When trying to cut household costs, reducing food wastage is a great place to start! After all, when you waste food, you’re wasting money.
Here are 8 simple tips from Donegal Nutritionist Sorcha McElchar from Sorchas Healthy Living to decrease food wastage AND save money.
- First, don’t wash your fresh fruit and vegetables straight away. This causes them to go off quicker. Of course, wash them when you are preparing them, but when you buy them just remove the packaging (if there is any), and shore them.
- You know when you buy salad greens and unless you use them that day, they go all mushy and soggy?? Well, removing the packaging, storing in an airtight container with a paper towel should help them stay fresh for longer. The paper towel removes the excess moisture, which is one of the elements that causes the greens to go off.
- Fresh herbs can make a dish, but unless you grow them at home yourself, they can be expensive. You can buy fresh herbs without buying the whole plant but like most fresh things they don’t stay fresh for long. A trick is to use an ice cube tray, fill each section ¾ full of stock or water and sprinkle some fresh herbs. Freeze thee and then when you need them you can pop one out and into your dish!
- Tinned and canned foods are not something to turn your nose up at! Canned fish, beans, sweetcorn…. these foods can help make your diet more balanced and nutritious. Plus, side, they are so inexpensive AND have long shelf lives!
- Make sure you store your onions and garlic away from other foods. They release a substance called ethylene which causes other foods to go off. Store them in a separate compartment n your fridge, or if you have a larder keep them away from other foods.
- Use your freezer! If you have a freezer, use it to store leftovers. That way you’ll always have homecooked meals ready to just be defrosted and heated. You can also use your freezer for frozen fruit and vegetables which will cut back on wastage too.
- Don’t store bread in the fridge, contrary to what most people believe it does NOT keep it fresher for longer. It causes it to go stale faster. Store it in an airtight container at room temperature and this should keep it fresh for as long as it should stay fresh. Bread is not a long shelf-life product anyway. If it says fresh for more than a few days it probably contains loads of preservatives. Also, don’t just throw away bread if it’s stale. It’s fine for toast, and it’s perfect to make breadcrumbs which can be used to make homemade goujons and loads of other things!
- Storing tomatoes in the fridge should slow down the ripening process and keep them firm for longer. Once again when the tomatoes go soft that doesn’t mean they are inedible. You can use them to make an amazing versatile tomatoes-based sauce which you can use on pasta, as a pizza topping, as a bruschetta topping etc.
If you find these tips useful then be sure to check out my Budget Healthy Eating playlist, it has loads of videos on how you can eat well without spending a fortune!
Check out my Blog www.sorchashealthyliving.com for some easy to follow Recipe ideas, and if you would like a more personalised one-to-one service check out my service page where I offer Nutrition Consultation, Nutrition Packages and Personalised Nutrition Plans.