Ways to Reduce Food Waste… With The Food You Have:
Buy less than you think that you need. We tend to over buy on food so remove one meal from your meal plan because you’ll most likely have an unexpected dinner out or leftovers!
Measure ingredients carefully! Follow recipes and adjust the amount of ingredients to the number of people eating. This will stop you ending up with too many leftovers, that won’t get eaten.
Chop and store the produce when you get home from the shop so creating meals is easy during the week.
Store your food properly so it doesn’t go bad! Look for storage tips on how to store your produce plastic-free, and how to maximise it’s shelf life.
Ignore the dates. Best-by, sell-by, and use-by are NOT expiration dates. There’s no scientific way to predict the exact day something is going to expire so use your best judgement with smell and taste. If it tastes fine – it’s probably fine to eat.
Eat your ends and stems – broccoli stalks are great for making soup.
Save the peels of your onions, carrots and garlic to make a delicious vegetable stock that you can use to infuse more flavour into rice, quinoa, etc.
Use your freezer to freeze fruits and veggies you might not have time to get to before they turn.
Use slightly mushy fruits in smoothies or breakfast breads. After all overripe bananas make the best banana loaf!
Make crisps from your potato peelings. Carrots, parsnips etc also work well.
Keep a stocked pantry so you can make all of your favourite meals quickly
Opt for smaller plates of food and go back for seconds if you’re still hungry.
Use your freezer for leftovers! Almost anything can be frozen to prolong its shelf life including bread, soup and pasta sauce.
Make sure you actually eat your leftovers! My husband will also make extra for dinner, which I can then heat up the next day for my lunch.
If you do have any food waste, make sure you compost it!
Ways To Reduce Waste… Through How You Buy Food
Write down what is inside of your fridge before you go grocery shopping! This allows you to plan meals around the food you already have, especially what needs to be eaten first. It will also stop you buying duplicates.
Opt for looseleaf tea (a lot of tea bags are made with plastic!)
Choose plastic-free produce and food. Look for items in recyclable packaging, like paper or card, or food that comes in tins, which are easily recycled.
Buy your dry goods in refill shops. We love refill shopping! Our toddler loves to weigh the jars and attach the labels for the till. It’s a great way to cut plastic out of your shopping, you take your own containers (we use glass jars, some new and some reused jam jars, but it could be any kind of container) and fill up with rice, flour, beans, cereal, all sorts!
Don’t buy individual servings of food. Buy larger servings and portion them out at home. Buying in bulk and avoiding individual portions in plastic packaging, can save you money as well as reducing your plastic waste.
Head to your local farmer’s market or greengrocer to stock up on loose veg. Our local grocer even delivers!
Start a small garden. If you can’t quite manage a vegetable plot, try a herb garden in your windowsill. No garden – then join a local community garden where you can compost and even have a hand in growing your own food.
Try to regrow your food from scraps like green onions or celery.
Ways To Reduce Waste… Through What Food You Eat
Eat with the seasons and enjoy the bounty of your region. Maybe even try your hand at preserving foods or give foraging a go (Please do check identifications and make sure you are 100% confident in your identification of wild plants. Know which parts are safe to eat and how to process them)
Go heavy on the plants, and reduce your consumption of animal products. The University of Oxford found that eating a vegan diet could be the “single biggest way” to reduce your environmental impact on earth. Researchers found that cutting meat and dairy products from your diet could reduce an individual’s carbon footprint from food by up to 73 per cent.