About the Author: Jillian is an interior design and organization expert. She reviews kitchen island designs, and kitchen fixtures, and everything else that goes into kitchen design. When she is not fixing up other people’s kitchens, she enjoys spending time in her own kitchen cooking and helping her son learn about different foods.
An eco-friendly kitchen is actually quite easy to work towards because there are so many little things that you can do that make a big difference to your personal carbon footprint. It is important to know about some of the simpler things so that you can get started today to make your kitchen a much greener room.
Choose Quality Products
When you constantly replace things like pots, pans and utensils, you add more and more to landfills while spending more money. Spend a few extra bucks from the get-go and get quality products that will last. Knives that can be sharpened, stainless steel that does not rust and other quality products are the way to go. You want to avoid non-stick pans because they contain chemicals that are about as far from eco-friendly as you can get. Stick with cast iron or stainless steel because they are chemical-free and last forever with proper care.
Gas Versus Electric
When it comes to gas, the lower the BTU, the better the stove’s efficiency. Since gas stoves are better for even cooking, you probably want this if you cook a lot. Find one that’s best for you.
When it comes to electric stoves, induction elements offer the best efficiency. Now, these will not be cheap. Look for the Energy Star seal when choosing a new stove. This will help to ensure that the stove is more eco-friendly than older models.
To get straight to the point, you do not really need to preheat your oven if you have a newer model. New ovens get hot so quickly that preheating just wastes valuable energy. Some dishes, such as soufflés, require preheating, but for 99% of what you make, just turn it on and pop it in.
When you are buying items for your kitchen, whether it is cookware or food, go local whenever possible. Local items are made right there and did not require hundreds of gallons of gas to be transported to your local big box store. Local foods also tend to be cheaper and healthier because they are not sprayed with potentially harmful chemicals to keep them fresh for transport.
Stop Wasting Things
This seems simple enough, but the kitchen is the most wasteful room in your home. Firstly, skip things that are heavily packaged so that you produce less trash. Secondly, keep glass and plastic containers and reuse them for things in your home like using plastic take out containers to save leftovers. Thirdly, buy some cotton grocery bags and skip the plastic ones because they are hard to recycle. Lastly, only cook what you will actually eat. Food waste is a major source of waste in American kitchens.