Everybody has daydreamed of all the delicacies they could purchase on a calm Friday night or has gleefully reached into their kitchen’s “junk” drawer to get a microwaveable dinner that would never let them down. In addition to a meager meal and a mountain of non-biodegradable plastic that lasts for almost a century, the ready-to-eat meal lasts only for two minutes.
It is as intimidating as it seems, yet it can be resolved. We remove fruits and veggies from tins and frozen packets without blinking an eye. But we overlook the carbon emissions produced by delivery vehicles that travel great distances to transport these frozen goods. The quantity of energy required to keep these out-of-season commodities preserved is concealed.
Hence, the first step to building an eco-friendly environment is to create an eco-friendly kitchen. Organic eating is the first step toward an eco-friendly kitchen, but it’s not the end of it. Suppose you wish to have a healthy kitchen. In that case, you should also practice energy-efficient meal preparation and sanitation techniques, use equipment made of sustainable materials, and avoid using hazardous chemicals.
In fact, making the best decisions for your health is also beneficial for the environment and your wallet. You’ll become a greener gourmet in no time with our advice on building an eco-friendly kitchen today! Here’s a blog post that lists 25 ways to make your kitchen eco-friendly. Without much ado, let’s begin!
Eco-friendly Shopping Tips For Your Kitchen
One of the prime causes of kitchen waste is irrational shopping and unawareness of eco-friendly materials. Here’s how you can take the first step toward building your green kitchen.
1. Use eco-friendly kitchen cleaners
Anyone’s stomach would heave at the list of additives found in typical petrochemical-oriented dishwashing solutions, surface cleaners, detergents, as well as other household cleaning products. Thankfully, there seem to be many natural cleaning businesses out there making plant-based detergents, biodegradable and non-toxic. Try using sponges made of recycled materials and free of phosphates.
Additionally, you can always put your hands on your homemade cleaning supplies using everyday items like vinegar and baking soda, which, when combined, produce a fantastic all-purpose, non-toxic cleaner. Ensure these do not harm marine life when you put them in the trash, or the water drains out in the open.
2. Try purchasing or arranging the following to take a step towards a green kitchen.
Here is a list of green must-haves that you shouldn’t skip on buying or arranging for your kitchen.
- Quick-wash dishwasher
- Small refrigerator with a freezer on top
- Convection oven or an induction cooktop
- Ventilation system
- Kitchen area for fruits and veggies that aren’t refrigerated
- Wooden kitchen cabinets that are sustainable
- Natural light
- Recycled materials for kitchen countertops
- Recyclable area
- Water purifier
- LED and fluorescent lighting
- Upholstered chairs and cotton curtains
- Bamboo splashback
- Linoleum or cork flooring
3. Use a Cotton reusable bag while shopping
Can you imagine single-use plastic bags take more than 1000 years to degrade in nature, and by that time, they might harm many marine lives? That’s why always remember to use reusable cotton shopping bags for your groceries and food item shopping.
4. Sustainable transportation for shopping
Do not use a private car or motorbike to shop for groceries or food items. If the supermarket is close to your home, take a walk. If the distance is long, you can take a bicycle or use public transport as a last resort.
5. Shop Local
Shop from your local stores to get fresh fruits and vegetables. Also, avoid online groceries (big brands) unless the local stores do it themselves.
Eco-friendly Energy Tips For Your Kitchen
Pondering about the energy sources of your kitchen can tremendously save tons of your energy and resources. Here’s how.
6. Change the light bulbs
Replace the incandescent lights in your kitchen with LED lights to save energy! You can save up to $75 on a monthly electricity bill by using energy-efficient bulbs, which consume up to 80% less energy. A dimmer switch could help you save energy in addition to utilizing LED bulbs in your lighting. Use windows for natural light, and turn off the kitchen lights whenever you can!
7. Change the existing faucets
Replacing your outdated faucet with a brand-new motion-activated model is all you need. In addition to looking excellent in a newly renovated kitchen, a touchless faucet with a sensor will also save water waste via automatic shut-off. If your faucet doesn’t need to be replaced, consider adding an aerator, which can help you conserve up to 40% of water usage.
8. Install solar water heater
You can install a solar water heater to get hot water for your kitchen. However, you can not get steam water from a solar water heater. But you can get your required hot water from it without wasting your energy bill. And most interestingly, the solar water heater is a one-time investment and can serve you for upcoming three decades at least.
Check out our other post on the 15 advantages of using a solar water heaters at home. I am sure you won’t be disappointed.
Eco-friendly Cooking Appliances For Your Kitchen
Numerous modern appliances are rapidly receiving energy-efficiency enhancements. For instance, a water-efficient dishwasher can use significantly less water than hand-washing dishes in the basin.
