Plastic Leftover Containers

It’s a rare home that has all its plastic leftover containers neat and tidy. Why is this?

First of all, most people way overestimate the number they’ll need. To find out if you do, I’ll ask you a question: Have you ever run out of clean ones? Perhaps you had to make do with a less-than-ideal size or shape, but I bet there was always a container in the cabinet for you, even with a sink and dishwasher full of dirty dishes, and a fridge full of leftovers.

Having too many is the first problem; the second is the never-ending search for matching tops and bottoms. Unless you buy only a certain brand of container so they all nest together, the best way to eliminate this problem is to store them already assembled. “What?!” my clients say. “But then we’ll be able to fit so few in there!” Well, see problem number one. You probably have too many.

Take 20 minutes and play the plastic container dating game. Match them up, tops and bottoms together. All the “plastics without partners” go in the recycling bin or trash. See what you have left. If it’s too many for the space, then stash some emergency back-ups in a labeled container in the basement. (You can also place down there the sizes and shapes that you only use once in a while, like the containers made for deviled eggs, or the lemonade pitcher that you only use in the summer.)

I’m curious to hear about your experience with plastic leftover containers. Oh, and P.S., I know there’s controversy over whether it’s safe to store food in certain types of plastic, but that’s beyond the scope of my blog!