Drive thru fast food restaurant.

Drive-Thru, Take-Out, Food Delivery—Is It Safe?

The news is constantly changing as experts learn more about the wicked virus that has invaded our world. Good, reliable information about food safety is absolutely crucial right now.

Restaurants have mostly moved into “to-go only” mode, closing their dining rooms but continuing to offer some combination of take-out, drive-thru, and home delivery. Can we rely on any of these options to keep us safe? Should we?

drive-thru fast food restaurant.

Yes, we can stay safe according to the FDA’s current position, provided we take precautionary measures. Just keep this in mind: Ordering prepared food is not quite as safe as preparing your own food at home. But it is definitely a safer option than eating in a restaurant dining room where the major risk is touching a table or another surface that has been touched by someone who is contagious.

Here are some things that experts are recommending we keep in mind when ordering food during this breakout:

Wash your hands

We’ve heard it a million times already, but it bears repeating because it is pretty much the second most important thing you can do. (What’s the first most important thing, which we’re just now learning? Do not touch your face!)

Wash your hands (or use hand sanitizer) both before and after you receive your delivery. And as always, wash your hands before you eat, even if you made the food yourself.

According to Stephen Morse, an epidemiologist at Columbia University in The Atlantic, there could be a small risk of contracting the virus from take-out containers and bags but that’s not your number one risk. What is our number one risk? Respiratory droplets we might receive directly from an infected person who happens to sneeze or cough in our presence.

Minimize human contact

Contactless delivery is the new term, and it is defined as receiving your food without coming face-to-face with someone else. Bear in mind that your delivery itself will have made contact with another person(s). However,  contactless delivery reduces the risk of your face coming into direct contact with respiratory droplets from a contagious person. Contactless delivery is safer for you and for your delivery driver, too.

Discard all packaging

According to the CDC, “It may be possible that a person can get [the virus] by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it [via a respiratory droplet] and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.”

Still, out of an abundance of caution, make it your standard practice to discard the packaging materials—paper or plastic bag, receipts, menus—that came into the house with the food. Researchers have found that the virus can survive on surfaces for a few hours to a few days, depending on the surface material. Then wash your hands. Again.

Disinfect surfaces

Using soap and water or an EPA-approved disinfectant like SNiPER or Clorox Wipes, clean your eating surface. And while you’re at it, clean the surface where you set the bags and boxes and any other things that have come in from the outside world.

Don’t eat with your hands

Even though you have just washed your hands prior to eating, using utensils can cut down even further on the possibility of contamination. Those little packets of sauce and condiment? Make certain to clean and disinfect them prior to opening. Or make it easier on yourselves and toss them in favor of your own items from the fridge.

Opt for cooked items

According to Stephen Morse in the source cited above, “cooked foods are unlikely to be a concern unless they get contaminated after cooking,” That’s why he suggests not ordering raw items from take-out. Make your own salad at home, following good hygiene practices for cleaning fresh fruits and vegetables.

Order extra, skip the drinks

If the food items can be easily reheated in a hot oven, order extra for tomorrow’s meal. This can help to cut down on delivery trips, which means you’re helping the restaurant. That makes it easier for you, too.

This is a good time to be drinking more water than we usually do, as immunity is heightened when we are well hydrated. Skip the sodas and other drinks in your take-out or delivery order. That makes it safer and easier for everyone involved.

No sharing, for now

It’s never wise to share drinks or eating utensils but we’ve all done that from time to time. And that needs to stop, for now. In general, according to Amy R. Sapkota, a professor of applied environmental health at the University of Maryland School of Public Health in Eater, if you want to split a shared takeout order, divide up the food onto separate plates before eating with your own utensils.

Support local business

Ordering take-out is not 100% foolproof (show me anything in life that is), but it is a way that we can support the businesses in our local communities, provided we are diligently following the best precautionary practices. These are tough times! And we want to come through as whole possible, with the restaurants and grocery stores we love to be whole, as well.

Businesses that have never offered home-delivery are gearing up to offer it. And that means delivery by people who’ve never delivered—who are willing to bring your food to you. Think of the risk they are willing to accept to keep themselves and that business going.

Tip more than you would normally if you can. Bear in mind contactless delivery for that person’s personal safety and peace of mind. Place the tip in an envelope, label it clearly then leave it where the driver will see it.

