Sunday, July 24, 2011

Saving on storage

If you have read a few of my past blogs, you will see that I store things in old pickle jars. My kids love pickles and will kill a jar in a matter of days. At that point, I can recycle the jar or reuse it. My mudroom doubles as our food pantry and the wire racks are filled with jars that used to contain other food. There are dozens of pickle jars filled with nuts, rice, beans, pasta, flours and other dry good essentials. I have found that these 1 gallon pickle jars are perfect for a 5 pound bag of flour, 1 1/2 pounds of pasta and 5 or more pounds of beans. These pickle jars are too thin to reuse if you are a canner, but for dry stores, they are great. I have also found that a certain brand of pasta sauce uses a mason jar to sell their sauce in and these jars are thick enough to reuse if you can. They are 24 ounces, but I have been canning stock in them for years and never had one crack or bust. Just be careful in checking the lid size. Some brands are using a deep lid that are not interchangable with other lids of the same diameter.

I have also found that some of the lids are interchangable in size for these mason jars. Mayonaisse jars (notably Hellmans and Dukes) use the same size lids as a small mouth mason jar and they are now made from plastic, not metal. Instead of using the mason jar lids and bands for my dry stores, I use a mayo lid, which is easy to wash in the top shelf of your dishwasher. I have several old Ovaltine jars (from when they were made from brown glass) that I use in my yogurt maker to make a quart at a time. I use a lot of those sauce jars and quart mason jars for storing opened cans of things in the fridge. For example- we don't use a whole can of olives at a time, so the unused portions go into a mason jar (with a plastic mayo lid) and onto the top shelf of the fridge for the next use. If you buy in bulk at a store, these jars are great storage containers and the best of all, they are washable and reusable.

My advice here is just to be aware of the containers you have and take advantage of the ones you may be recycling or trashing now. You could be saving a bunch of money on storage containers. Please check out my other blogs at .

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