There are many ways to lower the waste your home accumulates. Follow these 11 tips for cutting waste in the kitchen and help protect our Earth.
There are so many ways you can try to cut waste in the kitchen, besides just watching how much food you waste. Have you taken a look at how much is thrown in the garbage can in your kitchen daily? I know some people who have to take out their garbage every night. Every night! That means 7 bags of garbage per week!
We aren’t perfect and are working on cutting down the waste in our kitchen on a daily basis. But as of now, we typically have only 1-2 garbage bags per week for our entire home. This includes the trash from the office, bathrooms, kitchen, bedrooms, cat litter, everything! And we are still working on ways to cut that down even more.
Most household waste comes from the kitchen, from what I have noticed. Think about it, how many things do you throw away when you are preparing a meal?
And if you have children, you can still strive for cutting waste in the kitchen. If you teach them young, they don’t know anything different.
Originally Published On: September 14, 2017
Last Updated On: April 20, 2020
Cutting Waste in the Kitchen
- Many things get thrown in the trash that can be recycled, such as glass, paper towel rolls, cereal boxes, etc.
- Check with your local recycle collection on what can be recycled in your area and how to properly separate.
- Items with foods on it, such as pizza boxes, can not usually be recycled.
- If you eat smaller portions, you are likely to have less wasted food.
- Eating smaller portions is also good for your body.
- Learn how to properly store food so it stays fresh longer.
- Find other ways to use food that has gone bad, such as banana bread for overripe bananas.
Single-Use Items and Shopping
Don’t “shop” for trash
- Stop buying plastic cups, paper plates, paper towels, plastic silverware, etc.
- You are spending money on something that will be used once and thrown away.
- These usually have packaging that is thrown in the trash and then the product is thrown away.
No plastic straws
- When eating out, ask the waiter/waitress not to bring you a straw.
- Invest in a set of stainless steel straws that you can keep with you.
Avoid single-serving packages
- Similar to shopping for trash, you are spending money on something that will be discarded.
- Single-serving items include juice boxes, individual yogurt cups, single-serve coffee cups, etc.
Buy in bulk
- Buy in bulk, but only if you will use it all before it goes bad.
- Buying in bulk means less packaging that has to be discarded.
- Make sure it isn’t individually packaged within the bulk packaging, because that doesn’t help.
Reusable grocery bags
- You can buy all kinds of reusable grocery bags, and get them at almost any grocery store.
- There are even options for reusable produce bags instead of the plastic ones at the store.
- I just learned the other day that we can recycle all the plastic bags from the grocery store. I usually use my cloth bags, but when I forget, I at least know I can throw these bags in the recycle bin which is better than nothing.
- When you go out to eat, bring your own leftover containers.
- Styrofoam does not break down and can be bulky.
- There are so many things that can go in a compost bin rather than the trash.
- Get rid of food scraps that you can’t regrow in a garden by adding to a compost bin.
- Compost makes great fertilizer for your yard and/or garden.
Start a garden
- Start a garden to grow your own food so you can harvest only what you will eat.
- Use kitchen scraps in your garden to grow new food from old food.
- Use the compost you are accumulating to help fertilize the garden.
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When working in the kitchen, it helps to make sure you have the correct equipment. The following items are hand-selected for this post and are all items I have personally used and/or recommend.
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