There are many ways to promote a more eco-friendly kitchen. Yes, eating green is probably top-of-mind, but many other factors beyond cuisine come into play when going green in the kitchen. A huge part of an eco-conscious kitchen has to do with the appliances you choose to buy and the way that you use these appliances. Read on to learn how you can select the best appliances and put them to use is the most earth-conscious way.
Gas or Electric…the debate heats up
We all have a preference when it comes to our stove type, especially today with induction cooktops gaining ground in high-end kitchens where gas used to be a must. Whether you’re a fan of electric or prefer gas, there are a few useful factors to consider. Natural gas is a fossil fuel, but offers instant heat. If selecting a gas stove, keep in mind that the lower the BTU (the heat by a gas burner is measured in British Thermal Units, where one BTU raises the heat of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit) output, the more energy-efficient your stove.
Although electric stoves can run on power sourced using a variety of methods, most electricity in the States still comes from burning coal. When purchasing an electric stove, know that the standard electric-coil stove is the largest offender when it comes to energy wasting. Opt for a stove that uses induction elements or ceramic glass surfaces and take the initiative to buy green power for your home.
In the end, make sure that whichever stove you decide to purchase (regardless of whether it’s gas or electric), is a stove that will last and that you will be happy using for as long as possible. A helpful indicator of appliance energy efficiency is the appliance’s Energy Star rating. Choosing high-quality appliances reduces our waste contribution and cuts down on unnecessary spending and consumption.
When considering purchasing a new kitchen appliance, take the time to investigate whether it’s time for a scheduled tune-up or repair of your appliance before giving the heave-ho!
Up Your Eco Stove Savvy
- When roasting or baking something with a flexible cook time, don’t hesitate to put it in the oven right away during the preheating process. Many newer ovens reach temperature so fast that it seems as though the preheating period barely exists anyway. Another option for saving electricity: turn the oven off five to ten minutes early and allow your meal to finish cooking in the oven’s residual heat.
- Buy cookware that will stand the test of time to avoid unnecessary spending and waste.
- Buy cookware with tight-fitting lids to avoid losing heat.
- If possible, cook more than one dish in the oven at a time.
- Don’t shrink away from using your microwave or toaster-oven for smaller dishes. Using these alternative cooking appliances can drastically reduce the cooking energy your household consumes.
- Select pots and pans that are the appropriate size for the size of your stovetop burners.
Keep these green pointers in mind and watch your energy bill and carbon footprint shrink. Happy cooking!
Samantha Grose is both Associate AIA and Allied ASID. She is the lead designer for Optima Homes and JP&CO. She takes a unique approach to design creating spaces that are casually sophisticated and timeless in design, where you and your family can live comfortably. She has worked extensively throughout the TWIN CITIES area having completed many new homes and large scale whole house remodels.
Samantha received her BS from the University of Minnesota majoring in both ARCHITECTURE and ART. She is deeply committed to a creative approach giving you highly functional spaces with an aesthetic appeal for everyday living.