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Composting Egg Shells


February 9, 2021

Hello, I have a typical tall plastic composting tower made by FreeGarden Earth with big lid on top and a small door at the bottom to remove the finished compost from. I’m cold composting with layers of kitchen scraps and then layers of old leaves and other browns. I only put kitchen scraps from vegetables and things like coffee grounds in it. I would also put crunched up egg shells but someone told me that for Cold composting that introduced biological or animal scraps that were only good in hot composting. Is this correct or is there not enough animal material on the eggshells to be a source of bad bacteria?   I am here in Albuquerque at zip code 87110, just north of Lomas and west of Carlisle, and I’m really enjoying turning part of our household waste into something useful for my garden. Thank you very much for your help and I look forward to hearing from y’all.


Answer by JZ: Good for you.  Excellent that you are recycling your organic materials. What we put in any composting operation is organic material, that which was once alive.  Homestead composting need not be a “nit picking” or “hair splitting” exercise, as some people would make it.

You may add the same organics to a hot or cold process setup. Meat / dairy are often listed as leave outs, because their scent may attract critters, but as they are organic, they will decompose.  What goes in, what gets left out of your bin is your personal choice.

Crushed egg shells are mostly calcium which is inorganic, but as they disintegrate, then the calcium is added  / blended in the bin and eventually  will be added to your garden soil. Egg shell may contain salmonella bacteria, which is already present in most amended soils. If you are concerned about that you may boil your egg shells for three minutes, then dry, then crush, then add. If there is salmonella in any compost it won’t be of harm to you as long as you do not ingest the compost or get it in / on a skin wound. Common sense !

Let us know if this is helpful and if you have further questions.  Compost on !

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