Going low-waste and reducing food waste can be overwhelming, especially when a lot is happening in the world. It’s important to remember that the small steps are the ones that count. Plus, there are a lot of ways to get started, and there is an endless list of ways to start living low-waste, but what about finding your own way to live low waste. There’s no one way to start and continue the journey to low waste living, and there’s no one way to live it. So, how can you start your own journey to low waste? Check out these tips below!
Source: TEDx Talks/Youtube
And, if you’re looking for even more recipes and ways to live low to zero waste, these roundups and articles are where you should head next: 10 Low-Waste Recipes Using Stems, Stalks, and Leaves, Simple Guide to Waste-Free Grocery Shopping for Earth Day!, 10 Green Pledges to Take for Earth Day!
Start with What You Have Available
This looks different for everyone. If you’re a person that loves buying scallions or green onions, you can stick them in some water and regrow them! If you’re a person that wants to start composting and buying locally, look at ways to do that in your community. Look for a farmer’s market or if your community has a place to drop off food scraps. If not, and you’re a person that wants to start something like that, grab a few friends and go for it!
Scout Out Your Single-Use Items
Look for where you’ve got single-use items around and learn how you can replace them. Before you toss out all your single-use items, you can continue using them until their gone, but in the meantime, learn what ways you can change them. If you eat out a lot, see if you can bring your coffee cup or container to your favorite places. Or, if that’s not an option, see if you can get a reusable straw or even bring your utensils from home to start!
Learn about Growing and Regrowing Foods
Growing your food is a great way to start living low-waste but if you’re not a person who’s great a growing or even potting plants, check out different ways to grow, like learning how to sprout in a jar! Even just using the ends of your stems and putting them in water to see what you can produce is a wonderful start.
Clean Out Your Pantry
Periodically do a sweep of items in your kitchen that need to be finished. Did you make a recipe that has a few leftover ingredients like ginger or lemon? Don’t let it go to waste! You can make tea out of many herbs and spices that you have leftover! Even if you have extra coffee or coconut milk leftover, you can make them into ice cubes and toss them in a smoothie or make ice cream!
If your bananas are getting a bit too ripe, make them into delicious banana bread or a creamy nice cream! This tip doesn’t just apply to whole foods but to other groceries, as well. Make sure that you’re eating what you’re buying and finishing the things you have open. This time of year is perfect for doing a pantry clean-out and seeing what recipes you can make from what you have! Plus, if you’re wanting to find ways to grocery shop after you’ve spiffed up your pantry and fridge, check out this roundup for tips.
Manage your Expectations
The first step to living low-waste is being aware and knowing what you can do to help. It’s okay if you’re just doing one small thing in your life to reduce your waste. With the planet in trouble, it feels like big changes are the answer, and they can be, but those big changes start with starting small and living within your means. You don’t have to go out and buy three cases of mason jars or suddenly throw out all your paper towels and replace them with rags. Focus on one thing at a time, and choose what works most sustainably for you.
Start with these Delicious Vegan Eats:
Source: Green Smoothie for Glowy Skin
- Green Smoothie for Glowy Skin by Em Von Ew
- Tahini Lime Energy Bars by Zuzana Fajkusova and Nikki Lefler
- Cheesy Tofu Scramble Crescent Rolls by Jeunesse Pouchet
Source: Chunky Espresso Chili
- Healthy Spelt, Oats, Chia, and Flax Seed Crisps by Julie Zimmer
- Chunky Espresso Chili by Katherine Henderson
- Wild Mushroom Buckwheat Risotto by Zuzana Fajkusova and Nikki Lefler
Source: Pan-Fried Pesto Gnocchi
- Wild Mushroom Buckwheat Risotto by Zuzana Fajkusova and Nikki Lefler
- Pan-Fried Pesto Gnocchi by Keri Bevan
- Orange and Ginger Glazed Tofu by Romy London
Source: Blackberry Oat Crumb Bars
- Blackberry Oat Crumb Bars by Angelina Papanikolaou
- Oat Flour Almond Butter Brownies with Salted Date Caramel Frosting by Allie Penner
- Chocolate Olive Oil Cake with Espresso Frosting by Adam Merrin and Ryan Alvarez
Plantbased Cookbooks about Low Waste Living to Check Out:
Save the Planet Vegan Cookbook
You can eat incredibly well and contribute to saving the planet. Celine Steen’s uplifting No-Waste Save-the-Planet Vegan Cookbook shows you how with delicious recipes and practical advice. Plant-based foods have a dramatically lower negative impact on the environment than meats and animal products, as hundreds of studies have revealed. If you are a vegan and eat plant-based foods only, chances are you know this already. If you are a vegetarian or an omnivore, you probably have heard that this is one of the many reasons—quite aside from the ample health benefits of eating more plants and plant products—for adding more plant-based meals to your weekly routine.
