Simple Tips to Go Green in Kitchen

I have found that simple changes in my home kitchen added up to being more eco-friendly and the changes save me a few dollars on my monthly energy bill. Here are some of the simple things I do daily to go green in the kitchen, resulting in a lower monthly energy bill and causing less harm to the environment.

Fill the Freezer

A full freezer actually uses less energy than a half full freezer. I stock up on freezable food items when on sale (saving even more money) and keep my freezer full. When my freezer begins to have empty spaces in it, I fill empty plastic milk jugs with water and place in the freezer to take up the extra space and keep my freezer running efficiently.

Lid the Pot

Steam that escapes from pots while cooking increases the cooking time and heats up the indoor air (great in winter, but not so much in summer). More energy is used to cook and to run the air conditioner. Put lids on pots , especially if it’s a boiling liquid, and the food will cook quicker and use less energy.

Right Size for the Job

Use the right size pot or pan for the cooking task. Heating up a pan that is too large for the food being cooked is a waster of energy. Choose the smallest size pot or pan that will cook the food properly and save energy. It seems like the food quicker also.

No Peeking

Opening the oven door during the baking cycle can lower the oven temperature by as much as 50 degrees. Keep the oven door closed and give baking foods a visual check through the glass portion of the oven door.

Reusable Silicone Mat

Since I am an ‘old school’ cook, I thought nothing could rival good old aluminum foil for baking. I was wrong. A washable, non-stick, reusable silicone mat can take the place of aluminum foil and parchment paper for many kitchen baking tasks (but I still keep a roll of foil in the cabinet).

Use the Dishwasher

Hand washing dishes uses more water than a dishwashing cycle. To go green with the energy use of the dishwasher, don’t use the dishwasher’s pre-rinse cycle and skip the drying cycle. Fill the dishwasher full before running it and save even more energy.

Stop the Phantom

Any electrical appliance that is plugged into an electric outlet is using electricity. Even if the appliance if turned off. It’s called phantom electricity usage. The electric current is still running to the appliance so it will be instantly ready for use when turned on. Stop the phantom usage by unplugging small kitchen appliances when not in use. The toaster, coffee maker and microwave are three big phantom energy users in the kitchen.

Being eco-friendly and green in the kitchen does not have to involve a total kitchen remodel, a few simple changes like filling the freezer, covering pots, keeping the oven door closed and unplugging small appliances will save energy and make for a greener kitchen.

Sources:

PNM

NatScience

treehugger

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