5 Ways to Make Your Kitchen More Sustainable
There are lots of different ways to embrace an eco-friendly lifestyle in all parts of the house, and the kitchen is no exception. The products you choose for your kitchen, from the rug underneath your feet to the containers you use to store your food, can have a big impact. Use these tips to embrace a sustainable kitchen and bring your eco-friendly ethics into every part of your home.
Plastic baggies and other convenience products certainly do make life easier, but are not always great for the environment. These items require a lot of energy to produce and it can take hundreds of years for them to biodegrade. Luckily, there are plenty of easy ways to cut your usage of these items. One easy way to go green is to bring reusable bags with you when you go to the store. You can also swap out single-use storage containers for washable, reusable glass, metal or ceramic storage containers.
Life at the Table
Using paper plates and napkins is a great choice for when you’re entertaining and you can compost them when you’re done. But if you want to make an even bigger improvement, ditch the disposables and use real china or invest in some family-friendly, shatter resistant china. It might mean a little extra work when it comes to clean up, but every use means you’re doing your part to keep disposable plastics out of the landfill.
Want to take it a step further? Swap disposable tablecloths and napkins for reusable cloth napkins and table linens. Bonus: there are plenty of stylish options made from organic fibers these days as well. Not only will you be doing your part for the environment, but they’ll make even weeknight meals feel extra elegant.
To continue your eco-friendly efforts throughout your kitchen, focus on recycled fabrics for your curtains, and opt for recycled-yarn rugs rather than choosing conventional options made from freshly manufactured fabrics. Some sustainable rugs are suitable for indoor/outdoor use, which is perfect for the real-life messes that tend to happen in any kitchen. An indoor/outdoor rug won’t absorb spills and is easy to clean, making it the ideal choice for a busy kitchen. If you don't find recycled options that appeal to your vision for the ideal kitchen, look for organic cotton curtains or sustainably farmed wool rugs.
Glass is one of the few recyclable materials that can be converted back into its original usable form over and over again without breaking down. This makes it an excellent choice not only for storage, but also for use in your tabletop presentations and in many cases, it looks exactly like pieces made from a non-recycled source. From wine goblets and water cups to beautiful, party-perfect pitchers, recycled glass drinkware is chic addition to your collection of sustainable entertaining products.
To maximize your sustainability and minimize environmental impact, look for furniture made of reclaimed wood or woods certified by eco-friendly organizations like the Forest Stewardship Council, an international organization that works to promote environmentally sound, socially beneficial and economically prosperous management of the world’s forests.
Reclaimed wood is, as you might guess, wood that once had a former life and is now being repurposed into something beautiful and new. Whether it’s siding from an old barn or even an antique table, expert craftsmen can use whole wood pieces or pressed boards made of wood to create new tables, chairs, cabinets and other kitchen furniture. Many reclaimed wood products retain an antique or weathered look, adding an extra dimension to your style.