Food wastage can be a big problem in any household. Not only is food tossed out, but you’re essentially throwing away your money, too! The first step to saving it all is preparation! Planning your meals is a great way to reduce wasted food and get the most from your fridge. Help minimise the amount you toss by trying out a couple of these little hints and tips –something as small as an ice-cube tray could save you some serious money! Read on to discover some great ways to reduce waste and make the most of those leftovers haunting your fridge’s deep dark crevices.
Make your meals last
Nothing quite beats a meal made fresh, but who has the time to do this every night? Instead of purchasing your ingredients for one dinner each day, try making a larger amount that will provide enough leftovers for dinner another night! This will significantly reduce wastage, help you save money and give you more time to do other things. Stuck for ideas? Try large dinner batches such as pastas, soups, chillis, bakes, pizzas, Shakshuka and more to save yourself time and money.
Want to make your meals bigger and healthier at the same time? It’s amazing how a tin of beans or lentils can bulk out a meal, so consider throwing them in!
Use potato peels like a pro
If mashed potatoes are on the menu tonight, don’t throw out those peels! Instead, pop them into a baking tray, cover them with a splash of olive oil and put them in the oven while you cook dinner. This way there is no wastage and you get a delicious crispy treat to have as a pre-dinner snack.
To add contrasting texture to your mash, use your crispy potato peels as a garnish! If you want an extra punch of flavour, cook your peels with some crushed garlic or even a pinch of cumin.
Get more out of your ice-cube trays
Ice-cube trays are often forgotten, sitting in the back of the freezer with a layer of frost forming over the top. If you really want to get the most from your food and your fridge, start at the top with your ice-cube trays. You’ve finished making dinner, but there’s more sauce than there is food. Don’t pour it down the sink! Save it for another night by putting it into an ice-cube tray and freezing it for another time.
Want to take your food prep that extra step? Using an ice-cube try is also a great way to prepare herbs, and save you cooking time in future.
Get the most from your older veggies
A great way to reduce food wastage is to check on your older vegetables. If they’re still good, there’s a range of quick and easy methods for making use of them. If you have a slow cooker, turn those vegetables into a delicious soup you can freeze and have for lunch or dinner. If you don’t have a slow cooker but do have a blender, why not create a healthy and delicious smoothie? You can throw in just about any fruit or veggies in and still enjoy a delicious drink. There’s so much you can do with your leftover vegetables, you won’t have to toss them out again!
Worried your cut fruit won’t last in the fridge? Try lightly rubbing some lemon juice on the exposed flesh of fruit, such as apples and avocados, and sealing them in a ziplock bag. This will help reduce browning and ensure they keep for longer.
Know your portions
Everyone is different, which means different amounts of food are required at dinnertime. If you find yourself or certain family members are always leaving leftovers on their plate, try reducing the amount you serve up. You’ll all still be full, without all the excess food wastage.