Jar love – embrace your fridge clutter culprits


Here at Love Food Hate Waste Brisbane, we think it’s time to chat about some of our biggest fridge clutter culprits – jars and sauce bottles! Unlike perish-prone fruit and vegetables that are easier to identify and evict when they start to turn, half-used jars and sauce bottles end up in the back of the fridge for months. Getting these items under control means a more organised fridge, which means less food waste and more creative opportunities for ‘use-it-up’ meals.

Below are some of the biggest fridge clutter culprits and our tips to keep them under control.

Toast toppers

Let’s face it. Sometimes our desired breakfast cuisine changes mid-way through a jar of jam, honey, peanut butter or tahini.

But why limit these condiments to just toast? The sweetness of honey and jam can make them a great ingredient in pastries. Peanut butter is a great addition to your everyday cooking, whether it be sweet or savoury. Spice up a weeknight dinner with a satay sauce or treat the kids with some delicious peanut butter cookies. When added to smoothies, tahini adds a lovely nutty flavour. That’s if you don’t decide to use it up with chickpeas and impress your guests with a homemade hummus.

Sandwich fillers

Nothing jazzes a sandwich up quite like a relish, mustard or mayonnaise. Due to the perishable nature of some of these items, their expiry dates can often sneak up on us – especially items which state 'Consume within 5 days of opening'. To minimise this unnecessary waste, remember to always label these items with the date upon opening so you have peace of mind when it comes time to use them up. Another great tip would be to consider moving these items out of the fridge door and onto your fridge’s 'eat me first' spot (see how to love your food leftovers and prevent waste for more information about the Eat Me First strategy).

Remnant mayo and relishes can be a great addition to homemade salad dressings, in creamy pasta sauces or baked savoury items like pies or pasta bakes.


Due to their often high sodium content, sauces can last a long time without expiring. However, don’t forget that these items aren’t immortal and it’s better to use them up than let them get to a point of uncertainty. If you have any at-risk sauces in your fridge, consider using them up as a marinade, pizza sauce base, salad dressing or just add them into a stir-fry to see what flavours you end up with. The opportunities really are endless and we’d love to know how you use up your condiments!

Submit your tips competition

We have a signed copy of the book A Zero Waste Life by waste warrior, Anita van Dyke to giveaway. To enter the draw:

  • pick one of our three fridge clutter culprit categories and come up with your top tip or recipe idea
  • email your tip or recipe along with your contact phone number and mailing address (so that we can post you the prize if you win) to the Love Food Hate Waste team.

Entries closed Monday 10 December 2018 at 5pm. 

One winner will be drawn randomly from eligible entries (an eligible entry is from a Brisbane-based waste warrior (resident) with a valid tip or recipe and that has included a valid mailing address).

The winner will have their prize posted by Monday 17 December 2018.

Even if you don’t win the book prize, your tips and recipe ideas may be showcased in future issues of the Love Food Hate Waste e-newsletter!

We look forward to reading your great tips and ideas!  

Date posted:
Last updated:24 October 2019
Topics: blog green