In Clean Eating's newest online course, Batch Cooking 101: Cook Once, Eat All Week, Pamela Salzman, certified holistic health counselor and cooking instructor, revolutionizes the concept of make-ahead meals with easy-to-learn recipes and seven weeks of in-depth lessons on shopping, planning and cooking. Ready to learn more? Sign up here.
When you're batch cooking and making meals ahead, there's one essential that's often overlooked: How to store your food. I mean that literally!
As a clean eater, I'm not only concerned about what I eat, but how that food is packaged and stored. It all matters.
As a general rule, I try to avoid the use of plastics because liquids, oils and acidic foods (such as citrus and tomatoes) can make the plastic leech. Instead, I look to alternatives such as glass, parchment and even stainless steel.
Here are my recommendations for the cleanest ways to store your food without using plastic:
I always choose glass. From Tupperware-style containers to mason jars, it's a versatile, sustainable option and there are so many great brands to choose from. Some of my favorites include: Glasslock, Anchor Hocking and Ball.
Stainless Steel Tins
I love stainless steel tins, which are so lightweight. They're great for taking lunch to work. I prefer U Konserve.
Coated Canvas Baggies
Instead of plastic sandwich bags, I use Neat-Os, which are made of BPA-free polyethylene-coated canvas cloth. I store prepped produce in these and stash them in the refrigerator or freezer—it makes assembling lunch and dinner so easy during weekdays.
Recycled Paper Boxes
When I'm traveling, packing a picnic or eating on the beach, I like to use recycled paper-based containers such as ice cream pints or craft paper boxes (which are perfect for salads). I buy them in bulk for the best price.
Storing food in unbleached parchment—such as the If You Care brand—is a great option, and it can be used interchangeably for foil, except on the grill. (Though if you want to make a hobo pack for the grill, you can wrap your food in parchment first and then the foil.)
Ready to become a batch cooking boss? Sign up for Batch Cooking 101: Cook Once, Eat All Week with Pamela Salzman.