25 Easy Ways to Ditch Single-Use Plastic in Your Kitchen

Say so-long to single-use plastic wrap!

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Real Simple / Sabrina Jiang

Maybe you're going zero waste; maybe you're looking for alternatives to single-use plastic products; maybe you're concerned about the potentially harmful chemicals in plastics. Whatever your motivation, there are plenty of reasons to seek out sustainable swaps for single-use plastic products. Especially in the kitchen, single-use food packaging—along with takeout containers, disposable dishware and utensils, and plastic wrap—take a heavy toll on the environment. (Every little bit adds up, remember.)

Whether you're just learning how to recycle or you're discovering what zero waste is, cutting back on plastic use in your kitchen can help reduce your negative impact on the environment, save you money, and even prevent food waste.

These alternatives to single-use plastic bags, plastic wrap, food storage containers, and more offer reusable, long-lasting options that can mean less spending and fewer trips to take out the trash. Going plastic-free has never been so easy.

Plastic wrap alternatives

Bee's Wrap

Bee's Wrap Plastic Wrap Alternatives around bowl and avocado
Bee's Wrap

Bee's Wrap is a reusable sheet of organic cotton infused with beeswax. Use the heat of your hands to mold each wrap around the top of a bowl, or wrap up a sandwich, a block of cheese, or a loaf of bread. Each sheet lasts for up to a year, then it can be cut into strips and composted. These reusable wraps come in a variety of sizes and beautiful, vibrant patterns.

Khala and Co. Vegan Wraps

Khala & Co Vegan Food Wraps
Khala & Co

Khala and Co. Vegan Wraps are another sustainable alternative to single-use plastic wrap. Made with soy wax, jojoba oil, coconut oil, and tree resin in place of beeswax, these vegan wraps are crafted without animal products. Wash them with cool water and dish soap, then let them air-dry, so they're ready to use again and again.

Net Zero Co. Stretch and Seal Silicone Lids

Net Zero Co Silicone Covers
Net Zero Co

These silicone lids are ideal for when you want to get an air-tight seal around a container. These stretchy sheets of food-grade silicone fit over square and round containers, bowls, jars, pots, and even cut fruit like melons or onions. The air-tight seal helps leftovers last longer, preventing food waste and saving you money.

Frisco Silicone Pet Food Can Covers

Chewy Silicone Pet Food Can Covers
Chewy

These durable can cover keep leftover wet pet food fresh in the fridge. Each silicone cover adapts to three different lid sizes, so you don't have to hunt for different covers for small and large cans. Toss them on the top rack of the dishwasher for easy cleanup.

Five Two Airtight Silicone Lids

Five Two Silicone Lids in various sizes and colors
Food52

These lids form an airtight seal with any container with a smooth rim, so salads, fruits, veggies, meats, and more can be stored safely. The lids—each set includes five sizes—are dishwasher-safe and stack together for easy storage.

OXO Good Grips Silicone Lid and Splatter Guard Set

OXO Good Grips Silicone Lids in Green
Amazon

The silicone lid works on plastic, ceramic, steel, or glass bowls and containers and creates a seal on placement to keep food fresh. The lids are also sturdy enough to bear weight, so you can stack covered containers in the fridge.

Farberware Food Huggers

Silicone Food Huggers in various sizes and colors
Amazon

These food huggers come in a variety of sizes (and colors) of BPA-free silicone to cover cut fruits and vegetables—think half of a lemon or onion—without single-use cling wrap.

Butter and Cheese Huggers

Butter & Cheese Food Huggers in various colors
Uncommon Goods

These silicone covers work just like the ones above, but are designed to cover the cut ends of cheese blocks and butter sticks.

GIR Silicone Lids

Colorful Round Silicone Lids on bowls
GIR

Keep food fresh in every sort of bowl and casserole dish with these reusable, dishwasher-safe lids that come in a variety of sizes and colors.

Sealable plastic bag alternatives

Stasher Bags

Container Store Clear Stasher Bags
Container Store

A pinch-lock seal keeps food fresh (and spill-free), and the bags can be tossed in the dishwasher between uses. They are also freezer-, microwave-, and oven-safe, up to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. They can even be used for sous vide cooking, as the bags can withstand boiling water.

Grove Co. Reusable Snack Bags

Cactus Snack Bags
Grove Co.

