This, Not That

A series providing creative plastic-free solutions.

When I first started replacing Tupperware, Ziploc containers, plastic bags and wrap with plastic-free food containers I did what a lot of people do. I bought a large set of Pyrex glass containers with plastic lids. (It’s easy to ignore those plastic parts.) I use those containers daily, but if I had it to do over I’d buy something different or nothing at all. The plastic lids on those Pyrex containers become brittle and crack, eventually making their way to the landfill. You can buy replacement lids, but in my experience they don’t fit as well and have an even shorter lifespan.

I can’t tell you how often I’ve fallen into the camp to think I need something new to solve a problem or fill a need. Challenging myself to buy nothing new for a year shifted my mindset from fixing problems with money to fixing them with a little ingenuity. So, here are a few ideas of plastic-free food containers that you might already have in your kitchen:

  • glass jars
  • covered casseroles
  • tins (such as those used during the holidays to fill with treats)
  • a bowl with a plate as a “lid”
  • a plate serving as “wrap” to protect the cut side of food
  • a lidded pot

What doesn’t exist in my kitchen, I shop secondhand. While I’m not a fan of the plastic lidded Pyrex, I love my thrifted, glass-top Pyrex container (shown in the picture). I was pretty lucky to find a secondhand, stainless steel LunchBots container, which is great for taking food on the run. Solutions abound, it just takes a little creativity.

6 thoughts on “This, Not That

  1. When I need an airtight seal, I put a Bee’s Wrap sheet on top of the bowl. Then I press a plate onto that. I love our LunchBots, but agree that the plastic lids on most glass containers are not great. My greatest frustration is buying meat. All I can find is frozen in plastic. Looking on CraigsList for a freezer . . .

    1. I have a roll of plastic wrap that will likely last me for life since I rarely reach for it. However, when I do use it up I’m looking forward to trying out a beeswax wrap. I’ve had luck taking my own container to the meat counter and having them fill it to avoid the packaging. Thanks for sharing your ideas!

  2. YES – a bowl with a plate as a lid is my favorite life hack. Works so well! I also have a big glass pyrex bowl with a glass lid that I got secondhand, and I love that I can use it for soaking beans, serving, or storing food.

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