Preventing Food Waste at Home

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Believe it or not, Americans manage to waste about 40% of this nation's food. Harvard reported that some 52 million tons of food just ends up in our landfills each year.

There are simple ways you can reduce food waste in your own household which can also save you money.

Buy two items, freeze one. When you take advantage of store sales for everything from baked goods to meats, be sure to immediately freeze the extra one. As long as the item is sealed well, it could typically last three months in the freezer. The USDA offers a guide to how long you can freeze various foods.

Bake two smaller casserole dishes, freeze one. Baked dishes last only about three days in the refrigerator. But if you freeze one complete dish, that can be available for months.

Make serving sizes fun for kids. Try serving with something like silicone cupcake liners to make serving up veggies fun for kids. This could mean more of those veggies get eaten instead of left on the plate.

Use restaurant leftovers for tomorrow's lunch. A reminder here that restaurant portions are often larger than recommended anyway. So, saving that leftover food could provide you a budget-conscious lunch.

Compost peelings if you have a way to properly dispose of them in your own backyard. This keeps food waste out of the garbage and, ultimately, the landfill.