Thrive

Everyday Dairy Free Living

Cut Kitchen Waste with 5 Easy Ways to Upcycle your Scraps

Food waste is a huge concern these days. With an estimated 40% of food produced in the U.S. going uneaten, it’s important that we all do our part to help minimize waste and reuse as much as possible. But, with a little creativity, it’s possible to find a use for all sorts of common kitchen scraps. If you are throwing away things like broccoli stalks, carrot peels, avocado pits, citrus peels, and wilted herbs, then we’ve got five fun reasons for you to save them and put them to use in your home one more time!

1. Broccoli Stalk “Noodles”:

If you’re a fan of “zoodles” aka: noodles made from spiraled zucchini, then you’re going to love this idea. Plus, it’s another fun way to use that fun spiralizer tool. Start Saving the stalks from broccoli and cauliflower and store them in your freezer until you have 3-4 (or enough for your family). Spiralize them up (like we did here) and serve with your favorite sauce!

Noodles made from broccoli stalks!

2. Herbs at the Ready:

Is it just us, or are those bunches of cilantro just too big? If you can use it all up in time then more power to you, but if you find yourself with extra fresh herbs each week, try freezing some in ice cube trays with culinary coconutmilk. The heavy coconutmilk is a great addition to curries, stir-frys, and soups. If your dish would welcome some creamy tarragon or rosemary, it’s really nice to have a cube handy in a pinch!

keep herbs fresh in culinary coconutmilk

3. DIY Citrus Peel Cleaner:

Store bought cleaners can be cluttered with chemicals and dyes. You can make your own with white vinegar and water but it’s nice to have just a hint of natural fragrance. Enter citrus peels. These fragrant scraps are the perfect infusion to your homemade cleaner. Throw in the peels of a few oranges, lemons or limes, and maybe some cinnamon sticks, cloves or star anise and you’ll have a nice cleaner ready for tomorrow! We recommend a vinegar to water ratio of 1:2.

homemade all purpose cleaner made with leftover citrus peels

4. Avocado Pit Body Scrub:

We’re serious. The pit of the avocado is pretty underrated. It’s packed with fiber and has a nice nutty texture/behavior when ground up.

Turn your cleanser into a homemade scrub by adding dried avocado pit

Start saving your avocado pits, rinse them off, and leave them out in the sun for a few days. Use a high powered blender to grind them up, then transfer to a coffee grinder or mortar and pestle to get it as fine as you can. If you’re in a pinch, you can also dry the pits in the oven for a couple hours at 200 degrees.

To add some extra exfoliating power to your favorite cleanser, add 1 Tbsp. of the finely ground avocado pit per 3oz of cleanser!

5. Make Broth:

Don’t be intimidated. Homemade vegetable broth is totally doable and can even be made in the slow cooker! Try saving scraps such as your carrot peels, potato peels, herb stems, mushroom stems, onion ends, and celery leaves throughout the week. We like to store them in a 1 gallon jar (or bag) in the freezer until we’ve accumulated enough to make a batch of broth. When you have about a gallon of scraps, place them in your crockpot with 1 tsp. of vinegar, 1 tsp. of oil and enough water to cover. Leave on low for 12-24 hours before straining your homemade broth into a large glass container. It’s now safe to toss what’s left of the scraps into the bin.

Save your scraps. Homemade vegetable broth made from things you are likely throwing away

 

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