In every way we can, let our gratitude be known for all of the people in this country who are putting their own personal safety at risk to make our lives easier—all of our leaders, healthcare workers, law enforcement officers, truck drivers, and food delivery persons, too.

From the bottom of our hearts—Thank You!

thank you in large letters on a highway with a storm ahead


Up Next:

8 Ways Online Grocery Shopping Can Actually Help You Save Money

How to Steam Clean a Microwave Oven

The Food Pantry Items You Need to Stock Up On Now

Open refrigerator with food in kitchen. Food supply for a week.

Clever Ways to Make Meals from Leftovers

How to use leftovers? Oh, let me count the ways. There really are so many ways to make meals from leftovers, something the late Julia Child preferred to call “the remains of the day.” Such an elegant way to refer to leftovers.

Open refrigerator with food in kitchen. Food supply for a week.

Regardless, both terms refer to anything from half a pan of lasagna to a dab of mashed potatoes that sit in the fridge until they turn green, at which time we feel a lot better about throwing those leftovers away, right? These days, with the price of food soaring—that’s like throwing cash in the garbage.

RELATED6 Ways to Stop Throwing Rotten Produce in the Garbage

The secret to sticking to a food budget is to first find a delicious use for every last bit of what we buy, then have an immediate plan for leftovers, and finally, to be diligent to follow through. Really, it all comes down to choosing to see leftovers as ingredients for new dishes—not just multiple go-rounds of the same thing until it’s finally gone.

Contents

Click on one to go straight to it, or scroll down to enjoy all.

1. Pasta
2. Pizza!
3. Tortilla chips
4. Bread
5. Cheese
6. Eggs
7. Mashed potatoes
8. Coffee
9. Rice
10. Chicken, turkey
11. Fish
12. Meatloaf
13. How long to safely keep leftovers?

Pasta

Spaghetti Frittata

So, imagine spaghetti for breakfast. Impossible? Not at all, although this recipe works for lunch or dinner, too. For this recipe, you can use any kind of plain pasta—or go wile and use up last night’s leftover pasta smothered with sauce. Basically, you’re going to add protein value with eggs, milk, and veggies. Then, fry it up in a skillet and you’ve got Spaghetti Frittata.

Pasta Stir Fry

Stir-fries are a great way to clear out the refrigerator and use up bits of produce. Stir-frying is really one of the best leftover technique you can have up your sleeve. It’s a matter of throwing together leftover pasta, vegetables, a protein like chicken and some kind of sauce.

Pasta Mama

It’s one of our favorites—for any meal of the week. Does it sound familiar? That’s because you recall Pasta Mama from a previous post. Find it here.

Pizza

Pizza eggs

Cut 2 slices of pizza into bite-size pieces. In a bowl, beat together 8 to 10 eggs. Add the pizza pieces, stir to cover all the pieces and allow to sit for 10 minutes. Spray a large frying pan with cooking spray and heat over medium-high. Scramble pizza-egg mixture in the pan for about 6 minutes or until fully cooked. Top with grated or shredded cheese and serve.

MORE: Absolutely the Best Way to Store and Reheat Leftover Pizza

Pizza lasagna

This takes a little imagination, but bear with me. Use your favorite lasagna method or recipe, substituting the lasagna noodles with leftover pizza you’ve cut into strips. It’s amazing so you really should give this a try.

Tortilla chips

Breakfast scramble

It takes only 10 minutes, and the results are amazing. Crush up that partial bag of tortilla chips—crush ’em good! Then fold chips and salsa into eggs and add cheese for an awesome Breakfast Scramble. Full recipe here.

Tortilla soup

It’s quick (under 30 minutes!) and demands tortilla chips to finish. Perfect! This recipe from Martha Stewart is super easy, too.

Bread

French toast

In a bowl, beat together 2 eggs, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and 2/3 cup milk. Soak 6 slices stale bread in the mixture, turning to coat both sides. Next, heat lightly oiled skillet over medium-high heat. Place bread in a skillet over medium heat and cook on both sides until golden. Serve with butter and syrup.

Croutons

Rub 4 slices of stale bread with a crushed clove of garlic. Cut bread into cubes, crouton-size. Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add cubes and cook, stirring often, until crispy. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

French onion soup

This recipe actually calls for the bread to be stale—either a baguette or another crusty variety. Each serving of soup uses two slices of bread, one on the top and one on the bottom. Or check out my favorite French Onion Soup recipe, which admittedly is a bit more involved, but so worth it.

