Zero waste & cheddar cheese

Pregrated cheese packets were a repeat offender in my landfill trash, so I thought about how I could cut that down. So my first step was to grate the cheese myself. One day, I’ll find a deli that’s not already wrapped the cheddar in it’s own plastic raincoat, and I’ll liberate it to my house, where I’ll grate it and provide it with a reusable ziplock bag!

So, with my wonderful food processor, I was sorted:

Here's what you need to grate/shred your cheese
Here’s what you need to grate/shred your cheese

And in no time, I had this!

Grated cheese (bless that food processor!)
Grated cheese (bless that food processor!)
The solid cheese block wrapper, and the grated outcome (seems more than the 1kg pre grated bag)
The solid cheese block wrapper, and the grated outcome (seems more than the 1kg pre grated bag)
A $1.38 saving in grating my own - though slightly different cheeses.
A $1.38 saving in grating my own – though slightly different cheeses.

Weekly weigh in

This week’s check in is GREAT! (95g) I did a lot of cooking Thursday week ago, and that tided me over for meals until Sunday. Then my cooking on Sunday was homemade pastry for a leek pie – all minimal packaging (though the feta cheese wasn’t all used, to there’ll be plastic to come from that). I also had a belt fall apart (cheap = useless). There’s also some wrappers from choc chips and almond meal in there.

95g weigh in on Wed 3 July!
95g weigh in on Wed 3 July!

And last week? 297g.  Thanks largely to fabric of indeterminate type, so trashed.

Weighing in at 297g of choc wrappers and fabric
Weighing in at 297g of choc wrappers and fabric

I’m thinking I’ll create some sort of graph, and add it to my Zero Waste page so you can see how I’m going!

24 Replies to “Zero waste & cheddar cheese”

  1. I use old busted belts to hold tools. A few tacks attached to a wall or work bench and you can slide things in. If you want pics, let me know.
    Unrelated, I love those chocolate bars.

    1. Welcome Slackerjo (though I've seen you around ;)) Cool idea, though my tiny place isn't likely to have a great use for this – but something to keep in mind for the future. Yes, who can say no to chocolate bars!

  2. I'm envious of your food processor! I'm still grating cheese the old fashioned way (when I actually have it in the house).

    Nicely done on decreasing your waste this week!

    1. OH I love that food processor so much (it's sort of insane) cause I hate the strain of grating stuff with my weak wrists. Thanks for the encouragement

  3. That's a great figure for the week! I realised just how much waste we generate when we did our recent full-month's shop! It's all the repeat offenders like plastic meusli packets.

    1. Snacks are one of the worst culprits for rubbish (along with rice/noodles etc) – one of the 'categories' of groceries I'm trying to eliminate. But then you have to take the time to bake, which I do enjoy, but I usually make the sugar laden varieties rather than savoury snack!

  4. Well done – on the waste and grating your own cheese. Just a word re delis not wrapping in plastic. Often they have taken the plastic off that they food comes in and then display the food in the refrigerated shelving – as if it is plastic free. Rarely the case as it has to be transported!

    1. Yeah I doubt I can fully dodge plastic in the supply chain. But at least asking for it plastic free is sharing my preference, and if everyone did it, then processes might change?

    1. Ah thank you Glen, I did mean to include the price differential – $1.38 per kg (see the newly inserted photo). This is for like for like (Black and Gold brand). I wouldn't be surprised if I saved more with 'name' brands & comparisons.

    1. Thanks EK – I was reading about that on another blog actually. She's trying to have minimal ingredient foods – I can't believe the list of additives in the US! To be honest, I've frozen this DIY grated cheese, and it sticks together as much as pre-grated cheese, though it seems easier to break up due to a fine grate/shred.

  5. I have been grating my own cheese this year (using a grater) because as EOK said above, I didn't want to buy pre-grated cheese which usually has cellulose in it. Harmless, but who needs wood fibre? It sounds like you appreciate your food processor. I have a blender with a small food processor attachment. I've never used it, but I will have to try it for cheese!

  6. That's a huge change, you are doing fantastic. On your cheese you will save plenty of money grating your own, plus none of the added fillers they use in the packaged grated cheeses.

  7. We've been taking our own storage containers for storage for loose items and even lunch meet. Unfortunately, we get our cheese from the Amish Market and it's all wrapped. But we try to get the biggest package we can.

    I have a food processor that attaches to my blender but you know what…I don't think I've ever used ti and I've had it for a very long time. I still shred my cheese the old fashioned way.

    I'm going to see if I can get Tim into weighing our waste….we're still working on trying to get things to the recycling center since the condo doesn't do it for us. but we do have a lot less trash since we have lessened

    1. I'm annoyed I too haven't found a place where cheese is unwrapped, but it must exist, somewhere, in some deli. You should try the food processor for grating – so quick and easy! I used it for apple to make a bread and some granola the other day – so much quicker!

      I'm shocked your condo doesn't do recycling, that's so uncommon nowdays. Weighing it started from another blog doing it for a short challenge, and I thought it was a neat way to see if I was improving or not. At the moment, it's up and down, but still…

      1. When I moved here, the condo recycled. But we have a trash room, instead of a dumpster area and when the gentleman that did our trash retired, they had to find someone else and the people that live here didn't want to create a trash area and they made a deal with the lawn service to do our trash. it's pretty sad actually. The waste that goes out of here and I know a good portion of it is recycleable.

        1. OH that is so sad. It's like laziness won out. It's our councils who do all the trash collection. They supply smaller 'trash' bins to the recycling and green waste bins, but even still people fill their recycling to overflowing! It's positive, so long as it's all getting truly recycled and it's really hard to know if it is.

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