Regrow veggies

Strange but true: spring onions will regrow from their white ends. Just put them in a glass of water and let them get some sunlight. You can snip the green ends every few days for practically endless seasoning.

Say “cheese” to milk

If it’s can be hard to finish your milk before it expires, but don’t wait for it to curdle. Instead, set some aside and make cottage cheese.

Reuse your daily grind

Used coffee grounds can keep ants away. Plus, they can get rid of odours, stimulate your potted plants, and more, which makes them worth holding onto.

Put peels out for pests

Orange peels can actually be put to good use, especially if it’s summer. Insects such as mosquitoes and ants will stay away if you grind the up, and they can get rid of musty smells.

Bake bruised fruit

Overripe, very dark bananas make for flavourful banana bread. Instead of throwing them out, bake them into a great dessert. Reducing and recycling your food can even save you money.

Give stale snacks some bite

There’s no need to toss old chips. Stale snacks can be crisped up in the microwave – just put them on a microwave-safe plate and nuke on full power for 10 seconds.

Crisp up your crusts

You can make leftover pizza crust crispy again, but don’t use the microwave. Instead, put your slices on a skillet for 4-5 minutes on medium heat – make a rounded lid out of aluminium foil to make sure the toppings get toasty, too.

Cool down with an ice ‘pop’

Flat soft-drinks aren’t so great to drink, but they can make for a tasty treat with a little patience. Pour some in an ice cube tray, stick toothpicks in each space, and enjoy your treats after they freeze.

Rethink yesterday’s loaf

Don’t waste old, dry bread. As long as it won’t chip a tooth, you can chop it up, sauté it with spices, and make croutons for salads or soup.

Liquor? Now, thicker

You can kick up the quality of vodka with a simple water filter. It won’t completely transform what you have in the cabinet, but filtering can make less expensive brands taste better.

Look twice at rice

Think before pitching rice if it’s been sitting in your cupboard for a few months. It can be used to dry electronics if you get them wet – just put the device in a bowl of the dry grains for 24 hours.

Banish sponge bacteria

Your old sponge might look like it belongs in the bin, but two minutes in the microwave will kill as much as 99.9 per cent of the bacteria on it, making it good as new. Be sure to get it wet first.

Celery care 101

Celery is all about crispness, so when it starts to go soft, you may as well throw it out. Right? Not necessarily. Try this first: put limp stalks in a bowl of cold water with a few slices of raw potato. After an hour or so in this starchy bath, the stalks may deliver the crunch you expect.

And while even crisp celery may turn brown, you can stop browning before it starts. Before storing the stalks in the fridge, soak them for 30 minutes in 1 litre cold water mixed with 1 teaspoon lemon juice – a trick that will also crisp celery just before it’s served.

Get the most out of a lemon

When a recipe calls for a few drops of lemon, don’t slice the lemon and squeeze. Simply puncture the rind with a toothpick and gently squeeze out the small amount of juice you need. Then cover the hole with a piece of tape and store the lemon in the fridge for later use. Waste not, want not!