So, you’ve decided to take steps towards a more sustainable life. You’ve found an amazing local bulk shop, you’ve figured out which grocery stores don’t wrap their veggies in plastic, you’ve return home with your canvas totes full of amazing whole food options. Now...how are you going to keep it all fresh?
Before you go reaching for old yogurt containers, it’s important to note that, while only #7 plastic may contain BPA, a recent study in Environmental Health Perspectives showed that actually all types of plastics used in food containers can release estrogenic activators (yikes) if you keep reusing them or reheating them. So let’s explore some new healthy options:
1) Beeswax Wraps
Beeswax food wraps are, of course, our top choice for preserving the majority of foods (we’re only a little biased!). But seriously, fruits and veggies, crackers and snacks, prepared sandwiches, baked goods, covering leftovers, the list goes on and on. And while it may seem like you can pretty much store anything in a beeswax wrap, there are a few foods that are better off in a different container. I’m looking at you, soup!
2) Glass Containers
From the aforementioned soup to leftovers and salads, large glass bowls and lidded containers are an incredible plastic-free way to store food. If your glass container doesn’t come with a lid, just pop a wax wrap on it. (I warned you we were biased!)
3) Metal Containers
Inspired by the traditional Indian lunch box, the Tiffin, you can find all shapes and sizes of stainless steel food containers. These are great options for taking leftovers for lunch, as they’re lighter and less fragile than a glass lunchbox. They’re equally great in the home for storing spices and other dry goods.
4) Mason Jars
What can’t you do with a mason jar?! Sure, they’re amazing for pantry items and, well, pickles. But they’re also handy for storing chopped veggies and salads for lunch (they’re leak-proof!) and they’re really great for freezing things. Did you know you can freeze glass? Just make sure you let whatever’s inside completely cool down first and that you leave a nice amount of empty space at the top for it to expand.
5) Cooking Pots
This one seems almost too obvious to mention. Next time you cook up your world famous chili, just let it cool, pop on the lid, and put it in the fridge. There’s no need to add any other containers into this process. You can also use a pot and lid to store meats, pasta and any other leftovers.
The original food storage container! You can totally buy beautiful ceramics with lids, specifically for food storage, like a kimchi pot, or… you can just turn a plate upside down on a bowl (did I just blow your mind?!). We’ve all done it, you know why? Because it works!
It’s easy to get into a routine of reaching for plastic wraps, zippy bags and tupperware containers. But as you can see, it’s really no harder to swap those out for smarter, more sustainable and longer lasting options.