17 Simple Swaps for an Environmentally-Friendly Kitchen

Going Green

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Small changes are having a big impact as shoppers move away from disposable, petroleum based products in search of smarter options. Whether you’ve made a commitment to fully embrace a zero-waste lifestyle, are changing out flooring and appliances for healthier, greener choices, or are just looking for a few stress-free swaps that won’t break the bank, it’s getting a lot easier to be green.

Preparing home meals or sack lunches can save money and cut back on waste, and these natural food wraps are a plastic-free alternative to normal cling wraps. Keep cut fruit fresh, prevent spills and spoilage, and improve your lunch box game.

You can feel better about choosing these reusable storage bags instead of their disposable counterpart. Whether they’re an essential part of packed lunches, or help make meal prep a streamlined part of your week, these freezer safe, BPA-free bags offer all the convenience with none of the guilt.

A great way to bring home less waste is to shop thoughtfully. Checking out the farmers market for fresh produce that doesn’t come wrapped in plastic is an easy way to buy more food and less packaging. Bakers and vegetarians especially should know to hit up bulk grocers for dried fruit, nuts, spices, coffee, sugar, flour, and more. Many allow (encourage) you to bring in your own containers, further eliminating packaging and plastic. Whether you’re picking up fresh fruits and veg or scooping snacks from the bulk bin, these clear mesh bags keep everything organized and easy to find in the fridge.

UnPaper towels have been a popular money saving DIY item for a while now, especially for families with young children and constant little messes. These bamboo towels are an alternative for anyone lacking sewing skills; they’re washable and reusable, plus they’re actually more absorbent than disposable towels anyway.

Having a convenient way to hold kitchen scraps that are on their way to an outdoor compost bin makes the whole process easier. Keep coffee grounds, veggie scraps, peels and more organic waste out of the landfill and into a local garden with this one gallon countertop compost bin.

Hand washing dishes can be quick and easy, and for couples or single meals it’s much more energy efficient than running an dishwasher. This pleasantly-scented dish soap gets dishes clean without drying out skin.

While not yet fully plastic free, many dish scrubbers are transitioning away from non renewable plastics and towards natural materials, like this double pack of bamboo brushes that’s perfect for hand washing dishes.

If the local tap water is too unpleasant to drink, there are still options beyond going through thousands of bottles of expensive, plastic encased water. An in-fridge filter keeps cool, great-tasting water close at hand. This oversized model by Brita features a removable lid that lets you refill without removing it from the fridge.

These plant-based trash bags take on the problem of one of the most ubiquitous petroleum products in use today, one that even the greenest families often fall back on; the trash bag. These certified biobased bags are produced with sugar cane instead of fossil fuels, and are recyclable.

When you bring home essentials from a bulk grocer, you can keep an eye on when it’s time to refill by keeping them stored in clear glass containers. Some designs feature an air-blocking rubber gasket, others, like this one, are a simple nested fit.

Cooking doesn’t have to mean generating tons of dirty dishes, running a hot stove, or using lots of electricity. A pressure cooker/slow cooker combo will make sure you can make big, bold meals with tons of flavor, with only a minimum amount of time and energy.

There’s no produce more local than what you grow yourself, and this home herb garden kit is such a fun way to start that journey of growing some of your own food. If you can grow a succulent you can grow a gorgeous little selection of your favorite kitchen herbs and inject fresh, vibrant flavors into homemade meals.

Skip out on plastic utensils and choose renewable bamboo instead. This six piece set of organic bamboo tools perform well and are light weight and heat resistant. Made in a single piece construction, they’re free from glues or binders and won’t scratch even non-stick cookware.

It shouldn’t be the host’s job to constantly point out the correct bins for end-of-night dinner party cleanup, so these decals step in and step up. They make it easier to commit to those recycling goals by keeping everything in its place.

Sure, washing plates is better than generating trash, but if you’re raising kids, washing a plate for every single meal and snack they have day after day can make you feel a little crazy. Buying a bulk pack of compostable plates ensures that when you reach for that easier option, at least those plates aren’t going to outlive you in a landfill.

Speaking of injecting a little convenience into raising kids, these divided lunchroom style plates are amazing. Whether you’re running a daycare, summer camp, Sunday school, or just hosting the most fun birthday slumber party ever, kids will love these divided trays that keep their foods from touching.

PFOA free and guaranteed not to warp, Scanpan offers foodies an exciting range of options for those looking for more eco-friendly choices. This double burner grill can safely be used with metal tools, and includes an extra thick base, so you won’t struggle with hot spots.

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