11 Foods you should never, ever put down your garbage disposal

If you ask people what they do with their bones, you’ll probably get a wide range of responses. Some will throw them away, others will utilize them in soups and stews, while a small section will tell you to bury them deep, where no dog or law enforcement can find them. You should probably call the cops on that last group of people.

All in all, there are many ways to dispose of bones, but one place you should never get rid of them is the garbage disposal. In fact, while that hole in your sink is useful for a lot of things, there are a few food items you definitely shouldn’t put anywhere near your garbage disposal. Let’s take a look, shall we?

1. Bones

Let’s start with something we’ve already kind of talked about: bones. Whether you’re talking chicken bones, fish bones or any other kind of bones you might have lying around (I’m not judging), bones will spin endlessly around the garbage disposal, without going anywhere. And if by some miracle you end up getting it down, there’s no way it’s going to make it all the way down the drain.

2. Celery

Your average stick of celery is about 94 percent water, but it’s the other six percent that you’ve got to worry about when disposing of your excess celery. Take a bite into a celery stick, and you’ll notice it breaks off into stringy fibers. This is a nightmare for your garbage disposal: all those fibers will end up tangling up the blades on your garbage disposal, meaning you’ll have to call your plumber to help you out. Again. The same goes for asparagus, as well as corn husks.

3. Coffee grounds

Unlike bones and celery, coffee grounds seem like the perfect thing to chuck down your disposal. They’re small, they’re non-fibrous, and they grind up similar to how they would in a coffee machine. But in reality, what’ll end up happening is the ground up coffee will create a thick, brown paste in your sink, which will require a visit from the plumber.

4. Eggshells

If you’re in love with your plumber and are cooking up ways for you to spend more time with them, then go right ahead. Otherwise, if you throw eggshells down your disposal, the yolk’s really on you. Some people say that the shells are totally fine and can even improve the potency of your blades, but in reality the shell’s membrane lining can stick to the sides of the disposal, wrapping around your shredder and generally being a pain in the neck to get rid of.

5. Fruit pits

As the inedible part of your favorite fruits, you’re going to want to throw your pits away, but it would be a pit-y if you decided to go for the garbage disposal. Have you ever tried to cut through an avocado pit? Yeah, exactly; if you’re struggling to cut through, your garbage disposal isn’t going to have much more luck.

6. Grease

“But what about grease?” I hear you ask. Although it’s a liquid and therefore incapable of damaging your blades, the more likely outcome here is that it’ll cool and harden while on its way out, and your poor plumber is going to have to go in there and scoop all the congealed grease out. Not fun.

7. Pasta

Fusilli, linguine, tagliatelle or spaghetti; if you dispose of your pasta via the sink, you’re going to be in for a bad time. Going from dry pasta to al dente pasta, you’ll notice that the backbone of your Bolognese or Alfredo will have expanded, and exposed to more water, that process is only going to continue. So even if you don’t have a garbage disposal, avoid chucking pasta down the drain, lest you clog up your sink with one giant, swollen penne. The same goes for rice, just by the way.

8. Potato peels

Unlike most of the items on this list, you could probably get away with throwing potato peels down the disposal every once in a while. But too much, too often, and you’ll be left with a situation in your sink that can be best described as “unap-peeling”. Namely, a beige, slushy mess in your sink, which will cause havoc in your kitchen, and force your plumber to get the heavy duty gloves out.

Well, there you have it folks. Your garbage disposal is a wonderful and very useful thing, so be sure to treat it well and it will treat you well. If nothing else, think of your poor, overworked plumber.

More Stories From Food Envy