Avocado toast

Spread any kind of toasted bread with a touch of a schmear of mayonnaise followed by soft buttery avocado, a bit of lime juice, and salt and pepper to taste. Then, kick it up with these additions: sun-dried tomatoes, thinly sliced cucumbers, cilantro, sprouts, sliced olives—whatever you have on hand.

MORE: 7 Awesome Ways to Use up Stale Bread

Cheese

Fromage fort

It’s not what you’re thinking—blankets of cheese spread over furniture for kids’ play! Actually, it’s French for “strong cheese.” Translated, it is a delightfully economical blend of whatever odds and ends of cheese you have around plus some wine, garlic, salt, pepper and herbs.

Basically, you throw all of it (think leftovers from last night’s party) into the blender and Voila!, a spread for crackers and baguette, or a dip veggies. Don’t judge, this really is quite amazing.

There are no rules or recipes, just guidelines. But the main thing, the salient bit, is that you just wing it. You have to check it out!

Mac ‘n cheese

Pretty much a no brainer, right? Well not exactly, depending on which cheese you have in need of a delicious way to be used up. If it’s white cheddar, hallelujah! This copycat recipe is my family’s all-time favorite. If you’re a Panera Bread fan, you’re going to love it, too.

Eggs

Breakfast bowl

Probably not what you’re thinking. The idea here is to enrich that bowl of plain Cream of Wheat with an egg and vanilla. The result is a creamy breakfast pudding. Yum! Find the recipe here.

Pavlova

What to do with all of those egg whites leftover from that recipe that called for only egg yolks? How about a meringue dessert. The fancy name is pavlova, and it is delightful! There are endless recipes out there for pavlova, but you won’t find one easier and more foolproof than Easy Pavlova.

Mashed potatoes

Potato cakes

Mix cold mashed potatoes with an egg or two, leftover pieces of fish, ham, corned beef plus chopped onion and a little flour to hold it all together. Form into small patties and shallow fry in oil, until brown and crispy.

Topping

Use leftover mashed potatoes as a topping on a savory pie filling. You’re not likely to have a lot of potatoes, so think individual shepherds pies or chicken pot pies.

Gluten-free cake

Mashed potatoes are an ingredient in many gluten-free desserts, paired with gluten-free self-rising flour, like this Lemon & Orange Cake or this Lemon Drizzle Cake.

Coffee

Sauce

After pan-frying chicken or pork, deglaze the pan with coffee instead of wine for a deeper, southern-style gravy sometimes known as Red Eye Gravy

Freeze it

Coffee ice cubes are great in iced coffee; they don’t dilute the drink as the ice melts. Or add your preferred milk and flavorings to the coffee and pour into popsicle-type molds for a frozen treat tomorrow

Brine

Coffee-based brines that include spices such as cloves, star anise, peppercorns and, of course, plenty of salt make for delicious and super moist roast chicken. Here’s a recipe for your consideration: Coffee Brined Chicken Breasts.

Rice

Fried rice

The main ingredient in fried rice is … leftover, white rice! And it’s so easy, if not forgiving. All you need is a good roadmap to follow. And I’m sure you’re not surprised that I have that for you right here in New Life for Leftover Rice!

Rice pudding

Most recipes for rice pudding call for uncooked rice. That’s not much good when it’s cooked white or brown rice leftover that needs a yummy use, and quick. That’s why I love this recipe, Old Fashioned Creamy Rice Pudding. The first ingredient is 1 1/2 cups of cooked rice! I think you will agree that it is fabulous.

Chicken, Turkey

Chicken soup

Of course, chicken and turkey are pretty much interchangeable when it comes to making soup. You may have a heritage recipe handy, one that has been handed down through your family tree. Or if not, this one could easily become your go-to recipe of choice.

Club salad

Use cut-up turkey or chicken to top a salad. The protein fiber combination makes for a perfect meal!

Mediterranean wrap

Forget shelling out the big bucks at the local sandwich shop. Instead, repurpose last night’s chicken or turkey in your own healthy version. Grab a flour tortilla and use it to wrap chicken (or turkey) and your choice of grilled vegetables.

