If you're going to be zero waste for the long haul (and you are, right?), it's nice to have a few things that are purpose-built to make it easier and more convenient and, dare I say, a bit lovelier. Sometimes I talk about those things here (and here).
And yet: you can sure make huge steps toward zero waste without purchasing anything new. A special travel fork is nice, but also, you already own forks: if you take them with you, they become travel forks. Trying to make sure the glass jars in your pantry match in size and shape and kind can yield a lovely organized shelf, but the road there can also be look too much like stickler-y madness.
So, in this new series, I'll be talking about how to go zero waste with absolutely nothing new. A water bottle, a cloth tote bag, a glass peanut butter jar. Many of the tools we need are already all around us: let's bring them to the forefront and put them to creative use.
Up first: the simplest, cheapest zero waste lunch kit you ever did see. Sure, you can invest in a stainless steel container ready-made for packing a lunch without reusables. You can also stuff pasta, soup, or salad in a glass (or, heck, plastic) jar that originally held something else. I like glass peanut butter jars that have a wide mouth, which makes getting food into and out of it easier. If you want a bigger lunch, you can size up to two jars. (Soup and salad, anyone?).
Paired with a fork or spoon from your normal cutlery drawer, you've got yourself a free (and plastic-free) way to bring lunch on the go. If you have a cloth napkin, wrapping your fork in that will keep it clean and give you something to spread on your lap or dab at your mouth. If you don't have a cloth napkin, a clean washcloth or tea towel would do just fine, too.
Said glass jar is good for other things, too, of course. I tucked one in my coat pocket Sunday night when meeting a friend for dinner, in case of leftovers. Until the day before, the jar shown here had held loose-leaf tea. Versatile and easy, not fancy but just the ticket.
So, that's it: a zero waste lunch kit, no purchase required. Anything else from around the house that you'd add to your kit? I'm excited to share more ideas on the nothing new front in the coming weeks.