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Your tips to reduce food waste

We each have things we do to make the most of our food. Maybe you make smoothies from brown bananas or your Mum has a special way of storing celery?

Tell us about it!
What do you do to reduce your food waste?
Share your tip!
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By: Justine, Auckland

9

Leftovers make good pizza toppings

I freeze small portions of leftover meats (eg two meatballs, half cup cooked chicken) to use as pizza toppings.

By: Donna, Invercargill

6

Don’t cook one night a week

I don’t prepare a meal from scratch one night per week, instead I empty the fridge and pantry of leftovers and any half consumed packets to pull together a meal or three.

By: Angela, Hawkes Bay

6

Turn crusts into breadcrumbs

I have two children who refuse to eat their crusts. We now have an uneaten bread and crusts bag in the freezer. Whenever it gets bulky we use the food processor to turn it into bread crumbs. While you’ve got the processor out, you can also easily pre-make crumble topping by just adding two tablespoons of butter to every 2-3 slices of bread. Freeze it in bags then when your fruit is starting to turn or you have more than you can eat, you have ready-made crumble ready to go.

By: Rod, Wellington

16

Turn leftover cereal into smoothies

Living with five children I’m on a tight budget, and was fed up with the half-eaten bowls of cereal and milk leftover from breakfasts and the half-eaten fruit that came home in the lunchboxes. So I put the breakfast leftovers in the fridge and combined them with the fruit to make after-school smoothies—this has proved popular with the kids and has saved me a lot!

8

Keep track of your leftovers

I used to put leftovers in the fridge, forget about them and then have to throw them away because they’d gone off. Now I’ve brought a magnetic whiteboard and I write what leftovers I put in the fridge and when they went in. This reminds me to eat them first and I don’t have to worry about trying to remember how old they are.

By: Ana Central Hawkes Bay

5

Freeze brown bananas

My favourite tip is to peel, cut and freeze spotty bananas and use them in smoothies.

By: Cayley, Tauranga

15

Keep track of older veges in your fridge

I used to waste heaps of vegetables that had gone soggy at the bottom of the vegetable drawer in the fridge. Now every time I put new vegetables in the fridge they go in the right bin, and I move the ones that were in there over to the left bin. When I go to cook a meal I first check the left bin to use up as much as I can from there before I use the newest vegetables that are in the right bin.

By: Wendy, Porirua

6

Have a “leftovers” shelf in your fridge

We now have a new rule in our house – all leftovers and left over ingredients get put on the top shelf of the fridge. That way we always see them and it prompts us to use them up before going for something else.

By: Rebecca, Tauranga

5

Keep fruit in the fridge

I used to keep fruit in a fruitbowl and occasionally things would go brown or mouldy. Now I keep most of my fruit in fridge, with only a few pieces in the fruit bowl that I can eat within a day or two.

By: Katharina, Kapiti

5

Going away? Leave food for a neighbour

If I’m going away and I have perishable food in my fridge, I will drop it around to a neighbour before I leave.

By: Justine, Auckland

12

Freeze leftover cheese

I freeze all the little bits of leftover hard cheese, cream cheese, feta and cream to add to a cheese sauce for cauliflower and macaroni cheese. I make sure to use the leaves and stalks of the cauliflower.

By: Lucy, Auckland

5

Grate and freeze courgettes

Grate courgettes when they are in season, freeze in small bags or containers, to be used in pizzas or other dishes.

By: Mary

7

Use carrots to thicken stew

Add grated carrot to a stew to thicken it and add some sweetness.

By: Paul, Auckland