Whether you think it is a hipster fad or not, the mason jar can be a useful vessel for more than just jam and preserves. If you run out of Tupperware from time to time, these jars can bail you out when you’re in a pinch.

1. For Salads

Mason Jar

Photo by Bernard Wen

Layering salads in a mason jar is pleasing to both the eye and palate. Begin with proteins, like cooked chicken, lentils, tuna, or tofu at the bottom with the dressing. Hearty vegetables, like grated carrots, peas, or seeds placed on top of the protein layer act as a barrier to keep greens fresh and crisp at the top. These creative recipes will get you started.

2. For Soups

Mason Jar

Photo by Joy Oresajo

This is pretty self-explanatory. The tight fitting lid and microwave compatibility of the glass body makes an awesome portable container for that vegetable soup you made way too much of.

3. For Games

Mason Jar

Photo by Cheryl Ching

If you’re hosting a party in the near future, fill an empty mason jar with any food item (gummies, M&M’s™, chocolate Easter eggs, etc.), and you have a “guess the number of” game ready to go. Have your guests write their names and guesses on pieces of paper and collect them prior to a dramatic prize draw later on.

4. For Beverages

Mason Jar

Photo by Joy Oresajo

The tight fitting lid and insulating properties of the glass are great at keeping that iced tea in the summer and a hot chocolate warm in the winter. If your only thermos is full with some other awesomeness, then this is a great alternative.

5. For Luxurious Food Gifts

Mason Jar Cookie Mix

Photo by Luna Zhang

Always wanted to share that wicked-awesome brownie recipe with your friends? Look no further. Layering flour, sugar, cocoa powder, and chocolate in a mason jar is a treat for the eyes and is a convenient gift to your friends or family.  All your lucky recipient has to do is add the wet ingredients and voilà.

Check out these other ideas for mason jar use on Spoon University: