Planning & Shopping
Enjoy the Summer, ditch the Food Waste
Summer time is great, but it often means routines are thrown out the window. Between juggling childcare needs, working from home, last-minute picnics and trips to the beach, it’s really hard to plan regular and healthy meals on a daily basis. Granny and Grandad want to buy something nice for little ones, we’re all snacking on the go and that ice cream really looks good! All this means that at mealtimes the kids don’t have their full appetites, but then they are hungry later when the ‘kitchen is closed’. All this can lead to food waste.
So what do we do? Here are a few handy solutions with more details below.
- Make sure everybody eats something healthy before heading out.
- Give smaller portions at meals – e.g. half-burgers at BBQs.
- Expect smallies to eat less than you want them to eat – they’re too busy having fun!
- Watch out for the snacks, especially before main meals – keep a close eye on Granny and Grandad…
- Small sized fruit are great for kids – there’s less waste and they are more likely to be eaten.
- Split food (e.g. fruit) between kids.
- While a degree of firmness is essential when it comes to eating main meals, if the kids don’t want to eat their food now, put it in the fridge for eating later. Food goes off more quickly in summer and fruit flies are everywhere. Don’t forget to put it in the fridge!
Kids and sauce
Whether it’s tomato sauce, chocolate sauce or mayo, kids love sauces. But they don’t always finish what is put on their plate. A good way around this is to keep a small jar for what’s left over. Red sauce flies out of squeezy bottles so keep a jar handy and use what’s left over at the next meal.
Packets of cold meat
Sandy sandwiches at the beach can mean a lot of half-used packets of ham, salami or chicken. Buying sliced meat from the butchers can be handy as it gives you more control over the amount you buy each time. It also costs a little more which is a great incentive to use it all up! ‘Reseal’ packaging doesn’t always work well, so be sure not to allow any exposure of cold meat. In summer keep food refrigerated in airtight containers or wrapped tightly in reusable Ziplock bags or aluminium foil.
When the heat is on
In the summer be sure to keep your veg in the fridge. The cool dry cupboard you might use during the winter is a lot warmer in the summer. Shelves are brighter too, and vegetables are allergic to sunlight. So use your fridge!
Due to Covid-19 restrictions, it might not always be easy to get seats for a family lunch on a day out. A small camping ring and a few bits from the fridge can mean a fun meal for all the family. Just find some shelter and don’t forget the napkins.
Where you can use your leftover dips
- Salsa – Spread on toast, melt cheese on top: quick margarita pizza toast. Yum!
- Guacamole – Eat it with your chips at dinner time. Mix it with your scrambled eggs for breakfast time. Avocados cost a lot, don’t let them go off.
- Sour cream – Lash it on your baked potato or use to thicken up a soup.
Rule of thumb for the Family BBQ
- Don’t overdo the salads. It’s hard for people to see past them to what’s on the grill.
- One tub of coleslaw will be fine. No one ever left a BBQ because there was not enough coleslaw.
- Don’t throw out leftover cooked meat. Cold chicken wings are as good as hot ones and burgers can be easily chopped up, heated and used as a pizza topping or a kebab filler.
- Count your burgers and buns. If you are cooking eight burgers, buy eight buns. If you can only buy six buns in a pack, buy two baps from the bread section. Leftover buns are the scourge of the BBQ!