- Savory Sweet Cluck−Free Strips Sandwiches
- Fudgy Sesame Chocolate Mug Cake
- Breakfast Rice Pudding
- Sour Cream Onion Scones
- Carrot Top−Pea Soup with Pesto
- Moroccan Quinoa Veggie Bowl
- Uncanny Chickpeas
No Waste Vegetable Cookbook
Isn’t it about time to start nose-to-tail cooking with vegetables? Learn how to make the most of the edibles in your garden or the farmer’s market bounty! The No Waste Vegetable Cookbook will help you cook your way through greens, beans, roots, and herbs with seasonal recipes that utilize every edible part of the plant. Author Linda Ly shares a wide variety of recipes and techniques from her popular CSA Cookbook, from creative pickling (think watermelon rind) to perfect pestos. Whether you’re excited to make the most of the farmer’s market or use every bit of your garden’s bounty, this is the book that keeps the food on your table and out of the trash can (or compost bin)!
- Quick-Pickled Sweet ‘N’ Spicy Radish Pods [Vegan]
- Kale Stem Pesto [Vegan]
- Green Onion Pancakes [Vegan]
- Watermelon Rind and Jalapeño Pickles [Vegan]
- Pan-Charred Beans with Bean Leaf Pesto [Vegan]
Preserving Veggies by Angi Schneider
When veggies are at their peak of the season, this preserving compendium, Preserving Veggies by Angi Schneider, covers nearly every vegetable and is your one-stop source. Brimming with 100 recipes, beautiful full-page color images, step-by-step preservation methods, and handy reference charts, this foolproof guide will help you master canning & pickling, fermenting, dehydrating, and freezing the most common garden produce. Angi Schneider is a master of preserving. She shares methods that emphasize simplicity yet keep the flavors exciting and shares tips for working your preserved foods into your family’s regular meal plan, so nothing goes to waste.
- Fermented Squash Relish [Vegan]
- Fermented Green Tomato Relish [Vegan]
- Canned Sweet and Zesty Corn Salad [Vegan]
- Corn Cob Jelly [Vegan]
- Canned Spicy Cauliflower with Turmeric [Vegan]
Learn How to Cook Plant-Based Meals at Home
Reducing your meat intake and eating more plant-based foods is known to help with chronic inflammation, heart health, mental wellbeing, fitness goals, nutritional needs, allergies, gut health, and more! Unfortunately, dairy consumption also has been linked to many health problems, including acne, hormonal imbalance, cancer, prostate cancer, and has many side effects.
For those interested in eating more plant-based, we highly recommend purchasing one of our many plant-based cookbooks or downloading the Food Monster App which has thousands of delicious recipes making it the largest vegan recipe resource to help reduce your environmental footprint, save animals and get healthy! And, while you are at it, we encourage you to also learn about the environmental and health benefits of a plant-based diet.
Here are some resources to get you started:
- Weekly Vegan Meal Plans
- Plant-Based Health Resources
- Plant-Based Food & Recipes
- The Ultimate Guide to Plant-Based Nutrition
- Plant-Based Nutrition Resources
- Budget-Friendly Plant-Based Recipes
- High Protein Plant-Based Recipes
- Plant-Based Meal Prep
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