25 Amazing Mason Jar Ideas for Cleaning, Crafting, and Cooking
While Mason jars are highly prized for canning purposes, they’re also handy in many other ways. If you’ve invested in some Mason jars and are looking for more everyday uses for them, keep reading this blog for an excellent variety of Mason jar ideas.
From a container for DIY disinfecting wipes to a plastic-free drinking vessel, few items have both the charm and versatility as the elegant Mason jar. It’s long-lasting, environmentally friendly, and symbolic of American resourcefulness.
While Mason jars are highly prized for canning purposes, they’re also handy in many other ways. If you’ve invested in some Mason jars and are looking for more everyday uses for them, keep reading this blog for seven fresh Mason jar ideas.
1. Eco-friendly Water Bottle
Looking for a heavy-duty water bottle that will last for years, is easy to clean, and is good for the environment? For an alternative to plastic water bottles, choose a wide-mouth Mason jar and a reCAP® POUR lid. For a flavor boost, add cucumbers, lemon, or berries.
Pro-tip: Cut a thick winter sock into a koozie for your Mason jar water bottle.
2. Overnight Oats Maker
If you love oatmeal’s taste and health benefits, but your mornings don’t allow much time for cooking, use Mason jars to prep a hearty breakfast the night before. Add one-half cup of rolled or quick oats and a pinch of salt to a Mason jar. Next, cover with one-half cup of milk (water will also work, but the oatmeal won’t be as creamy.) Optional: Add fruit, nut butter, yogurt, chia seeds, honey, or chocolate chips. Screw a lid on your Mason jar and let it sit overnight in your fridge.
Pro-tip: For a week’s worth of no-hassle breakfasts, prep five overnight oats at once.
3. Disinfecting Wipes Container
To say disinfecting wipes are a hot commodity this year would be a gross understatement. If you’d like to learn how to make your own inexpensive wipes, click on this YouTube link for an easy tutorial or keep reading.
- One Mason jar
- One reCAP® flip lid
- A handful of microfiber cloths or a cut-up T-shirt
- Two cups of distilled or boiled water.
- One cup of 91% or above isopropyl alcohol
- One tablespoon of Castile soap
- Ten drops of essential oil (optional)
Pour the distilled or boiled water into a Mason jar. Add the alcohol and Castille soap. Add ten drops of essential oil, if using. Secure the reCAP® flip lid and shake the jar to mix contents. Add microfiber cloths or a cut-up T-shirt and submerge in the liquid. Use the wipes as you would a disposable wipe (except don’t throw them away), and add them back to the jar after you’ve washed them.
Pro-tip: If you’re cleaning up substantial messes with these wipes, consider washing them in their own load.
4. Hand Sanitizer Bottle
Securing hand sanitizer has been another priority for households during the coronavirus pandemic. You can make your own in a Mason jar and top it with a pump cap for easy dispensing.
- A regular mouth Mason jar
- ¾ cups of 91% or above isopropyl alcohol
- ½ cups aloe vera gel
- Three drops lavender essential oil (optional)
- Two drops eucalyptus essential oil (optional)
Mix all ingredients in a regular mouth Mason jar. Add the pump cap to dispense the hand sanitizer.
Pro-tip: If you don’t feel like making your own hand sanitizer, save big by buying it in bulk and dividing it among several pint Mason jars.
5. Rustic Outdoor Lantern
There are also endless ways to decorate with Mason jars. To create a rustic look outdoors, add white string lights to Mason jars. String a Mason jar with wire and ribbon for a hanging light, or place them on deck railings to illuminate your outdoor space. You can also add them to a picnic table to light up a barbeque.
Pro-tip: If you’re feeling crafty, fill the Mason jars with nonflammable decorative items, such as marbles, pebbles, or seashells, and then insert tea lights.
6. DIY Nail Polish Remover Sponge Jar
If you love the convenience of “dip and twist” nail polish remover but hate the idea of bringing more plastic into your house, make your own handy polish remover sponge jar.
You’ll need a 4 ounce Mason jar with a lid, a bottle of nail polish remover, and a cellulose sponge. Cut the sponge in half lengthwise, roll it up tightly, and insert it into the Mason jar. Pour the nail polish remover onto the sponge until it is saturated. Voila! You’ve made your own nail polish remover. Be sure to keep the lid screwed on tightly in between uses. When the sponge gets very soiled, replace it with a fresh one and add more nail polish remover.
Pro-tip: Choose acetone-free nail polish remover, which is gentler to your hands than nail polish remover with acetone.
7. Personal Care Item Holder
Morning routines go smoother when everything you need is at your fingertips. Instead of tucking cotton swabs, cotton balls, razors, and makeup brushes out of sight, display them in four-ounce Mason jars in a neat row.
Pro-tip: For a unifying effect, tie the same color of ribbon around each jar.
8. Small-Batch Fermenter
From sauerkraut to kefir, a classic Mason jar can be transformed into a perfect small-batch fermenter. We like to use the reCAP POUR lid combined with the waterless airlocks to keep the process simple.
