How to Make the Switch to a Paper-Free Kitchen

Thinking about making the switch to a paper-free kitchen but you don’t know what to do? Follow this easy 3-step process!

Thinking about making the switch to a paper-free kitchen but you don't know what to do? Follow this easy 3-step process!

I used to love using paper in my kitchen – paper towels, paper napkins and, every now and then, paper plates.

In fact, the idea of a kitchen without paper never crossed my mind.

Several times a day I sprayed down my table and counters with antibacterial cleaners and wiped everything clean with paper towels. Even when I started using safe cleaners – whether Shaklee or homemade concotions – I still used paper towels.

Two years ago I started feeling guilty about using paper towels. Did I really need them?

I had discovered that I could clean with Norwex microfiber cloths and suddenly, I didn’t need any sprays or paper towels. Without the need for cleaning sprays, I stopped buying paper towels, cold turkey.

Eliminating all paper products in my kitchen

Since paper towels were my big use of paper products, making the switch to cloth wasn’t that terribly difficult. Here’s what I’ve done:

I use cloth napkins at every meal.

Over the years I’ve stocked up when I’ve found great sales. I keep about two dozen on hand and wash them every couple days.

Aside from a stash of themed paper birthday napkins, I don’t keep any paper napkins in our home.

Thinking about making the switch to a paper-free kitchen but you don't know what to do? Follow this easy 3-step process!

I’ve stopped buying paper towels and have found ways to make do.

I use Norwex microfiber for all of my cleaning. I use cloth kitchen towels for drying my hands – and dishes. (I make a change to fresh towels every day, or more often, if necessary.)

I do miss paper towels after I’ve fried bacon or need to cool a batch of cookies. I’ve started using old linen tea towels instead of paper ones to absorb the grease. Because they’re old, I don’t mind if they end up with stains.

(I also could and sometimes do use a cooling rack.)

I don’t buy paper plates.

Without paper plates in my house, I have no choice to use anything but my stoneware Fiesta plates.

I don’t miss paper plates at all – and I can say that even when living without a dishwasher. (I wash all of our dishes by hand!)

Instead of using paper lunch bags, I use resuable lunchboxes.

Or, we recycle plastic shopping bags as lunch bags.

I do keep a roll of waxed paper and a roll of parchment paper on hand for baking needs, but one box of each easily lasts more than a year.

Your paper-free kitchen

Making the switch to cloth isn’t as difficult as you may imagine. Here’s a simple 3-step process for you:

1. First, make a decision to stop replenishing paper goods.

2. Then, prepare.

Watch for great deals on cloth napkins (trust me, they’re out there!) or reusable lunchboxes.

Gather all of your dishtowels so you have a handy stash for moments when you’d typically grab a paper towel.

3. Finally, enjoy the savings!

By eliminating paper products from your kitchen, you’re not only reducing waste, but you’re also saving money. And both are fantastic reasons to make the switch to a paper-free kitchen.

Thinking about making the switch to a paper-free kitchen but you don't know what to do? Follow this easy 3-step process!

What steps are you taking toward a paper-free kitchen? What paper products do you still use?


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Hilary

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3 Comments

  1. Hilary! You’ve inspired me to make the switch! I gave up paper towels a long time ago because I was sick of wasting money on them. (My family still can’t fathom it.) So as of a month ago, we’ve been using cloth napkins at every meal. It makes even an ordinary dinner a bit more fancy and I love not having to throw money away on paper napkins. It all started with a lunch we had at a new friend’s house just a few months back ;)

    1. Aren’t they great?! I love how something as simple as a cloth napkin can make such a difference at mealtime.

      And life without paper towels! I never thought it was possible. But now it seems so strange to use them.

      Too funny … I was sitting here thinking, “I wonder what friend of Keitha’s uses cloth napkins … we have something in common.” :) Duh. :) We need to get together for lunch again soon!

  2. I do use less paper towels then I use to but can’t imagine never using them ????. I do have Norwex microfiber and window towels and been thinking I need to use them more. Old habits are hard to break ????.

    All we use is paper napkins. I might have to look at cloth ones ????. We started using paper plates when we became empty nesters. Easier and less dishes to wash. When my hubby bought me my 1st dishwasher recently in a partial kitchen remodel I thought we would use our dishes more but we haven’t. If I get rid of all this paper my hubby’s REALLY going to wonder about me ????!!!!!

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