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The Best Eco-Friendly Alternatives to Kitchen Roll

Looking for eco-friendly alternatives to kitchen roll? Read on!

When it comes to the kitchen I’ve already covered eco-friendly alternatives to cling film. However, what about plastic-free and eco-friendly alternatives to kitchen roll?  

Kitchen roll is that other so-called kitchen staple. It’s undeniably very useful. However, as a single-use and disposable product packaged in plastic, it isn’t the greenest.  Dirty kitchen roll is also not recyclable. However, don’t worry, I’ve got four eco-friendly alternatives that are kind to the planet, and still pull their weight in the kitchen.

The Eco-Friendly Alternatives to Kitchen Roll

If you’re ready and looking to make the switch, then I’ve got some great zero-waste and eco-friendly alternatives to kitchen roll up my sleeve for you! 

If you’re not ready, pop back later when you’re ready, no pressure!  When it comes to green living my all-time number one tip is to make one small green switch at a time.   It’s much less overwhelming. And it’s so much easier to find a starting point, rather than trying to green all the things all at the same time.    

Go Kitchen Roll-Less

cleaning cloths that are kind to the environment

One of my easiest eco-friendly alternatives to kitchen roll is to keep a drawer or basket filled with cloths

My working mum’s budget doesn’t stretch to having a basket full of organic cloths. As such, I buy cheap as chips cotton cloths from the supermarket or from Wilko when I find them minimally packaged. Anything that’s not single-use paper towel is a big positive in my eyes, so I don’t feel guilty about it.  If it’s what you can afford then don’t feel guilty either.   

For an even more frugal and green approach, you can also cut up old clothes or towels that are way past their best, and use them as kitchen roll alternatives too.  If you’ve got a sewing machine you might want to stitch the edges with a simple and quick running stitch to prevent fraying.     

To use, I just grab a cloth when I need to wipe a spill, or for any other kitchen roll related task. I then pop the dirty cloth in the washing machine when I’m done.  Job done.

Make Your Own Kitchen Roll

reusable kitchen roll diy

A random pile of cloths stacked up in your kitchen perhaps doesn’t appeal to your aesthetics. Or perhaps you want an eco-friendly alternative to kitchen roll that still looks like kitchen roll. I understand this, as sometimes it easier to make the leap to reusables if things look the same.

The good news is that there are heaps of reusable kitchen roll tutorials out there.  This one, from A Beautiful Mess, is pretty comprehensive.  

eco friendly alternatives to kitchen roll

If you aren’t particularly crafty or are too time poor (me, on both counts!), then thankfully you can buy a roll of reusable kitchen roll on Etsy.  This one*, from Earth Kind Creations on Etsy, is pretty and practical.  

Use A Plate

eco friendly kitchen roll swaps

I have a feeling you will either be with me or not on this one.  When I was growing up in the 1980’s my mum often served us food on a piece of kitchen roll. A sandwich, or toasted cheese, or a bit of cake, it was always served up on a piece of kitchen roll.  I’m not dissing my mum. She worked full time and didn’t have time to be doing a constant stream of dishes that 3 kids create. Kitchen roll plates it was.  Was that just us or did you do that too?

This one was so ingrained on me. I honestly thought it was the MAIN use of kitchen roll! Therefore, it took me a long time to break this one, but now I always serve food up on a plate.  It helps that we have a dishwasher!

Reusable Napkins As A Kitchen Roll Alternative

easy eco-friendly alternatives to kitchen roll

This one is another throwback from my childhood.  For my packed lunches my mum wrapped my sandwiches in kitchen roll. Alternatively, she popped a bit of folded up kitchen roll in my lunchbox to either mop up any leakages or to act as a napkin.  I do this for my own kids now, whenever I make them a packed lunch, but with washable napkins.  

Pro tip: dark coloured napkins are king at hiding an all manner of food stains!  

Have you found any other eco-friendly alternatives to kitchen roll?  As always do let me know in the comments below! I’ve also got loads of other eco-friendly kitchen hacks. From plastic-free dishwasher detergent to making your own beeswax wraps, to my guide to natural cleaning products to DIY, and more.

Life & Style

Ethical Christmas Gift Guide 2018

ethical christmas gift guide 2018

It’s that time of year again. Christmas is less than 6 weeks away! As such, I’ve put together my annual ethical Christmas gift guide for 2018 packed full of ethical ideas for him, her, and for little ones.  From vegan, to palm oil-free, to plastic-free, to zero waste, to organic, I hope there’s something here for everyone.

