What can you do to prevent food waste? Money lost due to food waste could be spent in other ways. It is economical to avoid wasting food in your home. Need some motivating ideas?
7 Ideas on How You Can Reduce Food Waste in Your Own Home:
- Don’t waste food. It takes some thought and organization. Have a plan for what you are going to do with the groceries you purchase. Avoid buying on impulse. If you don’t have a menu plan for the item(s) you have on hand, come up with one. Each night, look at what you have that needs to be used up, and plan to incorporate it into your meal plan. Four eyes see more than two eyes. Ask a family member to help you move older food to the front in home food storage areas and ask for meal/menu suggestions. Use up what you have.
- Buy wisely and in season. Buy food that is full of flavor and in peak season. Keep it visible so you won’t let it spoil. Rotten food that doesn’t get eaten wastes money. Again, store fresh perishable foods in the front of your refrigerator. Eat it all. Don’t let it go bad.
- Shop your kitchen pantry, refrigerator, and freezer first. Think about using what you have before buying more. Make a grocery list before going to the store, taking inventory of what you have on hand. Don’t re-buy items you already have. Organize your food supplies. Use them first, before bringing in more.
- Cook just enough. Often, we over prepare dishes from our favorite recipes and the food is left uneaten and tossed in the trash. Cook just enough for what you plan to eat. A menu plan helps you stay in control. Consider freezing extra cooked food for future use such as during the week, perhaps another evening or at lunch the next day.
- Serve just enough. Plate appropriate serving sizes on breakfast, lunch, and dinner plates. If servings are too large, people often can’t or won’t eat that much. The food gets scraped from the plate into the trash or into the garbage disposal. That is good food that could have been served at another meal.
- Re-purpose food in soups, casseroles, salads and more! This is called “cooking with food scraps”. Use leftovers in a tasty soup. Casseroles can be enhanced with leftover vegetables and protein sources. Make a delicious chicken salad with leftover baked chicken. Many people like to “scramble” leftovers with scrambled eggs. There are a lot of ways to use leftovers.
One of my program participants told me she made the best soup ever. Her family asked her for the recipe. She laughed and told them that there was no recipe, she just added in all the leftovers from her refrigerator. She told me it was an excellent soup, but there was no way to reproduce it, since she randomly added ingredients, she did not want to waste. It came out much better than expected.
- Cook once and eat twice! This is a technique used by many busy home cooks. Plan to prepare two meals: one to eat now and one to eat later. This can save time and money. Sometimes food tastes better the next day, once flavors have time to set in.
Reduce food waste now.
Read more. Learn more.
UF/IFAS Extension, Broward County, Prevent Food Waste- https://blogs.ifas.ufl.edu/browardco/2022/03/28/prevent-food-waste/
Frozen: A food waste solution- https://frozenadvantage.org/frozen-a-food-waste-solution/