9 Must-Try Delicious Zero Waste Meals
We all love to eat and no matter what culture you are born into, food is at the heart of it all. These 10 Zero Waste Meals are made by some of the best food bloggers in the biz! And I am so happy to be sharing them with you. You can look at each recipe as a food waste solution. LOVE that!
We love to eat but that love of food is having a dire effect on climate change. You see when you throw food into the garbage can it ends up in landfills and as it starts to rot it creates methane gas, which is a major contributor to global warming, so the best thing we can do is to keep food out of the garbage can is to EAT IT!
What is food waste?
Harvard defines food waste as the following:
"Food waste occurs along the entire spectrum of production, from the farm to distribution to retailers to the consumer. Reasons include losses from mold, pests, or inadequate climate control; losses from cooking; and intentional food waste."
Solutions to food waste
- Set up a zero waste kitchen
- Shop zero waste online stores for proper storage containers
- Learn about the 5 R's of zero waste
Best Zero Waste Meals
1. Banana Peel Vegan Pulled Pork Sandwich
Banana peels get a really bad wrap, most people do not know that the skins can be eaten, so the next time you are headed to your compost bin to toss them, try this recipe instead. This zero-waste meal will show you how to pick the right type of banana, how to prepare it, and how to cook it up. You are going to shred the bananas then fry them with a delicious since mixture, then add them to a vegan pulled pork sandwich! I mean come on, you have to give this a go!
2. Potato Skin Chips
What goes best with a began pulled pork sandwich, CHIPS! Potato Skin Chips are an irresistible zero waste meal and this recipe takes only 20 minutes. Say goodbye to store-bought chips and hello to these bite-sized, zero waste snacks. Made with only 3 ingredients this recipe is packed full of nutritional goodness.
So the next time you want to toss those peels, I hope you will give this recipe a try!
3. All About Bone Broth
There are so many nutritional and health benefits to eating bone broth. Bone broth is a clear liquid that is made using the leftover bones from chicken or turkey. It's a protein-packed and easy addition to your meal planning. So instead of tossing all those bones and leftover veggies like onion skins, try this instead! This recipe will also give you options for different types of meat, how to use them, and how to make the best broth ever!
4. Instant Pot Vegetable Stock
If you are a vegetarian this stock is for you! Again it's filled with beneficial nutrients that actually help your gut heal. This recipe takes it to a new level by showing you how to make the stock in an instant pot...genius! It's also made with a ton of vegetable scraps. Pro tip: keep your collecting your veggies scarps and simply freeze them until you are ready. This low waste meal is simple to make and will only take you about 20 mins. Buying stock can add up, this is a cheap and cheerful way to stay healthy and save money. Sign me up!
5. Buffalo Chicken Mac And Cheese
Mac and Cheese might as well be made in heaven! It's at the top of my favorite foods for sure. Now, don't get me wrong, a chicken sandwich made with leftover chicken is good, but a Mac and Cheese made with leftover chicken is even better! This 20-minute recipe makes zero waste meal planning a breeze. I think the next time I go zero waste camping, I am making this for sure.
6. Sourdough Discard Crackers
What goes well with crackers? Um, everything. If you love to bake bread and always have leftover dough, you will love this recipe. It uses 5 simple ingredients and is a great way to reduce food waste in the kitchen. The whole recipe will take you about 25 mins to prepare and make. You can eat these as straight up or sink them into your favorite dip, looking at you guacamole. 🥑
7. Spicy Pickled Swiss Chard Stems
Add a little spice to your life with these salvaged spicy pickled swiss chard stems. Like banana peels, we typically don't eat carrot tops, broccoli, and swiss chard stems. But now, thanks to this amazing sustainable snack recipe you can save all of that plant goodness. Now you can have a zesty quick pickle made from food scraps! It only takes 15 minutes to make, how easy is that!
8. Oven Roasted Vegetables: An Easy Vegetable Medley
Sometimes I have random leftover veggies like one onion, one sweet potato, half a pepper, a carrot, or two, all needing a quick recipe to ensure less food waste. Well, what could be better than an easy vegetable medley? So easy to make, so delicious the whole family will love it and you can pair it with anything. The whole recipe takes about 20 minutes to prepare.
9. Overripe Pear Crumble Recipe With Almonds
DESSERT TIME! Never ever toss out your overripe fruit, you can make so many delicious pies and desserts. This recipe calls for pairs but as the author says you can use any fruit and also explain why overripe fruit is a good choice for this kind of recipe. If you love to bake and reduce waste, I hope you will give this a go, it's the perfect zero waste meal!
Final Thoughts on Zero Waste Meals
Food waste is a big issue in North America and I think part of the problem is our access to so much food. We don't have to go and hunt and gather, we simply drive to the store and buy what we need. We've also become very accustomed to throwing this out, not just food, but everything from e-waste to shoes. We need to start thinking about a more circular economy and trying to create as little waste as possible. It's not easy, but it can be done!
I hope these recipes have given you some great ideas and remember composting is still a good thing to do at home!