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Friday, August 14, 2009

Eco-friendly tip: Bring Your Own To Go Container

A few months ago I started teaching myself a new habit. Now when I go out to eat I try to remember to bring my own to go container if I know I'll be bringing home leftovers.

Here hubby and I went out for Thai food a few weeks ago so I brought my own tupperware. It's not as big of a pain as you might imagine. I just use a small shopping bag and bring it along.

It's inconspicuous, it just looks like I was out shopping, and when the meal is done I slide my food into it. I do have to hold the bag sideways out to the car but it really isn't a big deal. It feels great not to use those styrofoam or paper boxes just to take home and throw away.

Easy right? I got this spiffy "Klip Its" split container at The Container Store. It cost $6.99. I've used it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

You may recall I recently did a blog post about reusable travel chopsticks that are a great green way to avoid using disposable wooden chopsticks when you eat out.

I'm curious if any of you have great green ideas you can share with me?

ETA: BigEye Bri, Wendy and Michele were our contest winners!

By the way I picked up three pairs of the travel chopsticks like the ones pictured here to giveaway. If you'd like to win a set please leave a comment (with or without a green idea) with a name/link url that I can reach you at or send me a message so that I can contact you if you win. I'll draw three random names next Friday on 8/21/09. There are two cheery yellow pairs and one white so if you leave the color you want I'll try to match them up to the winners.


  1. That is a really smart idea! I went out to eat this week with my husband and his mom and brought home three pieces of my leftover pizza in one of those terrible styrofoam containers. Not only did I feel guilty for having it, it didn't fit well into my thermal lunchbox the next morning for traveling to work.

    One project that I'd like to undertake to make our office a little more eco-friendly is to convince our boss to buy a Brita pitcher and supply of filters for our office. Whenever we have clients in for closings, we offer them bottles of water, and while I'm always fishing bottles out of trash bins and putting them in our recycling bin in the kitchen, I would rather we use a pitcher and washable cups to offer drinks to our clients. I'm the sales assistant, so it'd be on me to wash glasses and change the filter, but I think it'd really be worth it.

    (I would probably choose white, as I'll give them to my husband. I am terrible at using chopsticks and almost always end up asking for a fork anyway!)

  2. Kate that's a great idea. I'd think the water filter pitcher is cheaper over time? Maybe sell your boss on the cost savings?

    Oh and your Blogger profile is not set to public so please send me your email address or contact information so that if you win I can contact you.


  3. I love the idea of taking your own to-go container! It would keep the food a lot fresher than those boxes from the restaurant, anyway. I usually carry giant purses so I could probably fit containers for my whole dinner party in there! :D

    I love the travel chopsticks! They're awesome! I would have no color preference.

    Hmm. Green tips... I know I do a lot of green things, but I'm drawing a blank! I try to buy things in bulk when I can to avoid unnecessary packaging (like buying giant containers of laundry detergent, etc.) I also wash and reuse my plastic utensils from lunch! I like finding new things I can recycle -- like the cardboard backs to the legal pads I use every day for work.

  4. Great, I want to win. This will keep me from purchasing the chopsticks from REI. I'm sure that you know this, but bamboo chopsticks are very renewable, it's the balsa wood type that the Chineese are deforesting to make. I went to Delica RF for lunch on Wed. and though of you Stacie. I chose Delica RF because I was starting a new "vegan before 6PM" diet. Had the agadashi tofu, steamed rice and the green bean sesame salad. YUM.

  5. Sorry if I double post, I don't quite know how to use these here interwebz yet.
    I have been thinking of going to REI to purchase their reuseable chopsticks (which break down into halves) but I'd rather win yours.
    Started a new diet that takes Environmentalism and Global Warming into account as well as weight loss. It's all in Mark Bittman's book "Food Matters". It's my new "green" thing.

  6. Oh My god! I never really thought of bringing my own tupperware container to a restaurant. (I always bring it to my Mom's house when I eat there so why not!) What an awesome idea!

    You can even take it one step further! When you are ready to eat the left-overs, make sure you actually eat it straight out of the to-go container instead of putting it on a plate. That way, you will save water too since you don't have to wash another plate!

    Have a SUPER day!

  7. I love the idea of reusable chopsticks...not only are they eco-friendly they are waist friendly too...I can never quite get as much in..lol

  8. What a great idea to bring your own tupperware container!! I love it.

    This green idea isn't related to going out to dinner but I always use biodegradable bags in my trash can and when I clean up after my dog and especially for cat litter. I know a lot of people that use the plastic grocery bags to throw cat litter in. Most cat litter will biodegrade on it's own so why not put it in an earth friendly bag.

    I'm sure most people do this too but I also bought cloth bags I can use to bring my groceries home in. That way the plastic bags aren't being used and there is less use of the paper bags. The bags can even be washed if something leaks or they get dirty. They only cost 99 cents in our area and usually you can get them at any grocery store. And, of course you can use them over and over again.


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