Energy-Saving Tips in Time for the Holidays — Part 3

Energy-Saving Tips in Time for the Holidays — Part 3

This post is the third in our month-long series featuring tips to help Virginians reduce energy use during this holiday season.To see part 1 and 2 click here.

Cooking up a storm or storing leftovers from holiday gatherings? Consider the following tips to reduce your energy use in the kitchen this season:

Prep time:

  • Your refrigerator loses its cool every time you open the door. To save energy, try gathering all your ingredients in one trip.
  • Defrost your food in the refrigerator to cut down on time and energy spent cooking. It also helps keep your fridge cooler!

Cook time:

  • Waking up early to roast that ham or turkey? Since it takes several hours to cook, skip preheating and help your oven save energy where it can.
  • When your dish is close to finished, turn your oven off and let the remaining heat complete the cooking process.
  • Keep the oven door closed tightly! Use the oven light instead to check on food instead of opening the door. Opening the door can let heat (and money!) escape. 
  • If you’re cooking side dishes or only entertaining a small crowd, consider using your microwave instead of an oven. Microwaves use up to 50% less energy than conventional ovens.
  • When you need to use the stove top, make sure the size of your pot or pan matches the size of the burner.  A six-inch pan on an eight-inch burner will waste more than 40% of the energy.

Clean up:

  • When you’re finished cooking, leave the oven door cracked to release heat into the house to make use of the energy you’ve already used.
  • After all the holiday cooking, your oven is bound to be dirty. If you self-clean the oven right after cooking, you can use existing heat to save energy.

Tell us how you’re saving energy this holiday season on our Facebook page. We’ll feature some of your new ideas on our Twitter feed and Tumblr blog!