By now, most of us are aware of the environmental issues that single-use plastic can cause. We've all seen images of beaches littered with garbage or marine animals entangled in plastic bags. Plus, chemicals found in plastics can be bad for your health. The plastic problem can feel overwhelming, but making small changes at home—such as cutting out plastic bags, bottles and containers—can make a big difference. We've rounded up our favorite food-storage containers made out of glass, stainless steel, silicone and even beeswax.
Related: 8 Simple Ways to Cut Back on Plastic
Everyone's favorite Swedish home-goods store has launched a new line of glass food-storage containers. They are functional, beautiful and affordable. And because they're made from oven-safe glass, they are easy to clean and won't stain or take on odors. These containers are a meal-prepper's dream and can go from the fridge to the oven to the table, saving you on extra dishes. Or use them to organize your pantry. The clear glass allows you to easily see what's inside, and you can stack them to save on storage space.
Mix and match lids are sold separately, so you can choose the one that suits your needs. We love the beautiful bamboo lids that double as a trivet (available in stores only, for now). Locking lids and oven-safe silicone lids are also available.
These storage bags are made from food-grade silicone instead of plastic and come in three sizes: snack, sandwich and half-gallon. They are endlessly reusable (saving you money in the long run) and are dishwasher-safe. They clean really well, without retaining any residue. They can even be microwaved and boiled up to 400ºF.
A natural alternative to plastic wrap, Bee's Wrap is organic cotton coated with beeswax, jojoba oil and tree resin. Stretch and press it to seal around salad bowls and wrap up sandwiches and cheese. Wash, dry and reuse it for up to a year, or compost it.
These tulip-shaped jars, available in 7.4- and 19.6-ounce sizes, are as beautiful as they are functional. Choose from traditional glass lids or add some flair with lids made from acacia wood, each sold separately.
This sleek insulated food-storage container will keep hot soups hot and cold smoothies icy cold until lunchtime. It's made with professional-grade stainless steel, so it doesn't retain or transfer flavors.
This stainless-steel bento box is so easy to clean, since it's all one piece. Just pop it in the dishwasher. The optional colorful cover makes this bento a fun one for kids.
So, it's not exactly a food-storage solution, but if you are looking for a simple way to fight plastic pollution: stop using plastic straws. There are a lot of reusable and nonplastic straw options out there these days—from paper to bamboo to glass. We like stainless steel, because it's easy to clean (just throw the straws in your dishwasher), they won't break and they're travel-friendly, so you can stash a couple in your purse for when you're on the go and craving a cool beverage.
Some additional reporting by Penelope Wall.