What Size Should a Kitchen Trash Can Be?

Greetings, dear readers! Are you tired of constantly wrestling with a kitchen trash can that seems to overflow just a bit too quickly? Or maybe you find yourself staring at a cavernous void inside an oversized bin, feeling guilty for wasting precious space. Well, fear not, for we are here to tackle the age-old question: what size should a kitchen trash can truly be? With so many options available on the market, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and unsure of which size is best suited for your needs. In this article, we will explore the factors to consider when choosing the ideal size for your kitchen trash can, ensuring that you bid farewell to unnecessary mess and confusion. So, let’s venture forth and discover the optimal size for this unsung hero of kitchen organization!

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Kitchen Trash Can

When it comes to choosing a kitchen trash can, there are several factors you should consider to ensure that it meets your needs. These factors include the capacity, dimensions, and material of the trash can.


The capacity of a kitchen trash can is an essential factor to consider. It is important to choose a trash can that can hold an adequate amount of waste without requiring frequent emptying. The capacity you need depends on factors such as the size of your household and the frequency of garbage disposal. If you have a larger family or generate a significant amount of waste, a trash can with a larger capacity may be more suitable. On the other hand, if you live alone or produce less waste, a smaller capacity can may suffice.


The dimensions of a kitchen trash can play a crucial role in determining its fit and functionality in your kitchen space. Before purchasing a trash can, it is important to measure the available area in your kitchen. This will ensure that the trash can you choose fits comfortably and allows for easy access. Consider the height, width, and depth of the trash can. Additionally, take into account any space restrictions, such as cabinets or other appliances, that may affect the size and placement of the trash can. Having these measurements in mind will help you find a trash can that seamlessly integrates into your kitchen without causing any obstruction.


Another important factor to consider when choosing a kitchen trash can is the material it is made of. Different materials offer varying levels of durability and aesthetics. The most common materials used for kitchen trash cans include stainless steel, plastic, and wood.

Stainless steel trash cans are known for their durability and sleek appearance. They are easy to clean and resistant to stains and odors. Stainless steel trash cans are a popular choice for modern and contemporary kitchens due to their clean aesthetics.

Plastic trash cans are lightweight and affordable. They come in a wide range of colors, making it easy to find one that matches your kitchen decor. Plastic trash cans are also easy to clean and maintain, making them a practical choice for any kitchen.

Wooden trash cans provide a more rustic and natural look to your kitchen. They are often made from durable woods such as oak or maple. Wooden trash cans can be treated with finishes to protect them from moisture and stains, ensuring their longevity. They are an excellent choice for kitchens with a traditional or farmhouse style.

Consider the style of your kitchen and the level of durability required when selecting the material for your trash can. For a modern kitchen, stainless steel may be the best choice, while a plastic or wooden trash can may suit a kitchen with a more rustic or traditional design.

In conclusion, when choosing a kitchen trash can, it is important to consider factors such as capacity, dimensions, and material. By taking these factors into account, you can find a trash can that not only meets your functional needs but also complements the overall design of your kitchen.

Types of Kitchen Trash Cans

Kitchen trash cans come in various types and designs to cater to different needs and preferences. Let’s explore some of the common types available:

Step-On Trash Cans

Step-on trash cans are a convenient option for the kitchen. These trash cans feature a foot pedal that allows you to open the lid without using your hands. This hands-free operation comes in handy, especially when your hands are occupied with food preparation or other tasks. By simply stepping on the pedal, you can dispose of your waste without any hassle, ensuring a hygienic waste disposal process.

Touchless Trash Cans

In today’s fast-paced world, technology has made its way into our everyday lives, even in the trash cans we use. Touchless trash cans utilize motion-sensing technology to automatically open the lid when it detects nearby movement. This means you don’t have to touch the lid or use your hands at all. The motion sensor system ensures a hands-free and hygienic waste disposal process, which is particularly helpful when you have messy hands or when you want to avoid cross-contamination. With a touchless trash can, you can effortlessly dispose of your kitchen waste without worrying about spreading germs.

Under-the-Sink Trash Cans

If you have a smaller kitchen or prefer a hidden waste disposal solution, under-the-sink trash cans are an excellent option. As the name suggests, these trash cans are designed to fit neatly under the kitchen sink, saving valuable space in your kitchen. By keeping the trash can out of sight, you can maintain a clean and organized appearance in your kitchen. Under-the-sink trash cans are available in various sizes, allowing you to choose one that suits your specific needs and the available space under your sink. With these trash cans, you can efficiently manage your kitchen waste without sacrificing valuable floor space.

When choosing a kitchen trash can, it’s important to consider your specific requirements, such as the size of your kitchen, the amount of waste generated, and your preferred waste disposal method. Whether you opt for a step-on trash can, a touchless trash can, or an under-the-sink trash can, make sure it meets your needs and fits seamlessly into your kitchen setup.

Tips for Choosing the Right Kitchen Trash Can

When it comes to selecting the perfect kitchen trash can, there are a few factors to consider to ensure it meets your needs and preferences. Here are some tips to help you choose the right kitchen trash can for your home:

Consider Lid Options

Trash cans come in a variety of designs, each with its own unique lid option. Take into account your personal preference and the level of odor control you require when selecting the lid type.

