From choosing locally sourced ingredients to being energy efficient in the kitchen and using eco-friendly kitchen tools and textiles, every small step you take makes an impact on the planet. Being green doesn’t necessarily mean all or nothing, every action counts. Start by focusing on the heart of your home. Here are eight easy ways to be green in the kitchen:
1. BYOB (Bring Your Own Bag) – Bring your own reusable bags to tote your groceries and skip the plastic produce bags by transporting your fruits and veggies in organic cotton reusable produce bags.
2. Eat Sustainably – Visit a farmers market to buy locally grown ingredients or test out that green thumb of yours and plant your own produce. Use any space available to you, whether it’s a window sill or your backyard.
3. Pack Your Pantry Wisely – Buy dry goods in bulk; the less packaging the better! When it comes to produce and other perishable items, only buy what you know you will use.
4. Use Eco-Friendly Tools and Textiles – You buy organic produce, minimize your water usage, and cook one-pot meals, but what about the utensils you use to cook, containers for storage and textiles for adorning your dining room table? Be sure to choose kitchen products that tread lightly on the planet, from organic cotton napkins to glass storage containers and utensils made from sustainable products.
5. Put a Lid On Your One Pot Meal! – Choose recipes that us only one pot or pan. The fewer burners you heat up, the less energy you use. Keeping that pot or pan covered aids in a shorter cooking time as the contents heat up faster.
6. Compost Food Waste – Use a stylish bucket and/or biodegradable food waste bags to collect food scraps; when full, add to your backyard compost bin or city yard waste container. Making sure your food scraps go back to the earth where they came from can make a huge difference. It lightens your garbage load and can make for a more vibrant and abundant home garden.
7. Waste Not, Want Not – An alternative to composting your food scraps is to use them up! Top salad with celery leaves, sautéed beet, greens with a squeeze of lemon or hoard your parsley stems, garlic skins, carrot peels and onion ends in the freezer to flavor a homemade vegetable, beef or chicken stock.
8. Use Your Dishwasher – No need to feel guilty washing your dishes in the dishwasher. As long as you only wash full loads, you can use up to 37% less water than washing by hand.
What green kitchen tips will you implement in your home? Do you have any green kitchen tips to add to the list? Take one small step at a time to pave the way to a greener kitchen, a greener home, a greener community and a greener planet. There is no better time to start than Earth Month.
About the Author:
From shelling garden peas with mom to watching grandma bake bread, I’ve always been surrounded by simple, wholesome food. Watching my mom grow her own business, I also grew up with an entrepreneurial spirit. The two loves came together with the launch of A Greener Kitchen in 2009. Already a proponent of local, organic food, I wanted to help cooks green their kitchen routine in ways beyond just what they put on their plates. I partnered with my mom’s sewing manufacturing company, the business I grew up with, to produce a line of organic cotton kitchen textiles. We use fair-trade certified organic cotton designed by one of the USA’s few eco-friendly textile artisans to create eco-chic products for retail stores, home kitchens, bakeries, restaurants, and more.
– Lacey Lybecker, Founder, A Greener Kitchen4