14 Ways to Repurpose Glass Jars

When I made the decision to go down the homesteading path, one of my immediate responses to this lifestyle change was to see what items could be repurposed and used. Those beautiful glass Mason jars are the epitome of homesteading and I have found them to be, by far, one of my favorite repurposing/upcycling projects.

Did you know that it takes glass over 1 million years to decompose? This means that, if handled properly, it never wears out and can be reused an infinite amount of times. The list below are ways that I found to reuse my glass jars. Some are for extra storage and some for more practical purposes.

14 Ways to Repurpose Glass Jars

  1. Use the jars to store leftovers and you will no longer have to worry about plastic chemicals seeping into the food.
  2. An old spaghetti glass jar could be used to store homemade dry bean soup mixes, sugar, flour, etc.
  3. Use them as drinking glasses.
  4. For an attractive garden border, turn them upside down and bury them in a row.
  5. They can also be made into unique lanterns with a regular candle or a citronella candles placed inside to keep the mosquitoes away during the summer months.
  6. Glass jars are a wonderful tool to get plant cuttings started. Just take the cutting, dip it in Rootone, and plant it in a good potting medium. Water it well, and place it in your glass jar in a sunlit area.
  7. Use them in your garage to store nails, screws, tacks, bolts, etc.
  8. Use them in your craft room to store ribbon, brads, eyelets, stickers, buttons, markers, etc.
  9. Glass jars make wonderful gift containers. You can fill them with the ingredients to make cookies, brownies, pancakes, hot cocoa, tea, etc. After you place the lid onto the jar, decorate it with a piece of fabric.
  10. Make them into unique picture frames. Insert your picture, place the lid on the jar, and turn it upside down. It is a wonderful way to decorate a shelf or a ledge. (Note: This may not be a good idea if you have small children.)
  11. You can use glass jars to house Betas (Siamese Fighting Fish). These fish do not require an air filter.
  12. Create a terrarium for African violets, orchids or herbs.
  13. Fill your jar with potpourri and interweave battery-powered tea lights or decor lights. Place the cord out of the back and put a rubber band or decorative ribbon around to hold the cord in place. When you plug in the lights, the heat disseminates the potpourri’s scent. (Note: If you use Christmas lights instead of battery-powered tea or decor lights, then do not leave the plugged in jar unattended.)
  14. Fill a large jar up with water and some tea bags and place it out in the sun for some Sun Tea.


Next time you go to toss that glass jar into the trash can, remember that any glass jar can still serve another useful purpose, as well as save you money in the long run.  So, with all the creative and useful ways to re-purpose glass jars, perhaps we should give those jars another shot at being useful.

The Prepper's Blueprint

Tess Pennington is the author of The Prepper’s Blueprint, a comprehensive guide that uses real-life scenarios to help you prepare for any disaster. Because a crisis rarely stops with a triggering event the aftermath can spiral, having the capacity to cripple our normal ways of life. The well-rounded, multi-layered approach outlined in the Blueprint helps you make sense of a wide array of preparedness concepts through easily digestible action items and supply lists.

Tess is also the author of the highly rated Prepper’s Cookbook, which helps you to create a plan for stocking, organizing and maintaining a proper emergency food supply and includes over 300 recipes for nutritious, delicious, life-saving meals. 

Visit her web site at ReadyNutrition.com for an extensive compilation of free information on preparedness, homesteading, and healthy living.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published May 4th, 2010
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