The Best Kitchen Trash Can for Fast, Easy, Compact Waste Disposal

When it comes to preparing your meals, you need as much room in your kitchen as you can get. But you also need somewhere to dispose of food packaging, fruit rinds, and other waste. That means shopping for a kitchen trash can.

The right trash can should feel like an afterthought in your kitchen. It should be unobtrusive enough not to get in your way. You also should be able to quickly and effortlessly open it and close it to dispose of waste.

simplehuman 50 Liter / 13.2 Gallon  Stainless Steel Rectangular Kitchen Step Trash Can, Brushed Stainless SteelSimplehuman
GLAD GLD-74507 Extra Capacity Stainless Steel Step Trash Can with Clorox Odor Protection of The Lid | Fits Kitchen Pro 20 Gallon Waste BagsGlad GLD-74507
NINESTARS CB-SOT-30-1/5-1 Step-on Trash Can Combo Set, 8 Gal 30L & 1.2 Gal 5L, Stainless Steel Base (Round, Stainless Steel Lid)Ninestars
Umbra Vento 16.5-Gallon Swing Top Kitchen Trash Large, 35-inch Tall Garbage Can for Indoor, Outdoor or Commercial Use, PewterUmbra Vento
SONGMICS 16 Gallon Step Trash Can, Double Recycle Pedal Bin, 2 x 30L Garbage Bin with Plastic Inner Buckets and Carry Handles, Fingerprint Proof Stainless Steel, Slow Close ULTB60NLSongmics
AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Trash Waste Can with Lid, BlackAmazonBasics

In this guide, we’ll introduce you to the top kitchen trash cans on the market today. These are quality products which are sturdy, compact, and easy-to-use so that you can focus on your food preparation and not on your rubbish. Want to learn more about selecting kitchen trash cans before you shop? Scroll down past the overviews for buying considerations.

1. simplehuman 50 Liter / 13.2 Gallon Stainless Steel Rectangular Kitchen Step Trash Can

simplehuman 50 Liter / 13.2 Gallon Stainless Steel Rectangular Kitchen Step Trash Can, Brushed Stainless SteelIf you are looking for the Rolls Royce of kitchen trash cans, the simplehuman 50 Liter Rectangular Kitchen Trash Can is it. This overview is for the 50 liter version, but you can also opt for 38 liters or 30 liters of capacity if you do not need a full 50 liters. You can operate the lid with a foot pedal.

Good

  • The brushed stainless steel offers you the ultimate in durability, practicality and style. This trash can is sleek and beautiful to look at, and will enhance the appearance of your kitchen. It is also smudge-resistant.
  • Have sensory issues? You will be glad to know this lid never bangs loudly shut. It closes slowly and quietly. If you need to, you can prop the lid open without having to hold it in place.
  • The trash can comes with an inner bucket which you can remove. This facilitates fast and easy cleaning, protecting the interior of the trash can itself.
  • Your purchase is protected by a 10-year warranty.

Bad

  • Not all 13-gallon trash bags fit inside the can. You may have to shop for specific trash bags, or they will be too small (there are options from Glad and Hefty as well as the manufacturer). You can, however, try stretching them out around the top. In some cases, this is sufficient to get them to fit.

2. GLAD GLD-74507 Extra Capacity Stainless Steel Step Trash Can

GLAD GLD-74507 Extra Capacity Stainless Steel Step Trash Can with Clorox Odor Protection of The Lid | Fits Kitchen Pro 20 Gallon Waste Bags
Another beautiful high-capacity option for your kitchen is the GLAD GLD-74507 Extra Capacity Stainless Steel Step Trash Can. This overview is for the 20 gallon version, but you can also get a 13 gallon version. Don’t like the foot pedal for opening the lid? A sensor version is available as well.

Good

  • You can put 50% more trash in this kitchen trash can than a regular 13 gallon size, so it is an ideal option for those who don’t want to take out their trash too often.
  • The Cloroxtm odor protection feature fights bacteria and unpleasant smells.
  • There is a rear compartment where you can store a few trash bags. That way you can quickly and easily replace a bag. You don’t have to move the can and open the compartment. You can just pull a bag out of the side of the compartment.
  • There are rings to help hold the bag in place so it doesn’t collapse inside the trash can.
  • The stainless steel resists fingerprints and has a lovely polished look which is perfect for any kitchen.
  • There is a 30-day money back guarantee on your purchase of this kitchen trash can.

Bad

  • Since there is both an outer and inner lid, dealing with the inner lid can be a bit annoying when pulling out a trash bag. But once you get used to it, it is generally no big deal.

3. NINESTARS CB-SOT-30-1/5-1 Step-on Trash Can Combo Set

NINESTARS CB-SOT-30-1/5-1 Step-on Trash Can Combo Set, 8 Gal 30L & 1.2 Gal 5L, Stainless Steel Base (Round, Stainless Steel Lid)
If you are shopping in a more modest price range for a kitchen trash can, but still want one which is lovely to look at, consider the NINESTARS CB-SOT-30-1/5-1 Step-on Trash Can Combo Set. You actually get two small trashcans for the price of one. One of them is 8 gallons, while the other is 1.3 gallons. Your purchase is backed by a two-year warranty.

Good

  • Commercial grade T430 stainless steel resists fingerprints and scuffing and offers a pristine finish. With the cylindrical shape of the trash can, the shine of the steel is emphasized.
  • The lid closes quietly and doesn’t bang shut, so it will not be loud and startling.
  • The trash can includes a bucket liner which you can remove. This keeps the bag from having to hang out around the edges of the trash can, keeping it tidy and pleasing to look at.
  • The bin is equipped with a non-skid base. Considering its tall, slender shape, this is quite helpful, as it may help to prevent it from tipping over when you push down on the foot pedal (of if you simply happen to bump into it as you are doing your kitchen chores).

