Burning Man is one hell of a good time, and an experience I think everyone should have. The nature of this game is radical self-reliance, or the encouragement to rely on one’s inner resources. It is also about communal effort, but let’s not rely on our neighbors to take care of us, lets take care of ourselves.
Knowing what you can and cannot be take on the playa can be hard the first time around, and it is especially hard with food. You are in the desert, be smart about what you bring. There is no fridge for your goodies, so pack smart. Don’t be caught with your pants down. I have created a list of tips and tricks that I found very helpful last year. Below you will also find a suggested grocery list of items that will keep well in the heat and what to bring for cooking, and stocking your BRC kitchen. The climate of Burning Man is tough enough, so why not try to at least eat well? Feel free to leave your tips in the comments below!
Ziplocks are your best friend. Use them to portion out your food or even your ice. This will prevent your cooler from becoming disgusting and wet and stinky. Store every food item in a ziplock to save it from the yucky water. Some suggest elevating your food in the cooler, but I say just put everything in a ziplock and let the cold water keep your food cold!
Keep your coolers item specific. Keep all your beverages (water, beer, coconut water, vodka) in a separate cooler from your food. This will prevent you from having to open your food cooler every time you need a beer or water (which is often).
Bring food high in minerals and salt. Your body does risk the opportunity to become cronicslly dehydrated. Help replenish your minerals and electrolytes by bringing along bananas, coconut water, cabbage, jicama, peanuts, and seaweed.
Wraps, flat bread and crackers last longer than bread. Plus you can dip them and turn them into wraps, tacos and burritos
Coconut oil is your saviour. Use it in your air, in your food, on your playa dried out skin. It will be your saviour—promise.
Granola bars are the perfect snack. Buy granola bars, they don’t NEED to be the healthy ones easier. They are the perfect snack to eat to and from BRC, throw into your backpack while you’re riding around the playa for longer periods of time, when you become too tired (or drunk) to cook. Pack ‘m, eat ‘m, love’m.
Bring two sets of cutlery , bowls and cups. This way you can use one set to eat while the other set lays out in the sun to dry. Also handy when sharing your meal with a friend!
SHARE! Sharing is caring and cooking for a friend is the ultimate gift .
The Vegan Grocery List
Nuts and seeds- be mindful of nuts with shells. I would suggest sticking to nuts without them.
Apples- keep well
Bananas – get unripe ones
Avocado- get unripe ones
Tomato- keeps well
Protein bars – for, uh, protein…
Granola bars- the best snack ever
Cookies- We’re all human…
Zucchini- for raw pasta!
Pesto- best condiment
Himalayan rock Salt
Coconut oil- to cook with, to moisturize and to eat when feeling icky
Coconut water- HYDRATE HYDRATE HYDRATE
Jicama- High in minerals
Cabbage- high in minerals
Chia seeds- keep you hydrated longer
Nutritional yeast- Vitamin B12 and for cheesy flavours
Beans and lentils- Keep you fuller longer and with more energy
Oats- quick and easy breakfast
Naan tortilla wraps or chips- last longer than bread
Mangoes or any other tropical fruit
Pickles- minerals, yo
Nut mylks in tetra paks- they can stand not being refridgerated
Sprouts- so fun to make on the playa
Tamari, soy sauce or BRAGGS- to flavour all meals
Rice or quinoa
Peanut or almond butter
Potatoes- store easily, cook easily
Watermelon- keeps well when not refrigerated
Garlic- flavour and for antiviral properties
Grapefruit- Vitamin C
Oranges- high in vitamin C
Lime- for beer and drinks
Nori or other seaweed
Bouillon- use to make soups or for flavouring dishes without bring along your spice rack.
Chutney- add some flavour to your meals
Spices: curry powder, chili, cayenne, mustard, salt and pepper or staples.
Wine – duh
Beer – obviously
Liquor- need I say more?
Kitchen Utensils and Tools
More than likely you are part of a large camp with a communal kitchen, so between all of you I am sure you have a plan for stocking it. Here some items to consider, not everyone thinks of the bare minimum 😉
Biodegradable dish soap
2 large buckets
Measuring cup and spoons
A couple pots
Wooden spoons/slotted spoons
Bowls of all shapes and sizes
Plates and cups
Sponges and dish rags
A smile and a song