How can Indian kitchens be more sustainable?
If you’re just looking out for sustainable living, plastic-free, and zero waste journeys—or are planning to start —the kitchen is one of the easiest places to make a substantial change.
A sustainable kitchen consists of products that are natural, plastic-free, recyclable that creates zero-waste. Mostly our kitchen is full of the immense amount of single-use, disposable items (bags, bottles, plastic wrap, containers, paper towels, garbage liners, wax paper, aluminum sheets, disposable plates, and cups) that has become a basic requirement. As we opt to remove the unhealthy and single-use items from our kitchen, we might be left to wonder what essentials can replace them?
The best kind of eco-friendly kitchen essentials must be multi-purposeful, and budget-friendly to start. Take these small and practical steps towards more sustainable living and embrace the simple swaps that add up over time.
When I started my sustainable living I was sure where to start (or what’s legit). But with experimenting, I have learned how to create a sustainable kitchen. The “Three Rs” of being environmentally friendly that I grew up with has evolved into “Five Rs”: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and now, Repair and Rethink. Taking all five Rs into consideration especially the rethinking part — here are 30 easy ways to make your kitchen sustainable based on how you can get started and opt for. These switches are simple enough to implement immediately in your kitchen.
A sustainable kitchen seeks to use products that can be reused or composted instead of just thrown away. Just know that a sustainable kitchen is really nothing more magical than simply trying to live sustainably, one small step at a time. That’s why we believe sustainable living is for everyone!
1.Reusable shopping bags
Reusable shopping bags have long been regarded as a responsible and ethical way to limit waste and the use of plastic bags that takes centuries to biodegrade. Carry your reusable shopping bag whatever works for you. Some people like reusable canvas totes. Do you often forget your reusable bags?
Earthy Fab Foldable Shopping Bag is a great sustainable alternative. They compress with precise heavyweight stitching, sturdy long handles enable you to carry this shopping bag easily in your hand or over your shoulder. I carry several of them in my purse so I am never without a bag. If you have a car, keep your grocery bags in it and remember to bring them into the store with you! And one more thing: reusable bags are not just for groceries! Carry them for all your purchases, from electronics to clothing.
2.Opt alternative of Cling Wrap
I always search for a way to cut down on the waste created at home. I prefer to use cling film alternatives, doing so reduces single-use plastic waste and helps avoid unnecessary food waste.
There are some great substitutes for plastic wrap on the market. They’ll have you saying goodbye to cling film – and consuming less plastic – in no time!
Convenient and stylish natural Urban Creative – (Beeswax Food Wraps) instead of plastic cling film, many can be reused time and again, for weeks, months, and even years, without needing to be chucked. But Reusable Safety Silicone Stretch Dishwasher Microwave and Freezer Safe Lids Flexible Covers for Rectangle Round Square are my real favorite: made of silicone, these come in different sizes to stretch over bowls, jars, glassware, and even fruit.
3. Opt Glass refrigerator bottle
A plastic bottle is also quite plausible for its durability and convenience if you can’t wait until bisphenol A – or BPA – is banned in bottles then opt for alternatives to plastic bottles, like glass or stainless steel, Several years ago, I switched to Glass Bottle, after reading extensively on concerns about the impact some plastics on the environment and human health. Avoid buying such products containing the chemical of concern, which is widely used in making polycarbonate plastics. OR you can also get a reusable Stainless Steel Fridge Water Bottle/Refrigerator Bottle (with no plastic on the cap at all!) or InstaCuppa Stainless Steel Tea Travel Mug With Steel Filter Unit,, I don’t recommend reusable plastic bottles as their chemical composition makes them susceptible to degradation and has been shown to affect the human body in negative ways.
4.Switch to wood utensils
I like to cook in an environmentally responsible way, and wooden utensils are my first choice. Wood utensils are a natural, renewable resource Plus when you buy a wooden spoon that isn’t made using harmful chemicals, you’re eliminating the possibility of those chemicals leaking into the environment–and your home. They’re heat resistant. Wood utensils also act as a functional decoration, with an impression of a rustic feel. Seek for Handicrafts Handmade Wooden (Rose wood) Serving and Cooking Spoon from spoons to spatulas to specialty pasta tools, with proper care these wooden utensils can last a long time as durable decorations and timeless tools.
Enhance your natural kitchen with a stunning Webhushi’s Classic Wooden Chopping/Cutting Board/Serving Platter.It can also work as stunning serving dishes, perfect for a cheese plate to chat around with friends or a rustic centerpiece for dinner time with family.
5.Seek for Jute Coasters
I believe no other alternative is as suitable as jute, as it has many economic and eco-friendly attributes. I am using kitchen set coasters made from jute yarn from the last couple of years, they are 100 percent non-toxic and its cultivation requires fewer pesticides and fertilizer. Jutes are strong, durable, and reusable.
