Beeswax wraps are a great, environmentally friendly alternative to plastic food wraps. Begin by cutting cotton fabric to your desired size and grating a block of beeswax into small pieces to make beeswax wraps. Then, sprinkle the beeswax over the fabric and bake it until the beeswax melts. Spread the beeswax evenly with a paintbrush, and the wrap is ready to use once it has dried.
Part 1 Cutting the Fabric and Adding the Beeswax
1. Purchase 100% cotton fabric. Use clean, old sheets or pillowcases for a zero-waste option, or go thrifting for fabric with bright patterns. Alternatively, you can buy new cotton fabric from a craft store or online.
The amount of fabric you’ll need is determined by how many beeswax wraps you want to make. 1 yd (0.9 m) of fabric, for example, will yield approximately 3, 12 in 12 in (30 cm 30 cm) beeswax wraps. Make sure the fabric is at least 1 yard wide (0.9 m).
Cotton is required for beeswax wraps because cotton becomes unbreathable when combined with beeswax. This is why beeswax wraps are ideal for storing food.
2. Preheat the oven to 185 degrees Fahrenheit (85 degrees Celsius). Turn on the oven and select the conventional bake setting. Allow the oven to preheat while you prepare the materials for the beeswax wraps.
The beeswax may burn if the oven temperature is raised too high.
The conventional bake setting is represented by two lines, one at the top and one at the bottom of the square. Other ovens, on the other hand, simply have a “bake” setting.
3. Measure the fabric to your preferred size. Use a ruler to measure out either a 12 in × 12 in (30 cm × 30 cm) or an 8 in (20 cm) square. Use chalk to mark out the fabric.
Beeswax wraps come in a variety of different sizes, depending on the type of food that you plan to use them for.
A 12 in × 12 in (30 cm × 30 cm) beeswax wrap is an ideal size to use for covering a bowl, while a smaller 8 in × 8 in (20 cm × 20 cm) wrap is best for sandwiches, fruit, and vegetables.
4. Pinking shears were used to cut the fabric. Make fabric squares in the size you want. You can begin with just one wrap or cut out many squares if you want to make multiple wraps at once.
Pinking shears will keep the fabric’s cut edges from fraying.
5. Grate a packed beeswax block into small pieces. Use a cheese grater to finely grate up the beeswax. You will need around 0.5 ounces (14 g) per 8 by 8 inches (200 mm × 200 mm) wrap that you intend to make.
You can purchase blocks of beeswax from local beekeepers, at craft stores, or online. Make sure that it is high quality, food-grade beeswax. Ask the maker for more information about what the beeswax is suitable for if you are unsure.
If you are making 12 in × 12 in (30 cm × 30 cm) beeswax wraps, you will need approximately 0.8 ounces (23 g) of grated beeswax per wrap.
6. Spread the beeswax all over the fabric. Place the fabric on a parchment-lined old baking sheet, then evenly spread the grated beeswax over the entire surface of the fabric.
Make sure to use an old baking sheet because the beeswax will stick to it and be difficult to remove.
Make each wrap separately if you want to make more than one.
Part 2 Heating the Beeswax
1. Put the fabric and beeswax in the oven for about 5 minutes. Place the old baking sheet with the beeswax-topped fabric in the oven. As soon as the beeswax has melted, remove the baking sheet from the oven.
Keep an eye on the wrap while it’s in the oven because it can burn if left in there for too long.
When the beeswax has melted, the fabric will appear wet.
2. Using a paintbrush, apply the beeswax evenly to the fabric. Make certain that the entire piece of fabric is waxed. Check that the entire piece of fabric is wet, including the corners, as this indicates that the melted beeswax is in all of the appropriate places.
Make sure the paintbrush you’re using is clean, new, and hasn’t been in contact with any toxic substances, such as paint.
If the wax begins to harden before you have had time to properly spread it out, simply return it to the oven until it melts again.
3. Hang the wrap to dry on a clothesline. When the beeswax has completely covered the fabric, hang it up to dry with clothes pegs on a clothesline. If you don’t have a clothesline, hang a piece of rope or string across a doorway to make a makeshift line. The drying time will be no more than 15 minutes.
You’ll know when the wrap is ready to use because it will have cooled and will feel stiff.
Use a damp cloth to remove any beeswax residue from the wraps before using them.
4. Mold the beeswax wrap around food items. Simply lay the wrap flat over the bowl and fold it in at the rim to cover it. Place the food item in the centre of the wrap and fold it around the shape. The heat from your hands will shape the wrap around the shape.
Dry foods such as whole fruits and vegetables, nuts, and sandwiches can be wrapped in beeswax wraps. Foods containing a lot of moisture, such as sliced fruit with a lot of juice or leftover meals, will not keep well in beeswax wraps and should be stored in a container instead.
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