Dining out and leftovers

Lasagna and bread in an aluminum to-go container.Many restaurants serve large portions, and people often take leftovers home. Eating leftovers is a good way to stretch your food dollar but it is important to keep the food safe.  When you take leftovers with you from a restaurant, go home right away so you can put the food in the refrigerator. If you can’t go home soon after eating, bring along a cooler with ice or freezer packs for your leftovers. Or you can always order less food or split a meal so you don’t have any leftovers. You’ll save money and you won’t have to worry about your leftovers spoiling. Be smart about restaurant leftovers and keep your food safe! 

Organizing your refrigerator and pantry to save money

Woman looking into an organized kitchen cabinet.Throwing away food is like throwing away money. Keeping an organized refrigerator and pantry will help you know what foods you have so that you can eat them before they spoil. Knowing what you have on hand will save you money because you won’t accidentally buy food that you don’t need. An organized kitchen saves you time and makes cooking easier because you will be able to quickly find what you need. To organize your refrigerator or pantry, start by taking everything out (use a cooler for perishable items like milk). Check the expiration dates, throw out what has expired, and plan meals around food that needs to be used up soon. Arrange similar foods together so you know where to find them. Save money and time with an organized refrigerator and pantry!


Bell peppers, onions, and summer squash on the grill.Grilling is great because: you don’t have to heat up the kitchen, cleanup is easy, and it adds a distinct flavor to your food. It’s also a healthy way to cook meat because some of the fat drips away. If the meat gets a little charred or burnt, just cut that section off before eating.  And grilling is not just for meat; vegetables and fruits are great on the grill. Good grilling vegetables include potato, summer squash, eggplant, asparagus, mushrooms, and tomatoes. For fruit, try nectarines, peaches, pears, and pineapple. Cut fruits and vegetables into thick, flat, even slices or cut smaller fruits and vegetables in half. Brush with a little oil to prevent sticking, and be sure to use separate utensils if you’re also grilling meat at the same time. Save time and eat healthy by grilling!

Enjoying tomatoes in season

Close-up of tomatoes on the vine.Tomatoes are here! Buy fresh, juicy tomatoes at farmers’ markets or roadside stands. Many grocery stores also feature locally-grown tomatoes. The flavor can’t be beat! Look for tomatoes that are soft – not too firm or mushy – and are deep red in color. Chop or slice them for salads, dice them for salsa, or eat them whole like apples. Roast them to make your own oven-dried tomatoes. Or buy extra and make tomato sauce for freezing. Be sure to peel them before making a sauce – make an “X” on the end of each tomato and drop them in boiling water for a minute to loosen the skins. Tomatoes are rich in nutrition and are now at their very best!