8 Top 5 Re-Uses for Egg Cartons

I have an embarrassing amount of egg cartons under our kitchen sink. I have been saving them up for a few years hoping to find an alternative use for them so I didn't have to recycle them. While recycling is easy and diverts them from the landfill it is not the best solution. The best solution would be to not buy eggs in a carton at all but that isn't exactly practical. If you eat eggs you are going to end up with some sort of carton and through some research and supreme craftiness I have found some awesome re-uses for them.

1. Give them to your local CSA or egg farmer for re-use
As long as the cartons are clean the majority of CSA's and egg farmers will take the cartons from you so they can re-use them. This allows the cartons to be used multiple times and save the farmers money because they do not have to buy new cartons.

2. Give them to your local school, church, Girl Guide/Scout group for crafts
Schools and groups are always open to accepting free art and craft supplies. Egg cartons can be used to make cute crafts or as containers for art projects (paint, glue, glitter etc). 

3. Store your holiday ornaments safely
Smaller ornaments can easily be broken if stored loosely in boxes. You can use an egg carton to store  your ornaments safely. Plus they stack neatly in a box!

4. Make crafts with your kids. Caterpillar, alligators, oh my!
I'm about 99% sure everyone made a caterpillar out of an egg carton as a kid. We upped the ante and made an alligator over March break. Not something a toddler can do on their own since it involved sewing an egg carton but it was fun to do together and he now has a spot on the bookshelf in B's room. Instructions

Other crafts from Pinterest: Knights, Counting Activity, Monsters

5. Turn them into campfire starters
Last summer there was a great discussion about home made campfire starters on my Facebook page.The focus was on the chemicals that can reside in lint. To minimize this don't use fabric dryer sheets and buy your clothes second hand. 

* Melt wax in a double burner on the stove. Use leftover non-toxic wax instead buying new. 
* Put the egg carton on a baking sheet or something you can wash afterwards...the hot wax will soak through the egg carton
* Stuff each section of the egg carton with your dryer lint (NOT belly button lint)
* Put a piece of string or lead free wick in the center of each piece of lint (this WILL drive you crazy trying to get it to stay in the right spot)
* Pour the melted wax over each piece of lint, filling the cup.
* Allow to dry and then take the whole carton with  you camping. Just rip of the number of starters you need (we use 1 or 2 per fire).

How do you use up your old egg cartons?

Related Posts - Check them Out
Upcycled Valentines
Rethinking One Time Use
Focusing on the 3R's


  1. We are allowed to put our cardboard egg containers in our curb-side composting bin.

  2. I cut them into individual cups and use them to start seeds indoors for my garden. Once planting time comes, I pop the whole thing into the soil outside. The carton just decomposes in the garden.

  3. Gillian - we are allowed to do that as well. Maybe talk to your city and see which they would prefer. Ours provides that guidance and prefers that they are recycled vs composted (right now).

  4. Using them for seedlings is great! I did that with a few last year but struggled with them surviving because the cups are so shallow. I found the toilet paper rolls to work better.

  5. Such cute ideas Jen! We have a lot of egg cartons too. My kids are always pulling them out of the recycle bin for art projects.

  6. I like that they pull them out Lori!

  7. I wish our CSA took back egg cartons, but they don't. We use for crafts or recycle. And we go through a lot of eggs -- about 3 dozen a week. I should ask at my kids' school if they'd like any.

  8. Love the ornament idea. I need to keep some in my xmas storage boxes for this because every year my mom gifts me ornaments from summer yard sales and such and I run out places to keep them. Great ideas!