These Jute Coaster will protect your furniture and make your favorite hot drink even more pleasant. Natural jute – is an organic natural material that perfectly fits into the cottage style.
6. Go for Clay cookware
No doubt that your modern kitchen is stocked with induction cooktops to Teflon-coated everything, Teflon was made using a chemical called perfluorooctanoic acid, and it’s harmful to health. Apart from that Teflon is highly persistent, which means once it enters the environment it does not leave. Teflon pans cannot be recycled and must go in the trash.
I am more inclined towards Earthen Pot for Cooking & Serving which has always been an essential part of Indian households. Clay cookware is a good alternative for Teflon as Clay Pots are Non-Stick and environment-friendly. Also, the exquisite flavors and richness are maintained. Modern cooking increases the chances of destroying the essential nutrients in your food.
Uses Of Clay Pots :
Cooling: Store water in an Unglazed Clay Water Pot with Comfortable Flip Tap and it remains cool throughout the day.
Baking: As clay cookware distributes heat evenly, it’s easier to bake desserts in it.
Storage: You can also store food in a Multipurpose Ceramic Jar since it remains fresh for a long time.
Clay Earthenware Cooker (Standard, Brown) is great, how about adding a traditional touch, albeit with a modern flair? Clay cookware can do that for you. Its highly porous and naturally insulating nature allows heat and steam to adequately circulate and cook the food while retaining its moisture. Try to add one of these clay cookware utensils to your kitchen.
7.Green storage bags for vegetables
I like my refrigerator to be more organized and plastic-free. I feel good about how great my fridge looks or how crisp your fresh produce is, while also reducing my contribution to plastic waste.
Cotton Vegetable Storage Fridge Bags Eco-Friendly, Non-Toxic, Washable, Reusable keep the produce fresh, hydrate, and rejuvenate the striving vegetables as well. These bags are scientifically designed to provide optimal humidity for veggies. Vegetables need certain humidity to stay fresh. The thread count and thread pattern used for knitting our bags provide aeration to the vegetables and hence keep them fresh. We have taken care of everything it takes to keep vegetables happy.100% Eco-Friendly Reusable Fridge Bag made of pure cotton exclusively for vegetables. Perfectly designed fridge bags for healthy living. Made exclusively for sustainable living practitioners.
8. Avoid storage of Food in plastic containers
Practically everything we use in our kitchen on a day-to-day basis is made up of plastic. But there’s one place where plastic is overused – and that’s as a storage container for the food. I can’t trust that any plastic doesn’t contain compounds that are toxic to your body. Some brands sell plastic products labeled as “BPA-free.” but in its place, these companies are using BPS, a close cousin of BPA that may be equally as toxic! If you want to make a difference to the Planet and care for your Health, opt for eco-friendly options Like Kitchen Food Storage Jar Airtight Food Storage Glass Jars Pack with good sealing ability along with moisture resistance.
9. Bring your own containers for a takeaway meal
Request takeaway places to use your container instead of their single-use disposable one. I always carry my Expresso Stainless Steel Lunch Box with Insulated Carry Bag,it keeps the food fresh for hours. So, if you are someone who wants to eat food hot and fresh even after hours, a stainless steel container is the best for you. Go ahead and start eating fresh food every day. It is much better for your health than the chemically leached one you carry every day to work.
10.Carry a stainless steel travel mug
I use InstaCuppa Vacuum Insulated Coffee, Tea Travel Mug Leak Proof Sipper Lid, Double Walled Thermos Flask, for water instead of a plastic water bottle. Besides the plastic lid and plastic straw, paper cups are lined with a plastic coating. When I first began this sustainable living project I always preferred to sit down at a cafe or restaurant with durable cups and glasses. Now I can go to any restaurant as I got into the habit of using my reusable mug.
11. Carry reusable utensils and glass drinking straws
I keep a couple of Reusable Stainless Steel Drinking Straw in my purse at all times. And actually, I didn’t need to go out and buy the plastic straw. I could have just as easily used my own stainless steel utensils.
12. Avoid plastic cutlery
The vast majority of plastic cutlery can’t be made up of polystyrene1. Polystyrene or expanded polystyrene is more commonly referred to as Styrofoam. It can’t recycle and finally dumped into a landfill.
I emphasis on not using plastic cutlery when ordering food from outside I use Stainless Steel Fork Table Spoon Tree Cutlery Set,They are bright, beautiful, gorgeous, clean and hygienic, easy to clean and durable, and importantly good for your health.
13. Say no to plastic packed
Plastic packs are generally unnecessary, are we worried about potatoes won’t get along with our apples? At the grocery store, I put most produce directly into my cart and then into my Eco Friendly Cotton Net Mesh Bags for Vegetable Storage Multipurpose, Reusable, If you do feel you want a separate bag for produce, they are the best options available.
