any compost falling down the holes inside the bin. Next you will need to stack the bin up. Next you will need to find a good spot in the garden. The best places are well drained spots which are level, this will also help the worms get in which will help the breaking down process.

Compost bin infographic

What can you put in a compost bin

Greens Browns Do Not Compost
Chicken waste
Tea Bags
Weed plants
Grass cuttings
Paper towels
Torn up Cardboard
Egg cartons
Hedge cuttings
Ash from wood
Wood sawdust
Plastic bags
Any Cooked food
Plastic Bottles