Fermented food comes with an array of health benefits, too. It’s an excellent source of probiotics, vitamins, and minerals. Check out some of our favorite recipes:
- Fermented Salsa
- Fermented Okra
- Fermented Veggies
- Fermented Cherry Tomatoes
MasonJars.com also has a FREE fermentation recipe eBook that features nine scrumptious recipes.
9. Spice Shaker
Save big by buying your spices in bulk. Redistribute your spices into jars for freshness and then turn your smaller (pint size or less) Mason jars into multipurpose shakers. They work great for parmesan cheese, dried herbs, pepper, and heck, even sprinkles. We recommend using a reCAP shaker insert or a mini shaker cap for all of your spice shakin’ needs!
10. Healthy Cup-o-Noodles
Typical store-bought soup is packed with sodium, MSG, and preservatives. Ditch the sky-high salt intake and use your Mason jars as an environmentally-friendly, to-go container for your homemade soups. Here’s a delicious recipe from Big Red Kitchen that’s fast and convenient:
- Angel Hair Rice Noodles (cut to the size of 2 decks of playing cards)
- 1/3 Cup of Roasted, Diced Chicken
- 1/3 Cup of Sliced Sugar Snap Peas
- 1 TBSP Sliced Green Onions
- 2 TSP Gluten-Free Soy Sauce
- 1 /8 TSP Toasted Sesame Oil
- 1/4 TSP Ginger Powder or 1 TSP Grated Fresh Ginger
- 1/2 TSP Sriracha
Layer ingredients in jars in the order listed above, starting with the noodles. Screw a reusable Mason jar lid onto your jar and store in the refrigerator for up to four days or in the freezer for one month.
When you’re in the mood for soup, remove the lid, and fill the jar with cold water to the base of the jar's neck. Microwave on high heat for 2.5 minutes. If you're using Julie Chini noodles, only microwave for 2 minutes.
Remove from the microwave, place the cap back on the jar, and let it rest 2 minutes.
Now you’re ready to stir and eat! Feel free to salt to taste!
*Three notes of caution:
- These jars of soup get hot! Use a cloth or oven mitt to get them out of the microwave.
- Do not pour boiling water in a cold or frozen jar; it will crack!
- Do not freeze with water in jars; the jars can break.
11. Coffee Storage
Few things in life are better than a fresh cup of coffee. But, in order to get that perfect cup, you need fresh beans. To reduce the UV rays that diminish your beans' freshness and quality, invest in a set of amber Mason jars.
MasonJars.com also created a guide to ensuring you’re always sipping on the freshest cup of joe: Four Coffee Storage Tips and Tricks.
12. Infused Sugar Storage
It's not the healthiest breakfast in the world, but cinnamon-sugar toast is a little slice of heaven. Pre-mix your cinnamon-infused sugar in a Mason jar, so it's always ready for you in the morning.
You don’t have to stop with just infusing your sugar with cinnamon either. Try using dry mint, orange zest, vanilla, or ground freeze-dried strawberries.
13. Coin Bank
Just about everyone has a place where they tend to empty their pockets: the bedroom dresser, kitchen counter, coffee table, junk drawer, you name it. If you’re tired of having a pile of loose change floating around, use a Mason jar as a coin bank. For an even “richer” aesthetic, outfit your jars with reCAP’s coin bank lid.
14. Cocktail Shaker
Don't have a cocktail shaker for your homemade drinks? No problem. Use a 24-ounce Mason jar and a reCAP POUR lid as a DIY cocktail shaker. If you're whipping up some particularly fancy drinks, you may want to get the reCAP straining kit so you don't wind up with hunks of muddled fruit in your glass.
15. Garage Organizers
If you’re into DIY projects, you probably have a garage or basement that’s overflowing with random nails, screws, nuts, bolts, washers, staples, tacks, etc. Use your leftover Mason jars to start sorting out the mess. What’s particularly nice about using jars instead of totes or boxes is that you can actually see what’s inside of them.
16. Crayon Storage
Somehow, as a few Crayon's break here and there, every pack seems to wind up in a giant box eventually. It's impossible to find the color you want when you need it, and all of the paper around the Crayons starts looking dirty from the wax. Use your Mason jars to sort out your little one's Crayons by color. Not only does it make coloring more fun, but it also looks cool!
17. Movie Theater Butter Dispenser
Between the shutdowns from COVID-19 and the growing popularity of streaming apps, it’s probably been a while since you stepped foot in a movie theater. Recreate the experience by putting on a new flick and serving up some movie theater popcorn.
Whether you want to go old-school and pop your kernels on the stovetop or speed up the process by putting them in the microwave, you can create a mess-free movie theater butter dispenser with a Mason jar. Simply melt some butter and top your jar with a reCAP Mason jar Pour Spout or Pump Dispenser and drizzle that delicious goodness over your bowl of popcorn.
