How to make your kitchen more eco-friendly

Ways to cut costs and energy usage in your kitchen.

🕑 5 minutes 35 seconds read

Kids smiling in the kitchen

Looking to cut your energy bills and be a little greener in your home?... The kitchen is one of the best places to start. This is where you’ll find most of the top energy consuming appliances.

Things like the dishwasher, washing machine, sink and other wet appliances are responsible for around 14% of your total energy bill, while your fridge and freezer make up about 13%. Then there’s things like the lights, electricity and the oven. All of it adds up.

So, if you’re trying to reduce your home’s carbon footprint (not to mention your monthly bills), we’ve got five ways to help you make your kitchen more eco-friendly. 

Source: Energy Saving Trust


1. Try different ways to cook your food

Want to cut down on your oven usage to save on costs? There are plenty of options. One-pot meals are quick and easy, and often mean you’re not using both the hob and the oven. Just one meal in a slow cooker could save you money since an average-sized slow cooker uses only 1.3 kWh one meal, which is under 1p per hour on the average energy tariff.

Source: Uswitch

Microwaves are often a more cost-effective way to cook, because they’re not heating up the air around your food. Plus, there are some microwaves that do nearly everything an oven does – grill, roast and defrost.

When you do use the oven, you could leave the door open while it cools and let the warm air out, helping to save a little extra on heating your home.

In summer, try some outdoor cooking. You can get sustainable, long-lasting barbecues and grills for an energy-efficient addition to your outdoor space.


2. Are you sending money down the drain? 

If you’re not a fan of washing up, we have some good news. It’s more energy efficient to use a dishwasher.

A standard load on a modern dishwasher uses between 10 and 14 litres. When you compare that to the 60 litres you could be using hand washing, then you can see how much water you’ll save. Plus, dishwashers are proving to be more energy-efficient, especially modern models.

Overall dishwashers can wash more in one go and use less water and energy. So, you could save £17 a year by switching from hand washing to a dishwasher, and reducing your dishwasher use by one run per week.

Source: Consumer Council for Water, CleanipediaEnergy Saving Trust


3. Refill and reuse

Have you noticed how much plastic you throw away from food packaging? In UK households, it’s nearly 2.5 million tonnes of plastic packaging a year, which contributes to the heavy cost of plastic waste on our planet.

Over the last decade, the majority of supermarkets have made an effort to distance themselves from single-use plastic and many now host refill stations and plastic-free options, which can help you cut down on your carbon footprint.  And, because you’re not being charged for expensive packaging, these shops can also work out cheaper.

Source: House of Commons LibraryGrocery Gazette


4. Make greener home improvements

If you’re thinking of making home improvements , there are simple ways to make greener choices for your kitchen. And they don’t have to be expensive.

MDF is non-recyclable, so look for sustainable, FSC-certified timber for cabinets and work surfaces. Not only is it better for the environment, you can find plenty of lovely styles – and you can even get that ‘real wood’ smell in your kitchen.

Why not shop around for other sustainable materials too? Look for recycled glass and metal rather than new. You can find second-hand fittings on Facebook Marketplace, eBay and in your local community. Choosing a second-hand cabinet is cheaper and better for the environment.


5. Little things go a long way

When it comes to cutting costs and going green, little things can make a big difference. Reusable food wraps, for example, like beeswax covers or soy wax vegan-friendly wax wraps can replace expensive, plastic clingfilm. These help keep and transport food – so you can save money on buying takeaway lunches. They’ll also help to reduce your plastic waste and can last up to a year.

Why not make the switch to eco-friendly cleaning products? Try compostable sponges and ecological cleaning products. You can even buy bin bags made with recycled plastic. There are all sorts of environmentally friendly options for your kitchen, so have fun exploring them.

Updated June 2023