Me going green … and dragging my family with me, kicking and screaming!

Baby steps toward self sufficience and greenocity

Food packaging reduction lady strikes again! March 30, 2008

Filed under: cooking,frugal living,green living,recycling — razberiswrl @ 2:49 pm
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I guess my kitchen witchery is showing.  I have, yet again, found a way to make my own version of a common household item, thereby reducing my waste.


I know, it’s not all THAT big a deal, but I won’t be throwing any little packets in the trash anymore (we use taco seasoning ALL the time) OR ingesting this common source of MSG.  I made a double batch, put a little more garlic powder and a little less cayenne (my kids are weenies, E still complained about it being too spicy), dumped it all in a jar I had saved from some artichoke hearts (I KNEW that would come in handy!), and used 2 tb of the mixture in ~1 lb of ground beef for them.  I used 1 tb  of the mix with my Morningstar Farm grilled “chik-n” strips.  To both pans I added a slurry of 1tsp corn starch and 1/4-1/3c water.  This is to get that thick sauce texture that the packets deliver.  This is the first time A has liked the DIY version BETTER than the packaged version.  SCORE!

Of course, you may be thinking “How is she reducing waste if she has to buy more containers of spices more often???”

Easy!  1) plastic and glass containers in which spices typically are packaged are recyclable, those packets typically are not.  2) spices are available in bulk at some stores, I can (and do when possible) buy little baggies to refill my existing bottles.

I think I’ve become a little obsessed about reducing my landfill waste.  Last week, we only filled 1 regular trash bag plus 1 grocery store bag (still not remembering to bring my reusable ones with me …) between Monday and Thursday.  That’s for a family of FIVE.  I’m pretty impressed!  If only I had the wherewithal to recycle our paper and compost our table scraps, we might get down to 1 bag every full week … yeah, uhh, maybe next year.


7 Responses to “Food packaging reduction lady strikes again!”

  1. Mouse Says:

    Great idea and the jar looks so much better in the pantry than a pile of packets!

  2. midnight Says:

    is there an organization pushing to reduce retail packaging? I’m not the fanatic about going green but I hate the fact that everything in the stores are so over packaged, mainly to attract our attention. I understand there quest to make a buck. I like money too. However, after returning and un-packaging everything I have a good size bag of waste that I have to dispose of.

    Any ideas?

  3. razberiswrl Says:

    I don’t know if there are any specific organizations, but I guarantee that if enough people write and call companies who’s products they enjoy to express their concern for the environment and the role that over packaging contributes … they may eventually listen!

    Thanks for the comment!

  4. plslade Says:

    oooh, we go through a ton of garbage too. I just had a recycle bin delivered to my house and I’m really excited about “filling” it up. I’ve even started using cloth grocery bags too. I can’t WAIT to check out your taco seasoning recipe…

  5. lisa Says:

    well congratulationson you continuing green success! i save any glass jar that looks like it’ll come in handy and they sure do… i use my natural PB jars instead of plastic water bottles and come christmas, i give goodies in all kinds of glass jars…. i bought my mom a few reusable bags and we went shopping yesterday, yeah, she bought two little things and received two big old plastic bags, she’ll catch on though, it can take a while before it feels “normal”…. i refused a bag at the home depot for a single item and the cashier threw it away! i tried… next saturday, wheaton village is having an eco fair, they’re selling composters for $25 and having a demo on composting ~*

  6. razberiswrl Says:

    OMG, LOL @ throwing away the bag. I’ve had that happen a few times. WHY??? What are people thinking???!!!! I still forget to bring my bags with me though. Currently there are 3 or 4 in the kitchen and 2 in the car. Even with them in the car, I still forget. At least I use the plastic bags for cat litter, bathroom trash, etc, etc.

    Saturday is a definite! The boys have soccer at 9:30, but I should be able to get out there by 11, unless A’s mom is home … then I’ll send him with the boys and steal her car and bring M with me. You think 11’s too late to get a composter though? I’m still toying with the idea of making one out of one of our outdoor trashcans though …

  7. Karlise Says:

    So are you going to share the recipe?? (Or did you already on WTC?) We use a lot of taco seasoning here too.

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