9. Opt for Glass and Ceramic Cooktops
Likewise, units with ceramic-glass surfaces that use halogen components as the source of heat are the next most efficient option. These react swiftly to modifications in temperature settings and produce heat instantaneously. However, they can only function well if there is a solid connection between the pan and the heated glass surface. If the pan bases are even slightly rounded, energy will just be wasted.
10. Pay attention to the energy Coils
By the way, conventional electric coils—the spiral kinds we are all accustomed to seeing—are among the least energy-efficient options. Choose the most energy-efficient electric stove you can if you decide to use one, and then buy green power to promote the production of electricity from pure, renewable sources.
11. Think about an induction stove
Want to buy a new stove? Choose an induction stovetop! This burner transfers heat to the pan, cutting down on cooking time and energy consumption. Your kitchen will stay cooler if you use an induction cooktop since it will discharge less heat into the room.
12. Purchase a Convection Oven
Your next eco-friendly kitchen project should be to replace your outdated oven! You’ll use roughly 20% less energy when using a convection oven than a regular oven. How? An environmentally friendly appliance, like a convection oven, uses a fan to continuously circulate heated air, shortening cook times and controlling desired temperatures.
13. Invest in an energy-saving microwave
Switching to a convection microwave oven from your current microwave is yet another option to save electricity in the kitchen. Even while these microwaves are small and consume less energy than ovens, they can nonetheless do most of the same food prep functions! You’ll ultimately save energy and money if you reheat or cook food in the microwave.
14. Decrease Oven Use
It is also wise to use the oven as efficiently as possible by cooking multiple things at once. Energy Star predicts that utilizing the microwave in place of the oven can eliminate cooking power by up to 80%.
Eco-friendly Cooking Procedure
You can bring about a substantial eco-friendly change in your kitchen by changing the cooking techniques and mediums.
15. Spend money on durable cookware
Pick tools and equipment that will last a long time and won’t need to be tossed out with your remaining dish. Instead, choose cast iron or stainless steel. A quality cast iron skillet can last many decades despite requiring some investment. Select durable utensils instead of cheap ones; for instance, low-quality wooden spoons might rot, and plastics will melt if left on the burner for an extended time. Use durable cloth towels rather than paper towels, and invest in high-quality cutlery that you can hand-sharpen.
Replace your crockeries with non-toxic, eco-friendly products for an easy green kitchen remodel. Replace your baking sheets, pots, and pans with ones made of glass, ceramic, or stainless steel. These ingredients cook meals more quickly, are non-toxic, and are simple to clean. Avoid purchasing plastic cooking utensils composed of hazardous materials when purchasing new cookware. Use products created from recyclable materials like silicone, wood, metal, or bamboo instead.
16. Don’t pre-heat
Preheating is so old that it’s nearly archaic. Preheating is unnecessary in many modern ovens because they reach temperature quickly (except for soufflés and other delicate meals). When baking or roasting something that has some leeway in the cooking process, you can bake in the oven straight away, close the door 5 to 10 minutes early, and allow the food to complete cooking in the heat produced.
17. Utilize a pressure cooker
Another excellent way to conserve energy is by using pressure cookers, which can cut food preparation time by nearly 70%.
18. Try Eating raw
Salads, chilled soups, and other foods that take little preparation can be consumed cold. It should not be overlooked if you want to prepare in the most energy-efficient way possible. Try new things. There is a sizable niche culture emerging around the concept of raw eating.
19. Cook Whole Foods
Make your home-cooked meals instead of buying pre-made, frozen ones. Many recipes can be refrigerated and reheated without losing flavor or freshness. Hence, there’s no need to thaw and reheat frozen and dried foods when you can just buy and prepare fresh instead.
20. Avoid wastage at all costs
The kitchen typically produces most of the garbage in any area of our homes, and one of the primary causes is its superfluous packaging on store shelves. But do not worry; reducing waste is not as difficult as it might appear.
- Step 1: By bringing your own bags, purchasing fresh, unwrapped vegetables, and paying close attention to how your products are packaged, you can reject superfluous packaging.
- Step 2: Avoid consuming or overcooking into excessive portions. If you frequently toss excess food, you purchase and prepare an excessive amount.
- Step 3: Reuse anything you can. Used glass jars or bottles, supermarket bags, and packaging that you can’t help but use.
- Step 4: The final step is to compost any leftover organic waste, including cardboard and paper. If you aren’t blessed with a garden to spread your delicious hummus on, don’t worry. Many neighborhood farmer markets and groups, even in large cities, will gladly welcome your compost. If anything remains after all this, ensure you double-check the trash cans/large garbage bins before throwing anything out.
