Planning Meals and Shopping

Six steps to reducing food waste at home

It’s easy to reduce the amount of food you throw out. Following these six steps will help you fight food waste at home as well as save you money, help you eat well and reduce your carbon footprint.

  • Knowing how much food you throw away is one of the best ways to motivate yourself to take action. To work it out, take a container and put all your food waste in it, including plate scraps, leftovers and food that’s gone bad. Measure how full the container is after two days and make a note of the amount, so you can compare your results later on.

  • A bit of planning will not only save you time and money but also help you and your family enjoy a healthy and balanced diet. 

    Think about what meals you’d like to cook for the week ahead and write down the ingredients for each recipe. How you plan meals is up to you. You can start by planning three dinners or every meal for the whole week. Look at what ingredients can be used in more than one meal, such as mince in spaghetti bolognese one night and tacos the next day. Check what you already have in the fridge, freezer and cupboards that can be used up.

  • Plan for a successful shopping trip and make a list of what you need before you go. Check the fridge and pantry to make sure you’re not doubling up on ingredients. Try to plan meals that include fruit and vegetables that are in season, as they keep fresher for longer and are usually cheaper.

    It’s a good idea not to shop when you’re hungry, as it’s much harder to resist impulse buys.

    Don’t forget to grab your reusable shopping bags before you hit the shops!

  • Cooking or preparing the right amount of food is one of the best ways to save money and reduce food waste. You can follow a recipe or use a serving size calculator to measure the amount of food you need. Our hands are also a ‘handy’ guide to show how much we need to cook. 

    Visit Love Food Hate Waste UK for their handy portion planner.

  • Storing food correctly will keep it fresher for longer, so you can reduce the amount of food (and money) that you throw away. It also preserves the nutrients in your food and keeps it tasting delicious. Here are some tips to keep your food fresh.

  • Leftovers can make a quick, easy and delicious meal. You’ll give the food in your fridge a second chance and reduce your shopping bill too. When planning your meals, check what leftovers you have that need to be used up. All it takes is a staple like rice or pasta and a bit of creativity to create an entirely new meal.

    Before eating your leftovers, make sure you heat them till they’re piping hot to ensure it’s safe to eat.

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