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I have become more strict with food waste in the last year or two. After all, every item you throw in the food waste bin is money thrown away. I would NEVER throw money away so why should food waste be something that I find acceptable? No more! There are a wide variety of ways to cut down on food waste. Here are 9 of my favourite ways to cut down on food waste…
Stop peeling off the skins (and the goodness!)
We stopped peeling vegetables, including carrots and potatoes, a long time ago. The taste difference is non-existent and there is no waste either. For potatoes, if they are sprouting, I use the end of the *vegetable peeler to remove those bits, rather than just peeling off a whole chunk. With carrots I just remove the top and save that for vegetable stock (see below!).
Keep your fridge temperature set correctly
The temperature that we stick to is between 3C and 5C. Although some people have different opinions on this! I’ve got a *fridge thermometer and ensure that I don’t put perishables, like milk, in the door of the fridge, where the temperature changes most drastically. Having my fridge set correctly helps food last longer and avoids milk going bad and being poured away. We NEVER have waste milk now, which has changed since we stopped storing it in the door.
Water your veggies
Celery, broccoli, asparagus and a few other veggies love a nice drop of water! When you get home from the supermarket, and have spent your hard earned cash, be sure to pop items in a little water. Give them a rinse and stand them up in a small glass of water. This will keep your veggies crisp for longer.
Freeze those leftovers
Got a bit of leftover slow cooker chilli? Freeze it! Make sure you cool items properly and then use an airtight container to store them. Almost all meals will keep for at least a month, but often much longer. Label items thoroughly so you know what you’re eating before you defrost it.
Use your veg scraps to save a few pennies
My lovely friend Chammy has a great post about making vegetable stock from those old scraps and peelings. This is a really novel way to cut down on food waste and make the most out of your money.
Check your vegetable drawer twice a week
Have a quick rummage. If you have something about to turn then make a point of using it up. Cook an omelette for lunch, chop it and prep it for the freezer or just use it in that nights dinner. Stop wasting food because of laziness! I’m my own worst enemy sometimes. I might see a pepper, going a bit wrinkly, and I think oh I’ll use it tomorrow for a slow cooker chicken curry or something, but it doesn’t happen. Check your fruit & vegetables when you have time and actually make the effort!
Meal plan like a boss
I’m a HUGE fan of meal planning. I’ve shared posts before with my meal planning tips, and meal planning with mince, and meal planning has been fantastic for us. We are able to shop around 30-40% cheaper at the SAME supermarket… We can save even more if we go to Aldi and make a real effort! You can buy yourself a *pretty meal planner, or just use a notepad or even a note on your mobile phone. I love to keep my shopping list on the same page as my meal plan, so I don’t buy items I don’t need. This is definitely my favourite way to cut down on food waste. Saving money on food shopping is important to me but I also want to eliminate waste.
Blitz up your leftover veggies – waste nothing!
This is tied in with the above really. If you have items that you cannot use, or don’t want to use, just give them a freeze in pieces and then blend them into a nice pasta sauce. You can really up the money-saving stakes by making your own pasta!
Stop wasting bread
We used to waste lots of bread. Now we freeze sliced bread, for toast. We also use leftover bread for homemade croutons and even turn it into breadcrumbs for chicken or topping pasta bake. If you have some bread that needs reviving just rub it with a tiny bit of water and pop it in the oven for a few minutes. This should crisp it up lovely and make it edible again!
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