Serve up this healthy sweet potato appetizer for Turkey Day.
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Goodbye harsh chemicals, skin irritants, and synthetic fragrances. Hello clean—the green way! There are many benefits of switching to all-natural cleaning products and avoiding using harsh chemicals and toxins in your home. Not only does using natural cleaners make your space safer for your family (especially kids and pets), it also makes cleaning much more pleasant for everyone involved. Plus, you’ll be supporting environmentally responsible companies that are committed to naturally-derived ingredients, recycled packaging, and more sustainable production practices.
When you’re ready to make the swap, rather than throwing everything away and starting over, use up your existing products and slowly replace items with natural alternatives as you run out. This prevents additional waste and is easier on your wallet. Natural cleaning products are now comparably priced to leading traditional brands, and they are available at most big-box retailers—like Target and Amazon. With so many great options out there, it’s easy to find budget-friendly brands without compromising your values.
Here are a few of my battle-tested, major mess approved brands and tips for green cleaning your home!
From countertops to cooking disasters (and even mopping!), Seventh Generation’s All-Purpose Natural Cleaner is my must-have for pretty much everything. When it comes to hand soap, dish soap, and other all-purpose cleaners, Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap and Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day are always great staples—and they offer refillable packaging options to cut down on waste.
For a deep-clean in the bathroom, I’m a fan of Seventh Generation’s Toilet Bowl Cleaner and Method’s Bathroom Cleaner. Method’s plant-based formula has a refreshing eucalyptus and mint scent and works serious wonders on tile and showers.
The Honest Company’s Laundry Packs are more concentrated than liquid detergents—minimizing water usage in production and making them lighter to ship or even carry home from the store. Seventh Generation’s Chlorine-Free Bleach gets your whites super bright, without the harsh bleach smell. And when it’s time to dry your clothes, ditch the dryer sheets. Instead, prevent static and soften fabrics with reusable wool dryer balls, like these from Molly Sud’s.
It’s easier than ever to get your dishes squeaky clean without the chemicals. Method—the dishwasher detergent I always have on hand—is packed with a whole lot of powerful natural cleaning solution to fight grime, grease, and it comes in an earth-friendly pouch!
Another small switch that can make a big difference in your home is minimizing paper towel waste with super-absorbent bamboo towels. Towels from brands like Econuts and Bambooee are super versatile and are washable for up to 100 uses!
I find that the simplest home remedies are the best cleaners—and easily concocted from ingredients you’re already using in the kitchen. DIY cleaning products can often be the quickest and cheapest options to reach for.
A good, old-fashioned baking soda and white vinegar mixture is the magic solution for almost everything.
KITCHEN: Sprinkle baking soda all over the surface you want to clean. Let sit for a minute before spraying the vinegar and wiping down with a wet cloth. The baking soda acts as an abrasive to scrub pots and pans, and deep cleans the sink and stove top. To sanitize the dishwasher, run it empty with a cupful of white vinegar on the top rack.
LAUNDRY: This same natural combination is a great substitute for bleach in the washing machine.
AROUND THE HOUSE: Mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a spray bottle for glass, mirrors, and windows. You can add a few drops of essential oil to make your own scented cleaning spray.
Lemons are another easy cleaning hack. After cooking or making tea, I’ll save used lemon wedges to rub over the sink (especially around the drain) to remove odors and to clean pots and pans.
To get rid of lingering smells in the kitchen, save your used coffee grounds. Place grounds in a bowl near the stovetop, in the fridge, or sprinkle some in the trash can or sink garbage disposal to eliminate odors naturally. Like salt and baking soda, the grounds also make a great abrasive for tackling those dirty dishes.
Now that you have your guide to tidying up, it’s time to transform your routine for the better. Happy green cleaning!
We all love cheese. And if you don’t love cheese, well, you just haven’t found the right kind for you. If you’re unlucky like me, however, cheese does not like you. Thankfully, we live in 2020, where plant-based cheese recipes are alive and well.
I have been dairy-free for a few years, and cheese is truly the food group I miss the most. As much as we try, we sometimes just can’t get vegan cheese to taste like the real thing. So, I recruited my dairy-loving, cow-consuming friends to be my taste-testers. Their brutal honesty helped me create some “fake” cheese that can actually compete with the real stuff.