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15 awesome uses for aluminum foil

Filed Under: in the kitchen, staying green, cleaning

pizza on aluminum foil
When I was growing up, my parents reused and recycled almost everything. All items were used until they were falling apart. My dad would wrap his sandwiches in wax paper until the paper was in tatters before he would use another piece. Plastic wasn't used much either in the house. Since we had every size Mason and Ball jar ever made for canning purposes and making jelly and jam, they were great for storing leftover food. If anything got stored on a plate, then aluminum foil was used to cover the plate. Nothing ever went to waste in our dirt poor household. The motto passed down to my 7 siblings and I was "waste not, want not!!"

I still use aluminum foil for almost everything. It is strong, durable, and efficient. It comes in all kinds of sizes now, not like when I was a kid and you had to tear off a tiny piece for a tiny item. Best of all, when it wears out, I just throw it in the recycling bin with the aluminum cans. I like it so much that I thought I would compile a list and share with you all the things to do with this handy item besides keeping food warm, so please join me after the break.

  1. When my scissors get dull, I layer about 7 pieces of foil and cut through them, and the scissors are sharp once again.
  2. I often forget to take my gold wedding ring and my silver cross ring off my fingers when I am doing dishes or grubbing around the house, so I put them in aluminum foil and put in some salt solution and leave it overnight. The next morning they look like new.
  3. Sometimes I go on a baking streak, and I find my brown sugar has gotten hard. To soften the sugar, I wrap it in foil and bake it in a 300 degree oven for 5 minutes. To keep it soft, I leave it wrapped in the foil and enclose in a labeled ziploc bag.
  4. Ball up some foil and use it to clean the gunk off your grill. It cleans just as well as a wire scrub brush.
  5. Makes great gift wrapping paper in a pinch and can be decorated as you wish.
  6. I use foil to clean the baked on gunk off my pots and pans. It works just as well as a steel wool scrub pad.
  7. Wrap your hardware and doorknobs in foil so that they don't get dripped on when you are painting.
  8. Half way through the baking process, take a length of foil and wrap around the edge of your pie, securing with a metal paper clip. This will prevent your crust from browning too much.
  9. Roll a double thickness of heavy duty foil into a cone shape, snip off the end, and use as a pouring funnel.
  10. Use it as a temporary piping bag or pastry bag by rolling it into a double thickness and leaving just a tiny hole at the pointed end. Fold down the top of the cone so nothing oozes out or twist the top closed.
  11. Put a length of foil on your oven rack to catch spills. Many pizzas have instructions that tell you to bake the pizza on the rack, but what a mess that can make. Putting the pizza on cooking sprayed foil will save a big mess.
  12. Since I love grilled vegetables, especially mushrooms, I top them with some butter and whatever herb or spice I am in the mood for, wrap them in a foil packet and give them to my husband to put on the grill with the steaks.
  13. To prevent stuck on food in my baking pans and cookie sheets, I will line them with foil. It cuts down on cleaning time and leaves my pans looking just as good as they did when they went into the oven. Rinse off the sheets if they are not to disastrous and save them for another baking session, or rinse them off and put them in your recycling bin.
  14. To prevent static electricity in your clothing, throw a small crumpled up ball of foil into your dryer.
  15. For clothing items that can't take direct heat, such as rayon, silk, and wool, you can get the wrinkles out by placing a piece of foil on your ironing board. Put the garment over the foil, and pass 3 inches above the garment several times with the iron, holding down the steam button the entire time. The wet heat from the foil with rid the garment of wrinkles.
These ideas are some of my favorites, and ones that were used in my childhood home as well as in my home now. I think that as long as they make aluminum foil, I will use it. Foil will be a staple in my household forever I think!! After all, it is recyclable too and is easily kept out of the landfills. What do you use aluminum foil for?

  • Erk

    Once I was stranded on a desert island. I used foil to craft a makeshift helicopter and thus find my way back to civilisation. Then I got a life.

    Reply
  • dave

    And between all the foil deliveries you'll be making you can use all the foil boxes as furniture too.

