Eating fruits and vegetables on a daily basis is a healthy thing to do – not to mention delicious too. When you have generous helpings on a regular basis, you will notice that you are left with a lot of fruit and vegetable peels. In most cases, we end up disposing them – but did you know these have a lot of use to them?
The more frugal with your resource, the better it is for you as well as the planet. And if you can make something good out of vegetable and fruit peels, then why not? Join us in both helping the environment as well as increasing your knowledge of niftiness when it comes to using all the resources given to us…
Uses for leftover fruit and vegetable peels:
1) Time to Make Delicious Jelly!
You can actually use peels of apples (or in fact, pretty much any fruit you choose and even some veggies such as corn) to make jelly by combining these ingredients:
I. Peels of chosen fruit
II. Sugar (enough to suit your taste)
III. Lemon peel (to protect the fruit from decomposing and fermenting)
IV. Pectin (helps the substance jellify)
V. Water (depending on the consistency you prefer)
After finely chopping up the fruit peels of your choice and combing the rest of these ingredients, you can easily make a healthy and delicious treat from what would have been something decomposing in the trash!
2) Little Pots for Seedlings!
You can use the shells or round peels of avocados, oranges and grapefruits – or any round fruit/veggie shell for that matter, to grow your seeds. Fill the peels with mud or potting soil and put in your seeds, placing by the window or outise. Once they have germinated, you can plant the whole thing in a pot or in soil. Make sure to transfer your seedling into another pot, otherwise the fruit/veggie round holding it will begin to decompose and attract bugs.
3) Clean Out Your Coffee Pots
Lemon rind or other citrus rinds that contain acid are good for cleaning out stains from glass pots in which you make coffee (or tea). All you need to do is add ice and salt along with the rind to scrub out the carafe or pot.
4) Make Scrumptious Citrus Zest for Baking and Cooking
You can always use your leftover fruit and vegetable peels to make zest or veggie flakes. Just take the time to scrape the outer layer of the fruit or veggies before eating them by using either a carrot peeler or a cheese grater, then store the zest or veggie peels you get in an airtight container for later use in the freezer. You can also choose to dry them out in the sun naturally or even immediately use for cooking.
5) Yummy Smelling All Natural Potpourri
Fruit and vegetable peels can be some of the main ingredients in potporri. If you think about it, many of us do tend to spend a lot of money on potpourri (the good stuff). Instead, use fruit and vegetable peels such as from pomegranate fruits, apples, citrus fruits and other trimmings to make your potpourri. You will need to dry these to start the process and then you have a wonderful potpourri with no extra cost. Be sure and combine the right scents with one another – experimenting is always fun!
Also, you can make some intriguing potpourri décor, such as in the photo above. Simply peel a circular citrus fruit in a circular motion and invert the long peel for a beautiful piece of art that mimics a rose.
6) Prevent Brown Sugar from Hardening
Use of lemon zest in a brown sugar container will prevent the brown sugar from becoming hard. I’m sure you’re familiar with the process of baking cookies, only to discover you’ve got to bang on the brown sugar bag to chip off a chunk. The peels help by sucking out the moisture that can sometimes find its way into the container, ensuring it doesn’t get into the brown sugar so it can dry out and create fusion. Do ensure that the lemon rind is dry and without pulp before adding to the brown sugar.
7) Make Your Skin Glow
Peaches come in handy with their potassium and vitamin A content to make your skin glow. You can use the peel of peaches along with a bit of white sugar on the inside to scrub out your skin. Note that other fruit and vegetable peels can also be used on the skin, such as avocado for its oils or even apple for its scent. Most fruits and veggies contain vitamins that are great for us – both inside and out.
8) Astringent for Facial Skin
Citrus fruits are superb astringents, and the peels can be used to rub on the face to make the face look bright and tight – lessening wrinkles. You will then need to rinse the face with tepid (luke warm) water. Be sure to be careful when rubbing such peels around the eyes, we all know that citric acid in the eyes isn’t pleasant!
9) Make Metals Glow
When you have metal containers that are made of brass or copper or any other such metal, they tend to become dull over time. Use of citrus peels with their acid content can make the vessels regain their luster when you scrub along with baking soda.
10) Make Your Tired Eyes Feel Better
When your eyes become tired and puffy, you can use the potato peel to relieve this condition. You will need to keep the peel on the eyes for about ten to fifteen minutes after which you can take them off then rinse the eye area out with warm water. Potatoes contain starch, which has anti-inflammatory properties and make them wonderful for ridding of irritation and redness around the eyes. Note that they are not an astringent, so won’t tighten the skin around the eyes like citrus peels can.
A Few Last Uses for Fruit and Vegetable Peels
11. Banana peels can easily help whiten your teeth. The manganese, magnesium, and potassium on the inside of a banana peel are great for ridding the enamel of excess muck stuck on them that create discoloration.
12. Lemon peels can not only help in cleaning your coffee pot as mentioned above, they can also help clean up greasy messes. Combine salt or baking soda with lemon peels in water and voila! A non-toxic homemade remedy for greasy messes.
13. Create Compost! Fruit and vegetable peels are a wonderful addition to creating a great compost that can be used as plant food to help feed your flowers, your garden, or even the trees in your yard.
14. Create your own flavorful pepper – such as lemon pepper! Just grate the peelings into a zest and combine with freshly cracked pepper. You can choose any fruit and vegetable peels to do this with, depending on what flavors your love and are looking for.
15. You can make a wonderful fabric dye using pomegranate peels. Simply take your leftover pomegranate peels, place in a stainless steel pot with boiling water. Let this simple concoction simmer for an hour, then turn the oven off and let it sit overnight. The next day, remove the peels from the water and place your fabric in it (ensure the fabric is wetted down with water first to ensure the dye evenly disperses on the fabric). Simmer this for one last hour, then allow to cool overnight. By day two, you can remove the fabric and rinse it out and dry – enjoying its fabulous new shade. From then on, you can wash with like colors.
16. By boiling banana peels in water then drinking it, some studies suggest that this may help with reducing depression. Wow! Who would have thought leftover fruit and vegetable peels could be so soothing?
17. The inside of banana peels also can help with reducing bruises. Simply rub the inside of the babnana peel against your bruise for several minutes, up to three times before noticing a difference in your bruise’s color.
18. Feed your grass! You can grate peels of fruits and especially veggies (staying away from the more acidic ones such as lemons and oranges) and throw them in your yard to help feed it the nutrients it needs to grow into becoming lush and full.
19. Banana peels can polish your silverware. Of course, you’ll need to rinse off your silverware afterwards in case you don’t particularly want it to smell like bananas (unless you like the tropical scent!).
20. Throw onion skins into soups and the slow cooker! Even the skin of onions is packed with wonderful nutrients, and they taste just as fantastic as the onion itself when used in soups or in a stew done in the slow-cooker.
There you have it, 20 uses for fruit and vegetable peels that’ll help you in eliminating your excess waste as well as sparking new and ingenious ways of using all of the food you consume – even the peels! Leave a comment if you’ve any other wonderful and new ways of using fruit and vegetable peels!