There are lots of ways to make your restaurant more sustainable. Going green will help the planet, save money, and attract more customers!
Here are 15 easy ways to make your restaurant more sustainable, plus tips and resources to get you started! We hope this helps you on your sustainability journey! This article may contain affiliate links and we may earn a commission on any products purchased.
Quick Picks - Easiest Ways to Be More Sustainable
Most popular picks that our readers use the most.
14 Ways to Make Your Restaurant More Sustainable
1. Offer Biodegradable Straws
Plastic straws can hurt animals and pollute our oceans and beaches.
2. Use Sustainable Takeout Containers
If your restaurant offers takeout or delivery, use ecofriendly takeout containers instead of plastic or Styrofoam.
Similarly, ecofriendly packaging is easy to buy in bulk on Amazon.
These containers are the #1 best sellers on Amazon. They are made of sugarcane fiber and are 100% biodegradable and plastic free.
Furthermore, they are good quality, microwave-safe, and oil-resistant. Perfect for any restaurant!
3. Use Plant-Based Compostable Food Gloves
Food preparation can be ecofriendly as well! Try these plant-based compostable food gloves that are plastic-free. They are inexpensive and good for the planet!
4. Use Biodegradable Trash Bags
Likewise, use biodegradable trash bags instead of plastic trash bags.
5. Use a Green Web Host Like GreenGeeks
If your restaurant has a website, then you can go 300% green with the click of a button by using GreenGeeks.
Every website is hosted on a server. Unfortunately, these servers consume tons of energy and are powered by fossil fuels.
GreenGeeks will host your website with renewable energy for only $2.95 per month! They will even transfer your website for free and will plant a tree when you sign up! Use our special discount below to sign up today and save money.
6. Switch to Electric Hand Dryers
Additionally, you can replace the paper towels in the bathrooms with electric hand dryers. The hand dryer below has lots of positive reviews, is inexpensive, and plugs into the wall with a normal outlet.
This is an easy step to reduce waste and make your restaurant more sustainable.
7. Use Less Water
Installing tank banks is easy! Just hang them in the toilet tank; you don't have to get your hands dirty, and maintenance isn't required.
Second, add an automatic sensor to your existing faucets. The automatic sensor below screws on to any standard faucet and automatically turns off the water when you pull your hands away!
Installation is simple and doesn’t require a plumber. All the tools you need are included in the kit!
8. Use Ecofriendly Cleaning Products
Avoid cleaning products containing toxic chemicals. Instead, look for all-natural, plant-based cleaning products like the one below.
9. Install Energy Efficient Light Bulbs (LED)
Energy efficient light bulbs are better for the environment. Plus, they’ll save you money on your monthly electricity bill!
Energy-efficient and LED light bulbs come in all shapes and sizes. There is something for every need and every budget!
10. Use Smart Plugs and Smart Power Strips
Automatically save energy by using smart plugs. Smart plugs turn off lights, fans, and appliances automatically. You can use your phone to set a timer and never leave lights or appliances on again!
11. Use a Smart Thermostat
Alternatively, you could use an energy efficient thermostat that conserves energy by itself.
For example, the Nest Thermostat programs itself to save energy. It learns the temperatures you like and creates a schedule that saves electricity and money.
12. Use Pens Made from Recycled Water Bottles
Have your staff use pens made from recycled plastic bottles to write down customers’ orders.
They are just as good as traditional pens but are better for the environment!
Check out the great reviews on Amazon!
13. Reduce Food Waste
Excess food that goes to landfills releases methane gas that contributes to global warming. Furthermore, the resources used to produce that food also go to waste.
Make a change by donating your restaurant’s excess food! Go to RescuingLeftOverCuisine.org and sign up to donate leftover food. There is no minimum, and the volunteers will come, pick up your food, and donate it to people in need.
14. Source Ingredients Locally Whenever Possible
When possible, source ingredients locally from nearby farms or farmer’s markets. You can use the US Department of Agriculture’s Directory to find local farms and businesses in your area.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is restaurant sustainability?
Restaurant sustainability refers to taking steps to go green and have less of an impact on the environment. Any restaurant can be more sustainable by making small changes to the supplies they use and how they operate.
2. Why is restaurant sustainability important?
Restaurant sustainability is important because we all must do our part to help the environment by stopping global warming and reducing our carbon footprint. Also, customers are more likely to be loyal to ecofriendly brands and businesses.
3. How can I make my restaurant more sustainable?
Start with making small changes. Swap out your traditional trash bags for biodegradable trash bags. Do the same with takeout containers, straws, and food preparation gloves.
Use all-natural, plant-based cleaners and conserve water and electricity by using automated products such as faucet sensors and smart plugs.
Most ecofriendly products are easy to purchase in bulk on Amazon.
4. Are there low-cost ways to make my restaurant more sustainable?
Yes, there are plenty of low-cost ways to make your restaurant more sustainable. In fact, making your restaurant more sustainable will decrease your utility bills and save you money.
For instance, purchasing energy efficient light bulbs and using pens made from recycled materials are low-cost ways to go green. Finally, if your restaurant has a website then switch hosting providers to GreenGeeks and pay as little as $2.49 per month to power your website with renewable energy.
5. What are some examples of restaurant sustainability?
Some examples of restaurant sustainability are, White Maple Café in Ridgewood, New Jersey. They use LED lighting, high-efficiency hand dryers and toilets, low-spray valves, and recycled paper takeout containers. Additionally, they only give out straws upon request and provide many vegetarian options on their menu which have lower carbon footprints than meat-based dishes.
Another example is LongHorn Steakhouse. Darden Restaurants, the owner of the Longhorn brand, has taken steps to use products made from recycled materials and conserve water and electricity in all of its stores. For example, LongHorn uses recyclable and easy-to-replace carpet tile, enzyme cleaners that do not require rinsing, and LED lighting that uses up less energy.
- 5 Tips to Help Keep the Environment Clean - Doing your part to help keep the environment clean doesn't have to be hard! Here are 5 easy tips anyone can use today!
- Environmental Impact of the Coffee Trade - Do you know what your cup of coffee is costing the planet? The answer will surprise you.
- 25 Go Green Tips for the Office – Employees can make changes at their workplace to help the environment. Here are 25 go green tips that every office should use!
- Environmental Impact of Styrofoam Cups - Learn how Styrofoam cups hurt the environment and what you can use instead.
- How to Write an Environmental Policy in Less Than 20 Minutes - Over 1,000 organizations have used this easy step by step guide.