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… and ways to re use your old jars

If you are here you have a sticky jar problem and like me you want to remove said sticky stuff from your jars without using harsh chemicals. The old me would go through jars and I was always happier to keep the jars that had easy labels. You know the ones that slide off when you wash the jar. But more and more jars seem to have their labels applied with some sort of magic super glue designed to be strong enough to build actual space rockets. If you do manage to get the label off in tiny tiny bits after wasting a day or two of your life. Then after all that your jar is still covered with the magic super glue.

There is no denying that the most sustainable thing to do is to manage what we already have. Yes it is great to have all the Instagram worthy cute matching jars but many of us already have jars entering our homes all the time. So let’s begin with the basics preparing your jars.

removing the labels and the sticky stuff…

If the label did not start to peel off easily when you washed the empty jar out leave them in a sink or a bowl of hot water. Weigh the jars down with water then pour hot water around them and just leave them until the water is cool. You do not need to add any soap to the water I find it makes zero difference so why waste the bubbles. Any labels still refusing to be rubbed off with your gentle touch get the knife!

Yes the next step is to take a butter knife or a cake pallet knife and hold it at a 30 degree angle, (or there about this is jar washing not maths class). Then Push the blade down keeping the flat angle so that you do not scratch the glass.

jars from the top down on an kitchen table ready to be filled

how to get the really stubborn stuff off…

By now only a few will be refusing to let go of their gluey mess. The knife took the label off but just moved the glue around the jar. Now there are many different products on the market that will do the job. Some of them are bright pink. And all of them will give your hands a quick chemical peel to boot! No thank you. All you need to do is mix a small amount of coconut oil and a some bicarbonate of soda. That is it then smear it on and rub.

it also removes grease…

This is also a great de-greaser, I regularly use it on the cooker top when all those little drops of oil decide that they want to stay forever. As I fear I could start sounding like a cleaning advert from the 1980s let’s talk about what to do with all your clean, sticky stuff free jars.

ways you could re purpose your old jars

old empty jars on a table waiting to be filled

I have done every single thing in the list above and I am always looking for new ways to use jars. The best jars I have coming through the house right now are large olive jars. They are cheap, in brine, not the best olives in the world but my children eat so many of them that is really the price bracket we are in. The jars are perfect for all sorts of lentils, nuts, seeds, dried flowers for tea. I even have one for my sourdough starter, I know I sound so homestead right now! Now is the time that you should be drying your herbs and once they are dry, guess what you now have just the jar to store them in.

If you have any other suggestions for re purposing your old jars please let me know in comments. x

October 12, 2021