How to save money and energy in your kitchen

Cooking is not something we can easily portion down, but there are a few tasty tricks you can deploy to trim the fat from your power and gas bill. The first thing is simple awareness. 

For a power demand that’s tolerable and expected rather than a sour surprise, develop an understanding of the running costs inherent with each appliance you plug-in or ignite in the kitchen, and how it’s best used to provide economical, delicious results. 

Where there are power-saving modes, chances are they are outlined in the instruction manual — or perhaps in a PDF.

Know your oven

Heating a large cavity with electric elements to high temperatures — often over lengthy periods — ovens are expensive to operate. 

I’m going to use the running costs for a typical fan assisted oven, at 2.5kWh, or 2.5kW per hour (that oven would be rated as 2,500w). 

So if you’re making a long slow roast for say an hour-and-a-half, you can expect to use in the area of 3.75kWh before you fire up the stovetop to use the rings, etc. 

It would be easy to reach 6kWh units of electricity preparing one meal. 

Slow cookers

A slow cooker can deliver a large family meal for 1.3kWh or in some cases even less.

The advantages of a long slow, gentle cook, don’t end there, as slow cooking preserves many nutrients in the food lost through searing temperatures.

We use around 3%-5% of our power for cooking. However, as many non-fan assisted overs come in at 3,000w-5,000w, wattage is not something you should skim over when examining litres and looks. 

Still, let’s venture a cost of discounted peak power of 35 cent per kWh of electricity — that’s €2.10 for that 2,500w fan-assisted meal. 

Now, we all have to live our lives, and no one is suggesting you kibosh the succulent lamb dinner everyone has looked forward to, but there are ways to make the use…

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