A Guide To Reducing Food Waste – It’s Not As Hard As You Think

food waste

Is there a more annoying moment of realization than when you discover your veggies from last week’s grocery shop just wilting away in your crisper? You had great intentions to ‘eat the rainbow’ and purchased a wide variety of seasonal veg, but the working week got in the way of your cooking aspirations and suddenly, your veggies are about a day away from ending up in the bin and you’ve wasted food you didn’t need to.

To assist this, Suncorp Bank has teamed up with OzHarvest to launch the Food Savings Challenge to show you ways to reduce food waste at home. The challenge includes tips like using OzHarvest’s ‘Use It Up Tape’ to mark your properly stored produce and keep it visible, minimizing wastage and reducing the need to replace expired or spoiled foods.

Now, all you need are some tips for using up that highly-visible food. Well, you’ve come to the right place!

Boil Those Veggies For Pasta Sauce

pasta sauce vegetables
Credit: Adobe Stock

One of the easiest ways to use up a bunch of veg from your crisper, and cut back on food waste, is to steam or boil them and blend with a can of tomatoes from your cupboard to create a nutrient-dense pasta sauce. Veggies that work especially well for this trick include zucchini, capsicum, eggplant, squash and mushrooms. Even better, sauces like this one freeze especially well, so you can make a solid quantity and portion it off in little containers to be frozen for a rainy day. Future you will thank you!

Use Leftover Veggies for a Soup

soup vegetables
Credit: Adobe Stock

Maybe you did find time to grill some of those veggies and serve them as a side dish, but now you’re unsure of how to use up the leftovers (but still want to cut back on food waste.) A great tip for reducing this kind of waste is to throw them in a soup with some olive oil, stock and seasoning and bam! A whole new, nutrient-dense and warming meal from one set of ingredients that can be made almost entirely in your blender. We love a bonus easy clean-up. 

Frittatas Are Your Friends

frittata vegetables
Credit: Adobe Stock

Now, if you’ve got a few containers of cooked vegetables or leftover pasta, combine them into a crowd-pleasing frittata and give them a delicious second life. Better yet, frittatas need eggs to bind their ingredients, so this meal is a bonus in terms of using up things you have taking up space in your fridge. A bit of seasoning to taste and voilà, you’ve got a brand new meal that is very freezer-friendly. 

If you’re unsure where you sit on the scale of ‘savvy saver’ to ‘needs some help,’ take The Suncorp Bank Food Savings Challenge and see where you land on the Food Savings scale. You’ll learn how to reduce your food waste, save your money AND use up those leftovers.