17 uses for old yogurt containers

Do you have these old yogurt containers around? We have them a plenty.  Uncle Dan has them by the hundred.  Unfortunately, most centers won’t recycle plastic number 5.  It’s like the U2 Rattle and Hum album.  As a teen when I visited the used CD store in our city there was always, always, a copy there. Even after I bought one for myself and one for a girlfriend they still had copies.  It’s a decent set of songs but not one anyone appreciates.  Just like old yogurt containers.  Here are 17 ideas for what to do with old yogurt containers.

  1. Store your bumper crop of tomatoes.  Does this sound familiar?  Get excited about growing your own vegetables when the weather gets nice, plant between 2 and 85 tomato plants, have tomatoes coming out your ears in July.  Chop the tomatoes and freeze them in the containers.  These are great for winter chili, shakshuka and pasta.
  2. Store allen wrenches you get with IKEA purchases.
  3. Store extra hardware from projects. I have ones labeled screws, nuts, bolts, fasteners, and light switches.
  4. Freeze leftovers like the chili made with garden tomatoes.
  5. Send leftovers with friends. Anything – liquid or not – can be transported in these.
  6. Use it as a disposable lunch box. When we flew to Orlando I made my own mix of cereal, nuts, and dried fruit and ate it on the way to the airport. Once we got there I threw the container away. Take that $10 airport McDonalds.
  7. Plant celery.
  8. Let your kids play with them. Keep the lids and these can become towers, drums, and anything else your kids might imagine.
  9. Store pantry items. Opened boxes of pasta fit really well. Make sure to label them.
  10. Use them as a “piggy bank”. Our daughters have to portion money into save, spend, and give categories and before we got fancier piggy banks we used old containers they decorated.
  11. Add them to your sandbox for making sand castles.
  12. Dedicate one to old game pieces.  We have one that contains pieces from Candy Land, Stratego, Scrabble and other games I didn’t know we owned. 
  13. Keep all your spare keys in one – don’t keep this one in the kitchen.
  14. Keep headphones in one.  These headphones will get so tangled you’d think this was a magic trick but it’s worth it when someone asks “Where are the headphones?”.
  15. Receipts.  For a while I kept every single paper receipt I was handed and put it in a container. At the end of the month I would close the container, tuck it away, and start with a fresh one. After six months I only needed one receipt and scrapped the system.
  16. Make your own salad to go.  The key is to put in dressing first, then hard vegetables like onions and peppers, then soft vegetables like mushrooms, then your greens.
  17. Crayons or other office supplies like clips or rubber bands.

The beauty of this system is that you can use any container you have a lot of and the more you have the better your system will look.  You’ll have consistent container sizes and when you arrange and label. The system will serve you a long time, as long as plastic number 5.

Read more about plastic number 5


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