    Reply
  • Down Pillow

    I love the trick with the 7 layers to sharpen a knife - I'm so going to do next time.
    Stef
    http://www.ShopDownLite.com

    Reply
  • Kathy

    This is great!! I laughed until I cried at the comments. I needed that!

    I do use foil alot, too. I'm experimenting on making a solar collector. Who needs a $4000 solar heater when you have aluminum foil!

    Thanks for the information and the laughs!!

    Reply
  • Margarita

    Thank you so much for your post. I was looking for a way to sharpen my scissors and found this. The other ideas were another bonus for me. I am now using it to remove static in the laundry and as the steam to remove wrinkles.

    Thanks to all the others for the funny things they posted. I needed that laugh.

    Reply
  • bill baker

    If you are into archery, you can also cut a piece of aluminum foil to about 2" wide x 4" long, crumple it lightly then smooth it out again. Just below the fletching on the arrow, using elmers white glue, wrap the arrow shaft with the gluey foil and let dry. then if you lose your arrow, the light reflecting from the faceted bit of foil will help you find it again.

    Reply
  • Bill G

    Tinfoil is also very good at keeping the secret radio waves from the Government out of my head. It works on most of the voices too! When you do not have enough to cover your body, or do not know exactly ho to fold it to best keep out the Zornac micro burst waves, just chew on some. It really helps!

    Reply
  • Debie

    some great ideas..but wrapping paper might be a bit of a stretch.

    Reply
  • R Looser

    thanks

    Reply
  • R Looser

    thanks

    Reply
  • R Looser

    thanks

    Reply
  • Nowcome

    Sounds great, that Al foil is so handy. Do you know of any toxicity studies conducted on Al by the major corporations. I think not.

    Reply
  • Nowcome

    Sounds great, that Al foil is so handy. Do you know of any toxicity studies conducted on Al by the major corporations. I think not.

    Reply
  • shere1111

    At our cottage, I found I had left my curlers at home. I used aluminum foil instead. I took a piece of foil the length of my hair. I cut the foil into 3-4 inch wide strips. I parted mt hair into narrow sections and folded the foil around my dampened hair. Then I loosely rolled the folded foil around my finger. In the morning my hair looked great! Much easier for sleeping too, although my husband jokingly complained of signals from outer space all night.

    Reply
  • shere

    At our cottage, I found I had left my curlers at home. I used aluminum foil instead. I took a piece of foil the length of my hair. I cut the foil into 3-4 inch wide strips. I parted mt hair into narrow sections and folded the foil around my dampened hair. Then I loosely rolled the folded foil around my finger. In the morning my hair looked great! Much easier for sleeping too, although my husband jokingly complained of signals from outer space all night.

    Reply
  • shere

    At our cottage, I found I had left my curlers at home. I used aluminum foil instead. I took a piece of foil the length of my hair. I cut the foil into 3-4 inch wide strips. I parted mt hair into narrow sections and folded the foil around my dampened hair. Then I loosely rolled the folded foil around my finger. In the morning my hair looked great! Much easier for sleeping too, although my husband jokingly complained of signals from outer space all night.

    Reply
  • cathy

    You forgot wrapping your kid up in tin foil for Halloween so they can go as a baked potato. (got that idea from a friend) Maybe even throw an aluminum foil themed children's party w/tinfoil party hats, candy filled tin foil pinata, pin the tin foil ball on the aluminum pie tin and the classic tin foil chewing contest....the ideas are countless. Have fun with it!

    Reply
  • Lis

    If you lost your pipe you can use foil to mold one and smoke your fave smokeabuls in it. Just remember to poke some holes in the bowl...

    Reply
  • Teresa

    Wrapping paper is a great idea. I use it alot. You can take a toothpick or other pointy item and write notes or draw decorative designs on the foil for the receipient. When I feel extremely crafty I can even design a foil ribbon to go with it.

    Reply
  • betsy

    don't forget about using foil on your rabbit ears

    Reply

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