Each set comes with one snack bag and one sandwich bag, making this the perfect duo for packed school lunches. Your kids will love the cactus print, and you'll love that they're leakproof and dishwasher-safe.

Plastic storage container alternatives

Aplat Make and Take Food Kit

Aplat Make & Take Food Kit in Cotton Fabric Cover and Tote
Aplat

This kit will elevate your food presentation the next time you bring a dish to a potluck, party, or picnic. Skip the plastic wrap and tin foil—this kit comes with a machine-washable cotton drawstring cover for casserole dishes measuring up to 9-by-13 inches. Then, slide the dish into the handy tote to transport your food in style. This kit also makes an excellent gift for all the foodies in your life.

S'well Stainless Steel Food Bowl

Swell Food Bowl
Amazon

These containers have two parts—an inner prep bowl and a vacuum-insulated exterior bowl—for transporting and storing snacks, granola, yogurt, or smoothie bowls, soups, salads, and more. Try S'ip by S'well containers for a more playful, kid-friendly option.

OXC Good Grips Storage Containers

OXO Glass Food Storage Containers
Amazon

These borosilicate glass containers with leakproof lids come in nine different sizes so you can stash everything from half a lime to a cheesy lasagna.

Essos Glass Jars

Essos Glass Jars with Wooden Lids
Amazon

For stackable, plastic-free storage, invest in a set of these glass canisters with air-tight wooden lids. Use for dry goods such as pastas, dried beans, and the like.

Pyrex Easy Grab Glass Bakeware and Food Storage Set

Pyrex Glass Food Container Set with blue lids
Amazon

If you want the convenience of cooking and storing food in the same containers, opt for this set of nonporous glass containers and bakeware with BPA-free lids.

Canning Jars

Container Store Glass Canning Jars
Container Store

There's a reason durable glass canning jars have stood the test of time. The glass was built to withstand boiling water and is dishwasher-safe for easy cleaning. Once the ingredients are added and the lids are tightly sealed, they can also be used to mix up a vinaigrette or some homemade whipped cream.

Plastic Produce Bag Alternative

Simple Ecology Mesh Produce Bags

Mesh Produce Bags
Simple Ecology

These reusable bags are crafted from organic cotton muslin that can be machine-washed in cold water. Instead of reaching for a single-use plastic bag when stocking up on produce at the food store, bring along these reusable alternatives. The tag on each bag lists the weight of the bag, so it can be subtracted when your produce is weighed at the checkout. An added bonus: the open-weave design allows ethylene gas to escape, helping fruits and vegetables stay fresh for longer than plastic bags do. No more rotten produce in the crisper drawer!

Ice pack alternative

Onyx Stainless Steel Ice Packs

Food52 Ice Packs
Food52

These ice packs are about the size of an iPhone, and can slip directly next to your food. Filled with distilled water, they freeze solid in about two hours and will keep lunch cool for four to six hours.

Plastic water bottle alternatives

Hydro Flask

Teal Hydro Flask
Amazon

All Hydro Flask products have insulated walls that keep cool drinks cold for 24 hours and warm beverages hot for six hours. Options range from water bottles to growler-sized bottles.

Nalgene Water Bottles

Blue Nalgene Water Bottle
Nalgene

These classic reusable water bottles are BPA-free and lightweight, perfect for hiking trips or urban treks.

S'Well Stainless Steel Water Bottle

S'Well Water Bottle in Green
S'Well

These stylish water bottles are condensation-free and can keep drinks cold for 24 hours or warm for 12.

Klean Kanteen

Klean Kanteen Stainless Steel Water Bottle
Klean Kanteen

Made entirely of stainless steel, these durable water bottles come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. They last for many years, replacing hundreds of single-use plastic bottles over time.

Sippy cup alternatives

Green Sprouts Glass Sip and Straw Cup

Green Sprouts Glass Sippy Cup
Amazon

This sippy cup holds liquid in a glass insert that's covered with a plastic shield for protection (which never comes in contact with the beverage). This is a great option if you're looking for a transparent sippy cup.

Pura Kiki Insulated Sippy Bottle

Pura Kiki Blue Sippy Cup
Pura

Made from stainless steel with a silicone spout and travel cap, this sippy cup is totally plastic-free. Internal volume markings make measuring beverages a breeze.

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