Food waste is major problem in America. More than 40% of the food produced in America is never eaten and the average American spends roughly $1,500 a year on wasted food. And on top of that, 90% of food scraps in the United States go to landfills. So what can be done about this? In terms of food waste, try not to go to the grocery store hungry. But there are also some ways to turn those food scraps that you will inevitably end up with into something actually useful.
Make Vegetable Scraps Into A Vegetable Broth
This little hack will also save you some money. All you have to do is save all of your scraps like onion ends, broccoli stalks, asperagus ends, carrot chunks, and some herbs you grew but never got to use. After you’ve saved up a nice sized ziplock bag full of these scraps, simply put them all into a pot with water, and heat them with a light boil for an hour or so, stirring occasionally. Then strain out the broth and put it into mason jars. The broth will last a week in a fridge, or 3 months in the freezer.
Turn Potato Skins Into A Snack
While some people believe in eating potato skins, many of us don’t and simply throw out these nutrient-rich shells. But you might actually be missing out on a delicious snack. Take your potato skins and place them on a baking sheet. Then, douse them in olive oil, salt, and pepper. Heat them at 400*F for 18-20 minutes, flipping halfway through. Add some cheese and you’ll have an awesome, light and nutritious snack.
Make Canned Pumpkin Into Dog Treats
In the fall, you’ll likely get swept up into the pumpkin spice trend. And that means, you’ll have some extra canned pumpkin leftover. It’s inevitable. So what can you do with canned pumpkin instead of throwing it out? Make a treat for your pup. Dogs love pumpkin and it’s great for them. Just mix canned pumpkin with unsalted peanut butter and oat flour. Then, turn it into a dough. After that, roll it out and cut it into the shape you want. Then, bake in the oven at 350*F for 8-10 minutes. You just saved some would-be waste, and your dog will be sure to thank you for it. Good human.
Turn Egg Shells Into A Supplement For Your Dog
Egg shells are probably the most ubiquitous food scrap in America. It’s likely that you’ve thrown out pounds upon pounds of egg shells every year. But no more. You can turn those egg shells into an incredibly useful source of calcium for your dog. First wash out the egg white from the shell, but keep the membrane in there. Then, lay them out to dry. After that, grind them up in a coffee grinder and place them in a ziplock bag. It’ll be good for 2 months. You can use about a quarter to a half teaspoon to your dog’s food. But ask your veterinarian for more specific doses.
These are just a few ways to make use of specific food scraps. But there are surely methods of saving just about any food waste in your kitchen. If you notice you’re tossing a lot of a certain item, try doing a quick google search to see what else you could do with it.