Recycled bottle tops to seal open plastic packets

bottle cap

Last month I came across a random facebook picture ( the kind that circulates itself through friends’ walls and you glance at it, maybe hit a like button, and then move on forgetting all about it 30 seconds later ) and fell in love with it. This one had a sliced off bottle cap sealing an open plastic bag.

We all are familiar with this sight: (at least I hope you are, it will make me feel better :D)

banded brothers

This facebook pass-around picture caught my serious fancy. It just flashed by me, and while I just did not remember who posted it and when, I remembered what I saw. And I LOVED it. I love it even more now that I am using it. Now, the packets look something like this:

Sealed and capped packets


The method is so simple that it makes you feel like a twit for having thrown away all those golden opportunity juice bottles that could have capped that annoying semolina packet that kept spilling over despite your best intentions to keep it tightly folded over, secured with a band and made to stand upright.

It was something that I HAD to give a try. You know how you feel driven by something at times? This was one of those times. So I hunted for used bottles. Just as my luck would have it, I had thrown away trash the previous day and along with it went a golden stash of used bottles. So I started with water bottles lying around, and struggled to fit in the caps to these large plastic bags. I soon realized that size matters πŸ˜€

You need:

Used plastic bottles

Sharp, heavy scissors

A Kitchen towel or soft cloth

Wash and dry the bottle.

Using the scissors, make a puncture about 1-2″ from the ring.

Slide the scissor in into the puncture and cut it out in a circle.

Slice the top of the plastic bag neatly.

Gather the folds and insert the ring, and pull up the ends creating a ‘neck’.

Seal the cap tight. You might have to push it down a bit to make the cap onto the ring.



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For thicker plastics, it’s wiser to use sturdy bottle caps with a wide mouth – like a juice bottle. For thin plastics, you can use water bottle caps. If the plastic is too stiff, then transfer to a more pliable bag, like a bread plastic bag, and then use the cap method to seal it.


bread bag




bottle cap

Take a bottle (wide mouth bottles are better for bigger bags)


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bottle cap


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bottle 2013-09-10 008


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It’s fun and rewarding. The kitchen cabinets looks sooo much better now.


36 comments for “Recycled bottle tops to seal open plastic packets

  1. September 15, 2013 at 12:17 AM

    I just about died laughing at your packets with rubber bands! I have the same thing! The daals I manage to store in jars but semolina, besan etc, are all rubber banded. Such a desi thing πŸ˜‰
    However, I love this very clever idea! Going to go and raid my recycle bin now and see what I’ve got!

    Coffee and Crumpets recently posted..Peach Ice Cream with Salted Caramel SauceMy Profile

    • September 18, 2013 at 7:54 AM

      lol!! I have a habit of storing excess. So at any given time, I have dal in two containers – a small and a large. But I still go buy an extra just because the Indian store here is so far. As a result, I often end up with half a packet lying around. And because I perversely like to store everything in ‘extra’, I end up not having enough containers for those half packets, hehehe! So rubber bands, clips, even pins!
      Minnie recently posted..Recycled bottle tops to seal open plastic packetsMy Profile

  2. September 15, 2013 at 1:41 AM

    I tried this recently and thought I was the last to know. πŸ™‚
    Maureen | Orgasmic Chef recently posted..4th Floor Restaurant – MooloolabaMy Profile

  3. September 15, 2013 at 5:44 AM

    Wow! Super Idea.Thanks for sharing.
    Asiya Omar recently posted..Falooda – SNC – 12 (September Challenge)My Profile

  4. September 15, 2013 at 8:24 AM

    This is an idea whose time has come … well, at least around here, anyway. I’ve got banded bags in cupboards just waiting for the band to age and break, raining down the bags’ contents on me at the most inopportune time. Thanks, Minnie. I have to go grab the bag of recyclables I took out yesterday and fetch me some bottles. πŸ™‚
    ChgoJohn recently posted..My Tomatoes Are In A JamMy Profile

    • September 18, 2013 at 7:56 AM

      hahaha!! Isn’t that a nightmare!! Whoever invented it, bless the soul, it’s really a cool one.

  5. September 15, 2013 at 1:21 PM

    This is super-awesome!!!!! you are a scientist! i am going to try this now!

