With the cost of living soaring, being mindful of the foods with buy and consume has never been so important. Globally, the amount of food we waste is eye-watering – around 1.3 billion tonnes of food is never eaten [Love Food Hate Waste]. It’s always baffled me why people choose to waste food. Growing up in a working-class home, food was never wasted. I’ve grown up with my mum freezing leftovers and every carrot and potato was used. If anything, my mum is definitely the inspiration behind these tips to make your food go further! So, why have we as a society become so accustomed to throwing food out?
Food waste is a huge problem of concern to the environment, with food in landfill letting off dangerous gasses, such as Methane. When released into our atmosphere, it warms the planet (and is a lot more powerful than CO2).
In 2023, we’re in a plethora of crises, the climate and cost of living being the most detrimental. With most of us having to be extra cautious with our spending; tackling food waste is a no-brainer for us all. Below, are 5 very simple yet effective tips to make your food go further. Which should, in turn, majorly reduce (or even eliminate) the amount of food you throw away.
Make your freezer your best friend
What I’ve learnt in the handful of years since moving away from home is your freezer really is your best friend. Whether it be storing leftovers to ease the need to eat them straightaway, or storing items you may not need for a few weeks, meats, fish etc. to save going off. It’s actually amazing the number of things you can freeze, avocado is a great example! Make your freezer your best friend and store items to save them from being wasted.
Perfect your base ingredients in your cupboard
Making sure you have a good selection of base ingredients in your cupboards is a great way to make sure you use up everything in your kitchen. It means you always have base ingredients to cook meals. The amount of meals you can make from simple items such as the below is off the scale! We always make sure we have these stocked up – you can’t go too wrong! Items such as:
-Chopped or Plum Tomatoes
-Pulses (Kidney beans, chickpeas)
Add ‘… recipe’ to a Google search, with items needing using up
One of my favourite tips to make your food go further! We’ve all been in the scenario of needing to do a food shop and the only items left in your kitchen are a random selection of things you have no idea what to do with. Well, what I often do is, gather 2 or 3 items together, type them into a Google and add the word ‘recipe’ at the end. Usually, a creative recipe you’d never think of will appear! It’s hard to always be creative in the kitchen, so this is a great way to cook something different as well as use up the foods you have.
Store things correctly in the fridge
Simple yet foods can easily go off if not stored properly. Be sure to seal things in containers so no air gets in. Putting plates on top of bowls and beeswax wraps are great ways too, to keep foods fresh.
Designate a day each week to properly sort your fridge
I know life can be busy at times, but it’s so worthwhile to simply take stock of what you have in your fridge, freezer and cupboards. It can be easy enough to forget about that half-used courgette you used last week or a jar of something hidden at the back of the cupboard. Sort through and used up the items that need to be eaten, it avoids foods going off if forgotten about!
For more tips and food-waste-tackling recipes, ODDBOX have a brilliant cookbook worth a read! Read the full review here.