Bigger Results From Your Money and Time - Money saving tips and ideas
A refrigerator is a wonderful, modern way to keep food fresh longer. Because of it's many shelves and nooks, it's also a good place for food to get misplaced and to eventually spoil. A container of delicious leftover meatloaf can get pushed behind the yogurt containers and the next time you find the meatloaf container, a week has passed, along with your chance (and desire) to eat the meatloaf.
A good start is to keep your refrigerator organized. Designating a shelf of the refrigerator for leftovers, a drawer for fruits, a section for beverages, etc. can help you to develop the habit of checking that particular area whenever it's time to cook dinner or make a snack.
Another very effective way to help cut back on wasting perfectly good food is to make a refrigerator list.
Simply keep a magnetized notepad right on the side of the refrigerator and make a note whenever you put something in the refrigerator that needs to be used in the next few days. You might note such things as an opened package of ham slices, leftover meatloaf, a slice of watermelon, a container of yogurt, a pound of hamburger, or a head of lettuce. Things that get used daily or frequently, such as milk or eggs, may not need to go on your list as they don't tend to be forgotten or lost in the refrigerator. As you use a food item, cross it off the list. Once a week, tear off the old sheet, and transfer any remaining items to the new sheet.
The list is also helpful in judging how long something has been in the refrigerator. You can tell by looking at it's place on the list, or if you are really organized, you could jot the date next to each item you write on the list.
As you make dinner plans, check the list. That pound of hamburger is already two days old? Time to either put it in the freezer or to make your fabulous sloppy joes. Apples in the bottom drawer? Slice up a couple, arrange them on a plate with a saucer of peanut butter or a shaker of cinnamon and serve them as a side dish with dinner.
Take some of the leftovers to work to eat for lunch. It's easy to see what is available by glancing at the list.
According to an NRDC study, the average American throws away up to $43.00 a month in food. Multiply that by the number of people in your household and you may have a pretty staggering amount of potentially wasted food dollars. In a household of three, the average dollars in food waste would be $129.00 a month!
A refrigerator list can reduce waste by helping you with meal planning and reminding you which foods need to be used right away. If this method could reduce your food waste by 25%, then in a household of three, the average savings would be $32.25 a month. That is enough savings to make it worth learning the habit of a refrigerator list.
So. The list of items in the refrigerator can help you plan dinners, keep your refrigerator fresher, help with packing your lunch, and even remind you of the fruits and vegetables that are ready to be eaten. And as a bonus, you can easily save $32.00 or more month.
Now that's The Fat Dollar way!
Article by Patti Tokar © 2012 All Rights Reserved
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