This post is sponsored by Stasher. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

While I love cooking, I’m a huge fan of finding hacks to save time when it comes to prepping and preparing meals, especially for my day to day tasks. Over the years I’ve settled into a pretty good weekly meal prep routine that is efficient and makes my day to day meal preparation easier and more enjoyable. One of my favorite tools in the kitchen are Stasher bags and bowls. Stashers are reusable food-grade silicone bags and bowls that come in a rainbow of colors and sizes. They have endless uses and can be used to store, freeze, organize or cook (microwave, dishwasher, freezer, oven, and can be boiled). I’ve loved exploring and experimenting over the years to find lots of different uses for them. The leak-free Pinch-Loc® seal works amazingly well for keeping food fresh and makes it a great option for on-the-go snacks and when packing my kiddos lunches too. Plus they’re surprisingly easy to clean – just pop them in the dishwasher!

Aside from the myriad of uses, I love that they are a more environmentally friendly option for resealable plastic bags. Sadly, 91% of all plastic is never recycled. The rest end up in our oceans and landfills where it takes 500 years for each of those bags to break down. Just one Stasher bag replaces 260 single-use plastic bags per year, helping to reduce community resources on ocean and waterway cleanups and decreasing your overall waste. They allow you to save money over time by replacing the need to re-purchase single-use containers, wraps, and more.

These are some of my favorite ways to use Stasher’s in the kitchen to save time, money and the planet! These hacks will save you time in meal prepping while also reducing food waste and preventing the use of single-use plastics as well. Read more below for lots of meal prepping and kitchen hacks that will save you time, money and reduce waste.

10 Ways to Use Stashers in the Kitchen to Save Time, Money and the Planet:

Smoothie Packs

If you find that produce is becoming overripe, don’t throw it away! Overripe fruit, such as browning bananas or berries, can be frozen to be used for making smoothie packs or to use for baking. Sandwich size bags are a great option for putting together individual smoothie packs. You simply add the fruit and vegetables you’ll need for a smoothie and freeze. When ready to make, pour it into a blender, add liquid and blend.

You can also freeze vegetable scraps to later be used for making soup stock. Add your discarded celery tops, onion and carrots to a bag and freeze to use later.

A few quick tips for freezing fruit and vegetables:

  • Cut produce into similar sized pieces and freeze on baking sheets. When frozen, remove from the sheet and add to a Stasher bag.
  • If you don’t want the extra step of freezing and then adding to the bag, you can add produce directly to the bag. They may stick together more, but since Stasher bags are pliable you can often carefully bend them to break apart pieces.
  • When storing in your freezer, lay packs flat on each other to save space.

Easy On-The-Go Meals

Save time, money and eat healthier by packing your own lunches! The 2-cup bowls are my absolute favorite as they serve dual function as a perfectly sized to-go container, can be safely heated and are able to stand easily for a portable bowl. These summer shrimp quinoa bowls (quinoa, shrimp, vinaigrette, veggies) are one of my favorites that pack easily and can be made in bulk for the week as they last sealed in the fridge for up to 4 days.

The snack bags are the perfect size for sending to school with my kids for snack break and the sandwich bags are such a great alternative for the traditional plastic snack bags. I feel so much better not creating so much waste daily and to also have my children be more mindful and aware of reducing waste too.

Store Fresh Fruit & Vegetables

Fruit and vegetables stay fresh longer when you properly clean and store them. As soon as I buy berries, I rinse, cut and toss them in a Stasher bag in the fridge. The stand-up bags are perfect for these. For cut broccoli and cauliflower, wash and dry well before cutting and storing. Squeeze out as much air as you can before sealing the bag. Having everything easy to see and ready to use makes it much more likely to be used quickly and reduce waste.

Steam Vegetables

Since Stashers can be used in the oven, microwaved and boiled, they have so many cooking uses. One of the most common ways I use them is for easily steaming vegetables.

When steaming in the microwave, add a tablespoon of water to the veggies, seal 90% of the way (leave a small gap for steam to escape) and cook for several minutes until cooked to desired firmness.

For more tips on steaming vegetables, Stashers has a ton of great information here.

Bulk Storage

Buying in bulk can be a great way to save money and reduce packaging waste. I use Stasher bags to store my bulk products and I also love to be able to easily see everything in my pantry. For oats and other grains (such as rice) the large 8-cup bowls are wonderful and easy to use. For nuts, the stand-up mid bags are my favorite as they stand on their own and have a wider seal.

Portion Frozen Meals

I love portioning out leftovers into individual servings that can be frozen and pulled out for a quick meal. Soups are especially wonderful as you can remove a serving as needed and reheat in a boiling pot of water.

Freeze and Store Leftover Herbs

Don’t let leftover herbs go bad in the fridge. Herbs can easily be frozen to be used in recipes later.

  • Wash and dry herbs.
  • Chop or mince into desired size.
  • Place chopped herbs into ice cube wells (don’t overpack).
  • Pour olive oil in to cover them.
  • Put the filled trays into the freezer. Once frozen, remove the cubes and storire in a Stasher bag for up to 6 months.
  • When ready to use, add to the dish (if adding to a cold dish, let thaw first).

Fun tip: You can label the bags using a chalk or dry erase marker! Make sure to write on the matte side of the bag.

Farmers Market Purchases

Skip the plastic produce bags and containers at the farmer’s market and use a Stasher bag instead.

Rehydrate Stale Bread

If you have hard, crusty bread, you can easily rehydrate it in the oven using a Stasher bag. Preheat your oven to 375º. Pat the side of bread with water and place into the bag. Seal with a crack to allow steam to escape. Bake on a pan for 6-8 minutes. Remove from the oven and open the seal and enjoy!

Make Popcorn

You can easily make popcorn in the microwave using a Stasher bag. It’s so simple and easy!

What you’ll need:

  • A Stasher Bag (the stand up bags are perfect for this)
  • 1/2 cup of popcorn kernels
  • 1/2 Tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and seasonings

How To:

  1. Add popcorn kernels and oil to a Stasher bag.
  2. Close the bag but leave a small opening to vent. Microwave on high for 2 to 3 minutes until popping slows.
  3. Remove the bag from the microwave (use a mitt – it’ll be hot).
  4. Open carefully and add salt and seasonings. Close and shake to cover.

Aside from kitchen uses, Stasher bags have so many uses! They are a simple and easy sustainable swap to help reduce plastic waste. For more ways to use Stashers and more sustainability ideas, check out their blog.

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