The humble mason jar is a multipurpose superhero in our homes. Mason jar uses can include everything from food storage to even growing herbs at home. You can also use them as a part of your food preservation, fermentation, and pickling processes.
Canning containers are constructed with a dense glass material that will resist high temperature or pressure, meaning you can put them in your fridge and microwave. You can use a mason jar to store baking soda, cinnamon sticks, rosemary, and other herbs. You can even use it as a blender jar or a coffee pot.
Keep reading for lots of reasons to love Mason jars as much as we do. Below, we explore the great ideas we curated on reusing mason jars for a whole variety of applications in the kitchen and around the home.
Glass mason jars are perfect containers to store all kinds of food in your plastic-free kitchen. You can use mason jars as canning jars for preserving food, their original purpose, and storing wet and dry food.
Their size and durability make them perfect for dried fruits, nuts, grains, cereals, herbs, spices, homemade granola, and seeds, and with a good seal, they’ll keep food fresh for ages. You can also use wide-mouth mason jars for baking supplies and pantry items like chocolate chips.
Living an eco-friendly lifestyle, plastics become the bane of your existence because they harm the environment and your health. So, one of the best ways to reduce your usage of plastics is to use mason jars for storing leftovers.
Even better, these versatile glass jars are microwave-friendly and safe to use to reheat food or defrost soup from the freezer without the need for plastic tupperware containers (which don't last as long either).
Mason jars can also hold your salad dressing, butter, whipped cream, parmesan cheese, honey, sugar, tea, coffee beans, and powder. Essentially, mason jars are your go-to containers for food preservation.
One of the more creative uses for mason jars is to turn them into candle jars. You can design the jars in various ways depending on your preference.
There’s the option of wrapping it in twine, drawing on the surface (with permanent markers), and painting your style on the jars. Attach small twigs around the jars with glue or wires if you prefer a more earthy vibe.
Mason jars are an excellent choice for making eco-friendly candles - you can even turn it into a small business creating unique styles to sell or make a bunch as the perfect DIY zero-waste gifts. You can reuse mason jars for candle making that were formerly stored for food items like jam and mayonnaise.
What's more, candle-making is easier than you think! Search online for guides, and sourcing DIY wax is easy from Amazon and any number of crafty retailers.
Don’t have enough mason jars to use for your small business? You can put up a glass jar recycling posting in your neighborhood. Then, people around you can drop off jars they aren’t using. You could even gift them one of their own candles to say thanks.
Our spice racks are often in disarray and need to be properly labeled. Using smaller mason jars can help make organizing herbs and spices in your pantry storage a breeze - and they look great, too! Another mason jar use is spice shakes.
Put your spices in designated jars and cover them. Then, use a marker to write the name of the spices on the covers. You can have fun with it by creating colored or hand-drawn name stickers you can put on the jar's body.
You can also use small mason jars as pepper shakers. However, use a mason jar with a metal lid for your shaker. Your jar doesn’t become a pepper and salt shaker until you make holes in it.
So, make the spots where you want the holes on the lid. Then, puncture it using a small nail and hammer. 3 to 6 holes are enough for the salt or pepper. Be careful not to injure your hands during this process.
A mason jar soap dispenser is a unique look to add to your kitchen and toilet. Large jars are suitable for this project, but avoid wide-mouth jars. You’ll need a dish soap dispenser, glue, and paint.
You can get a soap dispenser from Amazon or repurpose one you have around your home from an empty liquid soap bottle. First, you make a hole the size of the dispenser into the mason jar's lid. Then you insert the dispenser into the hole and glue it tightly.
While waiting for the glue to dry, paint the outer part of the jar in your desired color and wait about 30 minutes for it to dry - or leave it clear and choose a soap color to suit your decor. Once the glue and paint are dry, put the lid on to admire your artistic work.
Sand your painted jar for a more polished look. Then, pour the soap inside, and you are good to go.
You can repurpose smaller mason jars or jam jars into a toothbrush and toothpaste holder instead of spending on plastic holders. You can use the glass with no decoration. However, you’ll have more fun if you make little artistic decorations in the jar’s body.
String or fairy lights make your room, deck, and patio look beautiful and unique. This is perfect if you love having lights around your home. You can use 24 pint-sized mason jars or larger jars for this project. You will also need string lights.
You can paint the jars for more color variations. Once the paint is dry, put your string lights inside and cover with the lids. Your string lights in a jar are ready! Place them in your desired spots around your home.
