The eco-friendly kitchen begins with eating green, but it shouldn’t end there. Energy-efficient food preparation and cleaning habits, using equipment made from sustainable materials, and avoiding toxic chemicals are also important if you want to have a truly healthy kitchen.
Fortunately, making the right choices for your well-being is also good for your wallet and the planet. Our tips on making a sustainable kitchen will get you on your way to a greener home.
1. Cutting Boards
Cutting boards and chopping blocks that are functional and eco friendly. Olive wood boards are an essential item in any kitchen. Not only are they very beautiful, but olive wood boards are very strong and have natural antibacterial qualities that make them the ideal surface for preparing food. Olive wood boards are also produced entirely from sustainable, eco-friendly, ancient olive wood, which makes them the perfect replacement for plastic boards.
2. Shop Local
Buy local whenever you can. Food miles have risen near the top of eco-friendly food considerations, and the fewer miles from farm to table, the better. Organic grapes from Chile might taste good in the dead of winter, but consider the pollution caused by flying them to wherever you are. In addition, since they don’t contain preservatives, biocides, and many other nasties that inhabit conventional foods, organic foods can spoil more quickly, meaning that the longer your bunch of grapes is in transit, the less pristine its condition is likely to be. Whenever possible, we recommend supporting a community-supported agriculture (CSA) co-op, buying from local farmers' markets or purchasing directly from farmers themselves.
3. Avoid Packaging
Avoid excessive food packaging. On average, the kitchen generates the most waste of any room in your house; for one of the main reasons, look no further at the excessive packaging on supermarket shelves. But fear not, it's not as hard as it may seem to cut back on waste. Make sure to reduce excessive packaging by taking your own bags, buying fresh, unwrapped produce and thinking carefully about how the purchases you're making are wrapped up. Also, avoid oversized portions; if you are regularly throwing food away then you are buying too much.
4. Shop With Your Own Bags
Shop for groceries using reusable bags. One easy way to reduce the number of plastic grocery bags in a landfill is to use reusable shopping totes. Look for bags made of cotton, hemp or other natural cloth or mesh and wash them between visits to the grocery store. Reuse what you can, like old glass jars or bottles, grocery bags and packaging that you can't avoid.
5. Use Natural Products
Keep your home smelling fresh with natural products. Chemical air fresheners can expose you and your family to toxins and allergens. To make your home smell nice without the negative side effects, our tips include simmering spices or aromatic plant oils on the stove, dropping a slice of lemon down the food waste disposer or using houseplants to naturally purify indoor air.
6. Compost Your Scraps
Create your own compost pile from biodegradable kitchen scraps. One you’ve incorporated reusable, sustainable items in your kitchen’s repertoire, you’ll be throwing away less rubbish. You can reduce this amount further by tossing your organic kitchen scraps into a compost bin that will later turn into nutrient-rich soil. Compost any uncooked organic waste (including cardboard and paper), and don't fret if you don't have a garden on which to spread your yummy hummus. Even in big cities, many local farmers' markets and organizations will gladly accept your compost. After all this, if there's anything leftover, be sure to swing by the recycle bin before tossing anything in the trash.