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Even dryer lint has its uses

By on April 27, 2008

photo by bcmom
dryer
I’ll admit, I haven’t tried reusing dryer lint, so the first tip is on my must-try list. I hope there’s a new frugal tip for you, too.

DRYER-LINT FIRE STARTER: I stuff my dryer lint into an empty toilet-paper cardboard tube. I melt my leftover candle wax and pour it into both ends to cover where the lint is exposed. I let it harden and then use it whenever I start a fire in my fireplace or when camping. — Debbie, e-mail
Note from Sara: Store them in a plastic ice-cream tub.

STRETCH YOUR FOOD: When preparing boxed foods, add a few of your own basics. With boxed rice, add a little extra rice or your own vegetables. If you buy boxed macaroni dinners, add more elbow noodles. It tastes a little more homemade, too. — Lori, Illinois

SLICE MEATS: Instead of investing in a meat slicer, I just go to the deli counter and ask the ladies there to slice the whole hams I buy. They always do! — Lori, Oregon
Note from Sara: This is a great idea, but in some cases, meat is cheaper when bought at places where there isn’t a slicer available. So buying a slicer can be money well spent.

USE UP LEFTOVER CONDITIONER: Make detangler spray from a couple of tablespoons of conditioner and water. I made up two large spray-pump bottles for my granddaughters tonight, and they worked beautifully! You don’t have to rinse it out. It’s a way for me to use up free samples and the last bit in a conditioner bottle, too. — Kathi, California

DRESSING SPRITZER: I make my own oil and salad spritzers from spray-pump bottles. I use them to grease pans and to lightly spray meats, vegetables and salads. — Leigh, e-mail

REUSE COFFEE GROUNDS: Keep a can of them to remove the smell of food like garlic and onions from your hands. Just rub your hands with coffee grounds and rinse. — Crystal, e-mail

PORTION CONTROL: If you don’t make your own salad dressings, buy the dressing bottles with squirt tops, or pour your dressing into squirt bottles so you’re not pouring more than you really need. You can reuse condiment squeeze bottles (like mustard) to help kids decorate cakes, cookies and cupcakes. — Tammy, e-mail

USE LEFTOVER HOLIDAY CHOCOLATE:
Add them to your brownies. Put paper liners in a muffin tin, add a spoonful of brownie mix to each cup, then a chocolate piece to each and finally another spoonful of brownie mix. Bake according to your normal directions. — Kristy, New Hampshire

MASH UP: When baking peanut-butter cookies, instead of using a fork to make a crisscross pattern, use a potato masher or cookie stamp for a quick and consistent design. I use my masher when making meatloaf, too. –Tina R., Florida

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About Sara Noel

Sara Noel owns Castalia Coffee Roasting Company, Follow me on Twitter

8 Comments

  1. GradGirl

    4/27/2008 at 4:18 pm

    I read the title and saw the picture and thought: What, we’re going to use dryer lint in food??

    LOL.

    Great tips!

  2. Sara Noel

    4/27/2008 at 5:26 pm

    LOL. I had a pic of dryer lint, but it was pretty gross looking.
    Yum fuzzy rice. :D Tastes bad, more filling. <— “cheap” joke.

  3. Lisa

    4/28/2008 at 12:59 am

    Similar to what Grad Girl said…I saw the title of this post and I thought it was a list of uses for dryer lint. When I got to “Stretch Your Food” I was a little confused because I didn’t know lint was edible. After I read on, I felt better when I realized it was a list of frugal ideas…not all involving lint. :)

  4. Sara Noel

    4/28/2008 at 1:03 pm

    I had to change the picture. LOL I do have a dryer lint article floating around somewhere. I’ll post it when I come across it again.

  5. baxjul

    4/28/2008 at 7:50 pm

    Great ideas!

  6. Carol

    7/22/2009 at 4:17 pm

    I put my dryer lint on the ground around a tree, and on some branches for the birds to use for their nests. Also after I brush my cat, I leave the cat hair on the ground for the birds. It makes their nest warm and cozy for their babies. Carol

  7. Donna

    7/22/2009 at 7:29 pm

    I USE DRYER LINT TO MAKE ORNAMENTS OUT OF THE LINT. IN A BAGGIE PUT IN A HANDFUL OF LINT,THEN ADD SOME CRAFT GLUE AND CRAFT PAINT WORK IT TOGETHER AFTER IT IS MIXED WELL PRESS INTO A COOKIE CUTTER AT THIS POINT YOU CAN TAKE A NEEDLE AND YARN AND RUN THOUGH THE TOP OF THE COOKIE CUTTER DO NOT TIE ,LET LINT DRY FOR 24 HOURS SOMETIMES IT TAKES LONGER. AFTER IT IS DRY REMOVE FROM THE COOKIE CUTTER TIE THE YARN ( GLITTER CAN BE ADD TO LINT BEFORE IT DRIES , EVEN BEADS ) DONNA

  8. Bev

    6/28/2012 at 9:50 pm

    I always have a ton of empty toilet paper tubes and dryer lint. Our house has been redone with the addition of a larger living room where a small garage used to be and a large garage add-on. The garage has not been insulated and there is just empty space between the joists. I stuff the toilet paper tubes with dryer lint and I have started stacking them in between the joists for cheap insulation. They are just the right size! I was worried about them being a firehazard but I bought a can of spray that is used for fire proofing and give the toilet paper insulation a shot of the spray and let it dry before putting the tube in between the joists.

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