The kitchen may be the hardest place in the house to be eco friendly and reduce waste. Yes, we have reusable straws and a compost bin, but paper towels and zipper bags are a hard habit to break. It’s tough to switch food products you’ve been using for years to one with recyclable packaging. Bringing your own bags to the grocery store is hard to remember. I have been trying to be less wasteful in the kitchen, and these are the products that help reduce waste in my household:
1. Reusable towels instead of paper towels
I’ll admit, I haven’t been able to completely get rid of the paper towels. There are a few types of spills with kiddos around that I still don’t want to use a reusable item on. I’ll get there, but in the meantime, we have dramatically reduced our paper towel usage with reusable versions. Click here for one of the top rated brands ( https://amzn.to/2ZF5Yvv) or here for some cotton towels with a cute blue stripe (https://amzn.to/3uqijBI).
2. Plastic or cloth sandwich and storage bags
Yes, even in the kids lunches. This one is definitely the hardest for me to stick to just because of how often we use storage bags. But keeping those little plastic suckers out of the landfills goes a long way towards saving the planet and reducing waste! Click here to purchase clear plastic reusable bags in several sizes and colors: https://amzn.to/2NNRert or here for some very cute, patterned cloth bags: https://amzn.to/3kpu1IB.
3. Sustainable replacements for plastic wrap
I know…it’s so easy to just toss a bowl in the fridge with some plastic cling wrap and toss it when you’re done. But creation of single use plastic items need to be reduced as much as possible, according to this report. Mighty Nest, a company that sells all sorts of sustainable and nontoxic home items, has several great options for this purpose. Not only are they totally sustainable made, they are super cute. Click here to shop!
4. Nontoxic cleaning supplies
It’s hard to let go of the bleach kitchen cleaner smelling vaguely of lemons, because we’ve used it forever and it does work. But these chemical laden cleaners are not only terrible for the environment, they are terrible for you! And they often come in single use plastic bottles, which as we discussed above, needs to stop. Mighty Nest sells nontoxic cleaners at really good prices and uses refillable containers to cut down on packaging waste. Click here to explore what they have to offer. If you prefer wipes, you can go nontoxic there too! Click here for wipes that are nontoxic and biodegradable.
5. Glass storage containers instead of plastic
This one is probably the biggest investment, if, like me, you store tons of leftovers and baked goods and had dozens of cheap plastic containers. Glass doesn’t leach out toxic chemicals and doesn’t fill up landfills when tossed. This set has four pieces and two sizes. Click here for a 24-piece set with cute colored lids: https://amzn.to/3aH4sPI. Click here to shop Mighty Nests wide assortment of glass storage. If mason jars are more your style, click here: https://amzn.to/3bwSd7K.
These five steps will have you on your way to kitchen sustainability! This is by no means an exhaustive list, but I will post more ideas and products as I come across them. If you likes this post, follow me on Instagram @modernhippiekitchen for daily content!
I am a mom of two and wife to a martial arts school owner, full-time social media professional and avid cook and gardener. I love creating recipes and involving my kids in the process. The food we cook is usually dairy-free and gluten-free, and sometimes paleo, but we make exceptions (ahem, sourdough bread). The “hippie” part of this blog comes into play in the ingredients we use—I’m pretty vigilant about the health of my family and you could even call me “crunchy.” The “modern” part is that I am busy! You won’t catch me making my own nut milk or churning butter (not that there’s anything wrong with that). I’m more than happy to take the shortcuts provided by our lovely grocery stores and online shopping —especially in the midst of this global pandemic.