If you want a lid that can easily be opened with one hand, a flip-top lid may be the ideal choice for you. These lids conveniently flip open when you press a button or a foot pedal. They are great for quick and easy disposal of waste.

On the other hand, if you prefer a lid that opens and closes quietly, a swing lid may be the right option. These lids swing open and closed, preventing any unnecessary noise or disturbance. They also help contain odors effectively.

If you don’t mind having a lidless design, you can choose a trash can without a lid altogether. This allows for easy access and disposal, but it may not provide the same level of odor control as lidded options.

Evaluate Special Features

In addition to different lid options, some kitchen trash cans offer special features that can enhance functionality and convenience.

One popular feature is odor-blocking technology. These trash cans are designed to trap and eliminate unpleasant odors, keeping your kitchen smelling fresh and clean. If odor control is a priority for you, look for trash cans with this feature.

Another useful feature is a built-in recycling compartment. If you’re conscious about recycling and have limited space, a trash can with a separate compartment for recyclables can be a great choice. This allows you to conveniently sort and store recyclable items without the need for an additional bin.

Additionally, consider trash cans with removable inner buckets. These inner buckets make emptying and cleaning the trash can a breeze. You can simply remove the bucket, dispose of the waste, and easily wash or wipe it down.

Read Reviews and Compare Prices

Before making a final decision, it is always a good idea to read reviews from other customers who have purchased the same trash can you are considering. Their experiences can provide valuable insights into the performance, durability, and overall satisfaction with the product.

Furthermore, comparing prices from different retailers can help ensure you are getting the best value for your money. Prices may vary, so take the time to shop around and find the best deal that fits your budget.

By considering lid options, evaluating special features, and reading reviews and comparing prices, you can confidently choose the right kitchen trash can that suits your needs, preferences, and budget.

Tips for Maintaining and Cleaning a Kitchen Trash Can

Keeping your kitchen trash can clean and odor-free is essential for maintaining a hygienic and pleasant environment. Here are some useful tips to help you effectively maintain and clean your kitchen trash can.

Regularly Empty and Clean

One of the most important steps in maintaining a kitchen trash can is to regularly empty and clean it. It is recommended to empty the trash can at least once a week or more frequently if needed. By removing the trash promptly, you can prevent the accumulation of odors and potential pest problems.

But emptying the trash alone is not sufficient. Cleaning the inside and outside of the trash can is equally important to maintain proper hygiene. Before cleaning, make sure to dispose of any remaining liquids or food residues. You can use a paper towel or a cloth to wipe away any debris or spills.

Once the trash can is empty, it’s time to give it a thorough cleaning. Prepare a suitable cleaning solution by mixing a mild detergent or dish soap with warm water. Using a sponge or a scrub brush, scrub the inside and outside of the trash can with the cleaning solution. Pay extra attention to any stains or sticky residue.

After the cleaning process, rinse the trash can thoroughly with water to remove any soap residue. Allow it to dry completely before using it again.

Use Liners or Bags

Using liners or bags inside your kitchen trash can has numerous benefits. They not only make emptying and cleaning the trash can much easier, but they also prevent direct contact between the waste and the can itself.

By using liners or bags, you can prevent any potentially staining substances like food scraps or liquids from coming into direct contact with the trash can’s surface. This reduces the chances of lingering odors and helps maintain the cleanliness of the can. Additionally, liners or bags also make it easier to dispose of the trash, as you can simply tie up the bag and remove it without any hassle.

When selecting liners or bags for your kitchen trash can, make sure they are the appropriate size and thickness. Thin and flimsy liners may tear easily and lead to leaks, while oversized liners can be wasteful. Choose a liner that fits snugly inside the trash can, providing a secure and tidy option for your waste disposal.

Apply Odor Control Methods

Unpleasant odors can be a common issue with kitchen trash cans. Luckily, there are various odor control methods you can utilize to keep your kitchen smelling fresh.

One effective method is to use odor absorbents. Sprinkling some baking soda at the bottom of your trash can or within the liner can help neutralize odors. Baking soda has natural deodorizing properties and can absorb unpleasant smells.

You can also experiment with other odor absorbents, such as citrus peels or activated charcoal. Placing a few citrus peels at the bottom of the trash can or hanging a small bag of activated charcoal near the can can help combat odors and add a refreshing scent.

In addition to odor absorbents, it is a good practice to regularly disinfect your trash can. This can be done by spraying a mixture of equal parts water and white vinegar inside the can. Afterward, wipe it clean and let it air dry. Vinegar is known for its disinfecting properties and can help eliminate bacteria and germs that may contribute to unpleasant odors.

By following these tips for maintaining and cleaning your kitchen trash can, you can ensure a clean, odor-free, and hygienic environment in your kitchen. Remember to regularly empty and clean the trash can, use liners or bags for easy disposal, and apply odor control methods to keep your kitchen smelling fresh.