As Muslims, we are commanded by God, through Quran and hadith, to not waste food. During the month of Ramadan we try to avoid as much sin as possible in order to bring us closer to God and please Him. While we want to make sure our friends and family have enough to eat at suhoor and iftar, it is important that we do not use this precious month to waste food.
Instead of throwing out those leftovers, try these five tips:
1. Watch When You Cook!
Shopping or cooking while hungry spells disaster. Our eyes are going to be bigger than our stomachs and too much food is likely to be prepared. If possible, try cooking and freezing meals before Ramadan and only take out enough for each meal. If precooking your meals is not possible, simply try to cook enough for those eating.
2. Invite More People For Iftar
If you realize you have cooked far too much for your family to eat, call up some friends, neighbors or family to join you. Use this opportunity to break barriers and share the meaning of Ramadan with non-Muslims in your life.
3. Eat It
Why put yourself through the stress of trying to prepare a new meal each day? Simply store your leftovers in the refrigerator and eat it for suhoor or after breaking your fast another day. If you do not want to eat it as prepared, try making up an entirely new dish with it. This will also free up more time for reading Quran or praying taraweeh.
4. Freeze It
Put the food in a freezer safe container or baggie, write the date on it and save it for another day. Many foods can last over six months in the freezer. Perhaps eating a meal prepared during Ramadan can help rekindle your faith later in the year!
5. Donate It
Giving charity is another command by God. Donating food can help you earn reward during Ramadan. Take a plate of food to a neighbor or coworkers. Call around to shelters in your area to find out if they can accept food or if they know of people in need of meals. Take the food to the Masjid so others can eat, especially if there are needy families in attendance.