Turkey pot pie

Or chicken. Honestly, just the thought of homemade chicken or turkey pot pie makes my salivary glands go crazy. If you’re with me on that, here’s a pretty awesome, if not foolproof, recipe because father knows best, right? Dad’s Leftover Turkey Pot Pie. Be still my heart.

Fish

Salad

What to do with those bits and piece of leftover salmon, halibut or another type of fish? Even if it’s breaded or deep-fried, don’t toss it out! It can make a fabulous addition to tomorrow’s lunch.

Fish casserole

Move over tuna casserole. This fish pasta is oh, so much classier. While it calls for 1 1/2 pounds of white fish filet, I know you can figure out how to use yesterday’s leftover flaky fish. Since you’ll be baking this in a casserole for fewer than 25 minutes, no worries about it drying out or otherwise turning ugly.

Meatloaf

Chili

Use chopped up leftover meatloaf in place of ground beef to make homemade chili. It’s all seasoned and ready-to-go.

Quesadillas

So easy! Mix together chopped up meatloaf, onion and green pepper or other toppings of choice. Stir in your favorite BBQ sauce. Cover a flour tortilla with the mixture, top with shredded cheese and top with the second tortilla. Place tortilla in the skillet cook for 1-2 minutes, until cheese starts to melt and the tortilla starts to turn brown. Flip so each side is golden and crisp.

Spaghetti

Replace ground beef with chopped leftover meatloaf in your favorite meat sauce. Over spaghetti, it is one of the most fantastic dishes from leftovers!

Grilled sandwiches

Add a slice of leftover meatloaf to your next grilled cheese sandwich! Or forget the cheese and make a grilled meatloaf sandwich.

Sliders

Tiny dinner split rolls plus a slice of meatloaf cut to the same size plus your choice of spreads—bacon onion jam, mayonnaise, mustard, you name it and what do you get? Party Food!, no party necessary.

How long to keep leftovers?

In closing, you may be wondering, how long do we have to make these meals from leftovers? How many days can we safely keep leftovers in the refrigerator? That is an excellent question, and one for the professionals.

According to Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.:

Leftovers can be kept for three to four days in the refrigerator. Be sure to eat them within that time. After that, the risk of food poisoning increases. If you don’t think you’ll be able to eat leftovers within four days, freeze them immediately.

Food poisoning—also known as a foodborne illness—is caused by harmful germs, such as bacteria in contaminated food. Because bacteria typically don’t change the taste, smell or look of the food, you can’t tell whether a food is dangerous to eat. So if you’re in doubt about a food’s safety, it’s best to throw it out.

Fortunately, most cases of food poisoning can be prevented with proper cooking and food handling. To practice food safety, quickly refrigerate perishable foods, such as meat, poultry, fish, dairy and eggs. Don’t let them sit more than two hours at typical room temperature or more than one hour at temperatures above 90 F (32 C).

Uncooked foods, such as cold salads or sandwiches, also should be eaten or refrigerated promptly. Your goal is to reduce the time a food is in the “danger zone”—between 40 and 140 F (4 and 60 C)— when bacteria can quickly multiply.

When you’re ready to eat leftovers, reheat them on the stove or in a conventional oven or microwave until the internal temperature reaches 165 F (74 C). Slow cookers aren’t recommended for reheating leftovers as these devices may not heat foods hot enough to kill bacteria.

Revised & republished:  3-28-20


Up Next

Homemade Flour Tortillas

Rules for Leftovers

Turn Leftovers into Soup

Einstein in the Kitchen or Let Them Eat (Carrot) Cake

How Gardening is Good for Your Heart and Soul and the Tools to Get Started

There’s nothing like a series of sunny days in late winter to awaken my inner gardener. I’m convinced this hobby improves both my mental and physical wellbeing and for very good reasons—six reasons, to be exact!

Mary Hunt's garden in spring

Effective exercise

According to the CDC, (Center for Disease Control), just one hour of light gardening and yard work burns 330 calories—more than lifting weights for the same amount of time. I’ll take it!

Blood pressure

Gardening scored on the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute’s (NHLBI) recommendation list for battling high blood pressure. I’m sure they’re thinking the physical movement aspects of gardening. But me? Beautiful flowers and well-manicured beds calm my soul and refuel my joy like little else.

