It’s no secret the kitchen is the heart of the home. From early-morning coffee rituals to Sunday family dinners and all the snack stations in between, it’s where we and our tummies love to hang out. Foodies unite!

And if you’re anything like us, there’s nothing more satisfying than preparing a knockout meal for the ones you love. But between keeping track of cook times, ingredients, and clean-up, there’s a lot going on. That’s why we’ve wrapped up four simple ways you can save energy when cooking up a storm.

1. Get Cosy With Your Slow Cooker
A slow cooker or crockpot is a pretty efficient way to prepare a whole meal and what’s more, it requires minimal effort from you. To put it into perspective, the typical power use of a crockpot is only 230 watts, whereas a cooktop can use up to 2,200 watts and an oven approximately 1,900 watts.

What’s more, using a slow cooker or crockpot is so easy. Simply chuck in all the ingredients before you head out the door, or jump on eight hours of Zoom meetings, and come home to a ready-made meal. Plus, if you can’t fathom turning on a stove in the peak of summer, a slow cooker just might be the answer to your dinner dilemmas. Whether you’re craving a succulent stew, pulled meat, or even a gooey pudding, head over to NZ Herald for some slow cooker recipe inspiration.

2. Jump On The Meal Prep Train
One of the easiest ways to save both yourself and your power bill from high energy usage is to get on board the meal prep bandwagon. The benefits for you? You’re only having to cook a few times a week, instead of three times a day. We’re here for that. And when it comes to saving energy, doubling recipes and using your appliances less is an easy win. Just simply store your meals in stackable tupperware, let them cool, and then pop them in the freezer for another day. It’s that easy.


3. Get Your Family To Do The Dishes
We’re only kidding with this one… kind of. Put it this way, if YOU want to save some personal energy, put your kids, flatmates, or significant other on dish duty. But if you’d like to save a smidge off your power bill, some simple steps can make a difference. Tone down on hot water if you’re hand washing, and scrape all the debris off the plates before plunging them into the sink. If you’re a dishwasher person (look, we don’t blame you), try to only run full loads and use the ‘eco’ setting on your appliance.

4. Check In With Your Fridge
Since it’s usually running 24/7 all year round, your fridge is certainly the MVP appliance when it comes to using up a chunk of energy. So you’ll want to check in on it once in a while to make sure it’s running at optimal temperature. Your fridge should be between 3°C and 4°C, and your freezer should be between -15°C and -18°C. An easy way to measure this is to pick up a fridge thermometer at your local appliance store, place it in the centre of the fridge for 24 hours, take the reading, and then adjust the temperature dial accordingly. Plus, some simple hacks like cooling your food before putting it away, checking the seal is intact, and keeping the door shut can cut down power costs straight away.




The information provided in this article is of a general nature and not intended to be a substitute for personalised, professional advice. Mercury recommends that you always seek appropriate advice from a qualified professional to suit your individual circumstances. Links to external, non-Mercury websites are provided as a reference only, and do not imply a partnership or endorsement of their content.