Bad

  • The slender profile of the trash can pose challenges in finding bags which you can fill to capacity, but for those trying to squeeze a trash can into a tight spot in the kitchen, it may still be ideal.

4. Umbra Pewter Venti 16-Gallon Swing Top Kitchen Trash Can

Umbra, Pewter Venti 16-Gallon Swing Top Kitchen Trash Large, 35-inch Tall Garbage Can for Indoor, Outdoor or Commercial Use
If you do not want a kitchen trashcan which opens with a foot pedal or a sensor, you might prefer a swing top model like the Pewter Venti 16-Gallon Swing Top Kitchen Trash Can by Umbra. With a 14.5 inch diameter and 35 inches of height, it is large enough for 20 gallon and 30 gallon bags.

Good

  • The swing top design is simple and convenient. In terms of style, the look to this trash can is very basic, but it should fit well and unobtrusively into your kitchen. The fact that there is no foot pedal means that there is no mechanism which can be damaged with use. This may increase the longevity of the trash can.
  • The trash can is available in two different colors/materials, pewter and black/nickel.
  • While not the cheapest trashcan on the market, it is far from the most expensive. It is a good midrange option for those looking for something more sophisticated than a simple plastic bin, but not interested in shelling out a huge amount of money.
  • There is a ring to hold the bags you use in place which does a great job performing its function even with a lot of heavy items in the trash bags.

Bad

  • Considering that these trash cans sometimes arrive scratched, it appears that they may scratch or scuff easily.

5. SONGMICS 16-Gallon Step Trash Can, Double Recycle Pedal Bin

SONGMICS 16 Gallon Step Trash Can, Double Recycle Pedal Bin, 2 x 30L Garbage Bin with Plastic Inner Buckets and Carry Handles, Fingerprint Proof Stainless Steel, Slow Close ULTB60NL
If you want to be able to sort and separate your trash as you are throwing items away, you can consider the SONGMICS 16 Gallon Step Trash Can, Double Recycle Pedal Bin. It is a convenient to two-in-one unit which can contain your trash on one side and your recyclable items on the other. Each bin has a 30 liter capacity.

Good

  • The smart design makes it convenient and easy to make eco-conscious decisions when you are throwing away waste in your kitchen. It can also encourage the rest of your household to recycle more.
  • Made of fingerprint-resistant stainless steel, the trash can has a sleek, polished look which can actually add to the appeal of your kitchen. It is available in silver, black or brown. There is a pedal on each side to open the two lids, and there’s even a set of carry handles.
  • The inner buckets are removable for easy cleaning.
  • The lids are airtight when they close, keeping odors out of your kitchen. They do not bang shut, but close in a controlled, steady, quiet motion.

Bad

  • The only significant flaw with this kitchen trash can appears to be that units will occasionally arrive damaged from shipment. But this can happen with pretty much any kitchen item you order online.

6. AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Trash Waste Can with Lid

AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Trash Waste Can with Lid, Black
If you are shopping for a kitchen trash can on a budget, our recommendation is the AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Trash Waste Can with Lid. With a diameter measuring 8 ¼ inches and a 12 inch height, it is a small can, but for a very small kitchen (like in a tiny house, studio apartment, dorm kitchen or RV kitchen), that might be all you need and want.

Good

  • The cylinder shape, the stainless steel, and the simple lid (black or white) make for an appealing trash can which is an aesthetic complement to your kitchen décor.
  • If you like the design of this waste can, you can also purchase a soap dish, toothbrush holder and/or tumbler to match (this can works great not only in a small kitchen, but also in a bathroom).
  • You can wash the trash can with soap and warm water with ease.
  • The lid swings, so you can put items in the trash easily.
  • This is a good cost-saving option if you are okay with a small trash can.

Bad

  • The bin really is only useful if you are willing to take out your trash a lot. But again, you might be in a situation where that is your only practical option if your kitchen is super small.

Considerations When Buying a Kitchen Trash Can

1. Compact Dimensions

If you have a small kitchen, you should aim to get a compact trash bin which will conserve as much room as possible. You might even want to shop for a bin which you can stow in a cabinet underneath your counter (some kitchen cabinets even have a place intended specifically for such a bin).

2. Capacity

How often are you willing to take out the trash? You will have to weigh your need to conserve space against your capacity needs. In a larger kitchen, you may have the luxury of a higher-capacity trash can which can hold larger bags.

3. Type of Lid

There are many different types of lids for kitchen trash cans which operate in different ways. For example, you could get a swing top lid, or you could get a lid which you operate using a foot pedal.

Ideally, it is best if you do not need to use your fingers to open and close the trash can lid. This prevents you from getting your hands dirty as you are cooking or getting grease and other food debris on the trash can lid.

4. Durability

A kitchen trash can should not be subjected to a significant amount of wear and tear, but durability is still worth keeping in mind. In particular, you might want to choose a trash can which is unlikely to get scratched or scuffed. That way, its appearance will remain pristine over years of use.

5. Ease-of-Cleaning

Once in a while, you probably will need to wash out your kitchen trash can, even though you are using plastic bags. The easier it is to accomplish this task, the sooner you can get back to your usual kitchen chores.

6. Aesthetics

From a functional perspective, a trash can is a pretty straightforward thing to shop for. That means that you can put extra thought into the aesthetic elements of the trash cans you are comparing. Try and pick a trash can which will complement your kitchen rather than detract from its appearance.

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