Most of us are trying to be more green. We’re all aware of the dangers of climate change now, and there’s really no excuse not to be more environmentally responsible. There are more eco-friendly products available than ever before, and there are plenty of green living blogs out there full of advice and helpful tips.
At home, the kitchen can be a big problem. Look around your kitchen – you can probably see plastic bottles and chemical cleaning products. You might also waste a lot of food, and use more power than you really need to. If you are looking to live a greener lifestyle, here are some simple steps you can take to make your kitchen more eco-friendly.
Make Recycling Easy
Recycling is often the first thing that we think about when it comes to being more sustainable, but most of us could do better. Make recycling at home easier with a sectioned bin, or just an area of your kitchen for different kinds of waste. Then, make sure the whole household is in the right habits.
Buy Fairtrade Coffee
Fairtrade coffee is an easy switch you can make without losing any of the flavor. You can even opt for Fairtrade-certified coffee pods for your Nespresso machine, which are compostable. You can also buy Fairtrade tea and hot chocolate.
Enjoy Wonky Fruit and Veg
Farmers are forced to throw away tons of fruit and veg every day because large stores don’t want it. It’s too big, too small, the wrong shape or a funny color. Most of this fruit and veg is perfectly fine to eat, but stores won’t buy it because they want to offer perfection. The good news is there are now plenty of companies rescuing and selling this wonky produce. Buying it is a great way to be greener, save money, and try new flavors.
Reuse What You Can and Buy Green When You Must
It can be tempting to rush out and buy eco-friendly sponges, produce bags and cleaning brushes, as well as alternatives to plastic containers and bottles. It’s not eco-friendly to buy new if you’ve got something that you can reuse, or continue using at home already. Reuse what you’ve got for as long as you can, and then replace it with reusable, or greener options when you need to.
Use Natural Cleaning Products
You don’t need chemicals to clean your kitchen. Natural cleaning products are just as effective while being less harmful to the planet and even better for your health.
Avoid Plastic as Much as Possible
Plastic has long been used for products in our kitchens and bathrooms because it’s convenient, easy to clean, and safe. Nowadays there are plenty of more sustainable alternatives. Opt for cloth, tin, wax wraps, and bamboo whenever possible.
Avoid Food Waste
Food waste is one of the worst habits that most of us have at home. Fortunately, it’s easy to avoid this kind of waste. Start meal planning, so that you never buy more than you need, and if you have leftovers, either cook another meal with them or freeze them for another day.
Become a Composter
Composting is becoming cool again. Invest in a compost unit for your garden, and get into the habit of composting things like potato peelings instead of throwing them away. Eventually, this compost will be great for your garden and give you another way to avoid chemicals.
Invest in Long-Lasting Cookware
Instead of buying cheap pots and pans that won’t last, spend what you can afford on higher-quality goods that will last much longer. This can save you money in the long term, as well as reduce your waste.
Use Energy Efficient Appliances
Most new appliances come with energy ratings, making it much easier to buy products that are better for the planet and will reduce your energy bills drastically.
Cook More Efficiently
Using less power isn’t always easy, but it is possible to cook more efficiently and use your oven less. Stop preheating, unless you absolutely need to, and if you have more than one thing to cook, put them in the oven at the same time.
Cook from Scratch
Buying ingredients and cooking meals from scratch helps you to reduce waste and save money. It’s also usually better for the planet than buying pre-packaged meals.
Buying local ingredients and produce helps support local businesses. It also reduces carbon emissions by limiting your food’s journey.
A common mistake that people make is thinking that being more environmentally friendly has to be hard work, or that only the big changes will ever make enough of a difference. This isn’t true. If everyone committed to a greener home, the situation might not be half as bleak.