Home chefs everywhere are taking a new approach when designing their dream kitchens — they want features that are eco-friendly and environmentally smart. Here are the top trends in eco-friendly kitchen design.

Green counter-tops. The greenest counter tops are made from recycled materials such as glass, cement, porcelain and even paper. These products aren’t just environmentally friendly; they are absolutely stunning with complex colors and upscale designs that fit into any kitchen aesthetic.

Eco-friendly cabinets. Appearance isn’t the only thing home chefs are considering when shopping for cabinetr y. Cabinets made from sustainable materials are in high demand, like bamboo or wood that has been responsibly harvested. Finally, nontoxic paints and varnishes are a must.

Greenhouse garden windows. A garden window above the sink is a popular option for kitchens. Not only do these types of windows let natural light into the space to cut energy expenses, they also feature a recessed ledge ideal for potted plants.

Energy-efficient appliances. Appliances alone account for a whopping 13 percent of a household’s energy costs. Refrigeration and cooking appliances are the biggest energy drains, so it’s no surprise that green kitchens feature Energy Star-approved appliances.

Reclaimed materials. More home chefs are seeking reclaimed materials not only for environmental reasons, but also because these materials give kitchen spaces one-of-a-kind personality.

Smart faucets. Smart faucets offer additional ways to go green — some have motion sensors so with a wave of the hand they quickly turn on and then turn off after a designated amount of time.

The green movement is here to stay and home chefs are embracing kitchen design that offers up-scale elegance while being eco-friendly. Consider these trends when you build your dream kitchen.

This article is courtesy of Brandpoint.