Making Your Kitchen Eco-Friendly
Living sustainably is a funny thing. The better you are at it, the more ways you find to keep getting better. It’s an ongoing journey with plenty of easy changes you can make for a more eco-friendly lifestyle, but today, we’re going to focus on your kitchen.
Food safety is important, so you’ve gotta keep your kitchen surfaces and food storage clean. Unfortunately, many of the solutions to these tasks involve single-use plastic. The most disposable items? Cling wrap and plastic bags. After all, how else will you store leftover pizza or take a sandwich to go?
This is where it all starts — reframing basic tasks in more sustainable ways. Instead of asking how to use less single-use plastic, ask what you can use instead.
How Silicone Solves Plastic Waste
Can we talk about how versatile silicone is? Whether you’re storing stuff in the freezer or tossing snacks in your kid’s bag for months on end, silicone is your best bet for cutting the single use out of your vocabulary. It’s easy to clean, durable and can withstand super high temperatures. If you don’t want to hand wash your silicone bag after use, just toss it in the dishwasher!
Silicone baking sheets are another great tool. Rather than throwing away parchment paper or aluminum foil, silicone baking sheets provide a waterproof, nonstick surface you can use for years to come. If you haven’t looked into silicone tools for your kitchen, you’re missing out.
Shifting Away from Paper Towels
Disposable paper towels are a mainstay in the kitchen, and it’s easy to understand why — it’s easier to throw dirty stuff out than to wash and reuse it. But again, living sustainably means rethinking your usual routine. Reusable dish cloths go the distance before needing a wash. Just give them a quick rinse and wring, and you’ll save a lot of the water it takes to produce paper towels.
Splitting up with paper towels is tough, but within a week you'll realize that big messes aren’t that bad with a reusable cloth. Plus, you’ll be saving $20 on 8 rolls — not to mention all that cabinet space! Paper towels not only contribute to deforestation, but the process of bleaching them puts waste chemicals in the air and groundwater. It’s just better to go the reusable route.
Reusing Garbage Bags
Garbage bags are the only thing we buy for the express purpose of throwing it away. Humans are weird, but one sustainable hack involves either reusing garbage bags or ditching them altogether! This reusable garbage bag is machine washable and 100 percent waterproof, making it a great candidate for your kitchen.
While it’s nice to cut waste as much as possible, some stuff just has to go in the trash. Reusable bags like this make it easy to keep extra plastic out of landfills where they last for centuries.
Stick to It!
Remember, sustainability is a marathon, not a sprint. Give yourself a pat on the back for making an effort, and keep looking for ways to improve. Basically, anything that starts with re- is probably a good way to do this: reuse, refill, recycle, repurpose, etc.
We’re proud of you! Keep it up!