You'll need hooks and wooden planks to hang your light jars on your deck and patio. Drill your mason jar lids and attach them to the wooden planks. Put the string of lights in the jars and attach them to their lids. Then, you carefully nail the plank to the ceiling.
You can also use a wire hanger to attach them to your ceiling. However, you might need to attach hooks holding them to the ceiling. This simple DIY looks great and offers a cost-effective way to add a little sparkle and shine to your living quarters, indoors or out.
You can also add electric tea lights into the base and use them to light up pathways and outdoor spaces.
You can use mason jars to store cupcake liners. It's often difficult to find the perfect storage that will hold the shape of a cupcake liner. Cupcake liners are only useful when they are in shape.
Keeping your cupcake liner inside a mason jar keeps it away from moisture. A large mason jar will work excellently for this. Carefully place your liners inside and screw the mason jar lid tightly.
You can do something as simple as tying a ribbon around the jar or spray painting its body. You can draw smiley faces, googly eyes, flowers, and human stick figures on the mason jar.
Be as creative as you want with your design. The most important thing is that you have fun designing it. It'll look great on the top of your desk and also keep your home stationery and office supplies organized.
One of the great ideas for using a mason jar is turning it into a pencil sharpener. It saves you from buying plastic sharpeners, and it lasts longer. You need a sharpener, glue, and a mason jar to make your pencil sharpener.
First, mark the center of your jar on the lid. Drill a hole into the center that you marked. Before gluing it together, ensure the hole is the same size as the sharpener. Hold the sharpener on the glue for 30-60 seconds.
There you have your sharpener, complete with catchment for all those wooden shavings! Let it dry overnight before covering the jar. Once the jar is full, pour the shavings into the trash.
There are many ways to use a mason jar; one is to plant herbs like thyme, rosemary, basil, cilantro, and parsley. With more mason jars, you can have a mini herb garden on your window sill to freshen up your meal times.
Growing fresh herbs in glass jars is easy as long as there's enough sunlight and proper soil drainage. These mini herb gardens will add a leafy touch to any kitchen. You can place them on shelves, window sills, and tables around your home, serving as functional decoration in your home.
Select larger jars to start your mini herb garden because they better allow for proper soil drainage. Also, it is not advisable to start your garden with seeds. It's better to transplant the herbs as seedlings for a better chance of survival.
Drill several 0.25-0.5 cm holes at the bottom of the jar to give room for drainage when you water the herbs. Then, fill up a small portion of the mason jar with stones or broken ceramic shards. It improves the drainage system and adds character to your vase.
Add potting mix to the stones and transplant your herbs. Bury the roots deep enough so they'll get enough soil nutrients. Place the jars in a spot with enough sunlight and air. Remember to label your plants for easy identification.
For more ideas, check out our article on apartment gardening.
Using a mason canning jar saves you money from getting flower vases and allows you to be creative. Add your personal touch by decorating a glass mason jar before use as a flower vase.
You can paint the jars, wrap them with jute, and any other colorful cord around them. Go wild with your creative designs. Mason jar flower vases are a perfect gift for your friends and loved ones.
Crocheters and knitters often need help with tangled and dirty yarn during their projects. Mason jars can serve as the perfect yarn holder that keeps your ball of yarn safe and clean.
Get your desired mason jar size to fit the yarns you work with. Next, you will make a little hole in the center of the jar's lid. The hole should be slightly bigger than the size of the yarn strands.
Get a larger jar if you work with more than one yarn ball. For instance, you are using three yarns for your crochet project. Make three holes in the jar lid and pass the yarns through each designated hole.
Voila! You have a yarn holder and dispenser. You can easily knit and crochet without getting your yarn tangled or dirty.
Another way to use mason jars is by turning them into terrariums. Mason jar terrariums make excellent holiday or household gifts for your family and loved ones.
Making a terrarium in a jar is relatively easy. You will need small plants, well-drained soil, small stones, moss, and activated charcoal.
First, clean your jar and ensure it is completely dry. Place the small stones at the bottom of the jar to secure your drainage layer. Next, add enough soil to accommodate your plants' roots.
Remember to sprinkle some activated charcoal to help with drainage. Then, place your small plant in the middle and add moss to the surroundings. You can also add other small plants like Peperomia Rosso and Epiphytes.
