How To Store Food Without Plastic: 11 Eco-Friendly Food Storage Ideas

If you’re looking for ideas on how to store food without plastic, then this is for you.

Contrary to what many people think, storing food without using plastic doesn’t have to complicate or inconvenience your current lifestyle.

In fact, it can even make storing food healthier, more manageable, and convenient for you!

Below are 11 eco-friendly and plastic-free food storage ideas that will significantly minimize your plastic use and waste.

There’s no time to waste; food might get spoiled, so let’s dive right in.

1. Get eco-friendly food containers

Unlike typical food containers, eco-friendly food containers are made using non-plastic and sustainable materials.

Many of the eco-friendly food containers popular among conscious consumers today are made of silicone, glass, stainless steel, bamboo, and natural plant fibers.

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Moreover, unlike many plastic food containers, eco-friendly food containers are free from BPA, PVC, latex, and other toxic chemicals that can leach into your food.

They are also very durable, stylish, and affordable.

You can use eco-friendly food containers to store food at home or pack lunch for work, school, and trips.

You can check out our list of 10 eco-friendly food containers and lunch boxes here for your convenience.

2. Use old mason jars and glass jars

Do you have old mason and glass jars from previous food and products like pickles, olives, and jam?

Instead of leaving them to gather dust in the corner (or tossing them to your recycling bins), you can use them to store food – eco-friendly style.

Gather old mason and glass jars you can find at home.

They’re probably in your cupboard, drawer, or cabinets.

See which ones are still in good condition, wash them with soap and water, and let them dry.

Once dry, you can use your old mason jars to store and preserve other foods at home.

3. Use organic cotton produce bags

Organic cotton is one of the most eco-friendly fabrics today since it is produced without chemicals, is sustainably grown, and is completely biodegradable.

Hence, produce bags made of organic cotton are excellent eco-friendly alternatives to single-use plastic bags when storing food.

An organic cotton produce bag is very versatile and can store veggies, fruits, herbs, spices, grains, nuts, and more.

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Two of our favorite organic cotton reusable produce bags are from Leafico and Simple Ecology.

Moreover, produce bags made of organic cotton are also durable, washable, and reusable.

So using them to store food will help reduce plastic waste and help you save money as well.

4. Buy biodegradable disposable takeout food containers

Disposable takeout food containers can also be eco-friendly food storage alternatives to plastic.

There are companies today that are making takeout food containers using biodegradable and compostable materials instead of Styrofoam.

For instance, this compostable takeout food container is made of 100% natural sugarcane fiber.

It is tree-free, plastic-free, and completely biodegradable.

You can use it to both store food at home or for packing lunch when going outdoors.

Biodegradable takeout food containers will not only help anyone store food without plastic.

It can also help minimize single-use plastic waste in restaurants, fast food chains, and parties.

5. Use silicone stretch lids instead of plastic bags

Stretch lids are excellent options for anyone thinking of how to store food without plastic bags.

Silicone stretch lids can expand to fit most bowls, pots, mugs, cups, cans, and mason jars.

Thanks to them, you don’t need to transfer food into a new plastic container for storage.

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You can check out one of the best silicone stretch lids on Amazon here.

Alternatively, you can also use the ones from Food Huggers, as they are designed to stretch and fit around sliced fruits, veggies, and other food.

They are made from BPA-free and phthalate-free silicone material.

6. Preserve food using reusable silicone food bags

Time to say goodbye to the conventional plastic wraps with silicone food bags.

By switching to a reusable silicone food bag, you can eliminate thousands of single-use plastic food wraps from ending up in our oceans or landfills.

And as the name suggests, silicone food bags are reusable. 

Hence you can use it for a long time to store and preserve food.

Silicone is also a safer alternative to plastic food wraps as it doesn’t leach BPA and other toxic chemicals to your food.

Moreover, silicone is more eco-friendly than plastic when it comes to material sustainability.

7. Store food in glass containers

Besides old mason jars and glass containers, you can consider buying new glass containers with airtight lids and use them to store food.

Glass containers are an excellent eco-friendly alternative to plastic for storing and transporting all kinds of food.

Glass containers come in various styles, sizes, and shapes to choose from.

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And guess what?

Since they are made of glass, you can reuse them repeatedly as their material won’t degrade over time.

8. Consider using reusable bamboo paper towels

Besides cleaning your counters and cooking ware, did you know that you can also use bamboo paper towels to extend the life of fruits and veggies in the fridge?

Think of it as a zero waste food wrap, if you will.

You can use bamboo paper towels as eco-friendly alternatives to plastic cling wraps.

Once you’re done using a sheet of reusable bamboo paper towel to wrap food, you can wash it and reuse it again.

9. Kraft paper food wraps

Kraft paper food wraps are one of the best eco-friendly food storage alternatives to single-use plastic cling wraps.

You can use paper food wraps for veggies, fruits, meat, and sandwiches.

Tip when shopping for kraft paper food wraps.

Look for paper food wraps made using 100% food-grade certified materials to ensure your safety and your family’s.

Moreover, find paper wraps that are made without any waxes, bleaches, or unnatural coating that might tamper or contaminate your food.

You can find one of the top-rated paper food wraps here.

10. Use reusable beeswax food wraps

Reusable beeswax food wraps are great for storing food without plastic and minimizing waste and pollution as well.

Most of the top-rated reusable beeswax wraps are made from organic and sustainable materials like organic cotton, organic jojoba oil, and ethically harvested beeswax.

You can use them to safely and sustainably store foods like bread, veggies, fruits, and cheese. 

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You can also use beeswax wraps to cover food bowls and containers and pack snacks for trips, school, or work.

Check out our recommended reusable beeswax wrap here.

11. Wrap food with recycled aluminum foil

Aluminum foil is great for preserving your food’s freshness without using plastic.

However, don’t just buy any aluminum foil you can find.

Look for recycled aluminum foils and food wraps.

Traditional aluminum foil manufacturing is a power and energy-intensive process.

From mining the mineral to the production of the product, it leaves a huge carbon footprint.

Meanwhile, the production of recycled aluminum foil consumes far less energy because there is no need to mine for new raw materials.

Hence, you’re not only reducing your own plastic waste.

You’re also supporting businesses that create less waste and finding ways to reuse our planet’s natural resources.

Bonus: Put leftover food in the fridge

You don’t always need some kind of eco-friendly container or food wrapper to preserve leftover food.

You can simply cover them with a small plate or a lid and put them in the fridge for later consumption.

But don’t make sure to close your fridge properly to avoid unnecessary electric consumption.

Final Thoughts

While wasting food is a big no-no, storing and preserving food shouldn’t come at the expense of our planet.

As you may already know, tons of plastic waste in landfills or littering in the ocean and environment are used for food storage.

But with the simple eco-friendly and plastic-free food storage above, we hope you can now start storing food plastic-free.

But we would like to hear from you.

Which of the plastic-free food storage ideas above do you like best?

Do you know other ways on how to store food without plastic that we haven’t mentioned here?

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