    • September 18, 2013 at 7:57 AM

      And tell me how it turned out!

  6. September 15, 2013 at 4:06 PM

    I love this trick!

    • September 18, 2013 at 7:57 AM

      Me too!

  7. September 16, 2013 at 9:25 PM

    Such a clever trick to put waste to use,love this

    • September 18, 2013 at 7:57 AM

      Thank you Harini πŸ™‚

  8. September 16, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    Only comment I can think of is the tag line of IDEA network. “What an Idea Sirjee”! πŸ˜€ And its said by none other than your fav Abhishek Bachchan.

    Brilliant one!
    Bhaskar recently posted..Taste of Israel : Israel Diary – 3My Profile

    • September 18, 2013 at 7:58 AM

      Lol!!! He is my fav all right πŸ˜€ Brilliant it is, not mine though.

  9. September 17, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    Very smart indeed! Not to forget eco-friendly. I too had seen this idea in emails doing the rounds but then I’ve already put all my dals and stuff in separate containers. The only things which are still in their original packaging are the masalas – garam masala, chilli powder and so on.

    • September 18, 2013 at 8:00 AM

      I agree, it is really a good one. Especially for people like me who store in excess, and once the container is full, I have left overs banded. Now they are capped. Yay!

    • September 18, 2013 at 8:00 AM

      I agree, it is really a good one. Especially for people like me who store in excess, and once the container is full, I have left overs banded. Now they are capped. Yay!

  10. September 17, 2013 at 12:55 AM

    Wow thats a super duper tip πŸ™‚

    • September 18, 2013 at 8:01 AM

      Thanks so much!

  11. September 17, 2013 at 2:34 AM

    What a great idea! So much better to keep those bugs out too πŸ˜‰

    • September 18, 2013 at 9:36 AM

      Yes! Absolutely!

  12. Anuradha
    September 17, 2013 at 1:58 PM

    wow – what an idea…. too good…. thanks for putting this up… πŸ™‚

    • September 18, 2013 at 9:43 AM

      Thank you πŸ˜€

  13. September 17, 2013 at 5:28 PM

    This is a good idea indeed… I bought a huge bag of bag clips from IKEA some years ago, which work very well too, though these tend to “magically” disappear over time, so once they’re all lost I might switch to this idea.
    Charles recently posted..AΓ―eeeeeeee, it’s AΓ―oliMy Profile

    • September 18, 2013 at 10:22 AM

      Yes, I like the clips too, and they somehow vanish after a white, hahaha! Isn’t that aggravating? Thank you πŸ™‚

  14. September 18, 2013 at 3:05 PM

    love ur idea..n well explanied in step wise cliks..great..if v thunk vth little bit concentrate nothing is waste..Good dear.vl try.

  15. September 18, 2013 at 5:13 PM

    This is the most genius post I’ve seen today (or maybe this week!). WOW, whoever came up with this idea is very smart. Thanks so much for sharing! I became wiser. Hehee.
    Nami | Just One Cookbook recently posted..Castella カステラMy Profile

    • September 18, 2013 at 6:37 PM

      How awesome of you to say that Nami πŸ™‚ I think this was one of the best FB contributions to my life, hahaha!

  16. September 22, 2013 at 7:18 PM

    Well, this is very clever! I’ve never seen it before. Thanks for a great kitchen tip!
    mjskit recently posted..Spicy Sweet Red Pepper SoupMy Profile

  17. shital
    June 18, 2014 at 1:52 AM

    This is very helpful. Even i keep lot of packets opened, and throw all the juice / drink bottles. Thanks for sharing. I am going to try this tonight itself after going back home.

    • June 18, 2014 at 9:01 AM

      Thanks Shital πŸ™‚ I’m glad.

  18. Louise
    September 28, 2014 at 8:52 AM

    Wow Minnie! This is ingenious! Thank you for sharing. Raiding my recycle bin right now.

  19. December 3, 2014 at 11:16 PM

    Now this is a greatly creative way to recycle those bottle (including the caps), which is something that I think would greatly help a lot of homes when it comes to organizing and storage.

    I really appreciate everyone who tries to find creative ways to make recycling more useful than it already is.

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