Bring your eco-consciousness into the kitchen!

Here are some simple ways you can save energy, reduce waste, and go easy on the environment without leaving the kitchen.

1. Hack your Energy Efficiency

Run large appliances like dishwashers and washing machines on off-peak hours to minimize costs and maximize energy efficiency. Depending on your municipality, this is typically after dinner time and in the early morning as utility companies charge more during the day time. Wait until your dishwasher is full before running it. Toaster ovens or air fryers can be ideal for cooking smaller dishes, as well as being more eco-efficient, Energy Star reports that the gadget uses approximately ½ the energy as a conventional electric oven.

2. Make it Easy

Add a compost and recycling bin beside your garbage. Convenience is a major factor in getting individuals to adopt new habits. Even if your city doesn't have a composting program, many farmers markets accept home compost.

Stock up on reusable cloth napkins instead of paper napkins. If you blast through paper towels, consider re-usable unpaper towels for cleaning up messes. When you're done, just toss them into the washing machine. Reusable Unpaper Towels come in a host of pretty colors. Instead of plastic or paper garbage bags, try If You Care's compostable trash bags made from potato starch and without plastics, making them completely compostable.

Recycle bin in kitchen cabinet
Credit: Meredith

3. Limit your Waste Whenever Possible

Consider ways to minimize purchases that create excess garbage. At home seltzer makers can reduce unnecessary plastic, paper, and aluminum and offer a more economical solution for your carbonated water fix. Bringing your own Tupperware when picking up a take-away meal or a to-go coffee is now easier than ever with so many chic and mess-free options. We’re a fan of the W&P Porter bowl which is a sleek and spill-proof container that can go from your desk to the dishwasher or the latest iteration of the Keep Cup, insulated with double wall stainless steel for hot bevvies on-the-go. 

4. Make it a Green Clean

It’s easy to forget that the cleaning products we use in our home ultimately end up back in our environment. Use platforms like the Environmental Working Group which consider the ingredients in cleaning products, review the available data on these ingredients and then rank the products according to their known hazard level based on available data. We also love the app Good Guide, which reads product barcodes for on-the-go shopping and works with scientists to analyze and rate product composition. A solution of white vinegar and water worked for your grandmother, and still does the trick today if you’re looking for both an environmentally conscious and an affordable cleaning solution. You might also consider the vodka cocktail that cleans your house

More ways to create a more sustainable kitchen