Preparation Tips

Plan simple, easy-cooking, low-dishwashing meals. Bring two-thirds the food you think you’ll need. Prepare and freeze meals in ziploc bags. Experience says you won’t feel like doing much cooking. Go heavy on finger foods (go wraps, sandwiches!) that don’t need individual plates. Forget that messy watermelon. Bring sturdy, reusable cups, mugs, utensils, bowls or plates, not Styrofoam that will blow all over the playa. If you choose paper plates – food scraps go into your wet trash, plates go into your burnable trash. Ask visitors to your camp to¬†BYOM.

Repackage and prepare food in advance. Stock up on a few half-gallon food storage containers and leave the cellophane, plastic wrap, cardboard and other packaging at home! If you bring dozens of small plastic bottles, plan to take every one of them home with you! Better- bring water in big reusable plastic containers plus a few small bottles as personal canteens. Minimize use of glass bottles; those you do bring, keep ’em in camp. For walk-around drinks, use a mug, hydration pack, canteen or plastic bottle. Or a can. There are many good beers in cans!

Plan to separate and sort kitchen trash. Bring recycling container and use sturdy signs to clearly label trash separation and recycling bins. Bring tethers, anchors, containers, and covers, to keep light stuff from blowing away. Make a multi-bin trash holder from buckets (with lids) and PVC pipe or wood. You’ll want separate containers for recyclables, burnables (paper and wood), and nonburnable trash. For food waste use a mesh bag, like an onion bag. The stuff will dry up, becoming light and nearly odorless. Easy!

[Organizing a Communal Kitchen] (from the Burning Man website)

Cooler Tips

  • Dry Ice is cheap and will keep stuff frozen in a cooler.
  • Elevate your meats! When the ice in your cooler melts, it will permeate any bags holding meat and ruin them. Place food in jars, or anything that will not be affected by water, on the bottom of the cooler and the permeable stuff on top.
  • Keep your cooler in a spot that stays shady all day long.