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Reusing Jars

Instead of tossing small glass jars into the recycling bin, peel off their labels, scrub the glass clean, and keep them around to use for storage. Once you have a stash of these jars on hand, you'll be amazed by all the possibilities: Pulverize a week's worth of black pepper and bottle it to have a just-ground taste at your fingertips. Contain onions or other odds and ends whose aromas might otherwise permeate the refrigerator. And if you're a heavy garlic user, mince up a few cloves ahead of time and store in olive oil for 3 to 4 days in your fridge.

Comments (17)

  • Westislander 24 Jul, 2014

    What happens when it falls? I prefer BPA-free plastic or thick glass containers made to withstand a few drops.

  • UUjerri1 15 Jul, 2012

    I like glass to, but how do you stack them? At least with Tupperware I can stack them vertically for space efficiency. With the glass jars/metal lids they slip off or are not stable when stacking.

  • GraceMeyer 14 Jul, 2012

    I've been doing this forever; it is the Best idea ever. Jars come in all shapes and sizes, do not add plastic molecules to your food, and this keeps at least some jars out of the land fill. win/win/win

  • douchbag 14 Jul, 2012

    i use this all the time with 100% success!

    to remove odors in glass jars:

    clean jar and lid
    place a clean crumpled paper towel inside jar
    screw lid on jar and set aside for 3-4 days
    remove lid and paper towel and jar/lid is odor free
    if this does not remove odor, repeat procedure

  • scrapyj 14 Jul, 2012

    Great idea, this way you can see whats inside, not like Tupperware, have to remove the lid to see whats hiding.

  • MVB29 14 Jul, 2012

    Could you please post something new Martha?

  • missmarmy 22 Feb, 2012

    To clean jars, wash out then soak in vinegar. Rinse thoroughly. Odors gone.

  • carabau 21 Feb, 2012

    I use olive or peanut jars to keep cilantro and parsley fresher longer in the fridge. Cut the bottoms off a bit of the herbs, fill the jar with a bit of water , and cover lightly with plastic. I also use small jelly jars to make little fresh floral arrangements to put around the house.

  • autumnhill 20 Feb, 2012

    I love saving jars to reuse, but how do you remove the residual odor from salsa or pasta sauce jars? Seems no matter what they retain some flavor of what was in them originally.

  • ragsangle 20 Feb, 2012

    I use glass jars all the time for storage, like homemade dressings and mustard. I also use them for things like fingernail polish remover [smell be gone]. Liquild craft supplies. Powered detergents and bleaches store well in glass as well. And of course leftovers. Spices and herbs stay much fresher in glass as well.

  • mstarCA 20 Feb, 2012

    I used to hate how my mom never got rid of glass jars, and reused them just as you describe. Of course, now, she was so smart. She still does it at 91.

  • 4schnauzers 20 Feb, 2012

    I use jars from pasta sauce to store leftover uncooked pastas. When you don't use the whole box or if you buy pasta in bags, this keeps from spills in your pantry and also keeps out the uninvited pests.

  • 4schnauzers 20 Feb, 2012

    I use jars from pasta sauce to store leftover uncooked pastas. When you don't use the whole box or if you buy pasta in bags, this keeps from spills in your pantry and also keeps out the uninvited pests.

  • 4schnauzers 20 Feb, 2012

    I use jars from pasta sauce to store leftover uncooked pastas. When you don't use the whole box or if you buy pasta in bags, this keeps from spills in your pantry and also keeps out the uninvited pests.

  • nana2oneboy 20 Feb, 2012

    I also like using my blue Ball jars. I'll start using the small jars as well. I have a stash of them but never think of them at the right time to use them. Thanks DawneSN for the top for using plastic wrap on the top to prevent the lids from rusting.

  • TobyZapper 20 Feb, 2012

    I love using my antique Ball Mason jar under my kitchen sink to store dishwasher tablets and gel packs!

  • DawneSN 20 Feb, 2012

    Peanut butter jars make excellent storage for nuts, raisins and such; also for homemade dressings and toppings. One caution: if the food is acidic like a salad dressing, I always put a piece of plastic wrap on the top of the jar before screwing on the lid to prevent the lid from rusting.