Do you feel like a lot of the food that you buy ends up going to waste? Is it a struggle to cook and use most of the food that you buy before it goes bad?

I get it! This is a huge struggle for a lot of people. I used to struggle with this a lot and would get really frustrated when my husband and I would waste a lot of the food that we bought. Now I have a lot of tips and tricks that help me with using all of the food before it goes bad! But that doesn’t mean that I’m perfect. Just last weekend we had gone to the store on Thursday and I had also pulled a lot of things out of the freezer. We had just gotten home from traveling and I was restocking the kitchen. Well Friday I started to come down with a really bad cold and the LAST thing I felt like doing was cooking! So, sometimes things don’t go as planned, and that’s okay. But there are lots of things that you can do to keep your fruits and veggies fresh, and a lot of actions you can take to prevent waste!

The last thing we want to do when cooking and eating healthy is spend money on food just for it to go to waste, right? Or maybe you end up spending a lot of TIME cooking and prepping and then you don’t use those food. Time and money are valuable, so we don’t want them to go to waste! So, what can we do? First off, let’s talk about fresh fruits and veggies. You always want fresh if you can, but if a lot of it goes to waste, you can buy frozen or canned that doesn’t have all the extra/added ingredients! That is better than nothing/food going to waste! But, there are some tricks that you can use to keep your fruits and veggies fresh for longer!

Tips for keeping produce fresh:

Blueberries – don’t rinse; layer in a container lined with paper towels; leave a crack in the lid for excess moisture to escape; and store in the fridge.

Strawberries – don’t rinse; cut tops off; layer in an airtight container lined with paper towels; and keep in the fridge.

Cantaloupe/watermelon – cut into cubes and store in an airtight container in the fridge.

Apples – keep apples away from other produce and store in the fridge.

Avocados – let ripen on the counter and then store in the fridge.

Eggplant – store at room temperature.

Asparagus – snap ends off; put in mason jar with cold water, and store in the fridge.

Onions and potatoes – store in a cool, dark, dry place.

Mushrooms – store in fridge (not washed).

Leafy green veggies – store in fridge.

These are some ways to keep your produce fresh for as long as possible to prevent waste. Other than this, one thing you can do is to clean and organize your fridge each time you get groceries. This helps you to know what you have, what you didn’t use last time, and gives you a good starting point for prepping/organizing your fridge using the tips above. You can also use an instant pot to easily cook large quantities of meats or veggies that need to be used. An instant pot saves you a lot of time and also cooks foods pretty quickly if you need something quick for dinner.

After you get home from the store, do your prep for your fruits and veggies and then chop up the veggies you know need to be cooked. Toss them with olive oil, seasonings, and roast in the oven! This gives you pre-cooked veggies – that normally take a little longer – for snacks or meals.

If healthy food, cooking, and prep is hard for you, join me over on Patreon @healthmyfriend. I post weekly meal plans, grocery lists, and recipes for people like you who need help/ideas! But no matter what, remember that you CAN do this, and food is your friend! Don’t get frustrated, just implement different routines that will help you save time, money, and waste! And reach out if you need help.

*Disclaimer: The views expressed by the writer are in their personal capacity only and aren’t to be replaced with medical advise.

Abby Horst

A podcaster, wife, health/wellness coach, beach lover, and musician. She specialises in nutrition education, meal planning, and developing sustainable habits. She passionately works with her patients to help them build healthier and happier relationships with food, exercise, and themselves.

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