You may want to think twice before tossing your next plastic water or soda bottle in the recycling bin. You can actually turn your empty plastic bottles into a creative storage solution for a bag of chocolate chips. Sure, you can always use a bag clip or a twisty tie for this purpose, but this hack is a seriously useful way to store your baking morsels so they stay fresh, and it also makes it super easy to pour them into a bowl.
What's more, the trick helps prevent those annoying spills that leave tiny bits of food scattered across your kitchen floor or in your pantry. Another perk about this hack is that it's virtually free (if you have the bottles already) and doesn't require much effort.
For this easy storage solution, you'll need a clean and empty plastic water or soda bottle and a sharp knife, boxcutter, or scissors. Start by cutting off the top of the bottle, a couple of inches below the bottle cap and close to where the top of the label usually is (you'll only be using the top of the bottle for this hack so you can recycle the bottom part).
Next, scrunch up the opening of the chocolate chip bag and feed it through the bottom of the plastic bottle piece. Then, fold the bag sticking out of the top over the mouth of the bottle. Finally, screw the cap on and it's ready to be stored and can also easily be poured the next time you're making the best chocolate chip cookies.
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More Reasons Why You Should Be Trying This Hack
While you could always buy bag clips that have pour spouts, why not turn something used into something useful and create your own clip instead? Getting creative with your used plastic bottles is not only smart but a good way to repurpose items you have around the house. You'll be proud of your DIY skills once you see how effective and reusable bottle tops are, and pretty soon your drawer will be filled with them instead of bag clips. Cutting plastic isn't exactly fun but once you have a few of them you can use them over and over again to seal your plastic bags.
While this hack works perfectly for bags of chocolate chips, it also works great for any small plastic bag storing bits of food like nuts, rice, sugar, flour, etc. If you want a wider opening for pouring, try using a plastic bottle with a larger mouth like a Gatorade bottle.
Not only is this trick useful for pouring food, but it can help keep your food fresh by keeping air out of the bag. When food is exposed to oxygen a chemical process called oxidation occurs, which causes undesirable changes to your food's taste and color. Chocolate chips have a long shelf-life of several months or longer, but will eventually go stale or bad if stored improperly.
Try These Creative Bag Storage Hacks, Too
If you don't have any plastic bottles on hand, or need a way to close a larger bag of food (like a bag of potato chips), there are other bag sealing hacks that may be worth a try. One popular folding hack doesn't require special tools or devices, simply your hands and some origami skills. As seen on TikTok, start by carefully rolling down the top of the bag until you reach the chips. Then, simply tuck the corners in and fold the top of the bag down over the corners.
Another simple way to keep your snacks fresh that requires zero folding skills is to roll down the top of the snack bag and stick the whole thing in a large plastic storage bag (which can be reused multiple times). Make sure to squeeze out as much air as possible before sealing it and storing in the cupboard/pantry.
Also, did you know you can store a bag of potato chips in the freezer? The cool and dry environment will prevent your chips from going stale for a long time, possibly even indefinitely. While your chips will be cold, they won't freeze like ice since potato chips have most of the moisture removed from them when cooked.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.