I don’t subscribe to the idea that you should spend lots of money at Christmas. Therefore, all of my ideas are around the £30 mark or less and start from just £8.  

If you are after a more up-to-date guide, do check out my new guide to eco-friendly gift ideas for 2021.

Ethical Chirstmas Gifts For Him and Her

This post contains affiliate links

Here are my top ethical Christmas gift ideas for 2018:

DIY origami paper lamp kit* (£19.95) from OWL Paper Lamps.  I love this paper lamp kit that you make yourself (full instructions provided!).  Please note, this item ships from Portugal so bear this in mind with shipping times. 

Stainless Steel Lunchbox* (£18) by Green Tulip.  A great gift for anyone.  I have a stainless steel lunchbox that I use for work that my partner pinches on a regular basis!  

Soap, candle, and flannel gift set* (£21.50) from Soapdaze.  I love Soapdaze, and this gift box packed with a vegan candle, handknitted facecloth, and vegan soap is a lovely gift for someone that deserves a good pampering.  

Beeswax Food Wraps (£15) from Abeego.  I love my beeswax wraps, and I think they made a lovely gift.  Alternatively, you can make your own wraps. It’s really easy – promise!

Succulent enamel pins* from Katy Pillinger Designs (£18 for 3).  A cute gift for your friends.  Split them up so you all have one each, or give them all to one lucky recipient.  

Fresh Clean Home (from £8.30). Currently reduced on Amazon* but also available at other retailers.  I have it on very good authority that this book is brilliant for anyone that’s keen to give making their own cleaning products a go ;)  You could even gift it with some amber spray bottles* and/or a bottle of liquid castile soap*. 

Vegan and Palm Oil Free Pamper Gift Set (£18.70) from Bloomtown.  Vegan?  Check.  Palm oil-free? Check.  This gift set is perfect for anyone looking to indulge in a bit of natural beauty.

Vegan and plastic-free candle* (£11) from Vegan Bunny.  After a delicious smelling soy candle from a plastic-free company?  Vegan Bunny is the place to go!  

From clockwise, top left:

The Danish Art of Whittling (RRP £9.99).  I have been ogling this in my local bookshop and it looks like a wonderful guide to whittling (my newfound favourite hobby).  

Hydroflask (£23.99).  I love my Hydroflask – I wrote an ode to it here – and I promise, whoever you gift it to is sure to love it too.  

Safety Razor* (£32.50) from Wearth.  For anyone looking to swap from plastic razors.  

Bamboo Multi-Tool* (£15).  I  have one of those for my bike and it’s by far one of the most useful things I carry with me on a daily basis, and not just for my bike.  There are a few things you can’t mend with a multi-tool!  

Guppy Friend* (£25) from Ethical Superstore.  For ocean conscious pals that want to help stop microfibres from their laundry.  

Georganics Tooth Care Set (£19.90)* – A complete oral care gift set for anyone that wants to green their dental routine.  

Ethical Gift Ideas for Kids

Pretend Play Kitchenware Set* (£29.99) from Toby Tiger.  This sweet set contains enamel pans and metal utensils, and it’s so lovely to find a plastic-free set.  I could imagine this being a lovely hand-me-down set that will last for decades.  

The Lorax: How To Save The Planet Edition* (£11.41) from Harper Collins. We have this book and my kids love it.  As well as containing the classic Lorax story from Dr. Seuss, it’s also packed full of ideas on how kids can help the environment.  

Paper Bead Craft Kit* (£11.95) from Ethical Superstore.  Is there a kid that doesn’t love crafting?  I certainly haven’t met one yet.  This kit allows kids to make beads from recycled paper, which can then be used to make jewellery.  Hopefully, adults can get a shot too!  

Banana Pyjamas* (£19.99) from Toby Tiger.  These fun GOTS-certified organic cotton are sure to be a hit at bedtime.  These beauties come in lots of other fun patterns too.  

Personalised Water Bottle* (£15) from Not On The High Street.  Which kid doesn’t love seeing their name printed on anything?  I know when I was little I used to get incredibly excited when I saw my name printed on anything in a gift shop.  Now some 30 years later my kids are the same.      

Recycled Fire Engine (£19.95) from Ethical Superstore.  This cute fire engine is made from recycled milk bottles and is sure to provide tons of fun.

ps: here are 10 zero-waste and plastic-free shops on Etsy if you’re looking for more low-impact gift ideas, and here are some more lovely kids eco-friendly gift ideas.  I also have a great post on how to shop ethically online.

Do also check out my guide on how to have an ethical Christmas (without the stress).