Eco-friendly Kitchen Decoration tips
Here’s an essential part. Most of us fail at this stage; however, it is extremely important to ponder this point.
21. Go for any eco-friendly paint
If your kitchen’s walls need to be painted in a new hue, make sure you use non-toxic paint! Materials with no solvents and no volatile organic compounds, such as clay, milk proteins, or citrus, are used to make natural paint. To make your kitchen renovation more environmentally friendly, search for GREENGUARD-Certified paint when choosing the ideal shade. This paint helps lower indoor air pollutants and the threat of exposure to chemicals.
22. Change the countertops
An excellent idea to make your kitchen more environmentally friendly is to replace your countertops! Think about recycled glass or perhaps recovered wood as a possible material for your counters. These environmentally friendly materials are long-lasting, maintenance-free, non-porous, don’t require hazardous sealants, and won’t chip or split easily. Another environmentally beneficial alternative that is long-lasting and recyclable is quartz, which is composed of natural materials.
23. Select green flooring
If you’re remodeling your kitchen and installing new flooring, consider utilizing eco-friendly materials. For an eco-friendly kitchen renovation, you should consider flooring options like recycled tiles, bamboo, cork, or hardwood from responsibly managed forests. Whatever material you decide on, living sustainably won’t require you to give up beauty.
24. Consider using recycled materials
Think about recycling existing materials when choosing new ones for your kitchen. Build floating shelves if you’ve got extra wood from your countertops or flooring. On your cabinets, you may also use the cabinet handles from a dresser. You can design a gorgeous kitchen while preventing goods from ending up in landfills by refurbishing and repurposing them when you can!
25. Try Cabinet refacing
Looking to replace the cabinets in your kitchen? Consider offering your cabinets a facelift instead of a replacement. This could save you cash in addition to preventing waste from building up in landfills.
26. Try Recycling When Remodeling
Of course, the most environmentally friendly solution is to make your current kitchen work for you. But eventually, even the most environmentally conscious people need to remodel or replace. Consider salvage and antiques first if you need a new kitchen. Look for vintage, one-of-a-kind, and time-tested kitchen fixtures, flooring, paneling, and cabinets because they don’t make them like they used to.
There are many environmentally friendly solutions for new materials as well if salvaged resources aren’t up to the task. Ensure researching the available options and their effects on the environment, from bamboo and cork floors to green countertops made from recycled paper and yogurt pots.
In the local weekend markets, you may find organic goods free of plastic and chemical pesticides, fertilizers, and other chemicals, and it is a viable alternative to large supermarkets.
Tips To Become A Sustainably-Minded Cook
Although following everything listed in this blog works fine, becoming a sustainably-minded cook also helps to make the ecosystem green.
27. Lay the paper towels down
Although it may be instinctive to take a sheet off to clean spillovers or retain moisture, more environmentally friendly alternatives work equally well. Sponge and dish towels work well for cleaning up spills. However, a wire rack is often preferable for soaking fried items.
28. Ditch the disposable utensils and plates
Everyone has definitely reached their limit when it comes to dishwashing, and while throwaway plates and cutlery are convenient, you should consider the ecosystem the next time you’re choosing how to serve food. Pulling dishes out of the cabinet can elevate the event, but will it help the ecosystem? Think about it.
29. Reuse aluminum foil and parchment paper
Parchment paper and aluminum foil may both be reused and are excellent for reducing cleanup time and preventing food from sticking. Simply wipe it clean, fold it and store it for later use as long as it is not torn or extremely dirty. If you are searching for a more robust choice, cleaning up with silicone baking mats is a snap.
Some Bonus Tips to Make Kitchen Eco-friendly
Besides following the ones listed above, here are two other daily activities that can change society if altered and looked upon.
30. Go for reusable coffee mugs
Small adjustments to our regular activities can have a significant impact. Begin with your morning coffee. If you generally buy it on the run, carry a reusable cup.
31. Verify the temperature in your refrigerator
The ideal temperature for your refrigerator is roughly 37 °. If it’s too excessively high or too low, it could jeopardize the safety of your food. Your best option is to purchase a fridge thermometer (if it is already installed, it might not be reliable) and alter the temperature as necessary.
If you want to take your eco-friendly measures from your kitchen to your entire home, check out our other article on 101 tips to make your home eco-friendly.
Wrapping It Up
Generally, while attempting to act in a way that benefits the planet, there are numerous factors to consider. Somehow, the kitchen plays a wide role in making the planet eco-friendly. If this seems like a lengthy list, start with choosing one or two items and try incorporating them into your daily routine. Over time, even a seemingly insignificant everyday choice can have a fantastic effect. Also, don’t forget to say goodbye to plastic bags!