Stinky bins no more! How to get rid of prawn shells after Christmas Day

Dec 25, 2020
Here are four easy ways to reduce the smell of prawn scraps. Source: Getty.

Whether they’re barbecued, fried or eaten fresh, prawns are a delicious addition to Christmas lunch or dinner. Not to mention, they’re very quick and easy to prepare!

But as easy as they are to whip up, they’re a pain to get rid of. Leftover prawn shells can really stink out your bin if you don’t use correct disposal methods — and no one wants a smelly bin come Boxing Day, especially in Australia’s hot climate. Not to mention, smelly bins can also attract an array of bugs and flies. So, here are four easy ways to reduce the smell of prawn scraps.

Freeze them

If your bin man isn’t coming for another few days, freeze the prawn leftovers and then, on the day of collection, chuck the waste in your bin frozen to stop any pungent smells forming and stinking out your home and neighbourhood.

Compost your prawn in your garden

Rather than throwing the prawn leftovers into the bin, you can dig them into the garden to help combat bacteria that damages tomato plants, fruit trees, vines and roses, Elke Keeley, co-founder of UrbanYou — a company that specialises in household cleaning and gardening — told Starts at 60. The shells contain compounds that feed bacteria which, in turn, helps the soil to break down.

“You’ll want to grind your prawn shells up to be as small as possible before digging them into your garden soil and watering them in,” she explained.

Turn your prawn heads and shells into stock

Prawn shells, tails and heads are packed with flavour. Instead of tossing them out, save them and whip up a quick stock or prawn bisque, Elke suggested. Alternatively, you can freeze the prawn shells for up to a month.

“You can freeze the leftovers from your summer prawn pig outs for up to a month and, using a basic fish stock, revive them even after prawn season through an Asian-style soup, Spanish paella, or buttery prawn bisque,” she added. “Prawn heads can also be fried into crunchy morsels or into prawn oil.”

Reuse prawn shells as bait

You can also use prawn shells as bait when you’re fishing. Take the heads off and keep them as extra bait in case you run short — just be sure to keep them in the freezer until you need them or you could be at risk of stinking out your home.

“By keeping your prawn shells in an airtight container in the freezer, you can keep them out of your bins and be sorted with an after-Christmas family activity,” Elke said.

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How do you dispose of prawns? Do you have any extra tips? 

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