avocado toast and vegetable juice – using up produce before a trip

Breakfast. #nofilter

I wasn’t initially going to post this – after all, is avocado on toast or vegetable juice such novel ideas? But I started to think about how it’s probably not just me who is under the gun in trying to use all of the produce at home before going on a trip. Personally, I hate it when things go to waste, and inevitably, I do find an old bag of yellowing parsley in the back of the crisper. It happens to the best of us.

So what to do when you find yourself in a rather bountiful abundance of fruit and vegetables and only two days left to consume them? In my lack of proper planning, our crisper runneth over. Still. And we leave very early on Saturday morning. What to do?

Carrots, kale, cucumber, ginger, apple, lemon. #cleaningoutthecrisper

So I made some avocado toast. I toasted a nice, thick piece of Bien Cuit miche, which we get weekly (it’s really the best!), an drizzled a bit of olive oil over the bread. Then I mashed some avocado on top and topped it with a sliced (and very out-of-season) tomato. I topped it with a few flakes of Maldon sea salt, and breakfast was ready.

With my 1-pound bag of organic carrots (89 cents at Trader Joe’s!), a large cucumber, a nob of ginger, half a bunch of kale, 1 1/2 apples past their eating prime, and a soft-ish lemon, I decided to make a vegetable juice. The whole endeavor took less than ten minutes and my fridge was looking significantly less packed.

There’s more kale, more spinach, more tomatoes and other vegetables for tonight. I’ll probably make some turkey burgers and serve it with a nice, green kale salad. I have some sweet potatoes too, and we’ll probably roast those. We’ll see just how close I can get to wasting as little as possible.

I find this challenge to be invigorating?

How do you prepare for a trip? What do you tend to make with your produce and do you like to empty your fridge before you travel?


  • Adrienne

    This is actually one of my favorite challenges – I also like eating down the pantry before a move, but I’m a weirdo. We leave (for two weeks in California, woo!) in three weeks, and I’m already trying to figure out a plan – we have a CSA pickup a week before we go, so that’ll be interesting. We always end up eating lots of vegetarian riffs on lentils + rice + whatever right before we leave, which has the added bonus of being really, really cheap. Now we can eat more snacks on vacation!

    PS, which juicer do you have? I’m curious about them, and fascinated by the green juice movement, but I don’t know that I’d ever use one enough to justify taking up cabinet space.

  • Nicole

    I just learned that you can freeze avocado if needed. Apparently the consistency changes a little so you couldn’t use it in a guac but in a smoothie or mashed on toast, I bet it would be just fine.

    I barely have anything in my fridge so eating everything before a vacation or move is never an issue

  • olga

    Adrienne – I have a Breville (I think it’s their top of the line or thereabouts) – it was a wedding gift. I wish I knew more about juice when we registered bc you need a cold press juicer over a fast extraction one to get more nutrients. I’m happy with mine – it does a great job, but for the same $ spent, we could’ve gotten a Huron, which I think is better. But we’ll do this for now – green juice is juice. I’ve always liked vegetable juice – and it’s funny to me that it’s now a ‘movement’ :) whereas I think of it as just a tasty snack.

  • Ashley

    Though I’m not heading out on a trip, I just did a fridge clean this week to clear out any perishables (there are waaaaaay too many non-perishable jars of condiments in there, which is another thing entirely). I roasted most of them (too squishy grapes, long-lost and almost bad brussels sprouts, half a head of cauliflower) and hope to somehow eat all of them in a week. It’s amazing how roasting can hide even produce flaws, along with a hefty dose of spices!
    When I’m heading out on a trip, I try to clear out all the perishables, like you’re doing. If I’ve got my act together, I try to plan out meals to use them up. If I’m rushed, I try to cook everything I can. Love your idea to juice it up!

  • margarita

    olga! i love this post… no, you are not alone on your quest for anti-waste! i grew up in a third world country and i hate wasting food… i also tend to get really bad estimating how much produce to purchase before big trips. my husband (funny typing that word… we just got married!) always tells me that when he was young, his mom made it so that before they leave on big trips, all the food is eaten and they just order pizza that night. i’m not a good enough planner like that, so i end up tossing everything together in a stir-fry, and if we are on road trips, we take these as snacks. he always laughs everytime i bust out a plastic container with oatmeal, pineapple slices, or tortillas with stir-fried veggies. last weekend, which happened to be our wedding weekend, we brought all the vegetables we had to the house we were staying in and cooked everything up for our hosts! no waste! however, some trips require plane trips and hotels, which means, carrying vegetables is not an option. thanks for the juicing tip! i will definitely try this next time!

  • olga

    margarita – congratulations on getting married!! hooray. definitely took me some time before saying ‘my husband’ wasn’t weird. :) it’s a good weird though.

  • Rona

    It’s wonderful so many of us try to use everything before going away! My time away involves going to Florida to visit family and If I have bananas that are just getting to the perfect speckled/black colour I will bake banana bread, freeze some and take some with me. As for the veggies, I like to make soup and freeze that also. However, I have been known to ‘smuggle’ veggies, potatoes etc in my carry on and yes the looks I get from TSA are quite funny.
    Have a great honeymoon Olga!

  • Iris

    Coincidentally I found myself with a rather overripe hass avocado this morning and decided to try an avocado omelet, which turned out quite well. However, my question is whether those unsightly brown edges and spots in a too-ripe avocado affect its flavor. It didn’t seem so in the omelet but if I were to, for example, mash it and spread it on toast, as you did, would I be better off removing all that brown?

  • olga

    Iris – i don’t think removing the brown is critical. I do if the spots are too big; otherwise, i let them be.

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