Celebrate Earth Day all year-round by reducing your food waste every day. In the United States, it is estimated that 30-40% of our food supply ends up in the garbage can, yet 1 in 8 Americans still struggle to put enough food on the table. Help fight food waste by following these steps.

First, plan ahead.Before you go to the store, think about what meals you’d like to make, and take an inventory of the ingredients you have on hand. Then create a grocery list and stick to it. This ensures that you only purchase what you need.

Second, store your foods smartly.You can increase the shelf life of many foods simply by storing them correctly. Think about where an item was when you purchased it and try to store it that way. For example, if you purchased cherry tomatoes at room temperature, then a good place to store them would be on your countertop. Use airtight bags or containers if you’re refrigerating or freezing items to increase their shelf lives.

Third, use your freezer.If you’re unable to consume the food you purchased by the time it needs to be eaten, try freezing it. Most foods — like fruits, vegetables, meat, seafood and breads — can be frozen to extend their shelf lives. Eggs, cream-based soups, fruits and veggies with a high water content, yogurt and fried foods will not freeze well.

Fourth, get creative!Make use of the ingredients you have at home to make new, innovative and tasty recipes. You can repurpose commonly discarded food items into creative menu items. For example, you can turn bread crusts into bread pudding; fruit peels into candied peels; seeds into a crunchy snack; meat bones into stock, and more. These creative recipes might just become your new favorite!

Fifth, cook once, serve twice!Eat your leftovers. How often does last night’s dinner sit in your fridge until next Tuesday? Be diligent about eating your leftovers! You can also reuse ingredients throughout the week. If you have leftover vegetables from last night’s dinner, they could be added to your scrambled eggs this morning or to a stir-fry recipe tonight. Plan your meals in such a way that you can cook an ingredient once but use it multiple times.

Reducing our food waste not only helps us stop feeding our garbage can, but it also saves us money. Our food dollars go much further if we’re able to get the most out of the foods we buy. Plus, the less food that is discarded creates extra that can go to our neighbors who need it through local food banks and food pantries. Celebrate Earth Day and follow these steps to do your part in reducing food waste!

I have included a freezer-friendly recipe for breakfast burritos that can be eaten any time of the day!

3 mild Italian turkey sausages

1 medium green pepper, seeded and diced

½ medium onion, diced

6 large eggs, beaten

6 egg whites, beaten

1 cup shredded Colby jack cheese, divided

8 (10-inch each) burrito-size tortillas

Brown sausage in a large skillet; add green pepper and onion and cook until softened. Remove sausage mixture from skillet; add eggs and egg whites and scramble. Return cooked sausage mixture and add cheese to scrambled eggs.

Place about ¾ cup egg mixture on each tortilla. Roll up burrito-style.

Freeze burritos in a single layer on a plate or dish; when fully frozen, individually wrap burritos in plastic wrap.

To serve, remove plastic wrap from burrito. Wrap burrito in a paper towel to absorb moisture; microwave on high for 2 minutes, or until heated thoroughly.

Nutrition Information (per serving): 370 calories, 15g fat, 7g saturated, 820mg sodium, 36g total carbohydrate, 2g dietary fiber, 4g total sugars, 21g protein.

Recipe source: www.hy-vee.com