In German, we have a nice word for supper: Abendbrot. It translates to “evening bread” and indicated what most of us eat for supper.
Most of my life, I have been eating bread for dinner: When growing up as a kid in my family home we had bread almost every night. As a young adult studying at the University and living on my own for the first time, I ate bread because I was (and still am!) a terrible cook. After moving in with my SO we also had bread most of the nights for many years.
Ever since moving out of my family home, I stopped eating breakfast because I am not a morning person. Eating that early never felt good and I used this as an easy way to quit some calories. But in the evening, bread was a welcome and easy-to-make dinner. Quickly prepared and a nice and social way to spend the early evening: Eating and preparing your sandwich.
Usually, I would buy some bread on my way home from work from a local bakery. It tasted great, you might know that we Germans are famous (and picky!) for our bread. Together with all those choices of sweet or vegetable spreads, honey, cheese or cold cuts, to a German it never gets old to eat bread every night!
Eventually, two years ago, we had a special January-Challenge: We wanted to see if we could live on a really tight budget. During this challenge we had to quit eating bread because of the cost and the amount of leftovers we had to throw away on a daily basis: Leftover bread that turned to hard to enjoy anymore. Cheese that had gotten moldy. Cold cuts or spreads that turned bad. By having many options to eat our bread with, we managed to cause much more food waste!
During that month we had to budget our money for food and had to schedule when to eat what. Bread simply didn’t allow us with the options we wanted on this tight budget. After a full month of cooking simple vegetable based meals every night, we never went back to eating bread. Here is why:
The TOP 5 why I don’t eat bread anymore
- Even under best storage conditions, bread gets dry after the first day. In my experience, it is never as enjoyable anymore than on the first day. When living in a small household, it is really hard to eat it fast enough!
- If you eat bread on a daily basis, you want to have different options to have some variety. This means buying many different spreads, cheeses, cuts or marmalades, all of which cause packaging waste and might also go bad before you finish them – creating food waste especially in a small household!
- To avoid food waste, I used to eat more than I actually wanted to eat – just to not have to throw away that last piece of cheese or slice of bread. With our cooked dinners it is much easier to cook the right amount or take leftovers to work on the next day.
- When living on a tight budget, eating seasonal vegetables instead of bread is cheaper.
- With the reduction of carbs after quitting bread for dinner, I managed to loose weight without any hunger. For most people carbs in the evening are to be avoided because we don’t get to burn them during the night – but the science still is not sure whether this is a general trend or depends on the person. For sure, our new vegetable based dinner is healthier than the way we used to eat before!
For our small household, the change from bread to vegetable based dinners made a huge difference: We now save money, make a ton less food and packaging waste and enjoy delicious and healthy meals each night! I still enjoy having bread every once in a while (e.g. for breakfast on the weekend), but I never looked back to this new form of our daily diet.
Do you eat bread daily? What do you do to avoid food and packaging waste? Share your experience!