18. Leftover Paint Storage
Whether you prefer bright, bold colors or soothing neutrals, every paint job needs a touch-up after a while. Searching through your garage or basement for the original color can be time-consuming. Instead, consider pouring leftover paint into a Mason jar for easy storage. As a bonus, you’ll avoid having to store bulky paint cans with only a small amount of paint in them.
Pro-tip: Label your Mason jar lids with not only the color of the paint but also where you use it (i.e., kitchen, entryway, etc.) for easy identification.
19. DIY Match Container
If you light candles or your fireplace frequently, you probably keep a container of matches handy. Try making this simple yet elegant strike-anywhere match container using a Mason jar and sandpaper for a prettier display option.
Pro-tip: When cutting out the sandpaper lid, use an old pair of scissors because the sandpaper’s rough surface could dull whatever blade you’re using.
20. Chore Jar
If you’re just starting to assign your children specific ways to help out around the house, consider creating a chore jar to make tasks more fun. Start by festooning a Mason jar with a ribbon, their names, a favorite sports team logo, or any other decoration your children will enjoy.
Write out a list of chores you want your children to do, then cut them up into individual strips of paper. Add a few fun surprises, such as “Eat a cookie” or “Dance with Dad to your favorite song.” Have your kids draw a chore out of the jar and then tackle the task. Depending on their ages, they can work together, separately, or with you. While it won’t turn taking out the trash into playing Mindcraft, the novelty may make pitching in a bit more enjoyable for your kids.
21. Homemade Granola Container
Granola is nutritious and tasty, yet commercial versions are expensive and often smothered with a lot of corn syrup or sugar.
Try creating your own homemade granola and storing it in a Mason jar with a reCAP Mason Jar POUR lid for easy dispensing. Add the granola to yogurt for a filling breakfast or enjoy it in place of your morning cereal.
Crunchy Protein Granola Recipe
Preheat the oven to 325.
Mix in a large bowl, mix:
- 4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- ½ cup sunflower seeds
- ½ cup peanuts
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup coconut oil
- ¾ cup honey or maple syrup
- ½ chocolate chips
- ½ cup flax seed meal
Spread on two greased baking sheets. Bake for about 30 minutes, depending on how crispy you like your granola. Stir frequently (every 10 minutes), otherwise, the granola can burn. When it is completely cool, pour it into Mason jars and use it within two weeks.
Pro-tip: For extra flavor, add dried fruit such as apples, cherries, cranberries, or raisins after baking.
22. Dessert Parfaits
For no-bake, perfectly portioned treats that can easily feed a large crowd, try assembling dessert parfaits in Mason jars. Guests can help themselves to the sweet confections while you’re free to complete other tasks or mingle. The best ingredients to have on hand for a parfait included, but are not limited to:
- Whipped Cream
- Fresh Fruit
- Chocolate Chips
23. Floating Christmas Candles
Looking for a simple yet elegant Christmas centerpiece that won’t break the bank? Try assembling this floating candle centerpiece. You’ll need:
- A Mason jar
- A handful of cranberries (use more or less depending on the size of the jar)
- 2-3 fresh pine sprigs
- Small floating candles
Place pine sprigs into the Mason jar, then fill with water to just below the rim. Add cranberries, then place a floating candle in the center of the jar, moving aside cranberries as necessary.
Pro-tip: Make sure you purchase candles specifically made to float; tea lights will sink and become unusable.
24. Simmering Potpourri Container
For an aromatic Christmas gift without any calories, try assembling some stovetop potpourri. Your friends and family can simmer the ingredients on the stove all day to envelop their homes with the enticing aroma of cloves, cinnamon, and more.
Feel free to experiment with different ingredients. From dried flowers and fruit to essential oils, there is a scent that you can create for every season. For a holiday potpourri, use orange peels, cinnamon, cranberries, and nutmeg. Allow all of the ingredients to dry on a baking sheet for two weeks, and then add them to a mason jar.
Once your ingredients are in a Mason jar, add two to four drops of essential oil to the mixture. Next, screw on a Mason jar FLIP top, and allow the potpourri to absorb the fragrance and a cool dark place for at least a week.
Pro-tip: This gift idea is a great way to involve your kids in making Christmas presents. Even very young children will enjoy placing ingredients in the Mason jars.
25. Infused Oil Dispenser
Just like store-bought granola, commercially available infused oils can be pricey and may not contain the exact flavor profile you’re looking for. If you’re feeling adventurous, we recommend trying a variety of different ingredients, including:
Once the oil has completely cooled from the infusion process, store it in a Mason jar with a reCAP Mason Jar Pour Spout Lid & Tap. Store your infused oil in the refrigerator for up to three months
Stay Tuned for More Inspiration
reCAP Mason jar lids are BPA free, stain-resistant, top-shelf dishwasher safe, and freezer safe. Additionally, reCAP Mason jar lids are made in the United States.
If you don’t have the jars, caps, or ingredients you need, MasonJars.com is here to help you discover fun and eco-friendly ways to use Mason jars. Get started by browsing our store today and join our newsletter by filling out the form below!