Food Waste Reduction Checklist
There are tons of ways you can reduce food waste at home.
Start by filling out the form below and making your official commitment to being a food waste champion! Then, pick and choose from the following strategies that work best for you to implement at home.
Become a Food Waste Champion
Before You Shop
- Organize your fridge/pantry so you can easily see what ingredients you have and what needs to be used up first.
- Make a meal plan and shopping list so you’re only buying what you know you’ll eat.
- Holidays are a big trigger for food waste. Follow these tips to help prevent holiday food waste:
- Plan: Not sure how much food to make? Visit savethefood.com/guestimator
- Stay Strong: Once you have your grocery list, resist the urge to add “a little extra” to your cart.
- Play Matchmaker: Choose recipes that come in larger sizes.
- Be Honest: Discourage Guests from bringing dishes you know no one will eat and suggest other options.
- Downsize Dishware: Use smaller serving spoons to help guests moderate the amount of food they take.
- Store & Label: Stick masking tape on containers to identify what’s inside and when you should eat it.
- “FIFO” Your Fridge: Use the “first in, first out” method to eat food before it has to be tossed.
Smart Grocery Shopping & Storage
- Stick to your grocery list and avoid the temptation to over-buy when there’s a discount—if it’s more than you can eat, it’s not a good deal!
- Make sure you’re storing food properly when you bring it home. Tomatoes are best kept on the counter, potatoes should be kept out of the sun, and herbs like to be stored in the fridge wrapped in a damp cloth. Learn more about how to store all your produce.
- Try other preservation techniques to make your food last even longer. Learn about techniques like freezing, canning, pickling, and fermenting.
- Get creative! Use the ingredients you already have on hand to determine what to make. Make sure to use foods that have a shorter shelf life first.
- Flexible recipes like soups, salads, frittatas, or stir-fries are a great way to use up lots of extra produce.
- Save veggie scraps like carrot peels, celery ends, and garlic/onion skins to make veggie stock (store them in the freezer until you have enough).
After You Eat
- Save your leftovers and eat them. Don’t always love leftovers? Try heating them up in the same way you cooked them or using them as a starter ingredient for a brand new meal
- Freeze any foods you won’t eat right away to extend their shelf life. Date and label it so you know what it is and when to eat it.
- Compost any leftover scraps that you can’t eat. Learn how to get started with composting.