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10 Ways to Reuse Plastic Takeout Containers

One of the ways my husband and I save money and reduce household waste is to try to get an extra reuse out of everything within reason before it goes into the trash or recycling bin. 

Lately, we've been doing Quarantine Takeout Date Night as a replacement for our regular weekly date night and to help keep our local restaurants in business especially those that are now doing takeout to survive. Some of the food containers we can compost in our compost bin. Others are the hard plastic type we cannot compost or put in our city recycling bin because they are made from number 5 plastic.

Lucky for us, plastic takeout food containers are extremely easy to repurpose which makes them very, very useful.


how to recycle plastic takeout containers
Save these organization ideas to your Pinterest boards for later! Share it with your friends!


If you’re looking for ways to recycle those food takeout containers into something useful, we have you covered!

10 New and Easy Ways to Repurpose Empty Plastic Containers



1. You can reuse takeout containers for drawer organizers – the rectangle or square food containers fit my drawers best. You can also use the lids if they are deep enough.


how to reuse plastic takeout container ideas
I can actually find things in the kitchen junk drawer now!


2. You can repurpose food containers with lids to store freezer meals in the freezer – - If you are a super organized person who makes freezer meals or likes to portion food out to make  your own personal frozen entrees reusing takeout containers is a fantastic solution!  Just make sure you don’t put the plastic containers in the microwave oven when it is time to eat.



3. You can recycle takeout containers into seed starting trays if you like to garden.


4. You can save and reuse takeaway containers and use them to deliver a meal or send leftovers home with your guests. That way you don’t have to play the Who Do I Need to Remind to Give Me Back My Container? game.


5. I repurposed the bottom of a takeout container as a waterproof bathroom organizer to corral shampoo bottles and tubes. It was a temporary solution that I made permanent when I couldn’t find what I wanted in a store.


recycled bathroom organizer ideas
 I poked a drainage hole in the corner of my container to keep water from pooling and mildewing.


6.  On a related note, you can recycle round plastic takeout containers or the lids as saucers under potted plants.


7. You can repurpose takeout containers for kitchen food storage. I have to use a store provided bag when I shop at local bulk bins which aren’t great for long term food storage. I decant pretty much everything I buy (bulk bins or not) into a clear container because it stays fresh longer and is pest resistant.


8. You can reuse takeout containers with lids to store small items like charger cords, small toys or parts, hardware, accessories, office supplies, or craft room storage, etc. This list is only limited by your imagination!


how can I reuse Chinese takeout contaienrs
 I store and organize small supplies and tools in my craft and sewing room in labeled Chinese takeout food containers.


9. You can save and reuse delivered meal containers for food prep. If you like to do all of your chopping and peeling one a week (a totally smart way to making dinner quick and easy on a busy evening) you can store those items in takeout containers just like restaurant chefs do.


10. And finally, if you can’t repurpose them, you can recycle number 5 plastic takeout containers through the Preserve Gimmie 5 Program. You can drop all of your Number 5 plastic containers into the Gimmie 5 barrel at a Whole Foods store if you have one (which, honestly is just about the only time I go to Whole Foods) or box them up and send them to Preserve. Preserve grinds the plastic and uses it to make their products – which you can also recycle through their Gimmie 5 program. 

Looking for more creative ideas? Check out the following options - and more!- below!



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Comments

Good Ideas! I hate to throw out anything that can be used for organization.
Frugal Hausfrau said…
All great ideas! I use them to send home food with my son!

Thanks for sharing with Fiesta Friday this week!

Mollie