Lots of what we use in the kitchen that we dispose of could be given another life if only we knew how to. Found out I could reuse my grocery jars when I realized how expensive empty jars are at the thrift shop. It didn’t sit well with me to buy “empty” jars the amount I did (well sometimes not more than 50 bucks) especially when I am on a slim budget.
There are many benefits to reusing your grocery or mason jars. With so many ways to use these containers, you can save money, time, and space. Not only that — you’ll also be helping the planet for future generations by preventing unnecessary consumption of products that are thrown away on a regular basis.
Tried out some of these brilliant ways to reuse the empty grocery jars and I am so glad I did. Like I mean, there is no difference between the ones I bought and my grocery jars at home. Not even when I removed some of the branded stickers on the grocery jars; they look just exactly alike and trust me they performed the same functions.
So, sit tight and let me share with you these brilliant methods to reuse your grocery jars.
1. Utensil Storage
My spouse told me that he observed how quick my meals are and yet they seem as delicious as before. It never occurred to me that since the time I started placing my utensils at a closer reach I had cooked my food faster than previous times. Guess what? The empty grocery jars did the magic. I placed my frequently used utensils in some of the empty grocery jars to ease my cooking.
Rather than placing them in the drawers or cabinets, I relocated them to a better reach. Right there in the jars, I stored my utensils and cooking never seemed so easy and faster. You could also try this; clean your jars and place all your frequently used utensils in them. For smaller utensils – use smaller jars and for large ones, the bigger jars are perfect for the job.
2. Herb Garden
Get this gist; you could practice a mini-agriculture right there in your home with your herbs and yes of course with the empty grocery jars too. Empty grocery jars saved me a lot of thinking stress when I wanted to start a herb garden. I picked up all the empty jars and laid them up for cleaning.
After this, I looked around for some colorful pebbles to give my jars stability when I place them on the ground and to also make sure that water does not get trapped in the jar anytime I wet my herbs. I poured some charcoal (the activated one which I am sure will prevent bacteria or bad odor from my edible herbs) into the jar. My potting soil was ready too.
Almost forgot, a herb garden needs a very good drainage system. It is very important for your plant’s health. With the pebbles (in the jar about 1-2 inches), activated charcoal (1/4 inch), and soil (about 3 inches below the bottom of the jar) a good drainage system for my herb garden is ready. With these steps, my edible herb garden was set. Thanks to my empty grocery jars.
Rather than trashing your grocery jars, save them to make your herb garden. It is very easy to plant herbs at home because they do not have big roots. Save the seeds of your herbs and keep your large grocery jars, your herb garden needs them.
3. Leftover Storage
Think of your jars as storage bags or containers because they are also strongly made to keep their contents safe from germs or odors. Empty grocery jars are tested and trusted storage containers for any food item.
If you do not want to turn your food scraps into tasty dishes, keep them in the empty grocery jars. It is very possible to find out that some of your food will not fit into some jars. In that case, store only spices, seasonings, vegetable scraps, leftover soups, meat, and so on as long as they fit in the jars.
Empty storage jars are certain to keep your non-perishable foods and other things bought in bulk from excess sunlight and air.
SEE: Can You Freeze Food and Liquids in Mason Jars?
4. Candle Stand
Oddly shaped and very small grocery jars can be used for candle stands or a candle itself. Here’s how you can make that possible. For a candle stand, simply light your candle and turn over the jar or place it in a position it won’t tilt. Put your lighted candle on the jar and you are done. A candle stand made with a grocery jar. Pretty simple right?
To make a candle with an empty jar; pour some beeswax into it and add a cotton wick. Ensure you trim the wick to a length higher than the jar. I once added dye and fragrance to give it a better scent. You can try that too.
My kids were amazed by one of the gifts I gave them last Valentine. Do you know what it was? I gave them five jars of brownies (their best chocolate) and cookies. I couldn’t have imagined how I would have surprised them with that amount of brownies and cookies well packed if not for the empty grocery jars. They really loved the idea and since then they have copied my empty jar gifting style.
