Zero / low waste alternatives to reduce the environmental impact of your kitchen

Reducing waste in the kitchen can be daunting, especially since we’ve always relied so much on disposable items for cooking and eating. Ease yourself in with these clever sustainable swaps and you won’t even notice the transition until you realize your non-recyclable trash has reduced.

It can be as simple as choosing long-lasting renewable materials like bamboo over single-use plastic. Recyclable and biodegradable materials won’t end up in a landfill or degrade into micro-plastic and fill our oceans. And with the wealth of eco-friendly options these days, there’s no reason not to ditch the plastic!

Water filterGlass food containers Bamboo dish brushBeeswax wrapReusable strawsCotton produce bagsSorting bins Swedish dishclothsBamboo utensilsReusable lunchboxKitchen composter

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zero waste kitchen swaps

1. Water filter

Swap plastic bottles for a water filter

Depending on where you live, tap water may not even be drinkable. At best, it’s been processed with so many chemicals that it doesn’t taste great. Forget about bottled water and invest in this water filtering jug with replaceable cartridges.

FIND IT HERE: Nakii Water Filter Pitcher

2. Glass Food containers

Glass and bamboo food jars

Our kitchen storage containers see a lot of use. With daily wear and tear, we’re bound to replace them fairly often. Swap to more sustainable options that incorporate recyclable materials, like these glass and bamboo jars.

FIND IT HERE: Urban Green Glass Jars

3. BAMBOO dish brush

zero waste kitchen brush

These zero waste kitchen brushes are made from bamboo and natural fibers and feature replaceable heads. If you’re part of Team Sponge, don’t feel left out! There are also eco-friendly alternatives out there made from recyclable materials.

FIND IT HERE: Eplanita Bamboo Dish Brush

4. beeswax wrap

zero waste kitchen wrap made from fabric and beeswax

Beeswax wrap has been around for a while. It’s a great swap for one of the worst single-use plastic offender: cling film. This shibori version looks so good you’ll never look back.

FIND IT HERE: Superbee Reusable Beeswax Wraps

5. silicone drinking straws

Reusable silicone drinking straws

Plastic drinking straws have already been banned in some places and we’re thankfully seeing their paper versions being served more often. To reduce waste even further in your home, invest in a set of reusable straws. They can be made from glass or metal but silicone tends to feel better than colder materials.

FIND IT HERE: Nightingale Silicone Straws

6. muslin produce bags

Reusable produce bags made from cotton

From the grocery store to the kitchen, these cotton bags are a great zero waste swap that will let you eschew plastic produce bags. They’re made from breathable cotton muslin, so just pop them in the wash when they need it.

FIND IT HERE: Leafico Cotton Drawstring Bags

7. recycling bins

Recycling bin in Mint

Make the task of sorting your recycling easy with these bins available in different colors. Be sure to pair them with a biodegradable trash bag since your average trash bag could well outlive you in a landfill.

FIND IT HERE: Brabantia Sorting Bins

8. swedish dishcloths

Reusable and biodegradable Swedish dishcloths

Swedish dishcloths are reusable and biodegradable. They soak up spills so well you won’t even miss your disposable kitchen towels. They do look rather wonky once they dry but you can always hide them in your kitchen drawers.

FIND IT HERE: Reusable Swedish Dishcloths

9. bamboo utensils

Bamboo kitchen utensils

Have you ever left your plastic utensils a little too long on the pan, only to see them MELT into it. Just the tought of how much plastic we ingest this way is enough to make anyone swap to non-toxic biodegradable bamboo utensils…

FIND IT HERE: Riveira Bamboo Utensil Set

10. reusable lunch box

Swap take-away containers for a zero waste lunch box

This bento box is made from bamboo and recyclable plastic. It also comes with wooden cutlery. If you ever eat out for lunch, just ask the restaurant staff if they can fill your box instead of the usual take-away containers.

FIND IT HERE: Umami Bento Box

11. tabletop compost bin

Kitchen compost bin

Reducing waste in the kitchen can also help turn your trash into something useful. This tabletop composter will take in your vegetable peels, eggshells or coffee grounds and reward you with fertilizer. You’ll lower your waste even more when you don’t buy bottles of liquid plant feed!

FIND IT HERE: Bamboozle Kitchen Composter

going further with upcycling

Looking for more ways to reduce waste throughout the house? Check out these upcycling projects:

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