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Is a Pringles Can Recyclable?

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I was recently asked a recycling question that I thought was worth sharing. The culprit: A Pringles can. The inquiry: Can it be recycled even though it's made of different materials? I did some research, and discovered that other bloggers and information sources said no. They gave helpful tips for reusing these canisters instead of throwing them away, but that's another topic for another day. Not to keep you in suspense, but let's keep investigating!


Going back to the original question, I would like to propose that Pringles cans are recyclable! Even though they are composed of metal, chipboard, and plastic, all of those materials can be recycled...separately. Yes, that's the key! If different materials can be separated, they can be recycled!


No doubt, the most difficult part of this process is taking off the bottom portion of the can, which is usually metal. For people that are good with sharp objects, this can be done by carefully cutting out the metal portion. Those who should avoid sharp objects at all costs (myself included), please delegate this task to a coordinated friend.


After the metal is removed, just take off the plastic lid, and the can is ready to go! Into the recycle bin it lands, and out of the landfill it stays, thanks to your extra effort!



Pringles Cans


  • Chiara Cappellini Friday, 30 March 2018

    I think the only way to recycle it is to remove the metal butt. Peak the foiled paper from the cardboard (which goes to landfill) and recycle the lid and foil on top separetly.

  • Ryan Friday, 28 April 2017

    The tube of pringles is a multilayer paper tube with a layer of foil. Mixed materials cannot be recycled, because recycling them causes damage to the recycling equipment and lowers the quality of the recycled products, once it hits a certain quality lowpoint (which isn't all that difficult considering how much unrecyclables are being chucked into the recycling bin but less than knowledgable folks) the entire batch of product is checked away to the landfill. So landfill if you want, recycle if you can remove the metal, the foil, and the paper tube, or even compost and remove the uncompostable later on.

  • Corinne Saturday, 17 September 2016

    If you step on the cardboard tube, once it's smashed the metal end should come off easily. I checked Kellogg's site and they say it's not recyclable, but they don't say why. I'm with you, chuck it in the recycling bin. You can always call your local solid waste service and ask when in doubt.

  • Karen Eide Tuesday, 06 September 2016

    Does anybody know what number the Pringles lid is?

  • Midwest Fiber Recycling Tuesday, 06 September 2016

    Hi Karen! Lids of this nature are often made from a combination of plastic grades.

  • Rebecca Thursday, 26 November 2015

    Finally someone who gets that recycling take a little effort

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Guest Friday, 24 May 2019


Recycling creates four jobs for every one job created in the waste management and disposal industries.

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