You also could do it. It depends solely on how you can creatively put your ideas into existence. Find out the likes of the person you wanna present the gift to. Check and confirm the ones that will fit into the jars you intend to use.
When you are done packing all items into the jars, label them with instructions and give them the best decorations you can think of. They are great gift options for relatives and friends.
6. Drinking Glasses
Why should you use disposable cups at parties when there are cheaper ways to serve drinks at parties. Ever imagined that? Sure you haven’t. Empty grocery jars could be used to serve drinks at parties and when you have old friends’ get-togethers in your garden.
Do you want to spend so much to get disposable cups for small parties? That would be a bad idea not when you could use some empty jars at home. Empty grocery jars no matter the size and shape will give your party the fun and table magic even better than disposable cups. All you have to do before the party begins is to wash neatly all empty jars you intend to use.
7. Bulk Shopping
Little did I know that my empty grocery jars will be needed in bulk shopping until I tried them out of curiosity. And yea, it worked out fine. Plastic bags are not the only items to use in carrying your items from the store. Empty jars can serve the same purpose and they will add a better experience to your shopping.
Food items like fruits, nuts, sweets, and grains can fit into your jars when you purchase them. If you are gonna be shopping at a store where the weight of the product determines the price, here’s what you should do to ease any burden. Label each of the empty jars with their exact weights. This will make the cashier deduct the jars’ weight from the overall weight to determine your price.
For stores where you buy liquid in bulk, your jars will be very much needed. Jars are great at holding liquid unlike, polythene bags which can sometimes contaminate the content.
8. Memory Jars
Picnics and vacations will be awesome when each item you carry has its container and bag. Your scrapbook will not hold items that are not flat enough therefore it is good to keep such items in empty jars. These jars can also take in some memorable items you will love to stare at.
9. Beauty Products
Home-made beauty products are best stored in empty grocery jars. These beauty products require extra storage, unlike industry manufactured ones which are coated with chemical substances to make them withstand excessive exposure to air or water.
Deodorants, lotions, and even toothpaste made at home can be stored in grocery jars. These jars will keep them sealed, and air-tight, and water will be far away from affecting them. What a good way to reuse your grocery jars.
10. Sewing Kit Holder
Keeping your sewing essentials organized is easy with these colorful jars. Use them as a sewing kit holder, spice rack, cupcake baking supplies organizer, and more. Made from recycled glass and plastic, they keep messes contained in our handy kitchen dispensers and look great on the shelf.
You can keep all your needles, buttons, and thread in one place so they don’t get lost or tangled. They also hold scissors but be careful, these are sharp objects that can cut you
Frequently Asked Questions
Are store-bought jars unsafe for canning?
Yes, they are. You must not reuse any store-bought jars for home canning because they can easily break when heated, and they come with short necks which make re-sealing impossible.
How do you put the lid back on?
Gently tap it on a hard surface to loosen it and place the lid back on the jar before covering it.
How long do they last?
Glass and plastic jars can last as long as you’re able to maintain them.
Do they make food taste different?
Jars don’t make your food taste different, unlike polythene bags that can contaminate your food.
What are mason jars?
Mason jars are glass jars used for canning. Due to their size and shape, they are used around the home in various ways such as storage, vases, drinking glasses, and gifts. They come in all shapes, sizes, and colors.
There you have it, 10 different and creative ways that you can reuse those empty plastic grocery jars. I hope that you enjoyed this article as it shows you how to recycle your plastic grocery jars in order to save money and keep them out of landfills.
The more you reuse a jar, the less likely you are to throw it away. The easiest way to use your jars over and over again is to re-purpose them for other home necessities. Now that you are aware of the brilliant ways to reuse grocery jars, go save some money and keep your environment clean.
Want more related articles on food safety and hack, there are more than enough guides, tips, and hacks on Cheffist. Feel free to explore more.
Thanks for reading.