Compostable Materials & Helpful Tips

Yard debris: Grass clippings, leaves, plant trimmings, branches (no larger than 4 feet in length and 4 inches in diameter), flowers, houseplants, weeds and garden trimmings.
Food: Baked goods, bones, bread, butter and margarine, cake, candy, cereal, cheese, coffee grounds, cookies, corn cobs and husks, dairy products, eggs and eggshells, fish and fish parts, flour, fruits, grains, gravy and sauces, herbs and spices, jams and jellies, mayonnaise, meat and meat products, nuts and nut shells, oatmeal, pasta, peanut butter, pizza, popcorn, poultry, pumpkins, rice, salads, shellfish, sugar, syrup, tea bags, vegetables, watermelon, yogurt and other processed food like left over pizza or burritos, and more.
Non-Recyclable Paper: Used paper plates, paper cups, tea bags, coffee filters, facial tissuegreasy pizza boxes (non-greasy pizza boxes should go in your recycle cart), paper towels, paper napkins, wax paper, waxed cardboard (like waxed produce boxes, not regular corrugated cardboard boxes), tissue paper and paper take-out cartons.
Other Miscellaneous items: Cotton balls, dryer lint, feathers, hair (pet and human), wooden chopsticks, wooden popsicle sticks and wooden toothpicks.

Due to the wide array of non-organic material it is hard to develop a comprehensive list of unacceptable items.

Here are some examples materials NOT to go in your green cart:
  • PLASTICS - No plastics of any kind, including plastics marked as "PLA", compostable or made from plant based materials.
  • Styrofoam
  • Glass or metal
  • Liquids, cooking oil or grease
  • Diapers
  • Dirt, sand, sod, rocks or stone
  • Cat litter or pet waste
  • Lumber or construction debris
  • Treated or coated wood
  • Foil-lined cartons (Typically these are juice boxes for kids or broth and soy milk cartons with plastic spouts. But you should tear the carton to determine if it is foil lined for sure.)
  • When preparing meals or cleaning up after a meal, scrape food preparation scraps and leftovers from your plate into your kitchen pail. You can even include your paper plates, paper towels and napkins.
  • Store your kitchen pail under or in the sink or on the counter to make it easy to access while preparing food or cleaning up after a meal. Find a new spot for your garbage pail so that you have to think before you throw something away - ask yourself, "Can this be composted?"
  • When filling your kitchen pail, remember to include other items in your house that can be composted such as facial tissue, microwave popcorn bags, paper towels, popsicle sticks and all the other things found on the Accepted Items list.
  • Dump the contents of your kitchen pail into your green cart at least once a week.
  • Drain as much liquids as possible from food before putting it in your kitchen pail.
  • Rinse out your pail after you empty it or run it through the dishwasher on the top shelf to keep it clean and fresh. (WARNING: Running your pail on the bottom shelf of your dishwasher will cause the pail's lid to warp and not close properly.)
  • Line your kitchen pail with newspaper or a brown paper bag to help keep it clean. Or, purchase compostable bags to use to line your kitchen pail.

Denver Composts Guide

Denver Composts 
Service Instructions
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