Space-saving Counter-top Kitchen Compost Pail

An inexpensive and simple compost pail that can be wall mounted or sit on your counter-top.

Step 1: Intro

I have a narrow galley kitchen where counter space is at a premium. I wanted a counter-top compost pail but couldn't find one small enough.

I came up with the idea to use a simple metal mailbox - the kind that will hang on a wall, or sit on the counter taking up only a small amount of space.

One trip to the thrift store and I found what I was looking for! Clean and (apparently) unused at $3.99. Mine is 10-1/2"h x 8-1/2w x 3"d.

Step 2: Materials

- Wall-hung metal mailbox
- Mini kitchen bags designed for compost bins (compostable / biodegradeable) appx. size 17" x 16" (a bit smaller works fine)
- Two strong magnets ( is a great source)

Step 3: The Process

You can find mini kitchen bags at most hardware stores (I found them at Ace), and they fit perfectly in the mailbox.

Tuck the excess bag around to the back of the box and secure with a magnet on each side. has a great selection of strong magnets.

Step 4: It's That Easy!

If you want, you can mount the mailbox inside your cabinet under the sink. Because the box is designed to be wall mounted, you will still be able to open the lid. The bag would need to be secured at the sides with the magnets if you do a wall-mount.

That's it!



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    5 Discussions


    4 years ago on Introduction

    this is just brilliant. Thanks for thinking - I never would have come to this.

    Mar HK

    5 years ago

    This is great! I also have a gallery kitchen, and finding something for compost that's practical and looks nice is tricky.

    Thanks for your encouraging words! I use mine every day and continued to be darned pleased with myself for this little idea. Cheers!


    9 years ago on Introduction

    This is just great, I'm going to get one today, thanks for sharing a very simple but elegant idea. I used to have a tall plastic one but getting the lid off and on was such a hassle I stopped using it.


    9 years ago on Introduction

    fantastic idea,  you could wall mount it next to where you chop veggies...