Did you know that most of the nutrients of our well-loved fruits and veggies are found in their skins? Sadly, we all know what part of a vegetable can you not eat, so how do we extract all those nutrients from a fruit peel?
First things first, you need to thoroughly wash the fruit peels to remove any residue such as dirt, or anything that was sprayed on them. Next, it’s good to know some peeling vegetables skills and choose the best peeler as well.
Once that is done, you can turn fruit and vegetable peels into these great ideas.
Make a fruit peel face scrub
Do you love shopping for face scrubs? Well, have you ever noticed their ingredients?
The most expensive and effective face scrubs are those with natural ingredients. So why not go directly to the source and make your own organic face scrub?
Most nutrients are in the peels of these foods anyway, so why not just blend them up and apply them? Ingredients like yogurt, honey, sugar, or aloe can be added for texture.
Though, keep in mind that there are ingredients that can stain your skin. This is not the time to reuse your beet skins!
For some great ideas on how to make fruit peel masks at home, click here.
Apple peel jelly
If you use apples for pie or applesauce, chances are you’ve got a whole lot of apple peel left over.
The next time this happens, don’t throw them (or the cores!) away but try making some “apple peel scrap jelly” instead.
The ingredients are fairly simple. All you need is some water, sugar, and lemon juice and you’re ready to go. The Spruce Eats has detailed instructions here.
Make mango simple syrup
You may not be familiar with this, but mango peels contain a ton of vitamins, fiber, and antioxidants and are still being investigated for roles they might play in helping stabilize blood sugar or contributing to weight loss.
The problem is, they don’t taste very good and the texture is a bit tough.
But we throw them all away! Next time, don’t throw them into the trash bin. A fair warning, you still need to do a skin test because some people – especially those very sensitive to poison ivy, which is in the same family – can be allergic to them!
While sugaring up your fruit even further is typically not the best way to go, mango skin can be extra bitter, so in this case, a mango simple syrup might be your best bet.
After all, who doesn’t want their cocktail (or virgin mango soda) to be extra nutritious? We like this recipe from Serious Eats.
Orange peel to keep your brown sugar soft
Brown sugar will eventually get enough air inside to make it hard as a rock. We then end up throwing it away. What a waste!
Now, here’s a trick that works. While there are a few tricks for keeping it soft, we love the idea of using an orange peel.
Just toss a piece of rind in your airtight container and it will retain the moisture much longer than if you left the sugar in there alone. This also works if your sugar is already rock solid – it’ll soften it up.
And unlike using a piece of bread, it’s less likely to grow mold quickly.
Vegetable peels for easy stock
Have you tried using an electric vegetable peeler? If not, you might want to give it a try especially if you’re planning to do this next neat trick.
You’ve heard of using scraps to make stock, but making sure you get as much vegetable peel as possible into that boiling water is key to making it as nutritious as it can be.
Just be careful with the beet peels, unless you like pink soup!
Lemon peel to clean your kettle
If you’re the person who leaves water in your kettle after you’re done, you’ve no doubt noticed the mineral deposit build-up it can leave behind. It’s so hard to remove them, right?
It’s best not to ingest that in concentrated doses, just take your extra lemon peel and boil the remnants in your kettle before dumping it out. That should remove those white deposits (and it won’t leave behind the taste that vinegar – another solution that removes deposits – can).
If you use lemon often enough, you can probably drink the tea that comes out afterward! Just kidding!
But if you’re cleaning up some serious buildup, it’s best to pour that straight into the sink.
Orange or lemon peel candle
Next time you want your house to smell extra fresh, don’t spray some branded aerosol. Instead, try using a fruit peel as a votive holder. The heat will release some of the oils from the peel.
If you’re feeling really creative, you can even follow these instructions from Brit + Co to make the peel into its own candle by pouring in wax.
Just remember that you’ll want to keep it stable and put it on a flame-retardant surface!
Pureed cucumber peel mask
While some people insist that their cucumbers be peeled before eating, once again this strips the food of its most nutritious part.
Get your cucumber peeler and peel off the skin of the cucumber, but make sure to keep those peels off to the side to use later.
One great way to give your skin a boost is to puree the peels and mix them with yogurt and honey for a face or under-eye mask of whatever texture you’d like.
You can also add them to a water pitcher in the summer to get refreshing cucumber water!
Who would have thought that you can still use a fruit peel? Don’t throw them the next time you’re peeling a fruit or a vegetable. You can turn it into candy, a mask, or a face scrub, and you can use it to freshen your home.
Now that you’ve been inspired, maybe it’s time to check out the different vegetable peeler types so you can use the best one for your favorite fruit or vegetable.