Each month, the average family throws away £60 of good food, the majority of which could be eaten, says LoveFoodHateWaste. Anushka F, Freebie Finder at Magic Freebies – free stuff, free samples and more shares her top food and cash-saving tips with us.
1. Create a food-saving kit
Stock up on double-duty zip-lock bags and food containers to freeze and refrigerate leftovers. Ice-cube trays are also great for leftover condiments and herbs. Freezing leftover lemon juice and pesto for example not only saves waste but makes cooking a cinch.
2. Plan your meals in advance
Plan in advance, and make multiple meals from the ingredients - a batch of pasta can be popped in the freezer for use in pasta salad, soup and bakes! - and alternate between fresh and frozen ingredients. You can skip the frozen days when you make last-minute plans or fancy a takeaway.
3. Get creative with your leftovers
Remember – cook once and eat twice. When cooking always think of what you can make with extra ingredients or the leftovers. Today's leftover mash can be tomorrow's potato cakes! Try out delicious Beef and swede potato cakes made with leftover mash and beef.
4. Make your food go the distance
Ensure you're keeping food in the right place – use the Love Food Hate Waste guide to organising your fridge to keep food as fresh as possible. For instance, don't store bread in the fridge as it goes stale much quicker so instead, pop in a bread bin or cupboard. Also bananas, pineapples, potatoes and onions should be kept cool but not refrigerated. Once open, cheese and ham keep better if they're well wrapped by reclosing the pack, wrapping in cling film or foil or put in air-tight container. Use bread clips to keep air out and prevent food from going stale too soon.
5. Save your perishables before it’s too late!
It’s easy to forget about foods that are close to their use by date. Make sure you push all your newer foods to the back of your fridge and cupboards, and pull all the older foods to the front. Before you bin anything have a think of how you can save it – stale breads make delicious croutons. You could pop them on our Cinnamon spiced butternut squash soup!