Reducing your waste to a single jar for a month can seem impossible. It is not BUT does take some planning… especially if you want to jump right in. Check out the post “Green UP Challenge: Reducing our waste to a single jar” for examples of household waste that needs to be eliminated.


It is pretty impossible to think of every single way that you need to Green UP your life to reduce your waste to a single jar especially if you want to avoid throwing out potential items that could create waste. For example. if you already own ziplocks bags don’t just get rid of them. Instead, use them until they are no longer usable and then get rid of them. Use these  tips for reducing your waste to a single jar:

Tips for Reducing your Waste to a Single Jar


Buy extra containers

Buy used containers for bulk foods. If you have cleared out the used store of usable containers then head to your local grocery store and buy a case (or two) of big and small mason jars. This is helpful for those unanticipated bulk foods that you will need to store after buying them.

Prepare Easy Snacks

Snacking while trying to be waste free can be a challenge. I have two littles and they LOVE to eat all the time. Easy waste free snacks include: Fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, local baked goods and hard boiled eggs.

Double the Recipe

The hard part about Greening UP is that you often need to make a lot of your own snacks like granola bars. Especially if you have kids that like to eat! Double the recipe and freeze half so that you do not have to make the recipe again for a few extra days/weeks.

Create a To Go Bag

Create a To Go Bag to eliminate waste on the go. Check out The To Go Bag: Waste free kit essentials to start creating your own To Go Bag.


Refuse waste on the go by letting restaurants know before they sit you down that you would like no straws or napkins. Also tell them that you want no disposable plastic cups especially if you have kids! We have eaten out at two places that have given our kids disposable plastic cups for their juice. Luckily this was before the challenge and we now know to let the servers know BEFORE they bring out a wasteful cup.

Reuse Plastic bags

Do you already have a big box of ziplock bags or did your bread come in a plastic bag? Reuse and reuse and reuse those bags! We bought a box of ziplock bags last year and we still are reusing them. Old bread bags are perfect for storing homemade bread so don’t throw them out!

No Junk Mail

Avoid extra wasteful flyers and make your own “No Junk Mail” sign to put on your mail box. According to my husband, not putting please was rude so adjust the sign to say “No Junk Mail, Please”.

Buy Used

Need some new furniture or a statement piece? Head to a local reused store and find a hidden gem OR build your own furniture from reclaimed wood! We outfitted an old barn frame with some pictures of our family adventuring AND made shelves for our wall out of old barn wood. To give you some added encouragement… We are definitely NOT builders so if we can do it so can you!!!



If you are reducing your waste to a jar great! These tips will help you stick to your goal for the month of March.



Join the Green UP Challenge and choose to reduce your waste to a single jar OR simple choose a single goal to Green UP your life for the month of March.



By Annika Mang
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2 thoughts on “Tips for Reducing your Waste to a Single Jar”

  1. My goal for March is to reduce the month’s waste to one garbage bag instead of a jar. I’m starting with a more manageable goal for myself right now, but I do hope to one day get down to the jar! I’ll obviously recycle as much as possible too! Thanks for the inspiration.

    1. That is a great goal and it is so important to choose one that you can accomplish OR you will just quit before you even have gotten started. Thanks so much for your comment and good luck! Let me know how it goes.

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