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To ask for your waste reducing tips

(47 Posts)
Crazypetlady Tue 03-Nov-15 19:05:46

I am horrified by the waste in this country,we waste so much. I would like to waste less food and reuse things I would have thrown. So have any of you got any tips to share?

Mine is fried rice, great the day after a curry to use leftover rice and odd ends of veg.

halphalp Tue 03-Nov-15 19:40:07

I'm not fussy about fruit and veg that looks a bit manky. I'm happy to cut off those bits and keep on going, or to use root veg that's gone a bit limp in soups, stews or pasta sauce.

I batch cook and freeze.

I substitute vegetables in recipes with whatever's lying around, as long as it's vaguely similar.

I'm happy to eat the same dinner two nights in a row.

I base my meals on what I have in the house, not what I fancy eating.

VulcanWoman Tue 03-Nov-15 19:44:29

Not food but put stuff on Freecycle.

HeyMacWey Tue 03-Nov-15 19:45:16

Mine is to only buy what we need - done by meal planning, batch cooking and sticking to it.

Crazypetlady Tue 03-Nov-15 19:46:48

I like non food tips too, these are great.

Crazypetlady Tue 03-Nov-15 19:47:27

I struggle to meal plan , I never know where to start.

wanderingwondering Tue 03-Nov-15 19:51:38

I don't understand how people don't meal plan! How do you know what to buy?!
I plan a week's worth of meals in the morning before I go shopping, check we have the store cupboard things needed and then buy the fresh stuff.
I sometimes pick up reduced bargains which we freeze and incorporate into next week's meal plan

hollinhurst84 Tue 03-Nov-15 19:52:02

I have some chicken in the freezer and want to do a vaguely fajita sauce chicken thing with rice. Checked the fridge and there's some squishy cherry tomatoes and peppers so I will whizz them up in a mini chopper to go into the sauce

Actually that's probably my main tip - mini chopper! You can make salsa really easily or blitz things like celery into teeny pieces and it sort of thickens any sauce too

Juicer - anything that looks a bit dodgy goes in there, spinach, celery, apples etc etc

Smoothie maker - that gets bananas or left over spoon of yoghurt or the scrapings of a peanut butter jar in

Pointlessfan Tue 03-Nov-15 19:53:14

With meal planning I start by thinking of one meal I'd really like then think about what other things I can make with similar ingredients plus store cupboard stuff.
Then cook more than you need and freeze some. The planning gets easier once you have some stuff in the freezer and you can have a freezer meal once or twice a week.
I really hate unnecessary packaging so avoid buying ready meals, pre-packed veg, shop cakes, bottled water etc.

VulcanWoman Tue 03-Nov-15 19:54:09

Old blankets/throws to animal shelters, think they might take old duvets too, not sure though.

Daffydil Tue 03-Nov-15 19:55:31

Meal planning reduced our waste, and shopping bill hugely. It took a while to get the hang of it, but now we waste very little, and generally only buy what we need for that weeks dinners.

Add in some batch cooking, and buying freezable multi-deals or reduced things, and we've always got extra meals in the freezer.

avocadoghost Tue 03-Nov-15 20:00:24

I've got a few satsumas about to go off - anything I can do with them?

clearsommespace Tue 03-Nov-15 20:02:12

Have fewer clothes. Most people have far too many.
Buy good quality made to last when you can, although it is hard with appliances.

yeOldeTrout Tue 03-Nov-15 21:20:27

We don't meal plan, we write a list as stuff runs out & buy what's on the list or takes our fancy.

There are heaps of meal planning websites online if folk want to do that.

Don't buy stuff. If you don't buy it, you don't waste it.

BikeRunSki Tue 03-Nov-15 21:24:04

A tiny one.... when my DC only take a bite or 2 out of an apple, I chop off the bitten bits, slice it and put it in a bag in the freezer. I add to the bag with other partially eaten and bruised apples, and when it is full I make a crumble.

annandale Tue 03-Nov-15 21:27:04

Don't cook according to supermarket portions, cook the amount you need.

Soup is your friend.

MrsJamin Tue 03-Nov-15 21:31:25

The freezer is your friend, not the fridge, for leftovers. I'm much more likely to eat some leftovers that I have frozen than eat something again just a day or two later. Freeze little things that are nearly on their way out e.g. half an aubergine, chopped up into cubes (to chuck into a thai curry), or mushy strawberries that you can put into porridge (cut up so it thaws in the porridge). I generally look at what fresh stuff needs to be used up next and cook trying to incorporate it. Freeze in portions that you're likely to eat (I know that seems obvious but it wasn't to me) - I freeze one-adult portions. I hate throwing away food. I even freeze tiny bits of leftover curry as the portions are always a little large for me - three loads of leftover curry in one tub = one cheeky mid-week curry for one!

PiperChapstick Tue 03-Nov-15 21:34:15

Get a food waste digester. My local authority has a scheme where I got mine for £15! They're better than composter you can put any food in.

Pinterest is your friend for re-use/up cycling. I love reusing, and once you put your mind to it it's easy. I've reused -
- Coke cans spray painted to make herb plant pots
- empty egg boxes to grow seeds
- I got a big soap and glory set for Xmas last year, painted the box and use it to store make up (with Clarks kids shoe boxes as little 'compartments' inside it)
- any tatty little bits like thread, old birthday cards and buttons to do crafts with DD
- Nescafé jars painted and turned into vases

Reusing is very addictive and good for involving kids too!

Love food hate waste website has the best tips and recipes for leftovers

ShamelessBreadAddict Tue 03-Nov-15 21:35:06

Avocado you could squeeze them for juice, or make an orange sauce from the juice, zest, cornflour and sugar for with poultry or fish (seabass and citrus is a thing I swears) and stick the sauce in the freezer maybe.

patterkiller Tue 03-Nov-15 21:37:54

Fridge tapas. As long as I have a chorizo, potatoes and tinned tomatoes and store cupboard herbs and spices I can make some very convincing tapas with the rest of the dying food on a Sunday night.

PiperChapstick Tue 03-Nov-15 21:39:24


KatyN Tue 03-Nov-15 21:40:30

But less tat. Sounds really obvious but since budgeting within an inch of our lives we have less stuff. Presents are thought out because there is a limit to how much you spend. I don.'to buy new clothes because I can't afford them. Patched a pair of my son's trousers last night.
We throw away less than a black bag a fortnight.. Way less actually probably about half a bag.

KatyN Tue 03-Nov-15 21:46:29

Oh and don't have a bin in each room. This was something I picked up from work to encourage recycling.. If there isn't a landfill option you might as well walk to another room to recycle it.

Sgtmajormummy Tue 03-Nov-15 21:47:44

Make your own notebooks from scrap paper that's been used on just one side. Mine are ripped down to A5 size, hole-punched on the non-ragged side and threaded with ribbon. Sometimes I cut down interesting cereal boxes for covers.

Just avoid using bank statements or sensitive material!

MuddyWellyNelly Tue 03-Nov-15 21:54:23

Secret Santa. Christmas used to be a ridiculous event in our family even for adults. Now we do a secret Santa so each person only buys for one adult. We spend more on that one person so you can get something decent and we take recommendations so we know it's wanted. And for younger kids its money in the bank rather than plastic tat.

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