4th July BBQ Foods to Not Put Down the Garbage Disposal

hamburgers and hotdogs being grilled, while a person holds a hamburger bun

The Fourth of July is a time for celebration – friends, family, food, and fireworks! However, if you’re not careful, the festivities can quickly turn into a disaster. One of the biggest dangers during this holiday is putting the wrong things down the garbage disposal.

Food to Keep Out of the Disposal

If you don’t want to end up with a clogged sink or a broken disposal, then read on for a list of foods to throw out during your BBQ this Independence Day!

Stringy Foods

While vegetables can be an underrated and delicious part of any BBQ, it is a mistake to put these stringy foods down the disposal. While items like celery, corn husks, carrots, and onion skins can be put down the disposal, you do run a risk of a clog. This is because when the blades start to cut through these foods, the stringy fibers will tangle around your disposal and eventually cause it to jam. So it's best to just throw any leftover vegetables in the trash.

Greasy and Oily Foods

One of the most common culprits of clogged disposals and sinks is grease and oil. When hot, these may appear to be liquids that wouldn’t harm your drains. However, when greases and oils cool, they solidify and can easily adhere to your pipes, causing a blockage.

To avoid this problem, never pour these down the drain. Instead, pour them into a can or jar and let it cool. Once they have solidified, they can then be disposed of in the trash.


BBQ foods like ribs and chicken wings contain bones that can damage your garbage disposal and cause it to break. In no scenario should bones be put through your disposal or in your drains as they will at best cause a clog in your drain and, at worst, they will seriously damage your disposal.

Starchy Foods

While corn on the cob and mashed potatoes are often crowd favorites, you should avoid putting starchy foods down the disposal. Beans, pasta, rice, corn, and potatoes are tough for your disposal to break down and will also expand when introduced to water, which can lead to clogs.

When In Doubt, Throw it Out

By following these simple tips, you can help keep both your garbage disposal and drains in good working order. If you have any questions about what you can and cannot put down your disposal, be sure to consult your owner’s manual. And remember, if in doubt, throw it out!

If you or someone accidentally causes a clog this Fourth of July, the EZ Flow Plumbing, LLC family is here to help! Just call (480) 351-1820 or contact us online to schedule a safe and effective drain cleaning.

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