Reduce Fruit Waste Iced Tea

Volunteering in a food pantry this summer has inspired me to become more active about reducing my food waste. I am not perfect by any stretch and still have a lot to learn, but I see every small step as helping.

Reduce Fruit Waste Iced Tea shown in glass with a splash of orange juice

In the summertime, I cook with lots of lemons, peaches, plums and berries. I’m often too optimistic about my fruit consumption and end up with several mushy fruits before I know it (oops :/). Can you relate?

Also, is it just me, or is it impossible to truly get all the juice out of a lemon? I feel like I always end up throwing half of the fruit out!

These are just some examples of how food waste manifests in my life – and there are many many more where these came from!

Also, let’s talk about peels for a second –
If you’re like most people, you throw your fruit rinds in the trash (along with the tiny bits of fruit that cling to them :/). But did you know that lemon, orange and grapefruit peels (among others!) are super flavorful and contain more vitamin C and fiber than the actual fruits themselves? 😮

I’m not telling you to sit around and eat clementine peels (not yet at least 😉 ), but with this Reduce Fruit Waste Iced Tea, you’ll be consuming a refreshing drink while reducing your food waste AND reaping the peels’ vitamin C benefits! You can also save money on iced tea! 🙂 It’s a win for both your wallet and the planet. <3

Do you have any tricks for reducing your food waste? If you do, please comment below; I’m looking for more ideas!
<3 Dena

Reduce Fruit Waste Iced Tea
Please note that you should never use moldy fruits in this tea! Wash all scraps thoroughly before including in tea.

In the tea shown here, I used:
Peach cores
Plum cores
One mushy/bruised peach
One mushy clementine
Already-squeezed lemon wedges
Clementine rinds
Orange rinds
Honey to taste (optional)

Other fruit scraps you could use for this tea include:
Grapefruit pulp and rinds
Kiwi rinds
Strawberry heads
Mushy or bruised blueberries, raspberries or blackberries
Mushy or bruised grapes
Mushy or bruised cherries
Apple cores
Pineapple cores
Mango cores
Pear cores
… and any other fruit scraps you can think of!

Fill a container with washed fruit scraps. Store container in freezer to preserve scraps.

When container is full, fill a large pot about halfway with water. Pour scraps into pot; bring to boil. Simmer scraps for about 10 minutes.
(Note: The more water you use, the less concentrated tea will be).

When tea appears darker in color, remove from flame. Stir in honey if desired. Let tea cool several minutes.

Transfer liquid to pitcher using a ladle.  It’s okay if some pulp gets into tea!

Refrigerate tea for 2 hours. Serve over ice mixed with orange juice, lemonade, seltzer and/or mint.

Reduce Fruit Waste Iced Tea with mint leaves

*PS- Want to stay healthy in college? Keep up with my latest recipes and tips by following The Artsy Palate on Instagram (@theartsypalate). Subscribe to this blog by entering your email address below! 



4 thoughts on “Reduce Fruit Waste Iced Tea”

  • Of course, if you’re a frequent soda drinker, this is easier said than done. If it’s the carbonation you like, give sparkling water a try. If the taste is too bland, try a naturally flavored sparkling water. If that’s still too much of a jump, add a splash of juice, sliced citrus, or even some fresh herbs. You can do this with home-brewed tea as well, like this sparkling iced tea with lemon, cucumber, and mint .

    • Hi, and sorry for my delayed response. What a great idea to try sparkling water +/- a splash of juice, citrus or herbs. This can be a great way to decrease soda consumption. Thank you for your suggestion! 🙂

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