As homesteaders, we tend to be crafty and resourceful. Whether it is because of our money situations, or because we just simply want an easier and simpler way of life, we tend to be more eco-friendly too. Does this sound like you? Well if so, then have you considered trying to start a zero-waste homestead? Yep, that’s right. Zero waste. Let’s try to reduce our waste this year, shall we?

A zero waste homestead means exactly what it says. Zero waste. This may seem like an impossible feat. But in reality, with a little perseverance and dedication, you can be well on your way in no time. Let’s delve into the ways one can become a zero waste homestead.

Just so you know: This post contains affiliate links; if you click on a link and make a purchase I might make a small commission, but it does not affect the price you pay! For more information, please see my Affiliate Disclosure.

Zero waste supplies

Eliminate the Disposables

Do you eat on paper plates? Do you use those red solo cups that are so popular at parties and picnics? Is it easier for you to throw away that plastic silverware after a meal? Well, guess what, get rid of all those things. A zero waste homestead means no waste right?

Switch to good old-fashioned dishes, glasses, and silverware! That’s right, you have to wash dishes when you’re done with a meal. No more plates cups and utensils in the trash.

Instead of man-made sponges that are thrown away, why not use loofahs. You can even grow your own right in your yard.

Dishes and silverware

Eliminate the Paper

When you have dinner, switch to cloth napkins that can be used and washed for reuse. You can even make your own in any design you want without being a pro at sewing.

Even your paper towels can be eliminated. Have you heard of unpaper towels? I have no sewing skills at all and I made my own!

You can even purchase reusable toilet paper! I must admit that I am not quite ready to make the leap to reusable toilet paper quite yet, however, it’s available if you are ready to take the plunge!

These are all great ways to work towards a zero waste homestead.

Cloth napkins

Eliminate the Plastic

A zero waste homestead does not use plastic. The easiest way to start eliminating plastic is to use cloth bags for shopping. There are so many cloth totes available both in stores and online. Even groceries can be put in cloth bags instead of plastic.

Check out some reusable totes from Amazon for example. When you’re done with the bags simply return them to the trunk of your car for your next shopping trip.

As I mentioned above, use glasses instead of plastic cups, and eliminate the plastic plates and bowls too. Every bit counts.

Instead of using plastic wrap for your leftovers, why not consider beeswax wraps. They are reusable and you have the choice of making your own or purchasing them premade.

And while you’re at it, look into the new “green” garbage bags. These are eco-friendly, meaning they halo save the planet a bit.

Switch those plastic toothbrushes and hairbrushes for bamboo ones.

Bamboo toothbrush

Repurpose Everything

Another great step towards a zero waste homestead is to reuse everything you can. Those empty spaghetti jars make great storage for leftovers in the fridge, small toys, and trinkets and even for short-term storage of dry goods in the pantry. Check out my post on dry-canning to learn more.

Coffee cans can be recovered and used to hold utensils in the kitchen. I use coffee cans to store food scraps from dinner for my pigs as a treat in the evening.

Old socks become dusters. T-shirts get cut into small rags for washing the cars. Old waterproof boots can be turned into planters for the porch! Why not use those old jeans and an old flannel to make a scarecrow for the veggie garden.

Here are some other repurposed item ideas:

  • an old chandelier to a bird feeder
  • old throw pillows sewed together to make a dog bed
  • an old galvanized bucket on its side as a planter
  • wooden ladders can be a bath towel holder
  • pallets for planters
  • cut down trees become fence posts

Use Your Compost Pile

Most homesteaders have a compost pile and if you don’t, make one! Almost everything can go into the compost pile. You can check out, The Ultimate Guide To Composting, to learn more about what goes into the compost pile. Composting is a great way to reuse your scraps and make a great addition to the soil for your vegetable garden at the same time!

If you don’t have the room outside for a compost pile, then look into a countertop compost bin. It sits on your counter and allows you to fill it up with table scraps while it slowly turns those scraps into compost. I have one and I love it!

Compost bins

Cook From Scratch

If you want a zero waste homestead, start cooking from scratch. Don’t buy spices, make your own blends. Amazon has many options for bulk spices. I buy chili powder in bulk and make my own taco seasoning for example.

Start an herb garden in your backyard near those veggie plots. You can use containers, raised beds, or in-ground plots to grow an abundance of herbs. Then learn how to preserve those herbs you grow so you can have them year-round.

Also, start making your own meals from scratch. Maybe try your hand at once a month freezer cooking. It saves time and eliminates stress when you can pack your freezer full of meals already made and from scratch too! Make your own butter in your Kitchen Aid Mixer.

You can also make your own crockpot bread and even soup in a jar mixes.

Now you are equipped with a lot of great ideas you can use to start a zero waste homestead. Taking small steps will help you achieve this goal. Start slow and take one step at a time.

Start in one area and eliminate things one at a time. Before you know it you will be well on your way to a zero waste homestead.

Do you have any other suggestions you can share? Share them in the comments below.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.