I’ve been wanting to make reusable food bags to replace plastic for a while now but I was having a hard time figuring out what kind of waterproof fabric was food safe.
I wanted to make some snack and sandwich bags that can be tossed in the wash so I will continue to research food safe fabric (and I’ll keep you posted!) but for now, I’m happy with using beeswax food wrap.
There are a number of reasons that beeswax is the best wax to use for fabric food wrap.
- Sustainable – Beeswax does not rely on industrial processes to be harvested. If you have your own bees (or a friend with bees), you have a free supply too!
- Edible – If you end up with some beeswax on your food, it’s okay!
- Antimicrobial – A 2017 study found that a similar beeswax food wrap was able to inhibit bacteria growth on food.
My favorite reason to use beeswax though is that it can be “grown” on the homestead, making it a perfect wax for those looking for a more self-reliant life.
Beeswax Food Wrap Tutorial
Beeswax fabric is non-toxic, reusable, washable and, because of the nature of wax, can be molded around food or dishes. They’re also very inexpensive to make (ya gotta love that!).
- Cotton fabric (I used leftover craft fabric from OG’s birthday banner)
- Beeswax (I used these beeswax pastilles but you could use leftover candles or shavings from a bar like this one)
- An old cookie sheet (that can be reserved for beeswax only)
- A paintbrush (that can be reserved for beeswax only)
- Preheat your oven to 150 degrees (or lowest setting).
- Lay a piece of fabric on the cookie sheet (It can be doubled over if needed). Spread beeswax pastilles or shavings over the fabric. How much you need depends on the size and thickness of the fabric.
- Put the cookie sheet in the oven and wait a few minutes for the beeswax to melt.
- Use the paintbrush to spread the beeswax to coat the whole piece of fabric. I found that it worked best to leave the cookie sheet in the oven while doing this but you can take it out too as long as you work fast.
- If you need more beeswax to coat the fabric, add it now and allow to melt again.
- When the fabric is covered in beeswax peel it off of the cookie sheet and hang to dry/cool (this takes just a few minutes).
- Now you can use pinking shears to cut the edges or just start using your beeswax fabric food wrap!
Beeswax Food Wrap Washing and Care
Spot clean with cool water (warm water will melt the wax).
It would also make sense to keep this beeswax food wrap out of the sun or other sources of heat.
I had thought about sewing this fabric into bags for snacks it’s really unnecessary. The fabric folds and stays in place well without sewing it. It’s also easier to clean when you fold food into the large square of fabric rather than stuffing food into a pouch.
I also found this crafter who makes beeswax food wrap and has them for sale in her shop.