7 Ways to Go Green in the Kitchen Without Breaking the Bank
You do not need to start a worldwide foundation to help out our Mother Nature.
There are small but powerful ways you can make a difference in the comfort of your own home. However, sometimes we think it's expensive to “go green” and involves a lot of work. Sure, we'd all like to help out the environment, but will it cut into your budget and become costly and time-consuming?
The truth is we can't afford NOT to be environmentally conscious and it doesn't have to be expensive or difficult to do. One of the first places you can start in your own home is in the kitchen.
Here are 7 ways to make your kitchen a less wasteful and more energy efficient and environmentally friendly place.
Use Organic Cleaning Products
These all-purpose cleaning and dishwashing products are not expensive and are much better for the environment. They don't send harsh chemicals into the water supply or lower the air quality. It truly isn't necessary to use harsh chemicals or abrasives to keep your kitchen clean and sanitary.
Of course, you can always make your own products with some simple ingredients that clean just as well – if not better – as store purchased products. You can find some recipes here.
Purchase a Water Filter
Instead of buying bottled water at the store, purchase a water filter instead. You can buy ones that filter pitchers of water, or ones that attach directly to your faucet. This way you can still have clean water without wasting all those plastic bottles.
You can also carry a reusable water bottle with you to work and other places. The most popular brand of water filters continues to be Brita, which can also be found at your local department store and are relatively cheap if you consider how much money you spend on water bottles in the long run!
Start a Compost Pile in Your Backyard
Instead of sending all your food waste through the garbage disposal, start a compost heap. You can use the compost in your gardens and you will also be adding less garbage to the water supply and landfill. Read more on starting a compost pile here.
Save on Water and Energy with Your Dishwasher
This may sound like a joke, but using a dishwasher is easier and more eco-friendly! Although be sure to only run your dishwasher when it is full. You may also be able to turn the temperature down to save on energy. To kill germs the water temperature needs to be just 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
Minimize the Use of Paper Products in the Kitchen
Use cloth napkins and dish towels instead of paper napkins and paper towels. This will not only cut down on your use of paper consumption but save money as well (not to mention it looks classier at your dinner party!).
Also, use a thermos or reusable cups for your coffee when on the go instead of drinking from paper or horrible styrofoam cups.
Go Green at the Grocery Store
Take reusable canvas bags to the store instead of bringing your groceries home in plastic or paper bags. Try to keep extra ones in the car so you always have them on hand. Most grocery stores these days sell them for only one or two dollars each and they tend to come in handy not only when shopping but at home too.
Also, try to buy in bulk and avoid individually wrapped items to cut down on the amount of packaging you buy and use. To minimize trips to the store, plan ahead and use a grocery list.
This is a no-brainer, but make sure you recycle as much as possible! The less you contribute to the landfill, the better. Usually, you can find a local “blue bin” service that will come to your house and pick up your recyclables once a week to make it handier for you.
If you don’t want to pay for this service, invest in some large bins for your paper and bottles so you can keep them separated and minimize your trips to your local recycling establishment or bins.
As you can see, these “green” tips are easy to implement and not expensive. In fact, in some cases they will actually save you money – so there are no excuses! When it comes to having a more environmentally friendly and green kitchen, it is more a matter of being conscious of our impact on the environment and changing some of our bad habits. Take one step at a time, and you will make a difference right from your own home.
About the Author
Carly Lance thinks of herself as a personal finance junkie and loves to blog about frugal living and saving the environment whenever she can. She believes a happy life equals happy finances and happy finances equal knowing how to live within your means.