If you love Chinese takeout, it’s easy to end up with a ton of empty food containers in your home. Chinese takeout containers can be difficult to appropriately get rid of if you’re trying to live more sustainably.
After all, few of us know whether Chinese takeout containers can be recycled or composted. Fortunately, this is where we come in. In today’s post, we are going to answer these questions and many more.
What are Chinese food containers made out of?
In the United States, Chinese food containers are usually made of paperboard. However, these containers can be made of polystyrene or foil in other parts of the world.
Can Chinese takeaway containers be recycled?
Most times, Chinese takeaway containers can’t be recycled, especially when they have some food or grease smudged all over them. The only ones that can be recycled are the clean polystyrene/plastic ones.
That’s why it’s important to clean these containers before placing them with the rest of your.
Remember, any leftover food or grease can end up contaminating any recycling stream to which the containers are added.
Are Chinese takeout boxes biodegradable?
The only Chinese takeout boxes that are biodegradable are those made of paperboard. As such, they are also the only ones that can be added to your compost. However, not all of these boxes are compostable.
Some of them have a plastic lining that makes them unsuitable for composting. Ultimately, you may have to throw these out in the bin. Keep in mind that Chinese takeout containers that are compostable are usually labeled as such.
Can you reheat and reuse plastic Chinese food containers?
While you can’t reheat plastic Chinese takeout containers, you can reuse them to serve your food. If you want something that you can reheat, you’re better off with a paperboard Chinese food container.
How can you reuse Chinese takeout containers?
Apart from reusing your Chinese food boxes to serve food, you can also use them to:
- Plant in your garden
If you love gardening, you can easily use empty Chinese takeout containers to plant seeds. All you have to do is punch a few holes at the bottom of the boxes before filling them with a little soil and adding your seeds. This way you can easily water your plants as they grow.
Remember to plant the seeds around 2 cm deep and 4 cm apart.
- Hold snacks while traveling
If you’re on the road a lot and love having snacks on hand, you can use old Chinese food boxes to hold them.
- Store food in the freezer
This is one of the easiest ways to reuse Chinese takeout containers. As long as they are clean, you can store your food in them and place them in the freezer. After all, these boxes have uniform sizes and are stackable.
This also makes them great for storing dry foods in the pantry. Some of the dry foods you can store in them include sugar, chocolate chips, oats, beans, granola, and spaghetti.
- Store toys, receipts, and memorabilia
If you have a kid who keeps leaving their toys everywhere, you can use empty Chinese takeout containers to store them. You can also use these to store your receipts or even memorabilia.
You can even use them to store your kid’s art supplies such as crayons. If you’re using polystyrene/plastic containers, you can even use the lids as palettes.
- Make a gallery wall
If you have foam plastic Chinese takeout containers, you can easily use them to make a gallery wall. All you have to do is paint these boxes as you wish and then staple them to your chosen area.
Apart from making your home more beautiful, these foam containers can also absorb noise in the home.
Recycle, reuse, or compost Chinese takeout containers
When it comes down to it, there are only three sustainable ways to get rid of Chinese takeout containers; reusing, recycling, or composting. Ultimately, the best route for you depends on what material your Chinese food containers are made of.