Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This page may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something that I have recommended. There is no additional cost to you whatsoever.
If you’ve hassle utilizing perishable meals earlier than it spoils, you’re definitely not alone. Approximately 133 billion pounds of meals waste is generated within the U.S. every year, and a whopping 39 p.c of Americans say they really feel responsible about losing meals.
According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, about two-thirds of family meals waste is because of spoilage. So, that will help you in the reduction of on wasted meals (and inflated grocery payments), Earth911 compiled this listing of inventive kitchen instruments that will help you maintain meals more energizing, longer.
And if you happen to’re on a decent finances or would moderately not purchase new, we’ve additionally supplied useful DIY alternate options for every of those enjoyable, food-saving devices.
This article accommodates affiliate hyperlinks that assist fund our Recycling Directory, probably the most complete in North America. If you buy an merchandise via one among these hyperlinks, we are going to obtain a small fee.
1. Vegetable Keep Sacks
Did you understand that storing some vegetables — comparable to potatoes, onions, and garlic — within the fridge can really make them spoil sooner? Most root greens maintain longest in a dry place that’s cool however not as chilly as the typical fridge.
Since most of us don’t have a root cellar, one of the best ways to offer root veggies an extended shelf-life is to maintain them cool and away from mild — to assist forestall sprouting.
Evriholder’s maintain sacks for potato, onion, and garlic make it simple to maintain your veggies at midnight. Simply add veggies on the prime, and take away them from the underside after they’re prepared to make use of.
DIY Alternative: If you’d moderately not purchase a brand new merchandise to protect your veggies, merely retailer onions and potatoes in paper or cloth baggage in a cabinet or pantry. Skip the plastic baggage; paper and cloth are extra breathable, which helps forestall spoilage.
Tip: Don’t retailer potatoes and onions collectively. As potatoes ripen, they offer off moisture and gases that trigger onions to spoil extra quickly.
2. Cheese Vault
Cheese is a kind of meals that’s typically troublesome to maintain recent. If your cheddar, Gouda, and Parmesan cheeses aren’t creating mould, they’re typically turning into mushy or drying out, which is equally unappetizing. Experts will steer you away from plastic wrap, which may suffocate your cheese and switch an disagreeable plastic taste.
The Cheese Vault by CapaBunga permits cheese to breathe and prevents moisture buildup, preserving your cheese recent and attractive longer.
Made of reusable, BPA-free silicone, the Cheese Vault makes it simple to maintain monitor of how lengthy you’ve had your cheese. Write the cheese title and date on the label finish with a ballpoint pen. It simply wipes off to label your subsequent cheese.
DIY Alternative: To assist protect cheese and not using a shopping for a brand new gadget, wrap cheese securely in wax paper earlier than storing it within the fridge. This technique permits the cheese to breathe with out letting in extra moisture or odors out of your fridge.
3. Pop Containers
Storing half-empty baggage of cereal, pretzels, and different dry meals in your pantry typically leaves them stale, tasteless, and — let’s simply say it — fairly gross.
Avoid tossing stale snacks, pasta, and different pantry picks by transferring dry meals into air-tight containers after you’ve opened the unique packaging.
These ‘Pop’ Containers from OXO can be found in 11 completely different stackable sizes and styles for straightforward pantry group. The revolutionary pop-button mechanism creates an hermetic seal and doubles as a deal with.
DIY Alternative: To keep away from shopping for new, choose up just a few Mason jars out of your native thrift store for air-tight pantry storage. Or, rescue just a few giant glass jars, comparable to these used to bundle pickles and pasta sauce, out of your recycling bin for reuse as storage options.
4. Bread Preserver Box
There’s nothing fairly like freshly-baked bread. But how do you retain your bread, bagels, rolls, and different baked items recent longer?
Depending on the place you name house, the air in your kitchen can dry out your bread, inflicting it to change into stale. In extra humid climates, baked items could change into too moist and start creating mould sooner than standard.
So, what’s a greenie to do? Contrary to fashionable perception, storing bread within the fridge really makes it spoil more quickly. The inside of your fridge attracts moisture out of baked items, inflicting them to go stale. Your finest guess is to retailer bread on the kitchen counter utilizing a container that regulates airflow.
This Expandable Bread Keeper from Progressive expands as much as 11 inches to accommodate most loaf sizes. It options an adjustable vent that regulates airflow and retains baked items recent.
DIY Alternative: Wrap your baked items in a fabric bag, tea towel, or old pillowcase and retailer it on the counter in an airtight container, like a repurposed popcorn tin. If you’re not going to eat your bread inside just a few days, wrap it and freeze it earlier than it begins to say no in high quality.
5. Fresh Herb Preserver
Just like fresh-cut flowers, recent herbs saved with a supply of water will retain their taste and texture for longer than if saved unfastened within the fridge or on a countertop.
The NOVART Glass Fresh Herb Keeper permits herbs to face upright and comfortably spaced with their stems immersed in water for hydration. For comfort, the Herb Keeper additionally suits snugly inside your fridge door.
