How to Make Your Own Compostable Utensils at Home

How to Make Your Own Compostable Utensils at Home

How to Make Your Own Compostable Utensils at Home

Making your own compostable utensils at home is a great way to reduce plastic waste and be more eco-friendly. With just a few simple materials and tools, I can make sturdy forks, spoons, and knives that will biodegrade in my backyard compost pile.

Materials Needed

To get started, I first need to gather the necessary materials. Here’s what I need:

  • Wooden skewers or chopsticks – These will form the handles and base of the utensils. I can use bamboo, birch, or other types of wood. I need skewers that are at least 6 inches long.

  • Natural twine or stringI will use this to wrap the handles to make them easier to grip. Cotton or hemp twine works well.

  • Scissors – To cut the twine and trim the utensils.

  • Small saw or knife – To cut or whittle the wood into the desired utensil shapes.

  • Sandpaper (optional) – Helps smooth any rough edges on the wood.

  • Beeswax or vegetable oil – Used to coat and seal the wood. Makes the utensils naturally water-resistant.

  • Compostable glue (optional) – Can use instead of twine to attach layers together. Look for natural resin or gum-based glues.

Making the Utensil Handles

The first step is making the handles for the forks, spoons, and knives. Here is the process:

  • Take a wooden skewer and use the saw or knife to cut it down to 6 inches in length. These will be the handles.

  • Sand down any rough edges on the cut wood. I want it to be smooth to the touch.

  • Tie one end of the natural twine tightly around one end of the handle using a double knot.

  • Wrap the twine securely down the length of the handle, leaving about 1 inch of wood exposed at the bottom.

  • Tie off the end of the twine with another tight double knot. This will create a textured grip.

  • Apply beeswax or vegetable oil along the length of the handle. This seals and protects the wood.

  • Repeat these steps to make handles for all the utensils I want to create.

Shaping the Eating Ends

With the handles made, it’s time to shape the functional ends of the utensils:

Fork

  • Take 2 skewers and use the saw to cut off the pointed ends. This will leave blunt ends for pressing into food.

  • Use the knife to split the blunt ends of each skewer down the middle about 1.5 inches. This splits it into fork tines.

  • Sand and smooth any rough edges. Make sure the tines are rounded for safe eating.

  • Apply glue or beeswax to the end of a handle and press the fork tines perpendicular against it. Hold for 2 minutes until bonded.

Spoon

  • Take 1 skewer and use the saw to cut off the pointed end.

  • With the knife, carefully whittle and shape the blunt end into a spoon bowl about 1.5 inches wide.

  • Smooth and round the edges of the spoon bowl with sandpaper so it feels comfortable on the lips.

  • Apply glue or beeswax to the handle and press the carved spoon bowl onto the end. Hold for 2 minutes until set.

Knife

  • Take 1 skewer and use the saw to cut off the pointed end.

  • With the knife, carefully whittle down the sides to shape the end into a flat, blunt knife edge about 2 inches long.

  • Bevel the edges to create a sloping knife blade. Sand thoroughly.

  • Apply glue or beeswax to the handle and press the knife firmly against the end. Hold for 2 minutes.

Finishing Touches

Once assembled, I can add some finishing touches:

  • Sand down any remaining rough spots on the utensils. I want the surfaces to be smooth.

  • Use the knife to sharpen the fork tines and knife blade. Be careful not to cut yourself!

  • Apply another coat of beeswax or oil to the entire utensil surfaces. This further seals and protects the wood.

Now my handmade compostable utensils are ready to use! I can toss them directly into my compost bin when they start to wear down. Making them myself was easy, sustainable, and rewarding.