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Tips for an energy-efficient kitchen

20140918_kitchen_blogNow that the weather is getting a little cooler, it’s tempting to turn the oven on, throw in a casserole, and warm the kettle for some evening tea.  But all that kitchen work can crank up your electricity usage.

Follow these tips to cook up a storm–without burning up the bills:

  • Buy only Energy Star rated products.  These appliances, marked by a blue label, are certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Energy as efficient.
  • Use a convection oven, which circulates air around the food you are cooking, to save 20 percent on energy.
  • Use a microwave, when possible, to shorten cooking times
  • Bake in glass or ceramic pans, which will reduce oven temperatures by about 25 degrees.
  • Keep the oven door closed.  While it may be tempting to peek in on your food, opening the door leads to heat loss, resulting in longer cooking times and higher energy use.
  • Use the correct burner for the job.  A small pan on a large burner wastes electricity or gas.
  • Turn off your stove burner a few minutes early when boiling food.  The hot water will continue to cook the food while the stove is off.
  • Cut food into smaller pieces to reduce cooking time.
  • Thaw food in the refrigerator, instead of using the microwave or oven.
  • When it’s warm enough, grill outdoors. Grilling uses less energy than a microwave or oven.
  • Run the dishwasher only when it is full to avoid needlessly using energy on multiple loads.

Have any more tips?  Leave them in the comments!