Read more

homemade flour tortillas in a wicker basket

Homemade Flour Tortillas

Once upon a time, there was a restaurant located in Fountain Valley, Calif. Mañanas’ claim to fame—fresh, hot, homemade flour tortillas.

homemade flour tortillas in a wicker basket

Mañanas had a machine—a big, long, crazy machine—set right out in the open in plain sight. It alone was worth the trip, if only to watch a tiny ball of dough start at one end, go through a series of squishers and rollers, fly onto to a sizzling hot pan; get flipped at just the right moment, then deftly fall into a waiting basket at the other end. This thing was amazing—and super fast!

As a basket filled, off it would go to a table of waiting, hungry, drooling patrons.

Every Friday night, we and our friends were among those loyal customers. We’d slather those hot tortillas with butter, roll them up and try to mind our manners while we scarfed down tortillas.

As quickly as one basket emptied, it would be whisked away and replaced with a full one.

I don’t have words to adequately describe how delicious, comforting, absolutely fabulous. The memories are poignant. We built deep, long-lasting friendships over fresh, hot, homemade tortillas. The restaurant failed, but the friendships remain to this day.

Here’s some good news. You can make tortillas at home. You don’t need a machine, although wouldn’t that be fun! If you’ve got flour, salt, oil and water, and a stovetop or grill, you’re there! You can do this, like now.

A pile of fresh homemade wheat tortillas on a plate.

By way of background, tortillas are one in the world of flatbreads. Flatbread refers to any bread made with flour, water, and salt and then flattened or rolled. Most flatbreads are unleavened, meaning they do not contain an agent like baking soda or yeast to make them rise, like tortillas.

Other flatbreads, like Pita bread and Naan often include baking soda or yeast depending on the recipe. Flatbreads range from super thin to slightly puffy and even quick thick, but eaten without being sliced.

homemade flour tortillas in a wicker basket

Homemade Tortillas

Just 4 ingredients—that's all you need to turn out hot, fresh, tortillas that are sure to be devoured as fast as you can make them! Dipped in salsa or just slathered with butter—is there anything better? You might want to double the recipe. You're going to go through these fast!
4.6 from 10 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Bread
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep Time: 8 minutes
Cook Time: 2 minutes
Resting time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 160kcal
Author: Mary
Cost: $.50

Equipment

  • Large mixing bowl
  • Greased cast-iron skillet or another heavy skillet

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup water
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil (Note 1)

Instructions

  • Combine flour and salt in the mixing bowl.
  • Stir in water and oil until fully incorporated.
  • Turn out the dough onto a floured surface (cutting board, counter or pastry cloth).
  • Knead 10 to 12 times. If too sticky, add a little flour and work it in with your hands. Too stiff? Add water as needed to achieve a smooth dough
  • Let rest in the bowl for 10 minutes
  • Using a knife, cut the dough into 8 portions.
  • On your lightly floured surface, roll each portion in a circle approximately 7-in.
  • Cook the tortillas one at a time over medium heat until lightly browned, about 1 minute, on each side. Serve immediately, or keep warm.

Notes

  1. Other oils or fats will do here. In fact, traditionally, flour tortillas are made with lard. Alternatively, you can use shortening or coconut oil. If solid, you will want to cut in that lard, shortening, etc, instead of stirring it in.
  2. If the dough is too "elastic" and springy when you try to roll it out, let it rest a few more minutes until it calms down.
  3. The secret to tender tortillas, is to cook them quickly on a hot surface. But you don't want them to burn. So watch carefully, adjusting the temperature as needed.
  4. Rather have tortilla chips? Cut the rolled out dough into wedges and bake them in a 350 F. oven until crisp. Sprinkle with salt or other seasonings of choice. 

Nutrition

Calories: 160kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 147mg | Potassium: 33mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @EverydayCheapskate or tag #EverydayCheapskate!

How to Steam Clean a Microwave Oven

There are few things more disgusting than opening a microwave oven to find cooked-on extraneous matter clinging to every surface. The way to avoid this, of course, is to clean the appliance thoroughly after every use. Or unfortunate explosion. Uh-huh. Right.

Let’s get real. A microwave with frequent use, whether at home or at work, doesn’t get a thorough cleaning every single time. It’s going to get dirty so it’s good to know how to clean it effortlessly. With steam!

Steam cleaning a microwave oven is super easy with ordinary plain white vinegar and water.