Cover the jar, and your terrarium is ready. However, you can be more creative by creating an upside-down mason jar terrarium.
You'll be using the mason jar lid as the base of the terrarium. Repeat the process above and slowly screw the jar into the cover rings. Remember you created an upside terrarium, so tell those you are giving the upside-down terrarium not to turn it into an upright position.
Read more: Terrarium Ideas To Grow A Piece Of Nature.
Mason jars are perfect for organizing your bathroom essentials. Mason jars can hold bar soaps, toothpaste, toothbrushes, and cotton buds in the bathroom.
You can also turn a mason jar into a cotton ball jar, keeping all your cotton balls inside. Label the jars for easy identification.
You can hang a hook rack on your bathroom walls for easy organization. This hook rack will hold the jars, especially if you don't have a bathroom counter.
You will always need storage materials for your craft items as a crafty person. You can use mason jars to store sewing supplies, beads, painting brushes, sculpting supplies, paint tubes, etc.
Using mason jars to store craft supplies makes your craft room more organized and easier to access. You can also turn mason jars into paint cans. Pour your paints into the jars and screw them shut.
There are many ways to use mason jars, including a baby bottle. To use a mason jar as a plastic-free baby bottle, you'll need to purchase a silicone nipple.
Use jars with a regular mouth instead of a wide mouth. Ensure that the size of the nipple will fit the jar rings before purchasing.
Instead of sharing party favors in plastic bags, a sustainably minded cute idea is to put them in mason jars. You are protecting the environment while giving your gifts something to reuse in their own homes.
You can put cookies, candies, chocolates, bath bombs, and sugar bombs in mason jars. Your guests are sure to appreciate the gifts.
Check out our zero-waste party ideas and decorations guide for more celebratory inspiration.
Turning glass mason jars into piggy banks is a great idea. You only need a few tools to make it happen. All you have to do is to create a size hole in the center of the jar lid to allow for easy passage of your money.
You can save coins and paper money in these jars. Sometimes, we don't want people to know where we save our money. So, you can crochet a cover for the jar to hide that it is a piggy bank.
Mason jars aren’t the only useful things. You can also use their lids to create beautiful items around your home - including photo frames. You must print out your desired images in a circular shape or trim to size.
This is to allow it to fit into the surface of the lids. Trim out the excess edges and glue them on the lid. You can make a hole at the edge of the tops and hang them on walls and ceilings around your house.
You can add magnets to the back of the lids and attach them to your fridge or any other surface.
You can use mason jars as jewelry holders on your vanity table. Design them by adding laces around the jars and label them with the type of jewelry you want to keep inside.
You can keep your rings, necklaces, and earrings. You could even make a designated key holder near your doorstep. It will help you keep track of your house keys.
Mason jars have so many versatile uses! You can also store your beauty products inside mason jars. You can store your makeup brushes, zero-waste makeup remover, pencils, eyeliners, and cotton balls in mason jars.
You can also keep your zero-waste shaving gear, nail files, nail paints, and nail cutters in the jars. Mason jars are great for organizing your beauty products in your plastic-free bathroom and can also be used as a decorative element in your vanity area. You can paint the jars in your favorite colors or decorate them with glitter and rhinestones to add a touch of glam to your space.
You can use mason jars as sippy cups and drinking glasses for child and adult beverages. They are highly recommended instead of plastic cups.
To make a glass sippy cup, simply drill a hole into the middle of the lid. The hole should be the size of the straw you are using. Insert your straw through the drilled hole and have a sippy cup. They’re also great for smoothies! Plus, without the hole, try them as a cocktail shaker, or the smaller varieties are perfect for serving drinks (of any kind. :-))
In conclusion, mason jars are incredibly versatile and useful in our daily lives. They provide a sustainable alternative to plastic, ignite our creative spark, and provide a canvas to get creative.
The possibilities for using mason jars are endless, from the kitchen to the bathroom, bedroom to the office.
So, next time you come across a spare mason jar lying around in your home, get creative and explore the endless ways of adding color and life to your personal spaces. Your imagination is the only limit!
Jen’s a passionate environmentalist and sustainability expert. With a science degree from Babcock University Jen loves applying her research skills to craft editorial that connects with our global changemaker and readership audiences centered around topics including zero waste, sustainability, climate change, and biodiversity.
Elsewhere Jen’s interests include the role that future technology and data have in helping us solve some of the planet’s biggest challenges.