Before you shop
- Planning your meals and food shopping helps you use food more effectively and avoid waste. This will save you time, money and stress.
- Try planning something simple and straightforward for the days when you will be busy or home late, such as a leftover meal from the freezer.
- You may have food staples in your cupboard that you can easily plan your meals around, e.g. rice and pasta
When you shop
- Remember to check date labels so you know when it needs to be used by.
- Your local butcher, deli, greengrocer or counters at your local supermarket can provide you with the exact amount you want.
- Look out for the variety of pack sizes available for example Sainsbury’s are offering smaller sized meals and ingredient packs for single portions and children.
Cooking the right amount
- Look out for the recommended portion sizes available on ingredients such as pasta and rice.
- A guide for measuring uncooked rice:
- Child portion – 2 ½ level tablespoons, 35ml
- Adult portion – 5 level tablespoons, 75ml
- 4 adult portions – 1 full mug, 300ml
Making the most of your meals
- Packs of meat and fish can be separated into smaller pieces for the freezer so you can take out the right amount you need.
- Frozen raw meat or fish can be defrosted, cooked thoroughly (as a meal for example) then frozen again – however remember foods can never be reheated more than once.
- If you have leftovers you want to reuse again, chill them as soon as possible and keep in an airtight container in the fridge.
- You should try to eat leftovers within two days. The only exception to this is cooked rice, which should be eaten within one day.
- If you are making a meal in advance, for example sandwiches, then you are best to keep it cool in the fridge until you are ready to eat.
(source: Food Standards Agency)
To access campaign resources and materials please visit our Waste Aware Partners website.
Meal hints & tips
The freezer should be every food lover’s best friend! It’s a great tool for preserving food, sealing in freshness and keeping tasty meals to hand, which can save us time and money and help to reduce food waste.