Read more

Simple Secrets for the Perfect Home Manicure

I wish I had all of the money I’ve spent over the years on salon manicures. It would be quite a tidy sum. And perhaps I wouldn’t have had such horrible nails and even worse cuticles. 

Thankfully, after untold trials and errors, I’ve come up with the perfect home manicure routine that has turned my nail life around—and keeps me out of the pricey nail salon.

By way of a little history, over the years I’ve done the acrylic thing (don’t even get me started on what years of that did to my natural nails). I’ve endured wraps, gels, hot oil, dipping powder, and superglue. 

My cuticles have been snipped, nipped, ripped and clipped. I’ve purchased expensive lotions, potions and nail notions but to no avail. Nothing has ever worked long term. 

I’d just about given up completely on finding a reasonable and workable solution for my nails when finally, I put together a routine with specific products that have given my nails a brand new life. I’ve followed this routine for years and can report without hesitation:

This is it—the perfect home manicure and nail care program for dry, cracked, horrible cuticles and jagged, splitting, peeling nails.

Read more

Simple Tricks to Make Your Stuff Last Longer

Being wasteful is easy especially when everything seems to be so plentiful and simple to replenish. Just order more. Or run to the store, right?

Sure, we love to buy things on sale but that’s not the only way—nor the best way—to cut costs. Discovering simple ways to make things last longer is the surefire way to save time and money.

bottle of blue dawn on counter with a glass decanter showing how to dilute it to stretch farther

Blue Dawn

Our favorite degreaser and all-around amazing product, Blue Dawn, typically comes super concentrated. Read the label. It says it right there … “concentrated.” Here’s a great tip: Don’t use Blue Dawn straight out of its container. Dilute it. I’ve used the same sturdy glass decanter for more than 10 years now. It has no lid or cap which makes it super easy to dispense. I keep the jug of Blue Dawn on a shelf in my laundry room. It’s out of sight, and not that easy to grab mindlessly. When the decanter needs a refill, I eyeball 5 parts water to 1 part Blue Dawn.

Shampoo and conditioner

Store bottles upside down to prevent the shampoo or conditioner from getting stuck at the bottom of the bottle. When you can’t get any more out, add a few capfuls of water, and shake.

Read more

My Annual Spring Clean Kitchen Challenge

On the one hand, it feels as though our lives have been turned upside-down. And right in the middle of so much uncertainty, spring arrived exactly on time to remind that there are some things we can count on to never change!

Just like that, I have spring cleaning and kitchen reorganization on my mind something that happens to me every year just about this time.

dream baking center upper cabinet of beautiful white kitchen

Photo credit for this dream baking center: Tidbits

Cynthia Ewer, author of Cut the Clutter, says the first thing I need to do is harden my heart. An efficient, convenient kitchen, she says, must be pared to the bone. To create a clean and organized kitchen, I must dare to dump anything and everything that is not absolutely necessary and useful—not simply move things around in an effort to fool myself into thinking that somehow I can organize chaos.

Read more

hand with a calculator. money saving concept.

11 Money Savers That Will Pay for Themselves Over and Again

I have to admit to being a bit of a gadget freak. I’m drawn to tools and devices that do cool things. And when I discover “cool” includes being a money saver, for me that turns a purchase into an investment with a guaranteed rate of return.

male holding calculaor over pile of US currency

Here’s a list of eleven gadgets, tools, and items I’ve found that can save a lot of money and generally recoup the cost in less than a year. Your mileage may vary.

You can count on this: Once you’ve recouped the purchase price, these items will continue to save you money—for free!

Read more

open dishwasher with clean plates in it, focus on dishwasher detergent

How to Make Homemade Dishwasher Detergent

There’s nothing like reaching for the automatic dishwasher detergent only to find you’re fresh out, or you’re on your last pod. Normally, you’d run to the store or add it to your running grocery list for your next trip.

open dishwasher with clean plates in it, focus on dishwasher detergent

But suddenly, things are not normal. It’s comforting to know how to do things yourself—how to be more self-sufficient. With this post, you can add one more recipe to your “Make It Myself” file!

To make automatic dishwasher detergent you will need:

Airtight container

A wide-mouth Mason jar or similar is excellent for homemade dishwasher detergent because it’s easy to scoop from that wide-mouth, and easy to replace the lid to keep it as airtight as possible. However, any container, plastic or glass, with a tightly fitting top will work. A zip-type plastic bag will also work in a pinch.

Read more

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