The way food is produced is likely the biggest indicator of the type of impact it could have on the environment. Sustainable cooking starts outside the kitchen.
Unlike dining out or buying pre-packaged food—where there are several layers of sourcing, packaging and preparation that are out of your control—cooking at home allows you to make more sustainable choices at every step of the process, from shopping for the most sustainable ingredients to reducing food waste as you cook.
The more you know in the kitchen, the easier it is to create recipes and save money when it comes to sustainable cooking. Sustainable cooking is a great way to reduce your impact on people, animals and the environment.
Small changes can be made at home towards sustainable cooking that will have a wider impact over the long term. These include:
- Turning down the heat: Does the hob need to be up that high? Or does the oven need preheating? The answer to these is likely to be no. Turn the electricity or gas down a notch. If you're boiling in a pot or pan, put on a lid; this is both efficient for energy and your purse!
- Reducing your liquid: Try to avoid overfilling your pots and pans. Only fill them up and let them bubble away; try measuring out how much liquid you will need, or start small and add to it.
- Waste not, want not: Check the fridge regularly to see what food you have, what's going off soon, what can be frozen, and what veggies are on the turn that can be made into a quick side dish.
- Choosing sustainable food: We mean buying local, seasonal and environmentally friendly food. Try your local farmer's markets, choose products with a Fairtrade stamp and select fish that has been sustainably farmed.
- Taking the bull by the horns: Reduce the amount of meat and dairy you eat! Choose more fresh fruit, grains, vegetables, and pulses instead. You can reduce health risks and greenhouse gases by eating less meat and consuming fewer dairy products.