5 easy ways to reduce food waste in your home
1. Plan plan plan
I know, life’s busy; it’s not always possible, but having a plan before you enter the supermarket can really help you stop wasting food (and money). We shop for meals – so we plan what we’ll eat for the week and then turn this into a shopping list. We also check the pantry, fridge and freezer as well as planning “leftovers” dinners to use up extra fresh produce. Even if you don’t stick to your plan perfectly, at least you’re starting out with a more realistic amount of food for the week.
2. Freeze it
If you know you’re not going to have time to use something up, check if you can freeze it. Most meat can easily be frozen, as can numerous veggies, herbs and fruits. You can make extra portions of your favourite casseroles and freeze them, and you can even freeze things like milk, bread and dips.
3. Love your leftovers
I love this book River Cottage Love Your Leftovers, but I also love the sentiment. Plan to use up those leftover veggies, or that last bit of chicken. Use it as an opportunity to be creative and inventive, or try something you wouldn’t usually have. You might even find a new family favourite. Make your own recipe collection of leftover recipes – chances are you’ll use the same things over and over, that way you can build them into you’re weekly plan. Don’t be afraid to make 2 or 3 smaller dishes and pair them with fresh bread or a salad and have a kind of left over’s mish mash!
4. Compost it
We just bought this worm cafe and we love it! It’s really easy to set up and manage, and it’s actually fun to see what the worms are eating each day – ours love zucchini. We grow a lot of fruit and veg in our garden too, so it’s pretty cool that we’re giving the worms the leftovers from our plants, that will eventually turn into fertiliser for those same plants. Even if you don’t, you can give the compost away, or use it on non-edible plants and flowers.
5. Share it
Bake treats for friends and family, or invite them over for dinner. Do you have neighbours who live alone? Chances are they HATE cooking for one, and often don’t buy as much fresh produce as they’d like as it gets wasted. Split your fresh products with them, make them dinner, or who knows they might even have you over for dinner. Talk to your colleagues – do you both love watermelon but always throw half away? Split it!
If you wanted to take this a step further, find out if you’re local homeless, Samaritans or aged care charity could use anything you’re not or set up a Buy Nothing Project Group.
Let me know you’re tips for reducing your food waste in the comments below.