These sustainable meal preparation tips will help make your holiday meals healthier for both your family and the planet!
The holiday season is upon us, and it’s time to prepare lots of goodies for the holiday table! From tasty holiday treats to sumptuous meals, festive beverages to rich desserts, the holiday season is the time of year when even the least chef-like among us take to the kitchen to prepare at least some of our own food. As you may suspect, we sustainable-living-minded folks are of the firm belief that cooking is becoming a lost art, and that our lives would be both healthier and more ecologically sound if we took back some of our power in the kitchen and learned to make more food for ourselves!
However, besides cooking for yourself, there are other ways to make sure that your holiday meals are more sustainable and better for the planet. Below are 5 tips to keep in mind when shopping for and preparing meals this holiday season and beyond:
- Buy ingredients like grains, flour, and sweetener (and many other things) from bulk/refill options at health food stores. Bring your own reusable glass, stainless steel, or cloth bags to carry the bulk items in.
- Buy organic and local or Fair Trade as much as possible.
- Choose healthy alternatives to highly refined sugars, like: pitted and ground dates, bananas, pure and organic maple syrup, blackstrap molasses, organic dark brown sugar, or local organic sustainable honey.
- Choose healthy alternatives to animal products and animal by-products such as: flax eggs or bananas instead of chicken eggs, plant-based milk instead of goat or cow’s milk, organic olive oil or Fair Trade organic coconut oil instead of butter, and whole proteins from organic soybeans, buckwheat, chia or hemp seeds, rice and beans (or lentils) instead of meat from animals.
- Avoid single-use plastic containers. Instead re-use glass, stainless steel, bamboo, hemp, and other reusable containers, and remember to keep them sanitary/clean.