Farmers’ markets are a great way to buy fresh, local produce without plastic, as long as you remember to bring your own bags. Normally, the fruits and vegetables at farmers markets don’t even have those little plastic stickers on them
If you are worried about tomatoes or berries since they can get crushed in a reusable bag. I buy them at the farmer’s market and empty the tomato into your own Eco-friendly Market Bags before leaving the store and leave the plastic basket behind. If enough of us do this, perhaps merchants will take note.
15. Buy a fresh bakery that comes in paper bags
I buy bread that comes in only paper, you can keep it fresh when stored in the paper bag inside an airtight tin. I found that fresh bread is a bit more expensive than its plastic-packaged ones, but to me, it’s worth it. And since I buy so few new things, I can afford to spend more on quality, plastic-free food.
16. Choose milk in returnable glass bottles
Request your local dairies to provide milk in returnable glass bottles rather than plastic or plastic-coated cardboard (yes, all cardboard milk containers are coated inside and out with plastic.) Unfortunately, the milk bottle does contain an unrecyclable plastic cap. But I would rather buy milk in a glass bottle capped with plastic than milk contained in plastic on all sides. You can opt for your own Glass Bottle with Air Tight Cap .
17. Try the bulk bins
Look for stores that sell foods from bulk bins and allow you to use your bags or Glass Jar Glass Containers for Kitchen Storage I get almost all dry foods as well as some personal care products from the bulk bins. These foods included rice and other grains, pasta, pulses, seeds, nuts, and cereal.
Bulk bin shopping is available everywhere. You just have to look,
The key is bringing my own reusable bags and containers with me to the store. You can carry the same kind of cotton bags for bulk purchases .Glass jars and other containers work great as well. Even if you live in an area that does not have bulk food stores, look for non-perishable goods in large size packages, which will decrease the amount of plastic used overall.
18. Opt Natural Cleaning with vinegar and water
I use a mixture of 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water as an all-purpose spray cleaner (storing it in a reused spray bottle) and produce wash. I buy Heinz All Natural Distilled White Vinegar which comes in a glass bottle.
19. Opt for Baking soda for cleaning
Nearly every stain in your kitchen can benefit from a Urban Platter Baking Soda mixed with water to clean countertops, stainless steel sinks, microwaves, range hoods, and cooking utensils. Also use a deep-clean greasy pan, Clean store-bought fruits or veggie, and refresh a foul-smelling fridge. I’ve got Baking Soda, in my kitchen for multiple usages.
20. Natural dishes wash without plastic
21. Opt natural scrubbers instead of synthetic sponges
HerboBrite Prime Eco-Friendly Scrub Pad is great for cleaning water bottles and scrubbing dirty dishes. And of course, good old rags made from old clothing and towels are free and probably the greenest option of all.
22.switching to a reusable pad
23. No to synthetic rubber gloves
24.Compost food waste to avoid plastic garbage bags
I bought a Oggi Stainless Steel Countertop Compost Pail with EZ-Open Lid and Charcoal Filter and started composting. This solves several plastic garbage bags problems. First, since I no longer put wet stuff in the garbage, we don’t need plastic garbage bags of any kind (bio- or petro-based.)
25. Choose reusable cloth over the paper towel
Check out these reusable cloth made from cotton, Each cloth softens with the warmth from your hands and can be re-used with low maintenance and zero paper waste.
26. Opt a glass blender
Try to avoid the high-speed blenders that come with a plastic pitcher. Those containers contain endocrine-disrupting chemicals. My Cello Grind N Mix Juicer Mixer Grinder is all metal and works just fine.
27. Choose eco-friendly ice cube trays and popsicle molds
If your old plastic ice trays have worn out, consider replacing them with Silicone 24 Ice Cube Trays,
If you and your children enjoy popsicles in the summertime, consider investing in a Stainless Steel Popsicle Mold instead of buying packaged frozen treats or using plastic popsicle molds.
28. Matchbox over plastic lighter
Match sticks are a couple of zillion times eco-friendlier than disposable plastic lighters – keep our iconic match stick up instead of plastic lighters.
29. Repair things when they break
When a kitchen item breaks, try to repair with Hand Tool Kit instead of buying a new one.
I’m trying to conserve as many of the tools and appliances that I already own instead of allowing them to become obsolete or chucking them when they break.
30.Adding a pop of green to kitchen
Plants can add a fresh and lively feel that you didn’t realize was missing from your kitchen. Many also have air-purifying traits and produce pleasant fragrances. Try Indoor Plants that grow easily and work well in a hanging basket or clay pot.
What are some of your favorite zero waste bathroom swaps? Please do share with us.