6 ways to save money in the kitchen

Subtle changes can make all the difference

Rather than just cutting back on your food spend or switching brands, there are a number of things you can do to save a bit of money in the kitchen. Check out Quidco Discover’s top tips.

Change the way you cook

Cooking in the oven can be one of the most expensive ways of getting your food prepared. The oven uses more electricity, or gas, then any other cooking appliance. Instead, look to switch how you cook to save money on your utility bills.

Consider using your microwave which cooks food quicker or, my favourite, use a slow cooker. The slow cooker is perfect for cooking cheaper cuts of meat, meaning you can be more thrifty in the supermarket. It also uses just a small amount of electricity, even though it’s on for long periods, and makes your dinner taste great.

I try to bulk cook with my slow cooker too, meaning I can make two dinners in one go; I eat the first portion and freeze the other for another day.

Upgrade your appliances

It’s not a cheap upfront option but when the time comes to replace your fridge freezer, cooker, washing machine, microwave, dishwasher, or any other kitchen appliance be sure to upgrade the energy efficiency to A+ standard or higher. The product information should be clearly marked whether you’re shopping in-store or online.

Although the cost of the appliance may be slightly more than a lower spec model, over the course of its lifetime, you brand new kitchen gadget will save you money every month you use it. Also if you are going to make a major purchase, remember to make sure you get that all important cashback.

Put a lid on it

When cooking on the hob make sure you add a lid to the pot or pan you are using. Not only will it save you time mopping up splashes and spills but it will save you money too.

Boiling food with a lid on reduces cooking times and therefore the amount of energy you need to use. Plus, cooking that food a bit quicker really helps when trying to get dinner on the table on a busy week night.

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Avoid the tumble dryer

Using the tumble dryer can really hike up the energy bills, especially during winter when it takes twice as long for anything to dry.

Putting things outside in the colder months is just not worth it as your clothes will either come back half frozen, or soaking wet after getting caught in another rain shower.

Sometimes a tumble dryer is necessary and if you are using one, try to make sure you can have a really energy efficient one. Also check that you maintain it well by keeping the filters clear and only drying smaller amounts or more important things, rather than the whole load.

Use the kettle carefully

There is loads of energy wasted in the kitchen through the use of the kettle. When boiling the kettle, you should only boil what you need to use. Pour water into your cup and put that in the kettle, rather than adding water straight from the tap. This will make sure you only use what you need.

You could also consider getting an eco-kettle which is said to use 60% less energy than a normal kettle or even a one cup kettle to make sure that’s all you use. Check out Nigel’s Eco Store for a range economical appliances.

Wash at lower temperatures

Washing powders and liquids work wonders nowadays and pretty much every advert for them tells you to wash at a lower temperate as they can handle the dirt. This is an easy way to save money and you can use 40% less energy by turning to 30 degrees.

Also, make sure you wash full loads of clothes, unless your machine has a half load setting as the machine will be doing the same amount of work for half the load.

Ricky Willis is the founder and editor of the award winning Skint Dad blog. As well as hunting down bargains on the High Street and online; you can also find Ricky sharing his money saving ideas on Twitter and Facebook.

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Ricky Willis / @SkintDad

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