Non-Fibrous Fruits and Vegetables

Fruit and vegetable scraps are safe to put down your garbage disposal as long as they are non-fibrous. That means you should skip the pumpkin or banana peels. Citrus fruits are especially good for your disposal as they naturally clean it. In addition, putting fruit down your garbage disposal will result in a fresh scent.

Dinner Scraps

Cooked meat scraps and other soft food items are safe to put down the garbage disposal in moderation. It is best to avoid large amounts or big chunks though. Your garbage disposal should not become your trash can. All items should be washed down with cold water in order to solidify grease and oils, so they can be ground, too.


Hard Items

  • Fruit pits
  • Bones
  • Shells

If you’re finding yourself trying to shove something in the disposal, then it’s definitely too big. Even if it can slip down the drain easily, it may still be too hard for the blades. Pits, bones, shells, and other hard items are most often too dense to grind properly.

Thin Items

  • Peels
  • Eggshells
  • Skins

Thin items such as peels, skins, or the membranes in eggs get lodged in the drain and around the impeller. This is because the thin items can easily pass through the disposal without touching the blades, ending up stuck in the drain. This is especially important because items such as onion skins stuck in the drain will act like a net: catching more items, holding them in place, and requiring you to have to call the plumber when your drain is clogged.

Expanding Items

  • Pasta
  • Oats
  • Rice

When cooking pasta, rice, or oats, we’ve all seen how much they can expand. These items and other expanding foods continue to expand in the drain, even in small pieces. Therefore, it is best to avoid putting these items down the garbage disposal altogether to prevent a clogged drain. That being said, very small amounts will not hurt your drain.

Garbage and Other Items

When in doubt, here is a more in-depth list of items. It may also be smart to avoid the garbage disposal altogether when in doubt! There are a lot of contradicting opinions on certain items, such as coffee grounds or eggshells. These items have contrasting opinions, it is best to be safe and avoid them. If you do end up with a clogged drain, Knight Plumbing is here to help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week!

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