After customer feedback and extensive research, Gnarly Nutrition made the exciting switch from plastic to steel canisters. Our switch may be surprising to some consumers, as we are used to plastic supplement tubs. Unlike plastic, which can only be recycled 1-2 times in most cases, steel has the highest recycling rate of any material and can be recycled infinitely.
Plus, most new steel products manufactured in the US come from recycled steel, helping to continue to reuse the materials and provide them a new life. Most municipalities in the US recycle steel or metal food containers in curbside bins, making it easy for the consumer to dispose of their empty canisters properly.
And steel cans are far more durable than plastic, making them excellent for repurposing and reusing in your home, as well! If we follow the classic 3 R’s (reduce, reuse, recycle), we must remember that they were put in order of importance:
- We should first seek to reduce our consumption.
- When that isn’t an option, we should reuse what we have.
- If we can’t do either, we should then recycle as a last resort.
To help you give a container new life, here are a few of our favorite ways to reuse the Gnarly protein canisters:
1. Make a flower pot or vase
A classic reuse for metal cans is to make plant holders or a decorative vase. Now, you can use the can as it is, but it won’t be very aesthetically pleasing. We recommend painting the can or adding rope along the outside to make it more decorative.
If you decide to make a plant holder, it can be helpful to make holes in the bottom to help moisture drain from the soil. For hanging planters, add a layer of rocks on the bottom instead.
Another idea is to make a window display or a hanging planter setup for herbs. In a home with a lot of natural light and window space, a reuse idea like that could provide you with fresh herbs all year long.
Maybe potted plants aren’t your thing, and if that’s the case, a decorated canister will make an excellent centerpiece on a table or buffet. Add seasonal foliage to the canister, and as you use more canned supplements, you could even decorate them to fit each season or holiday.
2. A piggy bank
Whether your kids want a fun way to save up some money, or you need a container to collect loose change, Gnarly steel cans are a durable option. Much like a planter or vase, decorating the can will give it a new life.
Since the canisters close completely, all you’d have to do is cut a slit in the top of a clean can, and you have a way to deposit money.
We use glass jars around the house to collect our loose change, but these steel canisters would look much nicer and be more discrete with a bit of paint.
3. Punched can lanterns
You’ve likely seen punched can lanterns made out of soup or bean cans, but we like the Gnarly cans to make larger patio lanterns. They aren’t quite as big as a traditional full-size paint can, but they are larger than soup cans. Unlike other food cans, Gnarly canisters have smooth sides, making them easier to paint and design for use as lights.
To punch holes into the can, you can use a hammer and a nail. If you plan to make a lot of these, using a longer nail or something easy to hold that has a pointy end makes things easier.
Punched can lanterns make an excellent accessory for summer evenings on the patio. You can string them together to form decorative outdoor lighting, set them on tables, or even put citronella candles in them to keep the bugs away.
Since the lids of these canisters are so secure, you can fashion them to attach to a string of lights. It will take more handiwork, but the end result will be unique.
4. Food storage containers
If you aren’t feeling particularly crafty enough to fashion lanterns, why not use them for what they’re initially intended for: food storage.
The tight seal on the canister is perfect for storing bulk items like grains and flour. You can also make pup-proof treat stations around the house. Using the tins as food storage, especially if you shop in bulk, is a lower-cost option than buying new containers.
Since they are not clear glass containers, it will be helpful to label them. You can redesign the exterior any way you choose, but one of the easiest ways is to use chalkboard paint. This way, you can change the contents of containers easily while still having an aesthetic labeling system for the pantry.
5. Utensil holder
Another great use for these durable steel containers is a utensil holder. I used to keep many of my cooking utensils in a drawer, but then it became annoying while cooking a meal or baking to dig through the drawer to find what I needed. That’s when I started keeping the utensils I use the most out on the counter next to the stove in a metal holder.
Many utensil holders you buy in stores are made from plastic or metal material. Gnarly cans are the perfect size for this, and much like the other reuse ideas on our list, you can paint or decorate the outside of the can however you want.
If you already have a utensil holder, another option is a craft supply organizer or a way to organize tools and loose supplies in a shop.
What about the lids?
Not all of our repurposing projects require the use of the lid. If you decide to make lights, a piggy bank, or simply reuse the canisters for food storage, the lids will come in handy. You may not need the lids for other things like a utensil holder.
The lids can be recycled on their own, but they can also be used for other purposes such as coasters or decorations. A popular design is to make a wall hanging of mirrors with metal lids. To make these, all you need is a way to attach the lids to the wall and mirrors that fit onto the lids. Another fun idea would be to make picture magnets for the fridge.
We hope this helps you see your used Gnarly cans in a new light, and the ideas help you reuse your cans for months or even years to come!