DIY Alternative: Soft herbs comparable to parsley, basil, and cilantro keep recent longest when stored on the counter in a glass with about an inch of water. Trim the stems earlier than you place your herbs within the glass. For an extended shelf-life, wrap non-leafy herbs like rosemary, sage, and thyme in a moistened towel and retailer in a reusable purchasing bag within the fridge.
6. Garlic Keeper
Much like vampires, garlic prefers the darkness. Both light and moisture can cause mold to develop. And refrigerating garlic may cause it to sprout and style bitter. For finest outcomes, retailer garlic in a dry, darkish place with loads of air circulation.
To take the guesswork out of storing your garlic, take a look at this nifty Garlic Keeper, which retains your tasty bulbs at midnight for max freshness. Specialized holes permit for the correct air flow garlic wants to remain recent, eliminating undesirable oxidation and moisture.
DIY Alternative: To mimic the impact of this cool Garlic Keeper with out shopping for a brand-new merchandise, retailer your garlic in a darkish location with good air circulation, comparable to inside your pantry.
Tip: Don’t retailer garlic in a sealed container. Fresh bulbs may be saved in a wire or mesh basket or perhaps a paper bag. Just ensure your bulbs are away from daylight and getting loads of air for a recent chunk for weeks to come back.
7. Onion Saver
Figuring out find out how to retailer reduce onions correctly is a typical kitchen conundrum. Sure, you need to save that unused onion from final evening’s dinner. But onions perish rapidly after they’ve been reduce, and it may possibly typically be tough to recollect to make use of them earlier than they spoil.
Once you’ve reduce an onion, you need to at all times switch it from pantry storage to the fridge to maintain it recent. Too a lot air may cause uncovered onion to oxidize, resulting in discoloration and a not-so-tasty taste, so that you’ll additionally need to go for an air-tight container for storage.
The Cut & Keep Onion Saver by OXO has a lid of stretchy silicone to regulate to the dimensions of your reduce onion. It snaps shut to seal, so you possibly can put the onion in your fridge with out inflicting a pungent scenario. This cute Onion Saver is nice for conserving fridge area, and it additionally makes that reduce onion stand out from the remainder of the stuff in your fridge, reminding you to make use of it extra rapidly.
DIY Alternative: If you’d moderately not purchase new, any air-tight storage container will accomplish the identical job.
8. Avocado Holder
After you’ve reduce an avocado in half, how do you save the opposite half from turning brown with out utilizing plastic wrap?
The BPA-free plastic of the Evriholder Avo Saver covers the reduce fringe of an avocado half, pit and all. A sturdy rubber strap holds the Avo Saver securely to the avocado, lowering air publicity, slowing the oxidation course of, and preserving the fruit from turning brown too rapidly. Your avocado half is even safe sufficient strapped into the Avo Saver you could carry it in your lunch bag or picnic basket with out fear.
DIY Alternative: Place a halved pink onion onion in an hermetic container together with your reduce avocado and refrigerate. The sulfur from the onion will assist forestall oxidation and protect the inexperienced of your avocado. Another choice is to position the avocado in a container near-full with water, with the flesh facet down. Cover the container and place it within the fridge.
9. Fruit and Vegetable Keepers
Some produce picks, together with lettuce, greens, and berries, at all times are likely to spoil earlier than others. Reclaim all that hard-to-preserve produce with good storage options that may prolong shelf-life by as much as two weeks.
These useful Fruit and Vegetable Keepers from Progressive International function an adjustable vent that permits for air regulation to retain optimum produce freshness. Keep air vents open for produce like asparagus, carrots, berries, and mushrooms, and shut them up for lettuce, peas, greens, grapes, and peppers.
A water reservoir within the base of the containers retains produce moist, and the entire thing doubles as a colander for straightforward washing and storing.
DIY Alternative: Storing every produce choose in accordance with its wants is one of the best ways to make sure most freshness. Check out Vegetarian Times’ produce storage guide to learn the way to correctly retailer all of your fruits and veggies for higher taste and an extended shelf-life.
10. Vacuum Sealer
Vacuum sealers are immeasurably useful for preserving meals recent. With the contact of a button, these nifty machines seal meals inside an hermetic vacuum bag or canister for storing within the fridge, freezer, or pantry.
So, you need to use a vacuum sealer to retailer leftovers from final evening’s dinner within the fridge, seal ready sauces for pantry storage, or maintain in-season produce within the freezer for months to come back.
Keep in thoughts that vacuum sealers generally is a bit pricier than the opposite devices on our listing (most vary from $100 to $300). But many house cooks say the food-saving advantages are effectively well worth the funding.
DIY Alternative: It’s powerful to copy the food-saving results of a vacuum sealer. But if you happen to’re seeking to obtain related outcomes with out shopping for new (or spending further money), take a look at this creative DIY method from Kitchn, which helps you seal up your meals with a straw and a plastic freezer bag.
Originally printed on March 4, 2016, this text was up to date in April 2021.