I read a Facebook post from a friend that she only eats Strawberries in June. Hood Strawberries are so delicious that the other varieties just don’t do it for her. She hates hulling the stems but it doesn’t compare to how she feels when she’s throwing the tops.

Let’s be honest…Hood Strawberries are the best. Period. We can also be honest that they are not cheap. When you remove the stems and it feels like you are throwing away as much as you’re eating….well that sucky feeling.

So I thought I’d cruise Instagram and find some yummy solutions to use for berry waste and here is what I found.

  1. Strawberry Vinaigrette
  2. Strawberry Infused Apple Cider
  3. Freeze for Smothies
  4. Infuse Some Water
  5. Infuse Some Vodka

Strawberry Vinaigrette

The weather is getting warmer which makes a picnic or spinach salad on your patio is probably in your future…wouldn’t a fresh strawberry vinaigrette be perfect?

We took this idea from Need More Farms and tried it with just the tops. You can do this with the whole berry but today we’re talking about eliminating the waste!

Need More Farms was thoughtful enough to remind us thatย over time the strawberries will turn dull in color as they infuse with the vinegar. This is completely normal! They turn brownish and your vinegar takes on a beautiful pink hue.

  • 1.5-3 cups fresh strawberry tops
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups white wine vinegar
  • Place strawberries into a jar with a lid ( I use a one-quart Ball canning jar)
  • pour white wine vinegar over the berries
  • Put lid on it and store in a dark cool place like your pantry for about a week to 10 days.
  • You can speed up the infusion by mashing the berries up after a few days in the vinegar
  • Once the vinegar is infused, strain it and discard the solids.
  • Store the vinegar in the fridge for 1 month.
Home Made Strawberry Vinaigrette
Strawberry Tops in a Quart Jar

Strawberry Infused Apple Cider

Okay, so I saw the image and went OMG YUMM ๐Ÿ˜‹ , then I thought…. ๐Ÿ’ญ ๐Ÿค” what am I going to do with that?? @lilavolkas makes this Cider Vinegar and uses it to mix with bubbly water or other items to make yummy summer drinks. Genius ๐Ÿค“

  • Half Galon Jar
  • take your tops and put in the jar
  • fill 1/2-3/4 full
  • **optional**Add Rosemary sprigs for a herbal taste
  • top with Apple Cider Vinegar
    • the acidity of the ACV will preserve & protect any thin in the liquid so you have to worry about mold
  • optional- add weight to keep Strawberries weighted down
  • Label jar with Date
  • Infuse for one month in a dark place
  • strain

Freeze for a Smoothie

Did you know the strawberryโ€™s green top is packed with nutrients as well? Antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, helps with digestion. Throw the whole thing in the freezer and when you need it, you have fruit and green to add to your smoothie.

strawberry tops zero waste
strawberry infused water

Infuse Some Water

I’d like to say I stole this from Instagram but our famous big blue microchip maker here in Portland does this in their cafeteria; place the strawberry tops in the water containers. #strawberryinside

Strawberry Infused Vodka

I know this should have been first but then no one would have read the rest…well I wouldn’ have at least. We were hoping to find a pearl of wisdom from a local distillery but COVID-19 has a crimp on getting ahold of anyone. However, the internet never disappoints and I found quite a few people giving tips for infused Vodka. Here is the best of the best info we pulled

  • Hoods are super sweet so don’t add sugar or extra water if you’re using the scraps/tops.
  • ~2lb of berry tops
    • the better the vodka the better we like a wheat vodka the best: Wheatland or Ryka
    • why? well you’re likely to drink this with soda water or straight so you’re going to want the spirit that has some extra TLC in the production process
  • You’ll need a 1L or larger vessel to put the berries and vodka in
  • Don’t let the berries sit in the vodka more than 36-48 hours or it may get jammy when the sugar from the berries starts to ferment
  • after the soak strain the vodka/berry to get only the liquids out
  • Now you’ve got strawberry tops soaked in vodka
    • use to make a blended daiquiri!
    • double re-use ๐Ÿ˜‡
strawberry infused vodka